How to Make Your Own Beeswax Food Wraps.

Wondering if you can make beeswax food wraps?  You bet you can and it’s easy.  Also, STOP worrying that they don’t work or they’re hard to clean. They do work and they’re easy to keep clean. Here’s how to make them.

Reduce, reuse, recycle.

I do those things.  Sometimes.  When I feel like it.  More often than not, I do do those things, but I’m a human person living in modern times so sometimes I don’t.

I’m a firm believer in doing what you can when you can.  Use your recycling bins, but if you’re close to a mental breakdown from cooking, working, cleaning the house, dealing with a broken toilet, a screaming child and/or a slightly insane boss … don’t beat yourself up over throwing that one recyclable container in the garbage because the ease of doing so is the only thing  keeping you from jumping into the nearest volcano.

The 5 people who live in a pile of leaves and do everything possible to not make an imprint on Mother Earth – including not wearing clothing and eating only bugs, (that have died naturally) – aren’t the only ones saving the planet.  

Your small contribution as a regular person living in a regular home has a huge impact. Even if you don’t feel like it does.

Which brings us to my next point of interest.  Using beeswax wraps for storage instead of plastic bags. More specifically – making your own!

No matter how good hearted we are, we were born into a world of convenience so just because something is better for the environment doesn’t mean we’re going to immediately convert to it.

If something doesn’t perform well, isn’t easy to use or costs too much we aren’t going to use it. Which is why I have this next question:


Beeswax wraps are easy to use and do exactly what they’re supposed to.  If cost is the issue, then you can stop relying on that excuse because you can make a whole drawerful of beeswax wraps with some fabric and beeswax.

No more excuses.

How do beeswax wraps work exactly??

These sheets of fabric covered in a thin layer of beeswax will warm up in your hands making them moldable. You can shape them to a fruit, bowl or cut onion just like you would cling wrap.

Beeswax wraps not only seal your food, but they also let it breathe! Plastic doesn’t do that.


How to Make Beeswax Wraps

WHAT YOU NEED: Beeswax (candle remnants or a block), organic cotton fabric & an oven.

(you can use any cotton, but if you’re an organic kind of person you’re going to want to make sure you’re using organic cotton)

  • Gather a few pieces of 100% cotton fabric and put them on a baking sheet lined with tin foil.

I used leftover fabric scraps for this project and flour sack tea towels from my screen printed tea towels that didn’t turn out great.

  • Preheat your oven to its lowest setting. 150°F is ideal, but up to 170°F is fine too.


  • Shave and then chop a couple of ounces of beeswax.

You can use an old candle or buy beeswax beads, or a whole hunk of beeswax for this.

Amazon sells Beeswax beads for $10 for a pound of them.  And they claim they’re cosmetic grade!!!!!  (I’m feigning excitement over this.  Cosmetic grade is a made up thing. It literally means nothing, it’s just a marketing scheme)


  • Sprinkle the fabric with a light layer of beeswax.

About this much.  Maybe a teensy bit more.

You might have heard about adding pine resin to beeswax wraps. And you can!  But if the thought of sourcing tree resin is what’s stopping you from making beeswax wraps, good news – you do NOT need tree resin to make good wraps.

  • Put them in the oven for 10 minutes (or until wax is melted).

The fabric will be soaked through with wax when you remove them.

  • Take them off the hot baking sheet IMMEDIATELY.

If you leave them on for even a few seconds they’ll cool down and stick to the tin foil or the beeswax will become clumpy.


They’re beautiful.  I love them.

Now it’s all about finishing them.

You can leave them just as they are as squares or you can finish the edges with pinking sheers.

I’ve also added a couple of buttons and some butcher twine for closing one of mine to make a beeswax sandwich wrap or snack bag.

I know you’re worried about the ick factor. Don’t be.

Are beeswax wraps hygienic? 

You bet they are. I know, it seems weird to reuse something over and over but beeswax wraps have the benefit of being partly made by the world’s most magical creature. The bee.

Beeswax is a natural antibacterial. See here for scientific reference on that.

How long do beeswax wraps last?

If you take care of them and learn to revive them (you learn how to revive your old beeswax wraps in this post) these wraps will last for years. I’m personally on year 7 of some of mine.

Care.  All you need to do is rinse the wraps under warm water and give them a rub with a dishcloth and some mild soap.  Don’t use really hot water or your beeswax might melt but warm water is fine. 

