The first home refrigerator was invented in 1913, though it was another 10 years before Frigidaire invented a self-contained unit. And it wasn’t until 1940 when the fridge/freezer combination we’re used to today was invented. The problem is, a typical American refrigerator isn’t going to work well off-grid. So, here are seven refrigeration options for off-grid living.
1. Zeer Pot
A zeer pot is an evaporative cooler that was invented in the 1990s in Nigeria by Mohammed Bah Abba, though there is evidence of this style of refrigeration going back a couple thousand years to ancient Egypt. The mechanics of it are simple: Take two clay pots and nest them together. Fill the gap between them with wet sand. Place your produce in the smaller pot, and cover with a lid or even a towel. Place it in an area that is both shady, and ideally has a bit of a breeze. As the water evaporates (by the wind, not the sun; this is important.) it chills the pot.