Garlic Sauce Oil Lamp




About: I'm a software engineer who tries to stay away from the computer when I'm not at work.

In this instructable, I attempt to show how an innocuous garlic sauce condiment is turned into a beautiful oil lamp. Now Papa Johns makes some tasty pizza, but it always comes with a tub of garlic sauce. I used to enjoy dipping my crust in the sauce, but I realized it has no nutritional value except for fat, and I get enough of that from the pizza.

I hate to throw it away, so what else can I do with this oily sauce? A long time ago oil used be pretty valuable. It can be eaten, burned, used to lubricate stuff, even make soap. I briefly considered lubricating my bike with it, but decided against it. I wonder if I could make some garlic sauce soap as a gift for that special someone.

Anyway, this can probably be done with other condiment packets as long as they are mostly oil. Oh, and you should probably know how to put out a grease fire before you start, and don't leave it unattended.

What you need: garlic sauce tub, one sheet of toilet paper, pen, lighter, plate, and lid.

Step 1: Put It Together

First take the toilet paper and roll it into a tight wick. One ply is all you need, but you can experiment with different thicknesses.

The packet says shake before use, but it's best not to shake it, or maybe not. I don't know. This is playing with fire not rocket science.

Place the sauce tub on a ceramic plate (do not use a paper or plastic plate). Keep a sauce pan lid close by in case the whole mess catches on fire. Covering it with a lid should put out the fire if things get crazy.

Use a pen and poke a hole in the center of the lid, and feed the wick into the hole. Work the wick around a little bit so you can see it wicking up the oil.

Step 2: Light It Up!

Light it up!

It should burn for 2-3 hours. There may be a little smoke at first, but it should go away. At some point it will sizzle because the wick is absorbing some moisture. When it absorbs too much, it will go out. Thin wicks seem to go out easily when they suck up moisture, while a thicker wick seems to burn hotter and tolerates it better, but I'm just guessing.

There you have it. What could be more romantic or classy than a night of pizza, movies, and your own garlic sauce lamp. Enjoy!



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    9 Discussions


    Reply 6 years ago on Introduction

    Good idea. Maybe there would be some capillary action with an intact plant stem.


    Reply 6 years ago on Introduction

    Yes,if the fiber is twisted as one does when they are making rope,just smaller.I know from the fat lamps Ive made in the past,the plant fiber wicks last as long,if not longer than a regular wick,the size would make the difference.I think its a cool to know this Item that most people throw out,can be used for something practical.


    7 years ago on Step 2

    Definitive question everybody's asking -
    What does it smell like, and does it keep vampires away?

    3 replies

    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    Well we haven't had a vampire attack since I lit it up, so it must work. There is a slight odor, but it doesn't smell garlicky until you peel back the lid.


    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    If you don't smell much garlic while the lid and wick aperture are tight that's a good sign of nearly complete combustion.

    Have you noticed if the lid dimples down because of a vacuum effect?


    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    It does a little. Once the plastic and foil lid gets hot it starts to degrade. I doubt it is airtight for very long.


    Reply 7 years ago on Step 2

    Not so far. It gets warm but no melting. The lid has foil in it and that seems to help keep the wick standing up.