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Food Storage—Starting Small

So, you want to get started on your food storage, but money is tight. How to do it? Here is one way that might work for you.

After downloading the meal planning worksheets, decide where you’ll start: Breakfast or dinner. Then decide on two or 3 meals that you family really enjoys and that can be made mostly with pantry foods. Ideally these meals would not use a lot of ingredients that you wouldn’t normally keep on hand.

If you begin with dinner, use the worksheets to determine which meals you want to start with and how much of each main ingredient you’ll need in order to serve them five times over the period of 90 days. Then, decide on which meal you’ll start with.

For example, if you’re planning dinner meals and you decide to start with mac and cheese, either homemade or store-bought, use the Dinner Meals worksheet to work out how much of each main ingredient you’ll need for five meals. If you choose to make it from scratch, which is the most healthy, the main ingredients are: pasta, cheese, and milk. Assuming you already plan to have milk on hand for drinking and other meals, as well as seasonings such as salt and pepper you can concentrate on purchasing enough pasta and cheese (or cheddar cheese soup) for the sauce.

It takes about 2 cups of dry macaroni to fill a 9×13-inch pan when cooked and mixed with sauce, if you plan on baking it. When you buy pasta, check the package to see how many servings are in the package and purchase enough for five meals. Processed cheese, such as Velveeta makes a creamy cheese sauce and often goes on sale. This type of cheese has a long shelf life—check the date on the package. Shredded cheese also often goes on sale at a good price and can be frozen. Canned cheddar cheese soup is another alternative, but it’s expensive by comparison. Depending on the recipe you use, just multiply the ingredients for 1 meal by 5.

All cheese has a long enough shelf life to be used in a 90-day food storage program. Check the dates on the sliced cheese, grated cheese, brick cheese, and cream cheese when you buy it. You may be surprised. If you plan on using packages of mac and cheese, you’ll only need to decide how many packages it takes to feed your family for 1 meal and then multiply that by 5.
Transfer the information to your master shopping list and then start watching for sales on the items you need. Focus on getting a 90-day supply of food for that one meal, as you are able to do so. Maybe you will only be able to pick up an extra one or two packages of pasta or cheese while shopping. But at least you’ll be making progress.

Once you have a 90-day supply of the food for that meal, begin working on purchasing the food items you’ll need for the next meal on your list. Try and use common ingredients so that when you find a sale on chicken, for example, you can buy as much as you can afford and use it for several meals on you list.

The main thing is not to put off getting started, even if it’s just one or two items a week towards your food storage program. Your dedication and consistency will pay off and you’ll be prepared for the unexpected.

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This entry was posted on Monday, October 24th, 2011 at 3:49 pm and is filed under Blog. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can skip to the end and leave a response. Pinging is currently not allowed.

2 Responses to “Food Storage—Starting Small”

  1. Marie says:

    I was recently loaned this book. LOVE it!! As an emergency preparation instructor, I found many useful tips for my students!!

    Thank you for such clear instructions and great ideas!

  2. I just added this blog site to my feed reader, great stuff. Can not get enough!

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