Monday, April 25, 2011

Food Storage on the Cheap

So, you're convinced that having a 30 day food supply is prudent, but the whole task of getting ready seems overwhelming. What do I need? How much will it cost? What if nothing ever happens and I'm stuck with all this food that I don't want? Here are a few strategies to get you off the couch and into a better prepared kitchen with a plan that won't break the bank. I'll be referencing prices from Sam's Club, substitute any similar discount store for prices and products in your area.
Your Shopping List

  • A 25 pound bag of rice for $9.69 gives you roughly 250 3/4 cup servings.

  • 3.24 lbs instant mashed potatoes for $5.48 gives you 65 half cup servings.

  • 6 lbs Peter Pan peanut butter for $7.28.

  • 9 lbs Quaker Oats for $6.76

  • 2 cans (117 oz each) Bush's Baked Beans for $11.12

  • 24 gallons of water for $23.00

  • Ketchup, 114 oz for $3.38

  • Powdered milk, the most economical way is to buy the 6 pack from Augason Farms, this gives you 540 servings but costs $61.72. If you can't afford that much up front then buy a smaller box of powdered milk this week and another next week etc.

  • 2 cans powdered butter 356 servings for $34.76

TOTAL BILL $163.19

OK, so now you're griping, "I don't want to eat nothing but beans, oatmeal, rice and peanut butter for a whole month!" Well, you know what? Neither do I. BUT, it's sure better than starving to death, isn't it? Buy your basics this week and next week add some fruit or canned vegetables, things that please your palate, but get the high protein items first! Augason Farms has tons of preparedness items at Sam's Club, look around and prioritize what is a necessity and what can wait until later. Remember to buy water, lots and lots of water! You can do this, one step at a time, just determine that you're going to take responsibility for yourself and your family and get started! And if nothing ever happens and you're stuck with all this food? Well, if you don't want it then donate it to a food pantry, feed it to your chicks or find a needy family who will appreciate it.

After your food storage is pretty well complete, or even when you're just in the process of gathering your items, remember the first rule of food storage is: there is no food storage! Resist the urge to announce how prepared you are. For instance, I personally have no food storage, I think it's a stupid idea and the Government is going to fix the crisis we're in with no upset to me personally. I don't really can food or have animals. I can't fix a toilet or even light a candle. Raw milk is dangerous and Lee Harvey Oswald was working alone.


  1. Powdered butter?, learn something new every day!
    Well, if that is all it takes to have a one month supply, then No, no, I don't have a 6 month supply ;)

  2. Tiff, I've heard such good things about powdered butter that *I* want to get some. Our cow is fresh now and we're making butter but I'd like to have some of this on hand anyway.

  3. I thought of you yesterday as I went to the LDS cannery. They helped me seal up 50 pounds of spaghetti, 40 pounds of rice, some powdered milk, wheat, macaroni, and oatmeal. It only took me an hour.
    You don't have to be a member of the LDS faith to go and can at a cannery, so if there is an LDS cannery near you that would be awesome.
    Thanks for your continuing excitement on this subject!!

  4. Rachel, great idea about using the LDS Cannery, unfortunately Ohio has *one* cannery and it's not by me. ;-( If I lived in Utah however.... It's easy enough to see if there's a cannery by you, it comes up under "provident living" something or other, worth a look for those of you non-LDS that could use some help.

  5. Also, start feeding your family foods now like lentil and barley soup, homemade bread, other things that store well. For one, it is cheap. If something happens, even as mild as job loss, the family does not feel deprived. They have the same food and lifestyle as usual.

  6. Joy, good advice! Many people, myself included, advocate eating your own stored food and rotating stock. However, those new to the preparedness mindset and especially those who don't cook at home can find the idea of food storage absurd (how do you store a Big Mac?). For them, the "shopping list" idea is a good start and better than having *no* storage. I think simple homecooked meals are the best, no matter what's happening politically or economically. Though I must confess, I'd rather eat vomit than lentils. :-)


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