Food Storage- ‘Food Storage Calculator’ Style

Another style of gathering your year supply of food is to use a food calculator to determine how much food your family needs to survive a year, and then purchase those ingredients/foods.
One of my biggest complaints about food calculators is that they generally only calculate in ‘survival mode’ and for the ‘survival foods’. So the amounts they generally give you would be a little on the low side for how much I like to eat 🙂 and then they don’t give you amounts for things like canned vegetables and fruits, cereal… chocolate (!!)… you know, things you eat everyday. They are survival ingredients for surviving. However, what I do like about these calculators is that they give you a really good idea of what your overall food supply should be looking like. Sometimes I like to plug in the numbers for my family, just to see how my recipe-based style is comparing. 🙂 But my other problem with this style is that I am not very good at creating meals just with ingredients I have lying around. I am a total ‘follow the recipe’ type of person. That is why I have my method of food storage all based around recipes. This method would probably work well for someone who is good at just throwing a meal together with whatever is on hand (like my Hubby!). 🙂 And a definite advantage to this style is that it is a heck of a lot easier to get to the purchasing phase of the plan. You just input family numbers into the food calculator and {poof}, you’ve got a list of the things you need (versus gathering recipes, calculating ingredients, etc.) I’d be tempted to switch styles if I really weren’t so bad at just winging mealtime! 🙂

Anyway,  if this style is what you are looking for, here are some good online food calculators to help you get an idea of what you need to be storing:

Remember that these calculations are based on survival mode… meaning you will not be getting very much food each day if you follow these numbers and then actually have to live on this for a year. You could survive- true- but you might not be very happy about it! So use these calculations as a starting point and then boost your numbers from there as resources are available to do so. I would also recommend having a 3-month supply of your everyday foods and some comfort foods to supplement this supply… just in case you get tired of rice and beans. 🙂
Oh, and don’t forget to make sure you continually rotate through the items/ingredients that do not have a long-term shelf life so that you are not wasting food and money! And remember… whatever your style, find a way to make it fun! If you don’t enjoy it, you likely won’t do it.
Happy Prepping!

Photo courtesy of Stefan Gustafsson