If your beeswax wraps (homemade or purchased) start to get dry or cracked you can revive them to their original state using this method. 

Use.  I’ve used my original wraps since 2013 and revived them once. They’re still performing perfectly.  I use the Beeswax wraps to wrap cheese, sandwiches, carrots,  Portobello mushrooms, bowls of soup  cut vegetables and more. 

Just ignore the text in the video below, I grabbed it from my Instagram account to show you how easy they are to use and  how well they work.


Opinion.  They’re great.  They really do work.  The warmth of your hands allows you to mould the beeswax to whatever shape you want and it stays there.  Everything has stayed as fresh as can be with the exception of a sandwich I left wrapped for 2 days, which started to get stale around the edges.  

Problems.  They smell like beeswax.  I do NOT see this as a problem but if you have an aversion to how beewax smells you won’t like it.

How to Make Your Own Beeswax Food Wraps.

How to Make Your Own Beeswax Food Wraps.

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Active Time: 2 minutes
Total Time: 17 minutes

Easy, fast beeswax wrap tutorial for the DIYer.


  • 100% cotton fabric cut into squares or rectangles.
  • 100% beeswax (beads, blocks or candle remnants)


  • Oven
  • Knife
  • Scissors


    1. Preheat your oven to its lowest setting. 150°F is ideal, but up to 170°F is fine too.
    2. Gather a few pieces of 100% cotton fabric and put them on a baking sheet lined with tin foil.
    3. Shave and then chop a couple of ounces of beeswax.
    4. Sprinkle the fabric with a light layer of beeswax.
    5. Put them in the oven for 10 minutes (or until wax is melted).
    6. Take them off the hot baking sheet IMMEDIATELY.
    7. Hold the wraps up until they cool and solidify (this will just take a few seconds) then lay them down flat.


If your wraps get cracked or worn over time, just stick them back in the oven at the lowest temperature and remelt them. They'll come out like new!

Some people add resin to their wraps. This helps the wraps to "cling" to glass and itself. It isn't mandatory to use resin! They work extremely well without it.

So, reduce, reuse, recycle.  When you can.  When you can’t?  Avoid all volcanos.


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How to Make Your Own Beeswax Food Wraps.


  1. debra says:

    Oh for heaven’s sake, this means having to think if there’s ham on that cheese sandwich, remember to rinse in cold water only, don’t leave the beeswax cloth on the counter on a hot day, store separately so as not to get wax on the other stuff in the drawer…what’s wrong with waxed paper and waxed paper bags? More sanitary, less fussy.

    • Karen says:

      HI Debra – Well there’s nothing wrong with Waxed paper. I use it too. This is just an alternative that involves no waste at all and are much more attractive to use. And … they’re really not as difficult as you’re describing. Ham on the sandwich is fine, feel free to leave them on the counter on a hot day, I throw mine right in the drawer with a bunch of other stuff. Yes I have to wash them with cold water but it’s no harder to remember that, than to remember not to wash my face with ketchup every night, LOL. ~ karen

  2. Suzie Q says:

    You buy bags specifically for cat poop? Why not use your plastic grocery bags as cat poop bags? Or, for that matter, why not use used sandwich bags for the poop instead of making these things? If you’re going to use plastic bags anyway, why not use them for that and then avoid buying brand new plastic that will end up in the trash immediately?

    • Karen says:

      I’m in Canada where things are a little different than the USA. a) the cat poop bags are biodegradable b) I don’t use plastic grocery bags. No one does. If you want plastic bags with your groceries you have to pay for them. c) a sandwich bag isn’t big enough for cat poop. ~ karen

      • Suzie Q says:

        I see. Fair points! I only mentioned plastic grocery bags because you did.

      • Carolyn Arnett says:

        Just had a conversation with fellow less plastic user about our cat poop issue. Then I found that scooping onto a sheet of newspaper every day, folding that up and placing it in a paper shopping or grocery bag works just fine. Since the weather is still cool here, the large bag can be left in the garage for a week until garbage day. Will see what I need to do when the weather gets warmer. Possibly will collect into a covered bucket.

  3. Becca says:

    I found the beeswax in the basement and found a nice yard of muslin. First wrap is in the oven right now. I’m going to have to figure out a way to do bigger pieces than I can currently fit on any of my baking sheets.

    I’ve also made a fresh batch of Board Butter. This time I’m making it with Almond Oil instead of mineral oil. Smells divine and my hands are like silk after massaging all the kitchen wood.

