Cresson Kearny’s Infant Formula

(Psst: The FTC wants me to remind you that this website contains affiliate links. That means if you make a purchase from a link you click on, I might receive a small commission. This does not increase the price you'll pay for that item nor does it decrease the awesomeness of the item. ~ Daisy)

By the author of The Faithful Prepper and The Prepper’s Guide to Post-Disaster Communications.

Once upon a time, there was a man by the name of Cresson Kearny. A nuclear war researcher throughout the Cold War, Kearny was obsessed with the threat of nuclear annihilation. After all, that was his job.

After a brief stint in Panama at the dawn of World War 2, Kearny was shipped overseas to China. The Japanese had already invaded Manchuria, and the sight of starving mothers and babies was a regular sight for the man as he witnessed thousands of Chinese attempt to flee from the widespread rape and murder that accompanied the Japanese invaders. (This was before communist politicians in the USA helped Mao Zedong take over China.)

Of his experience overseas, Kearny wrote:

“Few Americans have watched babies starving. In China, I saw anguish on starving mothers’ faces as they patted and squeezed their flat breasts, trying to get a little more milk into their weak babies’ mouths. I saw this unforgettable tragedy in the midst of tens of thousands of Chinese evacuating on foot before a ruthless Japanese army during World War II.”

Not here.

Kearny loved his country and couldn’t bear the thought of witnessing the same on American soil. He knew that a nuclear strike would be accompanied by famine, however, and he set out to do something about it.

Landing a job at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Kearny spent years analyzing the problems that surrounded the threat of nuclear war.

Oak Ridge National Laboratory

What he had seen in China had been burned into his mind. Having small children of his own, Kearny wasn’t going to passively wait for trouble to come. He was a man, and a man’s job is to provide for and protect his family.

(For more information on building up your food supplies, check out our free QUICKSTART Guide to building a three layer food storage plan.)

He was going to do just that.

Through his government research at Oak Ridge, one of the things he ended up doing was creating an emergency food supply ration for babies. He knew that babies needed food after an emergency strike just like anybody else, and he wanted to ensure that they were well taken care of. Key to that was infant formula, and Kearny knew that babies were going to need it.

He ended up coming with the following emergency food supply that Americans should stash away to keep their babies from starving. The following numbers, according to Kearny, will keep a single baby alive for six months:

  • 32 pounds of instant, non-fat, dry milk
  • 12 pounds of vegetable cooking oil
  • 8 pounds of sugar
  • A jar of multivitamins

Kearny broke this down into a daily ad hoc formula that he was going to use to feed his infant children in the event of a nuclear strike.

His plan was to craft the following recipe:

  • 1/3 cup + 2 teaspoons of instant non-fat milk powder
  • 1 and 1/3 cup of boiled water

First, Kearny would add the milk powder to the boiled water, stirring the mixture thoroughly. Next, he would add 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil and 2 teaspoons of sugar, stirring thoroughly once more.

Kearny noted that while a larger batch could be made to last for 24 hours, it was safest during times without refrigeration or when it was hot outside to make three smaller doses (the recipe above is the “smaller” dose).

While he was a huge proponent of breastfeeding for disaster mitigation purposes alone, Kearny also understood that there were times when this simply wouldn’t be possible. He wanted American babies to get the chance to live, and it was because of this Kearny spent so much time experimenting and writing within the lab.

Worried that in the event of a nuclear war, babies wouldn’t get access to plenty of vitamins and minerals, Kearny advocated the use of keeping a stock of standard daily multivitamin pills on hand as well. According to Kearny, these could then be ground up into a fine powder and dissolved in a bit of water for the baby to drink. This would keep babies from developing diseases related to vitamin A, B, and C deficiencies, Kearney said.

And if all else failed – if even these simple ad hoc remedies weren’t possible – Kearney advocated for switching to mushy baby food.

(Want uninterrupted access to The Organic Prepper? Check out our paid-subscription newsletter.)

Timely advice on infant formula?

Kearny’s recipe is most certainly not the only one that is out there. Weston A. Price has put out a number of infant formula recipes that you may find of interest. They’re a bit more refined than Kearny’s recipe was.

