Are freezer bags safe?

Concerns over using plastics?

Periodically, we are asked “Is it safe to use bags?” Our answer to that is this:

Our personal opinion is yes, but you really should do the research yourself and make your own informed decision. We have provided some discussion points and links below to help you make that decision.

Freezer bags are considered food grade plastic. While using them for eating out of is not a claimed use on the bag’s box, most major manufactures have microwaving as a use and temperatures easily exceed boiling point in a microwave. For FBC style cooking, you use water below the boiling point and you do NOT boil the bag in water to prepare meals FBC style. As always, the decision to use plastics is YOUR decision. All of this information on this site and in our books is offered for information purposes only. We do not take any legal responsibility for the use of of any materials or methods described on this website, or in our books, nor of any products mentioned in them. There are a number of emails that are constantly sent around the internet these days, claiming that plastic bags, plastic containers, Saran® wrap, etc are cancer causing time bombs – which of course contain often only a tiny bit of truth it seems. If you would like to read excellent researches on plastics and safety, we have listed a number of links:

Cooking For Engineers

John Hopkins

Second Snopes Article

Also visit Plastics Mythbusters for more information.

For more information, visit Ziploc’s website, and go to the FAQ page. As you can see, all Ziploc® brand items are Dioxin free. Ziploc® freezer bags state on their box that they are microwavable safe. Microwave temperatures can easily exceed the heat of the water you will use for your dinner on the trail. One use though for the bags that is not recommended is boiling the bags. One of the more popular emails floating around concerns the “Zip loc Omelette” where you boil eggs in a bag for 12-15 minutes, in a pan of water. It works quite well, but the boiling water can weaken the bag, or if the bag touches the hot pan, it can melt. Some confusion can occur with this, until the person asking the question realizes that to do “FBC Method” cooking you are not boiling food in the bag, but rather, adding hot water to the bag! The water cools down below boiling pretty quick as the food absorbs that heat and is cooked. Most major name brand freezer bags are made of 100% polyethylene. Most bags are 3 mil thick. As with any question, it does come down to your own personal feelings. If you do not like plastics, then look above for ways to use our recipes and methods using the one pot method. Again we as authors and site owners, do not take any legal responsibility for the use of any materials or methods described on this website, or in our books, nor of any products mentioned in them. It is a personal choice of yours.