  4. Janet says:

    Probably a stupid question, but did you sew the bottons on prior to baking on the beeswax? Seems pretty tough to sew through the final product…
    Thanks for all the great hints! You rock!

    • Karen says:

      Hi Janet – I sewed the buttons on afterwards. The beeswax is no problem to put a needle through. ~ karen!

      • Carolyn Arnett says:

        I was wondering the same thing. Of course I run my thread through beeswax and press it with the iron before I do hand sewing to keep the thread strong and untwisted so this just makes sense.

  5. korrine says:

    Guess what everyone is getting for Christmas this year? What was the other awesome thing you made with beeswax? Was it some kind of balm?

  6. Erin says:

    Great post! I’m definitely making these.

    BTW, I’ve found that living off grid (although fully clothed with no intentional bug eating) is all about compromise. Yes, I guiltily fling the scary recyclable cottage cheese container in the garbage if it is growing a science experiment. I did it yesterday in fact. Life goes on. I love your take on doing the best you can, as you can.

    Thanks for your research and sharing this project with us.

    • Karen says:

      LOL, that’s exactly what I was talking about. The moldy bread, the writhing sour cream … straight into the garbage, container and all. ~ karen!

  7. Natika33 says:

    I reuse my ziplock bags until they are falling apart, but this is even better! Definitely more swank looking! (^_^) Thanks!

  8. Maria says:

    These are cool. I still use wax paper and I think the brand of bags are Waxtex, for about $2 a box.

    Another idea for container/tote/wrap is a simple Furoshiki wrap here’s a demo video I found on how to make the wrap – I use a kitchen towel as they double as napkins once you unwrap: (Zero Waste Lunch)

  9. Patrick says:

    I never even knew something like this existed! I’ll definitely try making these once I graduate and have that much sought after “free time”

    • Karen says:

      Good for you. It’s fun and it really only takes a few minutes if you have the crap on hand. Although I suppose a lot of people at school don’t have fabric scraps and beeswax on hand, LOL. ~ karen!

      • Patrick says:

        You’d be surprised what this art student has in his basement. I seem to recall a project where I made garden gnome head candles a few years ago :)

  10. Melissa says:

    I actually pinned beewax fabric wraps just yesterday, but from a company called I thought “hey, I bet I could make those!” And you went and figured it out!

    I wonder if you had big globs of wax, and then quickly spread it over the cloth with a bench scraper, like if you were silkscreening, you could get a more even coverage? Or does the melting of wax shards do enough?


  11. Amy says:

    This may be my favorite post you’ve done to date. I had been wishing that I knew a way to make beeswax fabric so I didn’t have to go buy it. You must be a mind reader. :)

  12. Marion says:

    What an awesome idea! My husband could (tries to) eat sandwiches every day. This would be much better than going through all those sandwich bags. Sometimes I just hate (HATE!) washing them out. I do it because if I don’t I feel guilty, but still, I cannot stand it. Something about the way they feel in the water with soap. ick.

  13. Barbie says:

    I am going to do this as well! I have lots of scraps of cotton and we have just recently gone vegan and all natural. So this is perfect timing.

    PS: The vegan thing…..kinda hate it…. vegetarian …I can handle that, but the vegan part is killing me. NO FLAVOR! I miss cheese! This foodie is having a hard time with that.

  14. Miia says:

    I love your sanity clause.

    Also the project is great!

  15. I made one last night! Just wanted to report back that it was super easy (honestly, active time involved, about 2 minutes to cut the fabric and scatter on the wax).

    I cut it with pinking shears first, then after it had been in the oven, put it on a wire baking rack to ‘dry’. It hardened up, and then I wrapped my cheese in it! It molds to the shape of the food really easily, and I found I didn’t need a string, it stayed shut just fine.

    Going to make more tonight. Thanks Karen, I love this site.

  16. Tricia Rose says:

    What an idea! don’t want the plastics guilt-trip, love beeswax, and I have rather a lot of fine linen scraps which would be even better than cotton! (I hope). My main use would be for cheese: plastic makes them sweat so.

  17. Brenda Watts says:

    These are wonderful Karen..I am so going to make some…especially love the one with the buttons.

