An alternative to plastic wrap is a fabric bowl or casserole dish cover. They’re washable and ecofriendly. They’re also easier to put on. Learn how to sew your own for personal use or for gifts.
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I DETEST plastic wrap and aluminum foil. They seem like such a huge waste of money and environmental resources. Plus, they’re a pain to put onto a bowl or casserole dish. I wanted an alternative to plastic wrap – and I found it!
Reusable bowl or casserole covers are so much easier. These are pretty simple to make with some basic sewing skills, although sewing with FOE is always a challenge when you’re not familiar with it.
Can’t sew? Check out these fitted bowl covers on Amazon.
Supplies if you want to make an alternative to plastic wrap
Supplies listed below may include affiliate links to the products.
- FOE or Fold Over Elastic
- PUL (polyurethane laminate) Fabric, food safe
- Your bowl or casserole dish to make a pattern from
- Typical sewing supplies
How to Make an Alternative to Plastic Wrap
You have a lot of different options for fabrics as an alternative to plastic wrap. I use clean dish towels to make my reusable bread bags. For a lot of items that could get wet though, I like to use food safe PUL.
PUL or polyurethane laminate is a fabric that was initially designed for hospital use because it can be washed on high heat. Eventually people started to make cloth diapers with them, then we’ve all made other things with them as well. I make reusable refrigerator liners with them, reusable snack bags, wet bags and more. Technically PUL is water resistant- not quite waterproof, but better than nothing. Like plastic wrap, if you tip a bowl of soup upside down with this on top, it’ll still spill everywhere. But it’s not apt to soak through the fabric if a bit splashes around inside the bowl. If that makes sense?
I like the fabric particularly because it can be washed in the washing machine. I keep a wet bag in my kitchen for all of our dish towels and do a load of kitchen laundry each week, usually with our regular towels. That said, these don’t usually get too dirty so sometimes I’ll quickly hand wash in the sink. They dry fast.
Needless to say, it’s a pretty good alternative to cling wrap. It’s also a great alternative to tin foil. I never did figure out when I was supposed to use the two… but both are a pain to put on a container. They’re never wide enough! These snap right on, being fitted like a fitted sheet. SO convenient.
Here’s a video to show you how, or you can scroll down below for the photo tutorial.
How to Make Reusable Bowl Covers
Bowl covers use PUL and FOE (fold over elastic).
You’ll start by laying your bowl upside down on your PUL. Trace the bowl, then trace another circle further out. The extra distance will be for your overlap over the edges of the bowl.
Now you just need to pick some coordinating FOE. Fold over elastic is like bias tape, except it’s stretch. You can fold it over your edges and stretch it as you sew to make an item scrunch up and be fitted.
As mentioned, fold the FOE over the edge of your bowl cover, stretching the FOE as you use a zig zag or stretch stitch to sew it on. You want to make sure you’re only stretching the FOE- not the fabric too. The reason you need a zig zag or stretch stitch is so the thread/stitching can stretch out as the elastic/cover is in use. If you use a straight stitch, the stitching will likely pop after just a little use.
Once you’re finished, keep it for yourself or give them as gifts. People LOVE these. But… first, tell them what they are. I always try to remember to explain my gifts because I make odd things, and when I gifted these a few people had been thinking they were shower caps. Apparently my son thinks they’re a perfect cap too!
Now these fit pretty well over the casserole dish too (the biggest bowl cover anyways), but if you want a more perfectly fitted option, keep reading.
How to Make a Casserole Dish Cover
These are made pretty much the same way as you’d make a fitted sheet for a bed.
You want to start by turning your casserole dish upside down on the fabric. Add a seam allowance- enough to give you some overlap over the edges.
In each corner, cut out an equal sized square. The square should be just a bit smaller than the space around the casserole dish.
To create a fitted appearance, you take the area where you cut out your square and face the edges right sides together. Sew a straight stitch along that. It creates a corner like here:
Do that to all four corners, then sew on your FOE, just like you did with the reusable bowl covers.
Don’t forget! Share your final projects on the Stuff Mama Makes Facebook group!
Love it? Pin it!
Here is a list of all the gift tutorials in this series: Grocery Bag Holders, Homework or Art Displays, Cloth Napkins or Wipes, Mint Extract, Bread Bag (to give with fresh bread) Braided Dog Toy, Paper Mache Pokeball, Peach Infused Liquor, Extra Large Pot Holder, Fabric and Wood Cross, Adult Apron, Cake Mix Cookies in a Mason Jar, Pillowcase, Library Tote Bag, Tile Coasters, Coffee Cozy, Essential Oil Storage Box, Bowl and Casserole Dish Covers, Dry Oil Perfume, Lunch Bag, DIY Wall Decals, Pokemon Boo Boo Bags, Cement Candle Holders, Wood Step Stools, Easy Soy Candles, Cutting Boards, T-Shirt Stencils Using Freezer Paper, Balancing Wine Holder, Easy Concrete Planters, Reusable Gift Bags
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Disclosure of Material Connection: Some of the links in the post above are “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will add value to my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”