If you take all of earth's food and cuisines, which ones would be the mostly logically adapted to be made and eaten in a microgravity-freefall environment within the following constraints.

Let's assume you'll be cooking in microgravity or freefall, that you access to a microwave/stove and a skillet/wok/pan (it works via mini-centrifuge) and a "glove box" or hood to assemble stuff in. So no gas stove or any actual fire, maybe some convection stovetops?

For ingredients we've got at the very least (deep breath). . .

  • Rice
  • Bamboo
  • Yeast
  • Mushrooms
  • Mycoburger
  • Fish
  • Algae
  • Insects
  • Rabbit
  • Some goat milk
  • Soy
  • Tofu
  • Goat Meat
  • Chicken
  • Some Shellfish

(These are just what I can think of)

What is not available/has to be imported at an expense is beef as you can't really keep cattle in space as well as some other ingredients that can't be grown/kept locally (like wild morels)

Edit: Based on commetray this has been edited for more clarity and to make it less broad

  • $\begingroup$ I believe this question fails to provide necessary information per our help center. Review this page, the General Guidelines for All Questions list, and make sure all the elements are there. (And to be honest, since all food must be imported to a space ship or space station, the difficulty to acquire it would seem irrelevant. Unless you haven't told us something...) $\endgroup$
    – JBH
    Dec 29, 2018 at 18:04
  • $\begingroup$ Almost relevant, from Babylon 5: "It's an Earth food. They are called Swedish meatballs. It's a strange thing, but every sentient race has its own version of these Swedish meatballs! I suspect it's one of those great universal mysteries which will either never be explained, or which would drive you mad if you ever learned the truth." $\endgroup$
    – user535733
    Dec 29, 2018 at 21:40
  • $\begingroup$ You are right, this question is a bit too broad, I will reformat if I can. On a side note, "all food must be imported to a spaceship or space station" just isn't true. Unless its a primitive research base like the ISS or not long term, most space colonies will grow their own food as it is not practical to try to feed an entire colony on imports. So most of the food for a colony would be grown locally, but if you wanted some exotic egg or squid eyeballs or something it would have to be imported, which would be expensive. $\endgroup$ Dec 29, 2018 at 21:43
  • $\begingroup$ Does this phrase the question better? $\endgroup$ Dec 29, 2018 at 21:57
  • $\begingroup$ Just to confirm - the cooking must be done in free fall / microgravity then are the goats and rabbits living in the same conditions? Also, a "convection stovetop" is dependent on gravity by definition - convection relies on heat rising. Stirring any dish whizzing around in front of the cook sounds... problematic $\endgroup$ Dec 29, 2018 at 22:27

1 Answer 1


A few thoughts on this quandary came to mind:

  • For eating, you'd want food that is sufficiently cohesive that it won't be flying about the living space while someone is trying to eat it (unless you go with the classic, and boring, eating through tubes approach). It should also have enough adhesion to stick to the delivery devices (fork, spork, etc) to get it there in one piece.

  • What you DON'T want is foods that are too wet or dusty (salt, spices, crumbs) that it will roam about the space until finally becoming electrostatically attracted to surfaces or devices. Most substances follow the rule of moving from highest to lowest concentration, so they will eventually disperse to coat or get into everything, including mechanical/electrical equipment. (This could actually create some interesting adventures on their own.)

  • Have you considered inventing your own cooking devices to make this possible, like an oven that spins (to create its own gravity) and heats like a dryer (for the convection thing)? Inventing new stuff is always fun to read about.

  • Another idea might be micromanaging air currents within the cooking device, taking advantage of the microgravity to cook, rather than fighting it. This would perhaps corral the food particles by producing air vortexes (like with bag-less vacuum cleaners) and cook them in mid-air, and then coax them into some kind of delivery portal for serving. Advanced tech in this area could even form the food into interesting shapes and stuff.

I'm sure there are lots of other ideas, but those are the ones that came to mind. ^^


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