    • Karen says:

      Brenda – Thanks. I know. I love them too. The fella’s taking toast in his lunch tomorrow and it got wrapped in that one. I said “I would be so happy if I had a packed lunch and this was holding my toast. Don’t you love it?” He just laughed. Men. ~ karen

  18. Amy says:

    This is a great idea and I’ll have to give it a try. Also, my brother-in-law travels and stays in hotels every week so he brings home the shower caps the hotels provide. They’re great for covering bowls and things. And then I turn them inside out, wash in hot water and reuse. They make great stocking stuffers in our family!

  19. alayn says:

    Love your blog, you are so fun to read. I may be letting everyone know how old I am, but there use to be wax paper bags for sandwiches, they stopped being available at grocery stores about 7 years ago. Wax paper is biodegradable. Let’s try to bring this product back!

    • Karen says:

      Alayn – I used waxed paper all the time. I love it. I had no idea that most people didn’t use it until my fella came home and told me someone commented on the waxed paper in his lunch. And I’m finding it more and more difficult to find in the grocery store. Weird. ~ karen!

  20. kate-v says:

    I also love it when I get that perfect plastic wrap covering over a container in the refreigerator — it truly is a work of art! Such a feeling of accomplishment!! But, I love this idea in spite of my “artistic endevours” with plastic wrap. I always feel the contradiction between ‘reuseable’ and ‘throw away plastic’ – between ‘wholesome’ and adding more ‘questionable molecules’ to my environment when I use plastic anything. I will make these and the first person I gift with a set will be my hairdresser Annette; she and I both wash out plastic bags for reuse. Thank you very much for this idea.

  21. Shauna says:

    LOVE! Thank you for always taking the time to figure this stuff out for us Karen.

  22. Nancy Blue Moon says:

    OK..I have beeswax for making candles and I have stacks of fabric scraps..I just need to know how do you store them when not in use?? Great idea Karen..Thanks!

  23. Naomi says:

    Very cute! I have a suggestion for meat sandwiches – my friend Corry sells reusable sandwich bags in her Etsy shop, called Pepper Picnic (the bog is at You can wash these babies in hot water daily and even pop the washing machine once a week for a deep clean.

    • Karen says:

      Hi Naomi – Thanks. You can absolutely use these for meat sandwiches though. You just might not want to wrap a pound of ground beef in it. :) ~ karen

  24. Mel says:

    Okay so first I chuckled at ‘do do’ in the first paragraph. Yep, I’m mature. Next I marvelled at this project. I use fake tupperware to bring sandwiches, cheese, etc to work, but although it is reusable plastic, it is still plastic. So this is getting added to my to-do list. Thanks!

  25. Feral Turtle says:

    What an interesting product. Can’t say I have ever heard of these. The enzyme cleaner was definitely a bust though!

  26. Catherine Fairs says:

    Karen , my sister told me of your blog and I love it. Your sense of humour kills me. I wanted to let u know about my sisters art show opening at the Carnegie fri March 1 7-930
    She,s your neighbour Jane Hill I can tell from your blog ,you will absolutely love her paintings.
    Catherine fairs

  27. Rondina says:

    I’m the one that has a guilt-trip over throwing one container away that could have been recycled. At some point I have to calculate how much water it will take to clean a container; factor in that I live in an area experiencing a long-term drought, and say—no. However, although they are cute with the button and string closure, no way I’m going to try this one.

  28. Kim from Milwaukee says:

    Again another brilliant ‘how to’ Karen. Thank you!! I abhor plastic and this will allow me to completely get rid of ziploc bags and saran wrap forever, and use up my scrap fabrics as well!

  29. Candice says:

    My new year’s goal last year (2012) was to purge plastic from my kitchen. A little over a year later, I’ve put a dent in it but it is waaaayyy more daunting than I’d imagined. I love the idea of these baggies! I’ll check out their website as well as MelissaM’s above suggestion for the Snacktaxi’s. I’ll be buying since I’m not sure I have the patience or sense enough to replicate yours.

  30. mayr says:

    You are wonderful.

  31. Cathy says:

    I love this idea. I think about this everytime I grab a sandwich bag out of the drawer. I have a large ziploc of leftover beeswax from our first harvest that I need to do something with. But first, I have to figure out how to get the honey out of it! Just need time to research it.

