When we moved into our current house, we began joking that if the zombie apocalypse ever hit, we were set. After all, we moved into a nice enough neighborhood that isn’t well known – and it’s nigh invisible from major roads. It’s also right next to a mill – so there’s tons of grain and other food storage only a little ways from our home.
Of course, the mill might also attract other zombie preppers, so then you get into the whole teaming up or going it alone debate. And while we aren’t going to debate that right now, let’s talk about the inherent value of food storage and preparedness.
Having Food Storage is NOT an Insurance Policy
I know a lot of people say that having food stored up somewhere is a great insurance policy against trouble. But… I disagree. Because, with an insurance policy, you’re paying into something that can only be used in certain circumstances.
Your food storage, however? It can be used any way you need it to be. So instead of thinking of it as a “for emergencies only” kind of deal, think of it as an “extended pantry that’s saving me money and there when I need it” kind of deal.
Because really. Food doesn’t keep forever, y’all. Quit thinking of it like it’s a one-and-done thing – and it’ll save you a ton of money and anxiety.
Storing Food IS a Great Way to Save Money and Be Prepared
When you make the mental transition from “this food is for emergencies only!” to “this is just an extension of my pantry,” you’ll notice two things.
First of all, you’ll save money. Why? Because you’ll start USING your food storage as part of your pantry. You’ll start storing foods you actually use – and know how to cook.
Second, you’ll still be prepared for an emergency. And, because you’ve learned how to use your stored foods, you’ll actually be fine during an emergency – because you won’t be stuck with a 50-pound package of wheat and wonder how to turn it into bread without any power.
So, what kinds of food should you store so that you can save money AND anxiety?
What Kinds of Food Should You Store?
Now, this is a tricky question rolled into a simple answer. Because you need to learn to store foods you actually use.
If you like grinding your own wheat and baking your own homemade wheat bread? Then storing wheat makes sense. On the other hand, if you wouldn’t know what to do with wheat grains if your life literally depending on eating them… well, maybe you should store boxes of spaghetti, instead.
We store a mix of foods – both raw foods (like wheat and oats), boxed foods (hello, mac ‘n cheese!), canned goods (like fruits), and freeze-dried foods.
However, we only store what we’ll eat. For example, none of the males in my family will eat mushrooms. I, on the other hand, love them. So I’ve got a few bags of freeze-dried mushrooms that I can add to my portions of recipes. But I don’t store a ton of them, because that wouldn’t make sense.
Cheerios and Grape Nuts, on the other hand, are foods that everyone in my family will eat. So we store a TON of those! The looks I get from the cashier at Costco when I bulk-buy Grape Nuts is priceless – she’s probably amazed and wondering at our regularity.
Learning How to Use Food Storage
Now, if you’d like to learn how to better use your food storage, you’re going to want to bookmark this page. Because it’s something I’m learning – and writing about.
For example, I’ve already had some fun learning how to increase our protein intake by tapping our food storage. You can read all about it in my experiments with wheat meat.
Or if you’d rather learn about how to grind your wheat and make your own bread, I’ve got you covered. And I’ll even show you some tools that’ll come in handy to keep making your wheat should those pesky zombies make an appearance. Or the more mundane problem of the power going out.
“We encourage [you] to prepare for adversity in life by having a basic supply of food and water and some money in savings. We ask that you be wise… [and] do not go to extremes… With careful planning, you can, over time, establish a home storage supply and a financial reserve.”All is Safely Gathered In: Family Home Storage
Where to Buy Food Storage For the Best Prices
Want to know where we go? We go to LDS distribution centers. Costco is another great option. Shopping sales (especially case lot sales) is my third favorite option.
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- Want to know more about food storage? This Provident Living website is a great way to get all of the basics – and the best available prices on bulk goods. And it’ll even show you if there’s an LDS distribution center near you. No church membership required to shop here in person or online.
- Shop some of the most popular food storage solutions (or read all about it) at BePrepared.com
- The Wise Company has a lot of great food storage options, too!
- Want to see my favorite food storage and preparedness products on Amazon?
Want to read more on food storage? Here ya go.
- How to be Prepared for Anything
- Cooking with food storage: how to make seitan
- What is Food Storage? – ProvidentLiving.lds.org
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