We now live in an America where an inability to feed their own children is causing grown men to break down in tears. Families are now shopping for formula for newborns who live across state lines. That is what it now takes to keep your baby fed in the United States of America. This is now the world you live in.

Will this be the world your children inherit?

What are your thoughts on the matter? Let us know in the comments below.

*This isn’t medical/nutrition advice, but is for informational purposes only.*

About Aden

Aden Tate is a regular contributor to and Aden runs a micro-farm where he raises dairy goats, a pig, honeybees, meat chickens, laying chickens, tomatoes, mushrooms, and greens. Aden has three published books, The Faithful Prepper The Prepper’s Guide to Post-Disaster Communications, and Zombie Choices. You can find his podcast The Last American on Preppers’ Broadcasting Network.


Picture of Aden Tate

Aden Tate

Leave a Reply

  • Vegetable oil? Goodness- that stuff is so very toxic. Coconut oil, collagen protein, bone broth, liquid vitamins-especially D and B vitamins, strained oat water, goat milk, camel milk…in truly desperate times I would think growing moringa could help as it is the only complete protein in plant form, strained amaranth….there are lots and lots of creative options but they do require thought and work. It was hard for me with my second baby but we are in the lucky few as we live close to the country where we can get raw goat milk from ethical small farms.

    • Yes. I agree. Goats milk is what we will use in hard times. Its been a big reason I wanted to start keeping goats too.

    • I’ve heard goats milk is much closer to human milk than that from cows. Bone broth sounds like a wonderful addition. And of course raw goats milk is preferable – having so many living organisms. The evaporated milk and milk powders are depleted of so many life-supporting ingredients. Thank you for your post. You are lucky to have ethical small farms close by you.

    • love your comment Tiffany, especially on growing Moringa, and everything prepper tree, has lots of uses. We have two trees in our backyard, we dry a lot of it for future use. Good Comment

    • Any kind of vegetable oil is toxic? Even avocado oil and olive oil and sesame oil? I agree that canola isn’t the greatest depending on how it’s processed – but there are so many kinds of vegetable oil out there.

  • The book “Where there is No Doctor” has a similar recipe for babies. Yes, ideally they would nurse or one could use more natural ingredients, but where there’s no other options, or when you’re talking for a lot of them at once, babies just need some kind of fat. I would use vegetable oil over no fat at all. And if imports slow or stop, I sure can’t produce coconut oil in the Midwest! 😉
    Also even nursing isn’t a guarantee – – mama’s need lots of extra calories to produce that milk. And stress or illness can reduce a milk supply too. If you have a baby, be sure to plan for mama’s health and nutrition!

    • Right? I’m guessing you can’t grow a moringa tree either. I’m in Canada, so I feel that…

      In the event that whole animal milk is not available, I would at least use an animal based fat as it is more natural than vegetable oils.

      • Zucker, Baker Creek offers seed for a dwarf Moringa. Have a cousin in northern MI that grows several in pots in his house; though I believe they can be grown as an annual as well. Not sure if it’s permissible to post a link to it or not. If it is, I will post it later.

    • Good thoughts, IA Mom. I haven’t got “Where there is No Doctor” yet but hope to in the future. I don’t have small children but want to be able to help others in need to feed their babies and help those mama’s be in good health too.

  • This is a horrible reminder of how much people depend on the system.
    Doctors can’t tell you anything of how to feed a baby without the option of formula, most of which are simply not nutritious for baby. Soy is an awful thing to feed a baby particularly a male baby.
    That so many women choose not to breastfeed is unnatural and sad. That is natures perfect food for baby.
    That folks cannot seem to think out of the box and figure this out is also sad.
    One more planned assault to cause chaos to make way for the so-called great reset.
    I would not use any vegetable oil in the above recipe. As Tiffany said there are other healthier options. Weston A Price is a fantastic resource. We give women the baby formula recipe all the time where I work. It takes some work though and I’m pretty sure most of the women don’t actually use it because of that.
    Strange times we live in with so many unable to actually think for themselves.

  • I think this formula would be adequate for nourishing a baby. I think the evaporated milk formula is better: the process of heating the milk produces a curd which is fine, has lower tension, and more evenly divided fat globules. It is easily digestible and less allergenic than untreated milk.