    • meg says:

      you can get the honey out of beeswax by just leaving it outside the hive. The bees will take off every single bit;-)

    • Chio says:

      Just melt the honey-sticky beeswax clumps in hot water. The honey will dissolve, and the wax will float. Then skim the beeswax “beads” off the top with a screen or cheesecloth. Y ou probably don’t need to actually boil it, just melt it. Then you can use the honey water for tea. :)

  32. dana gault says:

    Aside to Karen: geez, my two-hour sleep really shows in my grammar! Sorry : /

  33. dana gault says:

    Re: paraffin vs beeswax

    Even after processing, beeswax maintains antibacterial properties. So that’s the science. From personal experience, I’m and artist, and paraffin has never very worked well for me coating canvas and cotton fabric in general. Soy wax has, but I don’t know that it’s antibacterial, and I find it much messier than beeswax.
    LOVE this Karen! I adore your buttoned-up bag : )

  34. Inga says:

    This is awesome! Question though – how did you fold it to wrap the sandwich?

  35. Becca says:

    Thanks so much for sharing this… it’s a wonderful idea. The blue one you made looks like it might be quilting cotton fabric. Did you find the grain tight enough on that one? I have delightful images of batik food wraps in my kitchen. Only thing, I wonder if all the dyes used in quilting cottons would be safe to be in contact with food. Hmmmm.

  36. Jennifer says:

    Thanks for sharing! LOVE this idea as a replacement for seran wrap! I shared this with a friend who is going to try it with silk, as well. Again, thanks!

  37. Bonnie says:

    This is so timely! Like you, I try to recycle and reuse as much as I can. Just this weekend, I was decrying the use of so much plastic for food wrapping, and promised to look for an alternative. (I was decrying and promising to myself–no one else in my family really cares.) Then, this comes up. Thanks!

  38. MelissaM says:

    Your wraps look lovely. I have used a couple of Snack Taxis and the benefit, other than buying from my now-defunct local green store, is they can be thrown in the wash. When food for human consumption is concerned, I do prefer washing in hot kill-them-disgusting-germs! water.

    • kate-v says:

      OOh – what ever you do, don’t wash the beeswax food wrap in hot water because the wax will melt and run and then HARDEN in your drain and you will have plumbing PROBLEMS.

  39. carin says:

    A million thanks for this! I saw them [or someone similar] at the One of a Kind Show and bought a couple and love them. I’ll buy more, but it’s nice to know I can make them too and put to use my bag of beeswax bits.

  40. Debbie says:

    I love this idea! I see that there are online versions which use velcro as the fastener. I am going to try these soon! Thanks !

  41. Lynne says:

    Those wraps would make cool bags or gift wrap for beeswax candles, or honey….hmmm. Wrap your gift with the beeswax cloth, tie up with twine or raffia. Tahhh dahhh. No volcano jumping. Just beeswax sexiness. Whatcha think?
    Lynne :)

  42. cred says:

    love this- I’d seen beeswax cloth before (don’t know if it was Abeego) and was intrigued but I love that I can make my own now. I never would have thought to try it.
    Thanks for figuring this out.

  43. Ann says:

    I worked with beeswax a few years ago. The stuff is very very sticky so be careful to keep it contained while working with it. If you get any of the melted stuff on the counter or floor you will pay hell getting it back off!! I wonder if you could use regular paraffin just as well? Of course, that is a petroleum product and one might think it is bad for the environment. But if you can use it for a long time and in turn, not use plastic then I think it would still be a win.

    • marie says:

      because beeswax is sticky, it will bed with the fabric. not only is paraffin toxic (against your food?! really?!), but it won’t stay pliable.

  44. Langela says:

    Neat idea, but I have a question. I thought you weren’t supposed to reuse plastic bags after using them for cheese or meat. Is this the same for these?

  45. Luanne says:

    We have the Abeego wraps and love them. I bought them at Christmas specifically for the kids lunches and they’ve been in daily use ever since.

  46. Linda J Howes says:

    I LOVE this!!!! Just yesterday I was wishing I had a different way to wrap/store food. What an awesome alternative and I will definitely make some! Thanks for posting this.
    BTW, I got your bookmark in my self addressed stamped envelope the other day and thank you for that too!

  47. Michelle says:

    Hey Karen – I’ve had the Abeego ones for years and just ordered a new round now that she has the button up sandwich packages. They are wonderful and can’t recommend them enough. Thanks for the DIY tutorial as well.

  48. Simon says:

    I am doing this immediately, thank you. This is super common sensical.

    I use the citrus enzyme all the time by the way. I love it.

    Simon :)

  49. Laura Bee says:

    Well said! Doing what I can when I can is also how I live. Now THIS I can find time for. Other sewed sandwich bags have way too many steps.

  50. Laura says:

    How clever! & cute!

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