The Pantry Primer: Adding Larger Purchases to Your Stockpile

(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)

Weekly grocery shopping is not the way to quickly build  one-year food supply.  But now that I have built a base, over the past two weeks I was able to easily skip the weekly trips and save up for a larger purchase.

To be able to afford large purchases when you are on a regular, week-to-week budget, you have to figure out a strategy. For me, that is the best way to save up for bigger purchases – skip a week of shopping and then add the budgets of the two weeks together in order to  make some bulk purchases that I ordinarily couldn’t swing along with a week of regular grocery shopping.  Other strategies could include:

  • Selling something in order to come up with a lump sum of money
  • Using coupons to build a pantry
  • Taking a part-time job
  • Cancelling something that you make monthly payments on and putting that money towards your stockpile (cable, cellphone, etc.)

(Go here to learn more about living a frugal lifestyle in order to meet your goals.)

This week I purchased 8 starter kits from a nearby LDS warehouse for $31 apiece.

Each kit contains 28 pounds of food, including: wheat, flour, pinto beans, rice, and oats, and the LDS considers this a one-month supply of food for one person.

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Now, these kits are not the rock-bottom, cheapest way to purchase this longer-term storage food.  I could have gotten the items for less money by purchasing them in bulk elsewhere.  However, you have to keep in mind that I started out without most supplies.  I don’t have food sealers or any of that stuff.  I would have also had to have purchased Mylar bags, food safe buckets, and other items for repackaging.  These came already packed in #10 cans, ready to sit on my shelves for the next 10 years if need be.

My purchase added the following to my shelves:

  • 41.6 pounds of beans
  • 88 pounds of wheat berries
  • 32 pounds of flour
  • 19.2 pounds of oats
  • 43.2 pounds of rice

With this addition, my pantry is now up to about a 5 month supply of food for 2 people, although I need more fruits and vegetables put back to be truly well balanced.  (You can see how much you need for your family members using this FOOD STORAGE CALCULATOR.)

Want to learn more? My new book is now available!

Lots of us like to have hard copies of information that we’ve found helpful.  Because of this, I’ve expanded on the information included in this series and put it all in one handy primer, available on Amazon.

The Pantry Primer: How to Build a One Year Food Supply in Three Months

pantry primer pic

Daisy Luther

Daisy Luther

Daisy Luther is a coffee-swigging, globe-trotting blogger. She is the founder and publisher of three websites.  1) The Organic Prepper, which is about current events, preparedness, self-reliance, and the pursuit of liberty on her website, 2)  The Frugalite, a website with thrifty tips and solutions to help people get a handle on their personal finances without feeling deprived, and 3) PreppersDailyNews.com, an aggregate site where you can find links to all the most important news for those who wish to be prepared. She is widely republished across alternative media and  Daisy is the best-selling author of 5 traditionally published books and runs a small digital publishing company with PDF guides, printables, and courses. You can find her on FacebookPinterest, Gab, MeWe, Parler, Instagram, and Twitter.

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  • There is also a really awesome sale for Mountain House. Camping survival has all their #10 cans for 54% off and so does safecastle.com and they dont have a shipping charge!!
    Happy prepping!

  • Hi! I’m not new to stockpiling, but I am new to trying to do an emergency pantry. I was wondering….do you ever use your supply on a regular basis?? I ask because I just wonder about shelf life. I know I’ve had problems with expiration dates on things and you mentioned having boxes of crackers….will those not got bad?

    Also, regarding water…do you just buy bottled water and use that for your supply and then fill your extra empty bottles with tap water to clean with? Just trying to get clear on these concepts before I start really going “to town”. 🙂

    • Hi Charity!

      There are a lot of different ways to build an emergency food supply but you have hit the nail on the head – I do exactly what you said – this is our current food supply – not just a longterm stash that I have hidden in the attack. Once I’m past the “building” phase, then this will serve as a little store in my home that I will replenish as items get used. I store items based on their expiration dates and rotate them into my kitchen on that basis.

