Friday, July 10, 2009

Prepare: Cheap Survival Food

"Which Foods Are Gone After A Crisis?"

Food is king. Well, actually, the article I read today said that Ramen was king. I agree when it comes to cheap, lightweight, filling food, ramen noodles rock.

Ramen is considered the fare of hungry college students, underpaid office workers and struggling families. However, it is a big part of my survival food plans. Why?

It's cheap. It costs less than $.10 a pack often. It hardly weighs a thing. A person can easily carry 20 of things in a bug out bag. It is sold in bulk. You can buy a 15 pack at a regular grocery store.

Drawbacks - it has lots of sodium, some fat and other stuff which is not very good for you. In a survival situation, these may be good things.

Here is a great story about the history of ramen noodles.

What else is cheap food for survival?

Macaroni and Cheese

Forget comfort food, mac and cheese is survival food. It can be made with only the ingredients in the box, milk and butter, while nice, are not neccessary.

Macaroni and cheese is a favorite of children and adults. It can be purchased at the grocers often at "3 for a dollar" sales and the non-Kraft version is even cheaper.

I have made mine with dried milk and powdered butter, so that can be done as well.


Rice per cup costs next to nothing when purchased in big 50lb bags. All that is required is water to make.

Rice can stretch a can of stew or soup into a meal for two (or more in really hard times). Rice stores forever when properly contained.


Rice's best friend. Dried, can be stored for years. Only need water to cook. Soak overnight to cook and it helps remove some of the "gas effect". Rice is a healthy food as well. High in fiber and protein. And dried beans are cheap.


Same as rice, cheap and good for you. Buy in big packages. Store in large sealed buckets and it lasts for years. I used some oatmeal I purchased in 2005 for baking last weekend. Had it in a sealed bucket in the back of the pantry. Tasted fine.

Again, water is all that is needed.

There are lots of cheap survival foods which can and should be stored now while the stores are full and food is available. Remember, to pick up appropriate storage buckets to store the food in.

Whether it is a hurricane, storm, war or end of the world, a good food storage program starts with you.


Bitmap said...

Don't limit your macaroni to just the boxed mac&cheese stuff. You can buy big bags of pasta at big box stores. Pasta mixes well with almost anything, especially things that had fur when they were alive.

Another thing to add: peanut butter. Especially in the large size. It packs a lot of calories per dollar and stores well. Plus kids love it. A sort of downside is that it really begs for bread or crackers to go with it.

Anonymous said...

Just a thought...Ramen has no nutritional value. For beans, they can easily come with bugs, making long term storage a little buggy. To prevent this, freeze your beans for 2 weeks and let them sit on the counter for one week. That will kill any live bugs, but not the eggs. The week on the counter will allow any eggs to hatch. Then freeze for two more weeks. Now they're ready to store with desiccant which you can save from medicine bottles.
Another thought...bring along a bag of flavorless Benefiber, powdered gatorade & Tang. Vitamin C, electrolytes & no constipation!

Anonymous said...

How would a person -- or where -- find the right storage containers, such as the large cans I see in pictures (but everyone seems to take for granted are everywhere; well, not where I am, apparently, or maybe I don't know where to look yet. Also, where can a person buy large bags of, say, black eyed beans? - Thanks, Ron

JD said...

Ron - 5 gallon food grade (safe for storing food in) plastic storage buckets can be purchased at hardware stores or obtained from the bakery section at your grocery store. Just ask them for any buckets they are no longer using and as long as they have a lid and you are willing to clean them, you are good to go.

Number 10 cans are more difficult to get and store food in correctly unless you happen to have a friend who is LDS and gives you access to their cannery.

Bulk food like beans and rice can be purchased at a club store like Sams, BJ's or Costco. If not available, purchase the largest bags available at the grocers, place in the freezer for a few days and then restore in a plastic bucket.

Thank you for reading and taking the time to comment.

Lisa said...

The only problem with the package food stuff is you will need to rotate the packages or they will become stale with long term storage. They might last longer in buckets with the oxygen reduction packages or dry ice. I am thinking about researching do so. I purchase my mac and cheese in cans for the same reason. Another problem is with the package stuff you will have to have enough water to prepare it and you will have to heat it up.

Stu said...

For short term storage (5 year) on the cheap, I use cleaned 2 liter soda bottles with one oxygen absorber. The bottles are of course food grade and maintain a tight seal to keep the air out. My extra insurance, seal the outside with candle wax. This also allows you to transport or barter with smaller amounts if needed.

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