In a mood for a sing-along? I got just the tune for you – the blackout golden oldie. Yes, it’s a catchy song, and goes along with great with the other great things in life like running of food, water, and brooding in the dark. The piece I did on the makeshift stove using cooking oil inspired me to do a little snooping around for quick and easy-to-do light sources.
Of course, nothing beats a flashlight or an emergency candle in case the power goes out, but what are you going to do when there’s no more juice in that lantern and the last piece of flick died out like the ambitions and desires of a crestfallen lover? Make some more, of course, because that’s we preppers are good at.
In today’s article, I’m going to show you a fast way to create 24-hour emergency candles by harnessing the raw power of your favorite dish – bacon. Yup, you’ve read that right. Bacon’s not only great for breakfast, but can also be used to make portable and highly efficient light sources. So, enough chit chat! Let’s take a look at how bacon candles are made.
Gathering your materials
To pull this off, you will need:
- A pack of bacon (go for a family pack).
- A bell glass jar.
- A wick or a piece of string.
- A pencil.
- A cooking pan.
- A funnel.
- A strainer.
Ready with the ingredients? Great job! Here’s what you’ll need to do next.
Making Bacon Emergency Candles
Step 1. Put half a tablespoon of cooking oil into your pan. Don’t put too much though because the bacon will leave enough grease.
Step 2. Fire up your stove and start cooking the bacon. Your goal is to melt each and every bacon piece. Don’t trouble yourself too much if a piece is too stubborn because you’re later going to strain the “brew.”
Step 3. When the last bacon piece has melted, kill the fire, and allow the mixture to cool down. Careful while handling that pan because you can get some nasty burns from hot grease.
Step 4. While waiting for the mix to cool down, prepare your candle. Now, depending on how much bacon you’ve used, it may take more than one jar. No problem there – the more, the merrier.
Step 5. Untighten the lid and store it for future use.
Step 6. Tie a knot around the pencil and rest it on the jar’s rim.
Step 7. Make sure that there’s enough of the string inside your jar. Be sure to place the wick right in the center. For reference, leave at least one inch from the rim of your jar.
Step 8. Check up on your grease. Don’t leave it to cool down completely because you won’t be able to pour it into the jar.
Step 9. Grab a container from the pantry and place the strainer on top.
Step 10. When you’re done, use the funnel to fill up the glass jar with the grease. Ensure that the pencil holding the wick remains in the middle.
Step 11. After you pour the last drop of fat inside the jar, allow the container to put down completely. Stick it in the fridge and wait for the fat to harden.
Step 12. When the grease has hardened, take a pair of scissors and cut just below the know you made. Congratulations! You’ve successfully made your first bacon-powered emergency candle.
More on grease candles
The best thing about this candle-making recipe is that you can pull it off with just about any kind of grease. I prefer bacon because it’s ludicrously cheap and I usually have enough to go around the house. It’s possible to make these beauties using other fat from other animals. Duck meat, for instance, is a great source of fat. Didn’t try it myself but I don’t see any reason why you can’t use other types of fat.
As I’ve mentioned, during the cooking part, it may be possible to get stuck with undissolved bacon chunks. I wouldn’t advise you to continue cooking the mix as you will probably end up setting fire to the kitchen. Use the strainer to pick up the rogue chunks or a pair of thongs to remove the pieces directly from the pan.
Ideally, you should use special wicks. They’re not that expensive, and they do a far better job compared to other textiles. However, should you find yourself short on wicks, you can always replace them with thin pieces of strings or shoelaces (just be sure to snip off both ends before using them).
Word of caution of using shoelaces as wicks – some of them have a rugged coating on them. Great for weather-proofing, prevents warping, but not so great for burning. Stick with regular cotton shoelaces. Of course, you can always a piece of paracord or another kind of cordage.
Yes, I know that the idea of staying on a bacon-candlelit porch may be enticing, but I would advise you not to take them outdoors as there’s a fair chance of being overrun by bugs, especially mosquitos.
The pencil part is not mandatory. You can use anything to keep the wick aligned, like a toothpick or a small twig.
Yes, it is possible to make candles that last longer, but you will need more bacon and a bigger jar. Still, I don’t see the point of making bigger ones as the entire idea is to make something light enough for your B.O.B or backpack.
Be extra careful when handling the bacon pan. That stuff burns like Hell. You should also keep the fire on low or medium-high to prevent the hot grease from jumping off the pan. In case you get a grease burn, stick your hand in running cold water and keep it there for at least 15 minutes. You may need to apply a sterile bandage afterward.
That’s about it on homemade candles! Be sure to hit the comment section and let me know how your project went.
Originally posted 2019-07-19 10:13:06.