What are the Best Food Items to Hoard for when the SHTF?
If a catastrophic event occurs in your area, then it is important to have an assortment of foods stored to provide nourishment. Some of the events that require being prepared include:
- Economic Collapse
There are two essentials that you and your family need for several days or perhaps months to stay alive throughout a horrible event that makes growing crops or buying food at a grocery store impossible. You must have clean water and food to maintain your energy levels during a crisis. In addition, it is vital to know how to store foods properly. You might wonder what food items to hoard to prepare for an emergency and fortunately, there are several choices available.
1. Dried Beans, Lentils and Peas
Dried peas, lentils and beans are foods that supply a lot of energy for your body, and with proper storage containers that keep out moisture, oxygen and contaminants, these foods can last for several years. The major drawback of these foods is the length of time required for cooking, but if you are prepared to provide fuel for lentils, beans and pea, then you will have a steady supply of protein and calories.
2. Rice and Grains
Rice and grains are another food that you can keep in moisture proof containers for several months to bake bread or mix with other foods. A meal of rice and beans is filled with vital nutrients that will maintain your body’s temperature during the winter. Grains such as wheat, barley and rice are easy to add to soups and casseroles to provide additional calories.
3. Canned Foods to Hoard
Canned foods are designed to last for several months to many years, and the products are labeled with expiration dates by manufacturers. If you are going to stock up with canned foods, then check the expiration date on the products to find the best ones. In addition to buying canned foods, products that are in glass jars will last a long time, but these items require special care to avoid breakage. Canned and jarred foods that you should have stored for a crisis include:
- Fish – tuna, salmon, mackerel and sardines
- Fruit – peaches, applesauce, pears and pineapple
- Vegetables – peas, tomatoes, corn and green beans
- Prepared meals – spaghetti, ravioli, beef stew, soups
- Extras – jams, peanut butter, spaghetti sauce
Pasta is a good food to stock up on when it is on sale, but it requires proper care to prevent spoilage. Invest in a Vacuum Sealer device that removes air from specialized plastic bags. With heavy-duty bags, you can store small to large amounts of pasta to use during a catastrophic event. For additional protection from moisture and rodents, place the vacuum-sealed bags in metal containers with lids.
5. Freeze-Dried Foods
Freeze-dried foods are available from specialty companies, or you can prepare your own by using a food-hydrating machine. Preparing freeze-dried foods is labor-intensive, but if you have a garden or raise livestock, then it is an excellent way to store foods long-term. Freeze-drying correctly involves making sure that foods are kept in sealed packages to avoid moisture absorption. Almost any type of food is suitable for freeze-drying, including meat, vegetables or nuts.
6. Powdered and Canned Milk
You will need to store powdered and canned milk products for an emergency, and if you have an infant in a home, make sure to stock up on infant formula. Canned milk is available in condensed or evaporated formats, and both are suitable for baking bread or mixing into recipes. It is vital to keep canned foods away from moisture because the metals of the containers can rust and degrade, leading to spoilage.
7. Dried Corn
Dried corn or popcorn can provide a lot of carbohydrates to help provide energy and prevent loss of body heat. If you have livestock to care for during a long-term crisis, then it is possible to feed dried corn to cattle, goats or pigs. You can also grind dry corn to make cornmeal to make bread or muffins that are easy to carry with you while traveling away from a dangerous location.
8. Cooking Oils
You will need cooking oils to fry certain types of foods, and vegetable, animal or coconut oils contain numerous calories to keep your body energized. Oils can spoil and become rancid, so make sure to check the expiration dates on the products when shopping.
9. Nuts and Seeds
Nuts and seeds are powerhouse foods that are filled with essential nutrients, and these foods are easy to pack and carry in a Bug Out Bag. There are several varieties of nuts and seeds to choose from, including:
- Pine seeds
- Sunflower seeds
Seeds and nuts are high in fat, and improper storage of these foods can lead to spoilage. Most nuts and seeds remain safe to eat when the foods are left inside the shells, but you must also store these in sealed containers for several months.
You can use vinegar in some recipes, but more importantly, it is possible to use white or apple cider vinegar to preserve foods with a pickling process. If you have a vegetable garden, then it is easy to use canning jars and preservation methods to pickle these foods:
- Bell and red peppers
- Watermelon rinds
- Green beans
In addition, you can pickle beef, eggs and herring to have additional protein food sources.
Your body requires a certain amount of sodium to remain healthy, and if you are in a hot climate that leads to excessive perspiration, then salt can prevent health problems. It is also possible to use salt to preserve meats such as pork, beef, fish or wild game such as venison.
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What are the Best Food Items to Hoard for when the SHTF?