1. Rechargeable electric fire lighter
Whether you’re lighting candles or gas stoves (many gas stoves need to be ignited manually when the power is off), having a lighter will ensure you always have fuel on hand. This rechargeable electric fire lighter is flexible, easy to use and great for lighting candles and grills. Plus, it’s rechargeable so you never have to worry about it running out of gas. It will replace all the matches and normal lighters you constantly have to buy.
Buy it: R299 at Woolies
2. Portable camper stove
If you don’t have a gas stove, a small camper stove can definitely come in handy. They’re portable, easy to store and come with a variety of plates depending on your needs. You may not use these to make a whole menu, but for quick one-pot meals, toasties or breakfast-for-dinner situations, these little guys are really handy. They start from R250 and the price is dependent on the make and size. Gas canisters are often sold separately – and if you’re doing a lot of cooking, the smaller 220g ones can run out fast – so make sure you stock up on those too when you buy a camper stove so you have everything you need to cook.
Buy it: online or at a camping shop. True campers will tell you that if you want your gas stove to last, it’s worth investing in a slightly more expensive one from a known brand.
3. Vacuum flask jug
Having hot water on hand for tea and coffee when the power is out is a lifesaver, especially on cold winter nights. Plus, you can use the hot water to heat up food or make a packet of instant noodles in a pinch. This vacuum flask jug has a 1-litre capacity. Plus, it’s really stylish so on days when you’re entertaining you can use it to serve after-dinner coffee or to keep your punch cool at your next braai. Woolworths also stocks smaller flasks if you prefer.
Buy it: R549 at Woolies
4. Multi-function grill
If you’re braaiing a lot during loadshedding then you need this multi-functional grill. It makes cooking on the fire more varied, so you can make more than chops and wors for dinner. Plus, it’s reversible! It works as a griddle on one side and is flat on the reverse. One customer review stated that this is fast becoming their favourite pan, while another says they make pancakes on the flat side and grill breakfast sausages on the other side. The possibilities are endless!
Buy it: R799 at Woolworths.
Speaking of braaiing, everyone needs a potjie! You don’t have to worry about power cuts interrupting slow-cooked dishes. Soups, stews, curries, pot roasts and potjies (obviously) – there’s so much you can make in them. This potjie is perfect when cooking for 4 to 6 people, but it can scale up or down. It also stores and travels easily so you can take it with you when you go camping or on holiday.
Buy it: R749 at Woolworths.
6. CUBE™ charcoal portable barbeque
If you don’t have a braai or space to set up one, you don’t have to miss out! The CUBE™ charcoal portable barbeque allows you to braai on the go. It’s equipped with a built-in heat protection shield, so you can use it almost anywhere without worrying about scorching surfaces. The Cube also features a removable charcoal tray and a porcelain enameled firebox, making cleaning a breeze. Buy it: R3 999 at Woolworths. If you’re looking for a cheaper option, Woolworths also sells a tabletop braai for R1 999.
If you’re cooking around the loadshedding schedule, you know that speed is the best option. Air-fryers are an asset in this department. Whether you cook dinner before the lights go out, or just when they come on, you can shave off precious cooking time by using an air-fryer.
Buy it: from around R2 899 at Woolworths.
8. The TASTE Loadshedding Cookbook
Now that you know what gadgets, cooking ware and kitchen items you need to navigate loadshedding, you need to know what to cook! We’ve released a cookbook that contains 89 recipes that will help you make dinner while loadshedding continues. From recipes you can whip up in a flash before the power goes out, to meals you can put together with no electricity, this cookbook is the ultimate loadshedding cooking survival tool. Grab your copy at your nearest Woolworths for just R10o!
Buy it: R100 at Woolworths