Tons of long term food storage information including food calculators, food preservation, food safety, bulk foods, alternative cooking, recipes, and more…
DISCLAIMER: Some of this information can potentially be dangerous, even deadly… attempt at your own risk! As such, you should always seek appropriate medical/legal/professional/expert advice whenever possible. Therefore, I accept NO liability whatsoever for your use or misuse of this information.
Food Storage FAQ – A good resource about long term food storage techniques by Captain Dave. Answered many of my questions about how to do it, what supplies and equipment to use, what problems to watch for, foods I should store, and so on. Spend a few hours reading, you’ll learn a lot.
Long Term Food Storage Menu – from Millennium Ark. Resource regarding various information about food storage including how to pack foods, food shelf life charts/guidelines, as well as a food storage software.
7 Mistakes of Food Storage – Briefly outlines common mistakes we all make.
The Survival Food Pyramid – A brief article detailing what foods to store given the circumstances including immediate needs, extended needs, and long term needs.
The Guide to Long Term Food Storage – This is an interesting infographic with links to related articles that discuss what you should know about the food storage process. It literally walks you through planning for what you need through cooking and using your food storage!
LDS Food Storage Calculator – Use this online form to calculate the amount of basic bulk foods your family will need according to the LDS church. It’s a good start and definitely eye-opening if you have no idea about long term food storage. Simply enter the number of people in your household and get the results instantly… close your eyes first!
An alternative calculator from the TheFoodGuys.com or if you’d prefer an Excel spreadsheet generously designed by FoodStorageMadeEasy.net and here’s one last option if you’re really into tracking your supplies.
Ultimate Long Term Food Storage Worksheet (version 1.1) [Excel download; file created by Heidi & Dan Bartholomeusz] – A popular file for determining long-term food storage requirements for an entire family. This file is fairly robust and easy to understand. (Note: this file was not created by me but I found it useful and thought I would share.) I have tried other files and found this to be the most useful. Please Note: this file requires macros to fully function properly. You must allow Excel to enable macros to run.
How Much Food Fits in a Container? – Use this as a guide to determine how many pounds of dried food will fit in a given container, from one to six pounds.
National Center for Home Food Preservation – Learn a ton of information on food preservation techniques, including canning, freezing, drying, smoking, fermenting, and pickling. Follow the links on the left under “How do I?” for the details. Good introductory information is included as well as many recipes.
Simply Canning – Describes nearly everything one could want to know about canning. Includes a variety of safety info as well as “how to” information, including recipes and step-by-step instructions for a variety of fruits, vegetables and even meats.
Dehydrate 2 Store – Another neat site with plenty of dehydrating information, including loads of recipes, a variety of tips, dozens of videos and more. If you want to know about dehydrating then this is a good place to start.
Still Tasty– A neat website that tells you how long food is expected to be good in various locations (refrigerator, freezer, pantry). Search by category (e.g., fruits, vegetables, meats, sweets, etc.) or type in a name (e.g., broccoli) to easily find what you’re looking for. Often include tips on how to prepare and store a specific food for better storage. Check it out…you’ll keep coming back for more.
Freezing Fruits and Vegetables – Outlines the basics of freezing foods and briefly describe how to do so.
LDS Cannery Book [PDF File] – Another useful resource from the LDS church. Also includes some recipes.
Food Storage Times (Cupboard) [PDF File] – Briefly outlines expected food storage times for common household cupboard foods as well as how best to store them (developed by Kansas State University).
Food Storage Times (Fridge or Freezer) [PDF File] – Briefly outlines expected food storage times for common household refrigerator and freezer foods as well as how best to store them (developed by Kansas State University). You might also be interested in this Keeping Food Safe During an Emergency [PDF File], which offers an easy “keep/discard” decision making process regarding fridge and freezer food safety after a power outage.
Botulism Poisoning – A brief article regarding botulism poisoning. You should understand a bit about botulism before attempting any home canning.
Food Safety and Inspection Service Fact Sheets – A variety of online documents (also available as PDF files) regarding food safety during and after an emergency. Specific recommendations are given for power outages, fire, and flood emergencies.
Food Molds -FAQ on when food molds are considered bad.
Sams Club or Costco – Both warehouse clubs are good places to start your bulk food purchases as you will find a variety of foods you already eat, often at better prices than the local grocery store or Walmart. I would strongly urge you to actually begin your “bulk” food purchases here rather than any of the places listed below BECAUSE the foods you’ll find here are those you’re already accustom to eating. As budget, space, and time permit, begin using the resources below to bolster your current pantry supplies.
Bulk Food Storage from TheReadyStore. One of the biggest online bulk food storage site out there. They have nearly everything you could want and then some. I’ve always been satisfied with what I’ve purchased and highly recommend them. In fact, this is a great place to get some of those hard-to-find essentials such as powdered cheese and powdered eggs.
Freeze-dried Foods by Nitro-Pak. A major resource in the freeze-dried food industry. You’ll find plenty of foods as well as many other preparedness items. In particular, I would also encourage you to look for their Super Spectrim vitamins, which are specially packed for lengthy storage (up to 10 years).
