Let’s talk about how to build your own survival kit as it pertains to emergency supply food items. After water, emergency food supplies are the most essential element you need, whether you are just hunkering down to get through a bad storm, or you need to prepare to live in a survival situation the rest of your life. Remember that you want to give yourself a wide variety of nutritious food, while also focusing on those food items which are long-lasting. Just because you are in a disaster survival situation does not mean that all you should be eating are MREs (meals ready to eat) and chalky tasting nutrition bars. Let us cover the Top 10 essential items you will want to begin stocking immediately, which can get you through virtually any emergency survival situation. (Listed in no particular order, as they are all critical for your survival pantry.)
Dry beans and legumes are inexpensive, nutritious and tasty, and extremely versatile as an emergency food. They also pack a lot of proteins and complex carbohydrates, and there are literally hundreds of varieties to choose from. This means you will keep everyone happy at the dinner table, and the shelf life for dried beans and legumes is outstanding to say the least. If you store dry beans in a cool, dry and dark area, they can last indefinitely, making an excellent component of your do it yourself emergency food supplies.
Rice is a key emergency supply food item and one of the smartest choices you can make when creating your do it yourself emergency food supply list. It comes in white, brown, short grain, long grain and other varieties. Right off of your grocery store shelf, a bag of uncooked white rice will last a good 4 to 5 years past the printed date on the package. For the extreme long-term emergency food supply, you you will want to find oxygen-free white rice, which lasts a staggering 25 to 30 years. This is considering that these food items are stored in a cool, dry and dark area or pantry. Extremely versatile and inexpensive, you can combine them with beans and live off of these two items alone virtually forever.
Store-bought canned goods are inexpensive, extremely versatile, they pack and stack neatly, and thousands of food items are available in cans. You can use canned goods to build emergency food supplies, and also to stock your main emergency pantry. Also, many canned goods have a high water content, and any time you can add water to your diet without having to touch your emergency supply, that is a good thing. Be sure to purchase carbohydrates, proteins and fats, and include meat, fish, fruits and vegetables. And don’t forget a can opener.
Home-canned foods. 100 year old canned foods were retrieved from a sunken 19th century Mississippi river steamboat in 1968, and were tested in 1974 by the National Food Processors Association (NFPA). Though the food (peaches, oysters, tomatoes, honey and mixed vegetables) did not look or smell fresh, NFPA scientists detected zero microbial growth, “and determined that the foods were as safe to eat as they had been when canned more than 100 years earlier.” Learn how to can your own foods, and your emergency food supply could outlive you.
Oats are higher in protein than wheat or rice, by nearly a two to one margin. They make you feel fuller longer, are incredibly cheap and long-lasting, and help control your blood sugar and cholesterol levels. They come in a wide variety of flavors and forms, and BYU researchers have shown that oats deliver “life-sustaining nutrition” for over 30 years when stored in, you guessed it, a cool, dry and dark storage area. They can be ground into flour, they grow where wheat will not, and can be used as animal feed as well.
Animal or vegetable shortening, while not the healthiest emergency supply food item on the planet, adds flavor and much-needed calories to your diet. It is also very versatile, and can be used as a lubricant in many survival situations. It keeps longer than cooking oil, and a large can is relatively inexpensive. Stored alongside your rice, beans, canned goods and oats, you can expect at least a 2 to 3 year shelf life from this emergency food staple.
Peanut butter can be eaten fast, and delivers excellent proteins, fat and calories per serving. It also tastes great, and can last up to five years when stored properly. When the SHTF, this will taste like a delicacy. Also, peanut butter makes a great bait for trapping rats, squirrels and rabbits.
Salt and sugar are must-haves. Processed sugar is available in both white and brown varieties, adds much-needed calories and flavor to your diet, and will keep up to 10 years when stored properly. Honey as a sugar alternative is an excellent sweetener that has literally a limitless shelf life. A little can go a long way, and when combined with salt, can be used to make brines and cure meat. Salt lasts forever, provides excellent flavor, and is ridiculously versatile. Salt removes rust, has personal first aid uses, eliminates fish odors, is a great cleaner and makes plucking a chicken much easier when you rub the chicken’s skin with salt first.
Pasta is lightweight and can hang around for five years if stored properly. Pasta is also a great provider of carbohydrates, and there are as many varieties and flavors as there are taste buds in your mouth. This super inexpensive survival food item can be combined with other staples, prepares quickly, and it needs to be in your emergency food supply.
Freeze-dried cans and pouches. Companies like Mountain House, Shelf Reliance and Wise offer freeze-dried foods for emergency situations, packaged in either cans or pouches. Freeze-dried pouches can last up to 10 years, freeze-dried canned products will last up to 25 years. From great tasting soups, pastas, meat-based dishes and more, freeze-dried products are more expensive, but deliver a wide variety and prepare quickly.
Most of the items above can be obtained at your local grocer, and are definite must-haves for any long-term or short-term emergency food supply list. If you just purchase an extra $5 or $10 worth of these food items every time you go to the grocery store, you can salt away between 300 and 600 units of canned food, pasta, dry beans, rice and other essentials every year. If you have deep pockets, there are many companies which will sell you as much freeze-dried food as you need, pre-packaged in stackable, water-tight containers. Large, nontransparent plastic buckets with sealable lids make excellent food storage containers. Add a mylar bag inside, and the longevity of your stored food items increases. Remember to account for water in your cooking needs, and realize that this is a very basic list. MREs, food bars and other survival type food items should also be on the menu, but these 10 indispensable emergency food supply items simply must be on board when you build your own survival kit food components.