    I can’t think of when storing powdered milk for formula would be better than storing cans of evaporated milk and bottles of Karo. I think the cans would last longer and keep the contents sterile.

    • My mom fed all five of us with either cow’s milk or evaporated milk and caro syrup. We survived fine. Powdered milk wasn’t available for awhile when we were little so she did what she had to do.

    • Karo is corn syrup. Causes sugar spikes (typical of diabetes). Sure, they used it. And now it is genetically modified as well. It is bad news.

  • So grateful I was able to breastfeed. . . but a lot of women really can’t for one reason or another. I was only able to because of intense help from lactation consultants and not everyone has that kind of support.

    This looks good as an emergency backup but I think if I had a choice I’d do raw goat’s milk too. I have a friend who provides raw goats milk specifically to women who can’t nurse. They mix it with molasses and brewer’s yeast for the additional sugar and vitamins.

  • This is good information, but many people use formula because of food allergies. Two of my children are allergic to dairy, including goats milk, and I was told to give them formula when they were small. With the formula shortage, there is no hypoallergenic formula. Is there anything that parents can do in that situation?

    • I think that would depend on the degree of the allergy. I found out in my 40’s that I was lactose intolerant. I remember my Mum saying that I threw up after every feeding, but the doc said not to worry as I was gaining weight. My allergy was and is pretty mild….a bit of digestive issues in the lower abdomen and then a quick trip to the bathroom and I’m fine. (I know TMI) If mild, I would in case of an emergency just feed the child, now, if the allergy is more serious…..You can make your own almond and oat milk, so there is that option to have a stock pile of oats and nuts. I raised mine on evaporated milk. Nurse in the hospital gave the recipe to all new mothers.

    • I’ve seen suggestions using rice milk and atole (from corn starch). They wouldn’t have enough protein. And for children with eosinaphilia (an autoimmune vaccine reaction), who need an elemental formula, I don’t know what to do.

      I don’t think raw milk would be safe to give babies. It has a lot of germs, and can often transmit tuberculosis.

      • Commercially sold raw milk has more rigorous standards for safety than pasteurized milk. Raw milk has factors that combat germs. It can’t transmit tuberculosis if the animal doesn’t have it.

  • thank you. This information would be helpful if someone other than the baby’s mother was feeding them. (grandma and pa or aunt and uncle)

  • Another better option for veg oil is “La Tourangelle Organic Sun Coco Oil Blend.” which is made from organic high-oleic sunflower seed oil and organic refined coconut oil. It is relatively low in PUFA and tasteless.

  • Formula, formula, formula! Where are the articles encouraging and coaching moms on how to keep nursing? Or relactate? Or keep a good supply of milk going especially under stress?

    • Breast feeding is the best choice. But if you don’t start at birth and continue till weaning, your milk dries up. Some women are able to start their milk again if it hasn’t been too long, but in most cases it isn’t possible. I think that for families caught in this crisis, it’s not possible. I’d say they need to make the evaporated milk, boiled water, Karo formula until things get back to normal.

      • Karo is corn syrup, now genetically modified. Causes sugar spikes (i.e. like diabetes). BAD NEWS.

        I once tried to re-lactate a couple of years after I stopped breastfeeding my eldest. Stimulated my nipples for less than a minute a couple of times a day. Within days, I had colostrum. Never say never.

  • Thanks for sharing, Aden. I also appreciate the comments.
    I don’t have small ones anymore but good information to pass on to other mamas and those needing help. I’m thankful my granddaughter nurses my great grandbaby and did the others too. I understand not always an option for everyone and mamas need to stay in good health to do so as well.

  • Some tips:

    1.Working mothers can breast feed. It’s called a breast pump.

    2. Dr. Pottenger was a dentist doing surgeries on cats. They weren’t recovering normally, and he suspected the cooked meat scraps he got from a local institution. He did studies on raw and cooked meat, and then raw and pasteurized dairy. One scientific paper showed the guts of four groups of cats who had been fed raw milk, pasteurized milk, evaporated, and condensed milk. The raw milk guts looked like textbook anatomy, pasteurized were a little off, but I will never consume canned milk again after seeing those photos. I use whipping cream when recipes call for canned.