Provident Living Buk Food Storage PURCHASING Worksheet by the LDS Church. If you live near a LDS Church cannery I would strongly urge you contact them (use this map for LDS cannery locations) and–even if you’re not a member–ask if you may participate in a weekend canning session. To my knowledge, this is far and away your BEST option for getting the basic bulk foods (rice, beans, wheat) as cheaply as possible. While I’ve heard that some canneries may not let you participate if you’re not a member, it can’t hurt to ask. Be honest with them and state that you’re not a member. While they will probably limit your purchase you’ll still come away with a lot of food. If your local cannery works anything like the one near me, you’ll work for a few hours Saturday morning and be done for lunch. Pay for your foods with a check and you’re one step closer to your goals.
[Note: While there are many other sites where you can purchase heirloom/non-hybrid seeds, I would urge serious caution before purchasing seeds from just anybody for three major reasons: (1) the quantity of seeds in many of the “survival seed kits” found elsewhere may not be nearly enough, (2) you cannot expect that the seeds you buy are of good quality just because they say heirloom on the package, and (3) seed varieties are often tailored to climate regions to maximize growth and ability to thrive. I like AAOOB because you can buy A LOT of seeds for a good price, whereas sites like Johnny’s Seeds shown below provide climate-specific seeds.]
Region-specific seeds (it does make a difference if the seeds you purchase are grown for your climate). You might also be interested in this list of 35 Heirloom Seed Suppliers as well:
- RareSeeds.com – West Coast
- TerritorialSeed.com – West Coast
- EldoradoHeirloomSeeds.com – Midwest
- JohnnySeeds.com – East Coast
101+ Canning Recipes for Food Storage – direct links to canning recipes by type of food.
101+ Dehydrating Recipes for Food Storage, Hiking and Paleo Diets – same as above link but for dehydrating foods.
Basic Recipes from LDS Church – Many recipes created by the LDS Church.
Bean and Lentil Recipes – More than 66 Recipes from Soups to Dessert.
You might also want this powdered milk and powdered egg conversion chart [PDF file].
Recipes of Our Ancestors [PDF File] – Loads of recipes for breads, corn, soups, main dishes, etc.
Dehydrator Cookbook [PDF File] – Created by American Harvest. Discusses the basics of dehydration and provides many recipes for use in a dehydrator.
Cooking with Dried Beans [PDF File] – Includes a few dozen recipes that use dried beans as their bases.
Solar Cooking – Learn how to harness the sun’s power to cook your food. In particular, use a variety of solar cooker plans to build your own solar cooker inexpensively. I would also recommend these sun oven recipes you can use to get started ASAP.
Solar Cooker Plans – An wide assortment of plans, including panel cookers, box cooker, parabolic cookers, and more.
Dutch Oven and Other Cooking Ideas – How to use a Dutch oven including MANY recipes. Look to the handful of links regarding dutch oven cooking. FYI, I recommend you purchase a Dutch oven and practice using it over a campfire. Reference this Dutch Oven Cooking Chart to know how many briquettes to use with a dutch oven.
Zen Backpacking Stoves – An awesome resource for everything you want to know about backpacking stoves. It’s the best I’ve found yet.
Build a Greenhouse – Complete instructions for an 8×10 greenhouse including diagrams and parts list.
Build a Passive Solar Greenhouse – Lots of info on a passive greenhouse idea. They will sell you plans on how to do it.
Epic Gardening: All About Grow Lights – “Grow lights are one of the most important elements of an indoor garden. Whether you’re a seasoned hydroponic grower or just looking to extend the growing season, buying the right indoor grow light is essential. In this article, we’ll dig into everything you need to know when it comes to choosing and using indoor grow lights.”
Indoor Plant Grow Lights – Fluorescent lights for growing plants if you need them.
Everything You Need to Know About Growing Plants Under Lights – Learn about how colors affect lights, myths about growing plants under lights, light intensity, and how to choose and size a grow light.
Before you go rushing off to eat that delicious-looking purple plant you’ve been eyeing in your backyard, better have a clue whether it’s poisonous or not.
Plant Identification [PDF File] – Basic information on both edible and some poisonous plants.
Poisonous Plants [PDF File] – More information regarding proper identification of poisonous plants.
Pocket Urban Foraging Guide [PDF File] – Another guide to wild edibles.
Aquaponics – Ever wonder how to grow food in a fish tank? No!? Me neither until I found this neat site on the subject.
A Complete Guide to Aquaponic Gardening – You will learn about the basics of aquaponics practice – what is aquaponics, how it works and why it is so special, how had aquaponics developed through time, what are the biological and chemical mechanisms behind it, and how can an aquaponic system look like.
The Ultimate Guide to Sprouting [links to PDF File]
9 Common Spices to Stock (and 5 Uncommon Ones) – Briefly lists the author’s recommendations for spices to keep on hand.
Interactive Gardening and Plant Hardiness Zone Maps – Search by plant or by state to see what plants and trees are best suited for your area.
Fruits/Vegetables/Herbs When Are They In Season? – Infographic showing when fruits and vegetables should be in season (rather than always available at the grocery store).
Hydroponic Gardening For Beginners – If you’re interested in how to start with hydroponics, start here. The article discusses setups, planting and seed starting, and more.