Cooking during a power outage!

I I am in the East Bay, and fortunate enough to find that it looks like my gas stove top and maybe even gas water heater will work, but my refrigerator has been off since 12 midnight, and I expect the lights to be limited to flashlights by about 7 PM.

I have some jelly I’ve been working on and think I can make it work before the fruit juice and purée spoils, and I guess there’s always take out.

Is anyone else affected ? Does anyone have any exciting ideas?


Focus on perishable foods first. Any meat and such to go through asap?

Good time to open all those tinned fish and stuff. Hope you get power back soon.


Agree with @Presunto; also don’t open your fridge unless absolutely necessary, because it loses degrees each time.

I think the fact that you have gas, really gives you a lot of leeway as well, to throw together a quick soup or something. Work as fast as possible while you still have light. In fact, get all your alternate lighting in place now, like candles & etc.

Coolers, if you have any will help to keep things cooler. Would say if it’s colder outside and if possible, put them outside along with any ice you may have.

Please let us know @shrinkrap, how things work out. Did you guys have a big storm or what??


I am tempering my initial response out of fear of retribution. :no_mouth:


Oh, I am so sorry to hear that you’re affected by the preventive power outages. Good advice here about staying out of the fridge and using up perishables. That’s the procedure for us when we lose power here in MA (more often than we should because of above-ground lines and downed trees).

Let us know how you’re doing if it doesn’t drain your phone’s precious charge. Sending you good thoughts.


Dear friends of ours live way out in the hills, kinda near North San Juan (that’s where they get their mail) and they tell us that the power outages are due to PG&E’s incompetence to deal with the wildfire situation. One of them was out getting an extra battery for their generator as the other half is home recuperating from cancer treatment. They are both serious about food. We are hoping for the best but it feels a bit apocalyptic given their situation.


I’ve just seen this:

“Could last several days”, they have warned.

What’s worse… that it’s happening now or whilst you were on holidays?

Get as much done during the day as possible. Get some extra ice, too, maybe.


I’ve been without power for over a week due to storm damage. If it is possible, get dry ice for the fridge and freezer. Use heavy gloves and wrap it in newspaper or paper bags so it lasts longer. I keep regular ice and/or frozen water bottle in a cooler with the perishables I need for that day. I use a grill or a portable cylinder gas cooking stove (like people doing food demos have).

When there is warning I always make a quiche (room temp ok for a few days), hard boil eggs, cook up lentils (makes cold salads, grain bowls), cook bacon (fine in cooler, fine room temp for a day) cook pasta spirals, elbows or shells for future meal/salads, pop a bunch of popcorn, wash and prep lots of vegetables that hold well like celery, carrots, scallions. I also start a jar of sprouts. If I have little potatoes I’ll boil them - future potato salad, hash or composed salad. I make as much coffee as I have thermos room for. I pick up a bunch of fried chicken for the cooler - can eat cold as is, use for sandwiches, add to pasta salad…

Hard boiled eggs do well in a cooler. Hard cheese and butter hold at room temperature. Many Asian style noodles just need hot water. Sandwich wraps can be made and wrapped and stored in the cooler - saves room and doesn’t smash easily. Bread, nuts, olives, hard sausage, hard cheese, dried fruits make easy meals.

I keep canned goods specifically for emergencies. Single slice packs of spam, tuna, fancy meat spreads from World Market/Cost Plus. Packets of condiments are handy. Any sort of canned bean can be used without heating. Jarred artichokes, roasted peppers jazz up a wrap, pasta salad or bean salad.

That’s all that I can think of off hand.

Hope the situation doesn’t last long.


Oh man, now I can’t tell you with whom 2 members of my family are employed. (Please don’t hate me)!!! :upside_down_face:

Been boycotting the news lately, journalism is in a sorry state imo, no matter your political feelings. I will ask DH about this when he gets home. Hope everyone stays warm & well.


Uh oh @shrinkrap, understand now. Please stay well and soldier on!


Realize now you’re talking about Bay Area electrical, threw me off a bit.
My fam works for the equivalent of PG&E here in the Puget Sound. I know, everyone hates big power!! @digga!


Well it’s better than burning up in a terrible fire storm so I’ll give them the benefit of the doubt.

But it’s still pretty frustrating.

And I didn’t “get the memo” yesterday, went to work today and will be going again tomorrow. They have electricity.

Just wanted to say thanks for all the feedback and I am following it but I have really limited access at this point so I will just be lurking for a bit.

By the way, I’m sure it sounds crazy, but I am trying to make some pepper jelly from some peppers that I’ve spent the last eight months nurturing so I hope it works out. Wish me luck!


I think this could be a competition show. You’ve got 36 hours; what will you save from your refrigerator and your freezer?

And you have to open each of them as few times as possible.


I’m in nor cal . Not regulated by pg&e. I’m looking into getting a generator, just for the normal power outages. I need my refrigerator , lights , and tv . Can cook and have heat .


There are apparently no flashlights, no batteries, and no generators to be had in these parts today.

I guess I now see the pluses of living in and growing up in hurricane zones! It’s just part of my seasonal chores to have my kit ready. When a storm is forecast I just have to get gas, med refills, cash, dry ice/ice and some fresh foods.


I can certainly see the pluses of being prepared. We are being told to use our earthquake kits.

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I managed to make the juice for the pepper jelly by lantern last night, and our powers back on. Thanks for althe input ad support! l


That was a lot to think of! Thanks for taking the time. How much advance warning do you usually get?

That was one of my first thoughts! Haven’t even put it away yet!

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