    3. Weeds grew in the pens after the study. The raw pen had luxuriant weeds, pasteurized less so and the canned pens were almost deserts. Be careful where you get your “organic” fertilizer from!

    4. American cows have been highly genetically selected for triple milk production by weight between 1950’s and 1970’s. Must be worse now. That means watery, low-fat milk and a different milk protein. There’s A1 casein and A2, I forget which is usual here and the other in Europe, but raw may not be natural enuf. And “one man’s meat is another man’s poison,” anyway.

    5. My breasts ran dry once when I had a nursing infant. She made a face, but formula is better than nothing. I looked at info from the local health food store and learned that silver can affect breast milk quantity. I have some silver-plated silverware. It doesn’t take much. Right now, you can find silver plate. Get some.

    • I believe it’s the A1 casein here, & A2 in Europe. Just finished reading “The Devil In the Milk.” Some interesting reading.

  • You might ask at your local farmer’s market if there’s anyone in the area who presses oils. We have a couple of local farms that sell cold pressed oils (sunflower, flax, pecan, etcetera) at several of the farmer’s markets. Might be an alternative.

  • During my childbearing years I successfully breastfed four children in succession even though I was underweight at the time (105 pounds) and suffering from colitis and dealing with severe stress from an abusive marriage. My oldest and second baby were 13 months apart and I only had lowered milk production at the tail end because of the pregnancy and put the oldest baby on raw goats milk as I came close to delivery of the second baby. The second son did great, super healthy and robust, third , a girl and chunky and beautiful. Fourth, great nurser and healthy. I attributed my success to having support from La Leche League breastfeeding group for young mothers. Even the doctor was discouraging me as were other relatives. But I proved them wrong, I learned alot from the group who would be available for any issues I may have come upon, at all hours of the day and night. I really want to say dont give up, it works, and your baby will be super healthy and beautiful. Even in war torn areas with low food supplies, breastfeeding is the best. Nature has designed our bodies to be able to keep infants alive despite huge challenges. I urge you to try and start a nursing schedule right at the beginning by not allowing the baby to go beyond every three hours to breastfeed and maybe every two hours till your milk supply is built up. No pacifier or water.
    My now lovely daughter has successfully nursed my grandchildren and they are robust and active. Breast is best and you CAN do it. The book “The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding” is an excellent source of information if you cannot locate a La Leche League chapter in your area. Dont give up. Your milk WILL feed your baby. Dont let anyone tell you otherwise.

  • Back in the 50s and 60s most new mothers were sent home with a card telling how to make baby formula. My mom was one of them. The formula is 13 oz. of evaporated milk, 20 oz. water, 2 Tbls. Karo syrup. Heat together, allow to cool, and pour into 6 bottles. I was raised on this, as were many of my Boomer compatriots, and we did just fine. Tractorguy

  • Are you kidding me? This is HUGELY irresponsible and dangerous as well. And the little “this is for informational purposes only” blurb is insufficient in the context of this website and the nature of recent columns, with alarmist fear-mongering, and a readership who would no more trust the FDA or the JAMA or the WHO, but are prepared to mix this witches’ brew and feed it to their babies? Daisy, you’d better have a good lawyer on retainer. One (or more) of your readers is likely to do this and poison someone.

    So, you say in making this elixir you could have a “stock of standard daily multivitamin pills on hand as well. According to Kearny, these could then be ground up into a fine powder and dissolved in a bit of water for the baby to drink.”

    WTF? What kind of vitamins? Adult? Child? With iron or not? How much? and ground up and “dissolved in a bit of water” is a bit too imprecise for me, a bit rich for my blood. Don’t you know that many of these vitamins and minerals are TOXIC if you give too much? A and D, in particular, are stored in fat and not excreted like C is, and can lead to major problems. Iron can be a big problem and too easy to overdose on. And just how much of this should a baby be taking in? A newborn? A one-year-old? Don’t you think a baby would be a lot easier to overdose on vitamins and minerals than someone who is, say, not a baby?

    Look, I get that if your baby is going to starve, you do what you can to prevent that, and that’s when you break out this recipe. Without vitamins. This scares me. At a minimum, get some vitamin drops designed for preemies and put a TINY bit in. I worry some doofus on this site puts on their tinfoil hat and goes down to Walmart to buy some Centrum or even Flintstones vitamins and then overdoses their baby on this.

