Quick and Easy Campsite Dish "Washing"

One of the things I dislike most about camping is washing dishes.  The dishwater grosses me out (yes, I guess I am a delicate flower) and I can't get the dishes as clean outside and quickly as I could at home.  

On short trips, I've actually resorted to just putting all the dirty dishes in an empty bin and then washing them when I get home.

Somewhere along the way, I learned a way to (almost) avoid doing dishes completely,  and while I doubted how effective it would be, at first, it's turned out to work very well.

The magical ingredient is plain vinegar in a spray bottle.

Instead of washing dishes, the idea is just to spray vinegar on the plate or in the pot, let it sit for a few seconds, and then wipe it clean with a paper towel.  Then throw the paper towel in the campfire later, and all is good.

Vinegar is available in gallon jugs for pretty cheap.  The one pictured came from Target at was under $3.  I put it in a spray bottle, put it in my kitchen bin, and brought that to camp with us.

I will reiterate:  I did NOT think this would work.  However, it ended up working better than actually washing the dishes with soap and water.  The vinegar cut the grease and everything wiped clean in under two minutes.  

(Caveat:  According to this article from BMC Microbiology, vinegar is effective as a disinfectant against certain bacteria, but not others (for example, e. coli is a survivor).  Therefore, if you are using a plate to hold raw meat or fish, I'd highly recommend washing things with soap and water.  I eat mostly pre-cooked and vegetarian foods while camping, so this is not an issue for us.) 

Below are products I recommend.  If you buy through the link, I receive a small percent of the price at no cost to you. 


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