Top 30 Food Storage Items & Storage
Tawni has another very informative and useful post in our LOST ART OF SELF RELIANCE Series. She is addressing her top list of 30 items that are a MUST have and also ideas of where to store them all – very cleverly I might add.
Thank you Tawni for all the effort you have put into this critical topic and educating us so we can be better prepared for anything that may come along.
Post by Tawni Groneman:
Food Storage: My Top 30 & Where to Put It All
I hope you enjoyed the last installment of the Lost Art of Self-Reliance where we introduced the topic of food storage! Now you might be asking, what in the world am I supposed to buy? Or, I have no extra room in my kitchen, where am I going to put more food?
The food that you buy really depends on your personal tastes and what you like/are able to eat, but I’ve compiled a list of basic things that I have in my food storage. If you don’t have any allergies these are all great things to keep a supply of. If you do have allergies, feel free to substitute things you can eat.
So without further adieu, here are my top 30 food storage items!
1 – bottled water
2 – flour
3 – sugar/brown sugar/powdered sugar
4 – rice
5 – salt
6 – herbs & spices
7 – canned meat (tuna, chicken, Spam etc.)
8 – beans (canned or dried; pinto, black, kidney, etc.)
9 – peanut butter
10 – canned fruit
11 – canned vegetables
12 – canned soup
13 – dried or dehydrated fruit
14 – crackers & cereal
15 – cooking oil & cooking spray
16 – butter (I buy the boxes of butter when they’re on sale during the holidays and stick them in my freezer!)
17 – oats
18 – popcorn kernels (we have an air popper, so this makes a great snack)
19 – pasta
20 – honey
21 – chocolate chips, baking chocolate, etc.
22 – drinks (juice, powdered drink mix, powdered milk)
23 – jam/jelly
24 – condiments (mayo, ketchup, mustard, salad dressing, etc.)
25 – yeast (I don’t bake bread much, but I make a lot of rolls so I keep yeast on hand)
26 -baking powder and baking soda
27 – vitamins
28 – toilet paper (if the world goes to pot, at least you have toilet paper!)
29 – paper plates, napkins, plastic utensils, paper towels
30 – feminine supplies
So those are all the basic things that I have. When I see a good deal on something, I try to buy extra. I also keep things like sweet chili sauce, soy sauce, sesame oil, barbecue sauce, etc. Start with the basics and then work your way into the “extras”. And remember, build your storage up little by little. Once you have enough to last you a week, move onto a month, 2 months, 3 months, etc. Don’t get overwhelmed!
Now, where do we put all this food??? The #1 thing to remember is to keep food in a dark, cool, dry area. My family just moved, and in our old house we had some pretty awesome storage in our laundry room, so that’s where I kept it all. In our new house there is a large pantry and so far the food we have fits in there, but I won’t be able to get more unless I figure out a place for it (and we have no basement).
Here are a few ideas:
1 – Under beds – this is a good chance to clean them out! To make even more room, put the bed on raisers, like these. To rotate the food more efficiently, put the food in on the left side of the bed, and when you’re going to use some of it take it out on the right side.
2 – In a closet – we have a closet under our stairs that, with a little cleaning and organization, will be a great place to keep some of our food. Bedroom closets work great too, and most closets have room to add extra shelving somewhere. I have even seen people use hanging organizers for lighter items.
3 – Buy or make furniture – if you have the room, put in extra cabinets or shelves. If you’re really handy, you could build a stool or coffee table with a lid so you can store things inside. There are a lot of shelf options you can buy.
4 – Use an entire room – if you are lucky enough to have an extra room or part of a room that you just use as a “dump room”, this would be a great place to store your food. A few shelves and some organization go a long way.
5 – Under sinks – I keep all our extra shampoos, soap, deodorant, etc. under our bathroom sinks. Use boxes or baskets to maximize your space. Depending on how much room you have, you could even keep all your toilet paper in there too!
6 – Behind curtains – if you have a little extra space at the end of a room, hang curtains across and hide food storage behind them!
7 – Laundry room – I store extra detergent on a shelf in my *small* laundry room
8 – Drawers – do you have an extra drawer in your dresser or in a bathroom? This would be a great place to store food or non-food items.
9 – Behind furniture – pull out couches, chairs, beds or whatever furniture you have, and put food behind them. Even a few inches is enough to store cans.
I hope this has given you some ideas and a place to start. Remember to start small and work your way up and please try not to get overwhelmed. In the words of Bob on the movie What About Bob?, “Baby steps!”
Great job Tawni!
Copyright Carrie Groneman, A Mother’s Shadow, 2015
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Top 30 Food Storage Items & Storage