    This might be the most irresponsible thing I’ve ever read on this site.

    • Hi Lorraine

      Please write and submit a more responsible and safer article than this one. Please include information that resolves your concerns about this article.

      Thank you for your consideration.

    • I think your criticism is overly harsh. I read every article before it goes up and I approved this for informational purposes. We can learn a lot by looking back at history, and that’s exactly what this article does. It cites a recipe created long ago. I hope that our work inspires people to seek solutions, not just find problems.

      You are very aggressive nearly every time you comment. I have to wonder why you keep coming back if you think all of our work is “fear-mongering,” yet here you are.

      Perhaps it’s just your law degree that makes you so cantankerous. I’m just mentioning that because you forgot to for once.

      – Daisy

    • Part of the current breakdown of society is because we have been conditioned by the “experts” that anything unapproved equals deadly or at the least super unsafe. Those doing the approving are not always on the side of the people. Approval as most anyone can see over the past few years is heavily influenced by profits and politics.
      While I don’t know about the formula mentioned in the article the 1950’s formula recipe that has been going around online was given to a huge amount of the population and not only did it not harm them, they thrived. Yes vitamins and others juices and foods were part of the whole picture so for a long term substitute more us needed than milk, sugar, etc. Most parents are wise enough to figure that out. The anti DIY hysteria treats all parents as idiots who know nothing about sanitation or nutrition.

  • One problem with the formula. Even dry milk is getting hard to find. I know because I do the grocery shopping. My wife bakes, and uses non-fat dry milk in some of her creations. I scooped up one of the two small boxes left on the shelf (the one with “makes 3-one quart servings).

  • The man worked with what he at the time in history. To bad mouth him is ignorant. At least he saw a problem and worked at a solution. He probably never even heard of moringa or knew of coconut oil. If you have a better solution, post it and stop attacking the guy.

  • Vegetable oil? NO WAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! The stuff is deadly. Coconut oil or butter instead. Forget the sugar, too. Use something, but not that. Maybe powdered blackstrap molasses (not great, but certainly better). But even if you think the sugar is necessary, remember vegetable oils are high in Omega-6 fatty acids, and many are genetically modified and high in glyphosate. Your short recipe is OK.

  • We have an abundance of wonderful goat’s milk, but I worry that if a baby gets sick, we will be sued. So far, we’ve made cheese for our own consumption, but I know there are mother’s out there who would welcome the goat’s milk. Thoughts?

  • I agree goat’s milk is a great option. Nearly all babies can digest goat’s milk, and there are fewer problems with lactose intolerance. (I personally milked a goat for 2 years for my youngest who was deathly allergic to cow’s milk! He grew up just fine. He still has the lactose intolerance, but he can deal with that.) Human ingenuity is God given. Just keep your head screwed on straight and don’t panic! You’d be surprised how ingenious the human community can be when we need to be. Support each other, help each other. God is still in control, no doubts from this old gal! Besides it’s only been the last 70 years that we’ve fallen for the need to have baby formula in the stores for us! Babies and mothers have been around for at least as long as mankind…lol! So thousands of years of being self sufficient in comparison to the few decades of dependency…hmm, I’d say we can do it again.????????

  • Please alert your friends and neighbors that it’s entirely possible to make HOMEMADE BABY FORMULA that was developed by the authors of Nourishing Traditions (Weston A. Price Fdn, mentioned above) to resemble breast milk as closely as possible, and is superior nutritionally to all commercial formula, even organic.

    Babies THRIVE on this!

    There are variations to suit one’s needs. Once you get set up, it’s not hard. Radiant Life Catalog offers a kit to get you going. See the following links.

    The main recipe with video tutorial:

    Here’s a hypoallergenic variation:

    And a goat milk formula option:

  • You Need More Than Food to Survive

    In the event of a long-term disaster, there are non-food essentials that can be vital to your survival and well-being. Make certain you have these 50 non-food stockpile essentials. Sign up for your FREE report and get prepared.

    We respect your privacy.
    Malcare WordPress Security