Healthy Kitchens Healthy Lives

Your Emergency Pantry

Your Emergency Pantry

Perhaps after the devastation and heartache caused by hurricane Sandy in the east coast, you’re thinking about how prepared you are in case a natural disaster strikes where you live. You can’t assume you’ll have power, so be sure you have flashlights and batteries, candles, matches and some kind of a camp stove with propane. Volcano Grill is one choice, but there are many.

Water should be first on your list. You can’t live without water for very long. Keep water in one-gallon glass containers plus some plastic buckets with lids for washing and flushing. Be sure to use this stored water frequently so it’s fresh if and when you need it. Be sure to factor in enough for your animals.

You’ll also need some basic medical supplies such as you would find in a first aid kit.

Here are some food ideas to always keep in your emergency pantry. Remember to rotate these into your everyday lives, but always keep the basic supplies and quantities at the ready. Remember your pantry should be cool, dry and dark.

  • Canned and dried beans of many varieties
  • Beef or turkey jerky are sources of long-storing protein.
  • Canned tuna, salmon and sardines are an excellent source of protein.
  • Canned and dried beans of many varieties
  • Nut butter, jams and jellies and honey.
  • Coffee and teas.
  • Powdered milk.
  • Dried herbs and spices that you like and use frequently. Make sure sea salt and pepper is on this list.
  • Protein powder. I like Vega personally.
  • Vegetables, such as beans, peas, and carrots. Honestly, canned vegetables are cringe-worthy for me, so I would can my own. That said canned veggies are better than no veggies.
  • Canned or jarred fruits such as applesauce and pumpkin.
  • Dried fruits, such as dates, raisins, cranberries, etc., are another way to get the nutrition of fruit in your emergency food pantry.
  • Whole grain crackers are good replacements for bread.
  • Nuts of many varieties such as almonds, walnuts, and pecans.  Remember raw nuts should be kept in the refrigerator or freezer until use.
  • Granola bars. These are good for treats.
  • Dry cereals, including oatmeal.
  • Single-serving-sized juice that doesn’t need to be refrigerated. Make sure to choose 100-percent fruit juices.
  • Various types of pasta, rice and other grains such as quick-cooking quinoa
  • Canned chili
  • Pet food. Don’t forget your furry friends!
  • Baby Wipes/diapers/formula

This and That:

  • A good multivitamins. A bottle of multivitamins can help supply missing nutrients.
  • Can opener. You need to have a can opener that stays in your emergency food pantry. Hang it on a shelf with a sturdy string so it stays put.
  • Keep bags or backpacks close by, in the event you have to get out of your house in a hurry. You do not want to have to hunt for a bag to carry your food and belongings.
  • Have a stack of blankets that you keep zipped up in a special container in your pantry if you have room.

This is not an exhaustive list. Perhaps you can’t imagine not having sugar in your coffee or on your cereal. This list should, however, be enough to get you started!


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