      Next, yes, the bottled water is for drinking and the tap water is for cleaning and pets. The local water here is fluoridated and we do not use it to drink or cook with.

      Please feel free to ask any other questions you might have and I’ll do my best to answer them. Good luck! 🙂

      Daisy

  • Where do you store all that? I have a storage closet but it’s not nearly large enough for that much. Our most likely catastrophic disaster would be a tornado that would most likely take everything. Robbery would also. Stored outside in the South would not work. And then there’s the whole political thing!! Suggestions, anyone? Thanks!!

    • I have a large pantry that I use, as well as a big kitchen with lots of cupboards. Then I also store things outside the bedroom. I have items stacked in bedroom closets, under beds and in the front coat closet. The items in the front closet, I have arranged in a way that they are not easily visible.

      Some people have basement storage areas or they annex a spare bedroom for this purpose as well.

      • You can also store it throughout your house. We have a small pantry that is loaded. We also have some storage in our laundry room that is full of canned and jarred food. We also have an upstairs storage closet that has canned food in it. Our bottled water is stored in our cellar. When I was younger and living with roommates, we would store our own food storage in bins under our beds. Just think outside the box. Your food storage does not all need to be stored together. It’s probably better than it isn’t stored together so if you do get robbed by looters looking for food, they may take some, but not all of your food supply. P.S. Don’t forget to store soap, shampoo, bandaids, toilet paper, tampons, rubbing alchohol, medicine, etc.

  • Hey, just got off SHTF site. I’ve been noticing your absence, and I have to say, good for you! I’m so done there, lately I can’t even bear to scroll thru the comments to the bottom as I usually do. You write the things I’m interested in. This pantry primer is perfect, shows I’m not nearly as,prepared as I imagined! Appreciate you!

  • I am looking for people to join our group in central Texas, 194 acres IF you are a couple or a single lady ( with kids or not)YOU must have food, IF you have guns and ammo that would be great BUT food is a must. PLEASE send a photo of you OR your group & what area you will be coming from if you are not central or out of state. [email protected] in horse is a #### I have medical people coming & here all ready.

  • Daisy,

    Thank you for doing this series! Very useful information.

    I have ordered from LDS and am pleased with my purchases. These are all basic food items. The cans arrived in good order – packed carefully and no dented cans. Their prices are reasonable. Free shipping (in the U.S.) is a nice bonus too.

    Take care!
    KY Mom

    P.S. The starter kit makes a nice gift too.

  • No matter what I do, my wife IS NOT on board. She griped because there was a large pack of toilet paper in the back of my car and asked if it was for the house and I said no, it goes with my other stuff and it went down hill from there. I just don’t get it.

    • How funny..your def not alone.my husband & your wife should get together & discuss our crazy selves 😉 all i can say is do what u know to be right for you & when sit hits the ceiling you’ll be getting plenty of booty while you guys are surviving! For the mean time in between time Quietly stock up enough for your family without it getting in her way..rent a space or start digging

  • Hey Daisy!
    I have debated about getting some food stuffs from this source but have not taken the plunge. We have a cannery about 20 miles from here that sells to the public.what are your thoughts on this?
    Is white flour better than no flour?
    And why so much wheat in the starter kit?
    One needs a good grinder and a strong arm or learn to like boiled wheat berries.
    What are your thoughts on this?
    I do like the idea of them already being sealed in cans. That chore is done for you!

  • Here’s a great deal on powdered milk. It went down in price about a week ago so I don’t know how long it will be $8. Just noticed over at LDS they are pretty much sold out of everything! Thanks KY mom for the tip over at shtfplan, I’ve already made purchases from them. Daisy, the milk is the brand I’ve been using for two years and it’s good. (Makes my homemade yogurt thick!)
    y’all keep preppin’!!!

  • You Need More Than Food to Survive
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