19 August 2015

Reuse Cheese Wax

I love cheese but my compost does not seem to love the cheese wax. Instead I have been storing it until I could find a way to reuse cheese wax. Turns out there are a couple ways the wax can be reused.


Reusing Cheese Wax

We like our aged cheddar. It can be used in a range of dishes, most people love it and will lasts a long time. Plus the price is reasonable. The blocks of cheese we buy are small wheels, covered in wax and accompanied by a sticker that cannot be recycled. I am in talks with cheese stores here in Melbourne to a find cloth bound cheese that comes without a sticker or just simply packed in a paper box. There are a couple options, one being a 20kg wheel (!). The cloth can be composted easier or even reused in the kitchen after a wash.

Back to the waxed cheese we have been buying from our local deli - cheese wax is a mix of paraffin and microcrystalline, both petroleum based. The wax is also coloured with food grade colours. This wax cannot be made into a candle but it does have other uses that make it reusable. We would happily keep buying our cheese like this but the massive stickers are simply annoying and really not needed. We used to buy wedges of cheese from larger wheels that we could get in our own container. However each time we would do this, the deli would wrap a new piece of plastic cling wrap around the cheese wheel we were buying from. It kinda defeated the purpose of reducing plastic in our life, ultimately leading us to buy mini wheels of cheese in wax.

Until I get my hands on cloth cheese this is what I do with my old cheese wax. 

I clean the wax, making sure there is no cheese left on it. Once clean I melt it down in a double boiler, then pour it out onto a surface and once cool enough simply roll into balls that I can store in a glass jar for use later on. If you feel like it or want to do something while watching a movie then you could roll the wax by hand using the heat of your hands to mold together.

Reusing Cheese Wax

Reusing Cheese Wax

Reusing Cheese Wax

Reusing Cheese Wax

Reusing Cheese Wax

Uses include:
  • Fire starter. The oil in the wax will help sustain a flame. Handy for camping or when there is not enough dry kindling. 
  • Sealing jars and bottles. 
  • Let the kids make medievel wax seals. 
  • Reuse the wax to coat your own hard cheese or pass onto someone who makes hard cheese at home. 
  • Mold it into shapes for fun or to practice drawing objects.
I'd love to know if you have any other uses for wax? Do you eat as much cheese now you are living without plastic?
  1. Thanks for this post Erin. I just got a naked deodorant bar from Lush and it has wax on the bottom of it. This has given me some ideas on how to use it when I've run out of deodorant.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That's great to hear Katie :)

      Delete
  2. Maybe it could be used for ear plugs, they sell some made of wax.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That is not a bad idea either Miriana

      Delete
  3. Hmmm not sure what else you can do with the wax, but if you have a few friends who like the same cheese you could get the 20 kg wheel and split it up. Or learn to make cheese (from Gav at greeningofgavin) or maybe he would even sell you some??

    Madeleine.x

    I must be an optimistic soul - I thought the wax on cheese was bees wax!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That is what I am thinking of doing Madeleine. I thought about making my own cheese but It is near impossible to get milk plastic free :(

      Delete
  4. Hmmm not sure what else you can do with the wax, but if you have a few friends who like the same cheese you could get the 20 kg wheel and split it up. Or learn to make cheese (from Gav at greeningofgavin) or maybe he would even sell you some??

    Madeleine.x

    I must be an optimistic soul - I thought the wax on cheese was bees wax!

    ReplyDelete
  5. I buy my cheese in wax covered wheels too! I've also been contemplating what to do with it. Fire starter is a great idea!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes it's a great idea and really works.

      Delete
  6. You should make waxed cotton :) it's the original saran wrap. I'm actually making this this afternoon! http://myhealthygreenfamily.com/blog/wordpress/plastic-wrap-alternative-diy-beeswax-cotton-wraps/

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I do make the waxed cotton wraps, but I don't use the cheese wax for these.

      Delete
  7. Or waxed canvas for a neat travel backpack! http://content.photojojo.com/diy/diy-how-to-make-a-waxed-canvas-camera-bag/
    I know these both use beeswax, but it's worth a try!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Cool idea, thanks for sharing with me Alyssa

      Delete
  8. What about using cheese wax to make tealight candles? I'm trying to figure out if it's safe to burn the wax.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I have not tried it yet, but it would be worth exploring for sure. I wonder if the wax would be different between each cheese wax.

      Delete

Start typing and press Enter to search