While it is always better to cook and eat natural and fresh produce, it might not always be possible. A variety of causes, from natural calamities to health epidemics, can limit your supply of fresh produce. Having the right pantry, stocked with useful food items, is vital in such cases. Therefore, stocking up on the right kinds of food is critical to ensure that you don’t struggle for supplies. So, what are the best foods to stock up on? How do you ensure that you have an emergency-prepared pantry? Here’s a look at the best foods to stock up on, so that you can weather the storm with the least stress possible.
Why Is Stocking Food Important?
Some people struggle with getting the right product, even for their day-to-day meals. However, making, cooking, and preparing meals during an emergency is a lot different. Natural disasters, like floods, snowstorms, heatwaves, and earthquakes, can really hit supply chains, leading to food and supply shortages. In such cases, having a pantry stocked with the best food becomes vital for survival. Also, during an emergency, you cannot predict your energy requirements, and therefore, you should eat high-protein foods. In case the emergency is medical, like with the COVID-19, eating healthy is very important. Eating nutritious food will help you boost your immunity, which helps keep diseases at bay. Furthermore, the limited supply of rations and produce can be extremely stressful. Therefore, you should have a stocked pantry to ensure that you don’t stress out too much during such emergencies. So, what foods should you stock up on?
Best Foods to Stock Up On
Peanut butter gives you instant energy and is healthy, as it contains a lot of healthy fats and protein. Also, try to go for ones that you do not have to refrigerate, to make the item more emergency-friendly. A great option is the Jif Natural Creamy Peanut Butter two-pack, which will give you 160 ounces of peanut butter. This peanut butter is low on sodium, is gluten-free, and is natural.
Whole-wheat crackers are a suitable replacement if you are someone who depends on bread for their carbs. Bread might be tough to get your hands on when an emergency strikes. However, these crackers can last for long periods and can be used to make some great sandwiches. While the whole-wheat variety lasts a little less long, they are healthier and contain many healthy fats. They also have a lot of fiber, which helps them aid digestion, ensuring that your digestive tract stays healthy and active. Consider vacuum-packing them to retain their freshness.
Nuts and Dried Fruits
Nuts are high-energy foods that contain a lot of healthy and essential fat. They are also very long-lasting and convenient to store. Also, they require close to no preparation to eat, making them the perfect emergency snack to revitalize you. Always store them in vacuum-packed containers, to ensure they do not oxidize and lose their crunchiness and freshness.
Emergencies can severely curtail your access to fresh fruit. The next best substitute in such cases is dried fruits, as they carry many essential vitamins and minerals. They are also high in potassium and dietary fiber, making them a great snack option, along with nuts. Some dried fruits you need to stock up on include dried apricots, raspberries, kiwis, and strawberries.
Multigrain cereals serve as the best breakfast choice during an emergency, as they need no cooking. Go for natural, multigrain cereals as they are individually packaged and are super healthy. You can also opt for cereal and protein bars if you enjoy eating them. Most protein bars last as long as 6 months, and so do granola bars, which are a great breakfast option. These energy bars also contain many carbs, making them energy-dense, meaning you won’t need much to feel satiated.
If you want a quick dose of protein, make sure you stock up on enough canned meat, such as tuna, salmon, chicken, clams, and turkey. Most of such canned meat stay fresh for up to two years and are a great source of protein and omega 3 fatty acids. Also, they are versatile and can be used to make a variety of food items, which help you create several different types of dishes.
Emergencies cripple the agricultural sector, and hence veggies might not be very available during such hard times. That is why you should stock up on canned vegetables, such as tomatoes, green beans, carrots, pumpkins, and pinto beans. Having these veggies around gives you the option of making full meals, with multiple main nutrient groups.
While stocking up on foods, one of the most important things people forget is potable water. While you might be able to go days without food, you won’t survive long without water. Therefore, stocking up on water is imperative. Try to stock up on enough water, and calculate at least three bottles for yourself every day. You could also buy some energy drink cases if you prefer those. However, make sure you give the first priority to water, as it is more important. That being said, energy drinks will be able to rehydrate you and revitalize you when you are feeling dull.
Tips While Shopping For Pantry Essentials
- Make sure everything you pick is non-perishable, and while this might seem obvious, many people choose food items they like over practical things.
- Always check the label and ensure that all the ingredients that go into what you buy are natural.
- Make sure that everything you buy lasts at least 6 to 12 months.
- Remember to buy two can openers so that you have no issue accessing all the food you’ve bought!
- Always buy food in an air-tight and vacuum-packed container to make sure they stay fresh for longer.
- If you are someone who loves milk, buy powdered milk if you want to have a steady supply during tough times.
- Always stockpile essential medicines, emergency medicines, and other stuff in case of emergencies.
Keep this guide in hand to ensure that you are well-prepared for an emergency. Eating right is extremely important, and it becomes even more so during emergencies. Therefore, having an emergency-ready pantry is vital to ensuring that you make it out alright.