Build a Food Storage with Food You Already Eat

Having a food storage is an important part of any emergency plan. However, storing food for a long period of time can be daunting. The first thing to do is to make a 72 hour kit. The second thing to do is build up a two to three month supply of food that your family is already eating. The third thing to do is continue building up your food storage using basic foods that last for a very long time, such as grains and legumes. This article will give you ideas on how you can accomplish the second step and build a supply of everyday foods that you already eat.

Building up a storage of food that your family already eats is a smart idea. In an emergency, you will have many different things to worry about, and you don’t need the added stress of becoming accustomed to new foods. Having familiar food to eat will help your family feel more comfortable, and they will be better able to cope with difficult situations. This type of food storage will see you through short term emergencies, such as power outages or gas and food shortages. It will also be available in times of unemployment or other financial stress. These foods can be used to spice up and ease the transition to the longer term, basic food storage items.

Before you start buying extra food, you need to make a plan. Stocking up on food before you have thought about what you need will certainly fill up your pantry, but the results will be unbalanced and much less usefully. Having 15 boxes of spaghetti noodles but only 2 cans of spaghetti sauce means you will have a lot of plain noodles to eat!

Start by making a list of 30 days worth of dinners, lunches and breakfasts. These meals should be simple, easy to prepare, and well liked by your family. The ingredients should be able to last at least three months in the pantry, fridge or freezer. Remember that SIMPLE is the key, you’re not trying to serve gourmet five course meals, you’re just trying to survive. If you are having a hard time thinking of recipes, search the Internet. You are sure to find many delicious recipes that are simple and appropriate for a food storage program. If you can’t come up with enough recipes, then repeat some of them. The point is to come up with enough meals to fill 30 days.

Make sure that you include several dishes that can be prepared without electricity and contain ingredients that don’t require refrigeration. This way you will have food to eat if your power goes out. If you have a gas stove, grill or fire place, you will have more options. Make sure that your gas stove will still work when the electricity is out and that you also store fuel for your grill or fire place.

Write down all of the ingredients and quantities needed to make each of your meals. If you repeated any meals, make sure you list the ingredients needed each time you repeated it. Use this list of ingredients to make your shopping list. As funds allow, start picking up items from this shopping list when you do your regular shopping. Once you have purchased everything on your list, you will have a one month supply of food. Use the same shopping list again to build up a two month supply and then a three month supply.

Now that you have built up a food storage, you need to rotate and maintain it. You can use this food when you prepare your regular meals, just make sure you replace what you use. Whenever you open a can or package of food, add that item to your weekly shopping list so that you can replace it as soon as possible. Place fresh food in the back so that older food gets used first.

Tips:
* Bread and milk can both be frozen if they are prepared correctly. For more ideas on foods that can be frozen, search the Internet.
* Be creative when adapting your recipes. For example, a hamburger can be served between pieces of bread instead of a hamburger bun.
* Place copies of your recipes and the list of meals in an emergency notebook or other safe place so that you find them when you need them.
* Don’t go into debt to build your food storage.

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