5 Basic Foods to Start Your Prepper Pantry

When crisis strikes, it doesn’t take long for the supermarket shelves to empty. If you’ve ever lived through a hurricane, you know how the local grocery store looks in the days leading up to the storm. Once the forecasters sound the alarm, the entire population turns into one big survivalist army. That’s why it’s so important for full-time preppers to stock the shelves before the rest of the public catches up to the danger.

Obviously, you have to be careful when outfitting your pantry. Look for staple foods that are calorically dense, inexpensive, and are able to stay good for a long time. By focusing on these three criteria, you can slowly build a storeroom you can turn to when darkness approaches. Here are the best five foods to start your disaster-proof nutrition nook.

Beans
Beans are power-packed with nutrition, and they can retain their flavor for up to a decade if stored properly. They are among the easiest foods to prepare with limited resources and they are cheap. This conspires to make them one of the top foods for any burgeoning survivalist. Buy them liberally whenever you go to the grocery store, rotating them into your everyday diet on a regular basis.

Rice
What would beans be without rice to go along with them? Rice has a similar shelf life of up to ten years, and it is practically pure carbohydrate. With a steady supply of just rice and beans, you’ll have met your basic nutritional needs. That’s not to say that this represents a balanced diet, but beggars can’t be choosers. If crisis strikes and you only have two foods in your pantry, you could do a lot worse.

Cornmeal
Flour is extremely handy, and it has a long shelf life. Any all-purpose flour will do, but cornmeal comes with oils that help extend its lifespan. What really recommends cornmeal, though, is its versatility. Even without a steady power supply, you can make a variety of meals from cornmeal with little more than a skillet. Other flours may require oil and yeast to make something worth eating. Under optimum storage conditions, your cornmeal should last 1-2 years.

Salt
Survivalists have a tendency to forget about the importance of seasonings when stocking their pantry. And while you can argue that what your food tastes like is a lot less important than how nutritious it is, a long spell of self-sustaining solitude may be easier to cope with if you have a little flavor. Even if you aren’t convinced, salt is a powerful prepper item. Its use as a preservative alone makes it worth the purchase.

Canned Meat
Beans pack a wallop of protein, but there’s no substitute for meat. Look for meats like chicken, ham, and tuna that are stored in the can. They will keep for at least five years, and some of them may be good for up to a decade.