disposable or reusable?

Discussion in 'Camping Green' started by edgeuk8tr, Oct 7, 2012.

  1. edgeuk8tr

    edgeuk8tr New Member

    Sep 29, 2012
    I am the hippy of the family and like everything to be reusable. Do the majority of you use disposable dishes or do you prefer washing and reusing? Just trying to get all packed up so we can test our the PUP :) If you prefer washing, what do you use?
    Parker Hansen likes this.
  2. JT2

    JT2 Member

    May 20, 2008
    We carry both types in our PUP. Which to use is usually a function of the time remaining...we use our camper as our motel room at various events, so if time is short before heading out, breakfast gets the paper plates and plastic forks. Ditto for snacks in the afternoon, say salsa or dip in a disposable bowl. Cleanup is seconds, not minutes.

    But for fine dining or lazy dinners when time is fat for cleanup, we'll use the Melmac (really!) plates and plastic salad bowls. We got 4 place settings worth of the plastic stuff at a yard sale for maybe $3. Twenty years later, they're still almost bulletproof.

    As a side note, many campgrounds now provide recycling bins for paper and plastic items, so you might still hit the best of both worlds.

    Parker Hansen likes this.
  3. kitphantom

    kitphantom Well-Known Member

    Dec 26, 2009
    Albuquerque, NM
    We use both, depending on the circumstances. Our usual camping dishes are Lexan plates and bowls; love the Tervis tumblers we added this year.
    We'll use paper plates and bowls for quick snack, or non-cooked meals when we don't want to wash up.
    Lots of ideas here:
    Parker Hansen likes this.
  4. Wizfisher

    Wizfisher New Member

    Mar 5, 2009
    We use reusable and wash in the sink.
    It's easier now in the hybrid but did so in the pup too.
    Parker Hansen likes this.
  5. bondebond

    bondebond New Member

    Aug 14, 2008
    We also carry along both reusable plastic and disposable paper products for place settings, and reusable metal and disposable plastic flatware. There are certain meals that would just not work with disposable products but we tend to use paper plates most of the time.

    We wash up the silverware, pots and pans with Dawn and water.
    Parker Hansen likes this.
  6. neighbormike

    neighbormike Well-Known Member

    Oct 6, 2012
    While I certainly believe there is a time & place/ need for paper plates, it is nice to use "real" dishes... (love the melmac JT2!). I am a bit fond of my families hand-me-down square tupper ware plates Haha! Just get some rubber-made tubs or get a collapsible sink and some Camp Suds (earth-friendly of course) and you're in business!! Or I guess, you could use the sink in your pop-up... nah....
    Parker Hansen likes this.
  7. FL_Bill

    FL_Bill I'm cooking something yummy!

    Parker Hansen likes this.
  8. ghacker

    ghacker Active Member

    Nov 8, 2009
    Like many prior posters, we use both depending upon time constraints. I'm not a big fan of plastic/paper dinnerware but sometimes it just makes sense.
    Parker Hansen likes this.
  9. Campit


    Sep 16, 2011
    We have both in the PU, but we use disposable mostly because of time restraints. Like someone else posted, some campgrounds are starting to have recycling bins, which is a good thing. Keeps all that plastic out of the landfills. :)

    Parker Hansen likes this.
  10. bondo54

    bondo54 Active Member

    Aug 15, 2010
    Paper for snacks or maybe a quick sandwitch but for cooked meals real plates and silverware.
  11. LjohnSaw

    LjohnSaw So many fish, so little time...

    Jun 24, 2011
    Northern California
    I despise cheap plastic flatware. It always seems to break. Any plastic flatware I have is nice and heavy - so heavy that I hate to throw it away [:O] [LOL] [LOL] and I end up washing it. That said, I also hate floppy paper plates. I pretty much exclusively use thick hard plastic plates (have 4 white and 6 larger red), plastic bowls for cereal, Tupperware tumblers, some old yellow plastic coffee cups for juice or hot chocolate and some nice heavy thrift store stainless flatware. Just because I'm camping doesn't mean I have to suffer when I eat [:D]
  12. LjohnSaw

    LjohnSaw So many fish, so little time...

    Jun 24, 2011
    Northern California
    Oh, yeah, and I do use my sink in the pup - love it. I wipe down the dishes with a paper towel or napkin to push all the food waste in the garbage. I can wash all the pots, pans & dishes for 4 and rinse with about 1 to 1.5 gallons of water. Sometimes guest will wash and all I can do is cringe. I will have to stop them so I can empty my 5 gallon tote before they can finish [:O] Good thing I'm on hookups when they help!
  13. ghacker

    ghacker Active Member

    Nov 8, 2009
    Want a nice solid paper plate? Try the Chimera brand. Around me, Jewel carries them. Can't cut through them and they're rigid. Never had one fold. I particular like their "serving platter" because it's oval and holds all your food.

    We do Olive Garden takeout maybe 1x/month. Very robust "silverware". We use our real cutlery at home and save them for camping trips. Over a yr. we usually have enough for the entire camping season since we don't use disposable all the time camping.
  14. eckertsbrew

    eckertsbrew Member

    Jan 29, 2012
    We use both.
    The paper is used here and there but then recycled as a firestarter at night. We use great thrift-store finds for reusable items (plates, bowls, pots and pans).

  15. Unstable_Tripod

    Unstable_Tripod Well, there's your problem!

    May 20, 2008
    Seattle, Washington
    While I enjoy cooking and making a production of meals at home I try to minimize all aspects of "the food thing" when camping. I'm usually busy shooting pictures much of the day, especially at times when others would be cooking or eating. I cook, eat and clean up as speedily and simply as possible because the whole "food thing" is just a nuisance that gets in the way of other things I enjoy much more while camping. As a result of this I have no interest in doing a lot of dishes. I use disposable plates, "silverware" and cups as well as paper napkins. After a meal cleanup consists of a quick trip to the trash container.
    theseus likes this.
  16. 94-D2

    94-D2 Happy Campin'

    May 21, 2010
    Sutter Creek CA
    We use Corelle in our pup. We bring a few paper plates but figure water is cheaper. The Corelle dishes are extremely durable, light and is way better than the plastic stuff (had plastic in the former pup). It can be dropped at 6' and not break. So, it travels well and is durable for the mobility of camping. Plus, the Corelle is nice to eat from. No annoying scratching from cutting food, scratch marks and such. Since it is a ceramic, no issues microwaving and you can actually cook in it if yu needed to.

    Anyway, FWIW, you can get it fairly cheap. I think we paid $20.00 for service of 4 or so.
    Parker Hansen likes this.
  17. BarbaraFaith

    BarbaraFaith New Member

    Oct 15, 2011
    This summer, I started out with the idea of no paper plates/disposable silver. I did find however, that it was a time saver, if on the last day of our trips that we would have cereals, fruit and yogurt, instead of a big camp breakfast. So I started using disposables for that meal only.

    Last week, we camped with another couple and thier kids. We shared the duties of cooking. It just made it easier to use disposables at that time.
  18. jjkach

    jjkach New Member

    Sep 8, 2007
    We use both depending how many will be eating at that time.
  19. novagirl

    novagirl retired camper

    Jul 13, 2011
    We use both too. We have outfitted the whole camper from thrift stores and garages sales. Found some groovy old Melmac plates and bowls, glasses, stainless flatware etc. Works like a charm for minimal $$
  20. LISA1969

    LISA1969 New Member

    Jun 3, 2011
    We have reusable and do dishes using a hot water on demand on the table after meals

Share This Page