Plastic free entertaining sometimes feels like an impossible ideal. If you google party or celebration you will be confronted with a sea of photos that almost exclusively include plastic. Plastic balloons, plastic streamers, plastic cups and plates and more. And for anyone who’s cleaned up a beach recently, you’ll have seen much of this washed up. Washed up in tiny fragments that are all but impossible to remove entirely.

The thing is, everyone loves a party. And it feels somehow wrong not to celebrate with brightly coloured objects and trinkets. It is possible to do plastic free entertaining though. When you have a clever creative like Jen from Zing Fresh catering, a few clever ideas can go a long way.

Menu Choices

When entertaining, choose menu options that will allow you to minimise or even eradicate the need for serve-ware. For instance, serve finger foods that can act as a shell/base/plate and don’t require cutlery. This saves on the after horrors of washing up in magnitude & the unmentionable disposables, even earth friendlier compostable serve ware.

Your chosen toppings served on watermelon wedges. (a popular savoury option for example, avocado, prawn & fresh lime squeeze or for a sweet course treat: halva, mint & goji berries  Simply compost the rind. 

Meredith goat cheese smeared on crisp pear slices & sprinkled with fresh thyme & hazelnuts. Absolutely nothing to throw away!

Dips served in hallowed out & ornately carved rockmelon bowls. Makes for uniquely impressive presentation whilst maximising the use of the entire food product as the hallowed out fruit can be used in another way such as fruit salad or melon balls/skewers etc.

Entertaining with Bounty Boxes from Zing Fresh

entertaining gift box

Zing Fresh provides a range of catering options including bounty boxes, corporate catering, canapés for parties, platters and even an entire dinner party. Prices vary but range from $80 – $100 for a 2 to 4 person platter. Where possible Jen’s produce and products come from the Manly Food Co-op. Please contact Jen on for more information.

Zing Fresh is a 22 month young, dynamic catering business based in Manly & headed up by Jennifer Sargent.  Jen’s signature is contemporary, clean, creative & considered. Zing caters with the utmost agility of menu & guests are steadily served from either sea or on land.

Hunt, gather, design, create, smile, style, enlighten, inspire, share, conserve, serve, satisfy, entertain, rescue, deliver, refresh. Catering corporate & private events for any occasion; all these things are done & done exceptionally well.

No matter how large the event, the aim is to leave only the smallest footprint on the earth. No matter how small the event, clients and guests are always left with huge smiles on their faces.

Packing and Storage Options

When packing lunches/picnics or storing/transporting food: squeeze lemon juice over fruits to prevent browning. Try to pack cut edges of foods face to face (where flavours and odours are not discernible or are compatible, eg- half an apple and half a pear) as an alternative to using disposable packaging of any sort.

Instead of thisUse this
Sandwich paper wrap foils & glad wrapsUse Bees wax wraps or put a plate on top of a bowl
Meal packagingUse take away food containers you have washed from previous take away / home delivered meals. Use metal washable food containers. Re-usable & silicone lids. 
Biscuit packaging/traysHome made biscuits & lunch box treats.
DrinksMetal, washable drink bottles. Glass at least instead of plastic
StrawsMetal or glass straws. No straws.

If there are companies of brands you love using plastic, (especially excessive degrees/layers of packaging  such as unnecessary or over the top single serve portions) call them to express your environmental concerns to at least register some consumer concern in the hopes that they will be more responsive to this into the future.

You can also follow Jen on Instagram @caterzingfresh