By Sarah Ebright, Guide
My favorite section of any outdoor gear store is the area with all the kitchen gadgets. It is constantly changing, and anytime I’m shopping, I’ll always stop by to see the latest new item. Over the years, I’ve found a few gadgets to be extra-helpful (and worth their weight in my pack), so I thought I’d share them with you! Here goes!
- Pot scraper: The only drawback of this small, lightweight object is I’m afraid of losing it! This tiny piece of plastic is designed to scrape against your pots and bowls to clean up any extra food. Whether you choose to pack it out or lick it clean, it reduces food particles in your dish water, and makes clean-up a breeze!
- Wire mesh strainer: This is my second defense against leaving a trace with my dishwater. I’ll pour my dishwater through this screen to catch any additional food particles I missed with my scraper, and pack them out, keeping a clean camp (which is great in bear territory!). For an even lighter option, just cut a piece of screening.
- MSR Alpine Strainer: A spatula, cheese grater, and strainer all in one, a meal hardly ever passes by when I don’t need it. It’s great for straining pasta, and I can pack my cheese in a solid block (more compact and less likely to spoil), shredding it in the field. And of course, it’s my go-to spatula for flippin’ pancakes.
- Leatherman: It’s always by my side in the kitchen, ready to chop ingredients, open a can, or grab a hot pot off the stove. Also handy for field repairs, it’s within an arm’s reach on any Alaska hiking or rafting trip.
- Hand Sanitizer: When it comes down to it, the ultimate backcountry kitchen tool is my hands, and it’s important to keep those as clean as possible. Small 2-3 oz bottles of hand sanitizer can be refilled at home from larger jugs, and should be the first kitchen item unpacked and used. Use it liberally and often out there folks.
So check these out the next time you’re in the local gear shop, and maybe give one a try on your next adventure!