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 πŸ™‚ 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. πŸ™‚ 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!). πŸ™‚ 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! πŸ™‚

Anyway, Β 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 foodΒ 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. πŸ™‚
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

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Food Storage- ‘Recipe Of The Month’ Style

Howdy all! As promised, we’re going to start discussing other styles for gathering our food storage supply.
This style comes from some of my dear friends in my ward. They like to gather their food supply by focusing on one recipe each month.


The basic idea is this: You still make your goals, gather your favorite food storage recipes, calculate how many times you’ll make each recipe in a year, and then each month you pick one of those recipes and purchase all the ingredients needed to make that meal for the determined number of times. (And then don’t forget to rotate and restock your ingredients as you use them so you don’t slip back to the starting line.)
What I really like about this plan is how flexible it is in terms of working with your budget. If you’ve got a tight month, you can choose a recipe that will only be made a few times, and therefore you will not need to purchase a whole lot. If you’ve been extra blessed one month, pick one of your most common meals and start stocking up! It’s also easy to work with sales this way. If you find a great sale on items in a certain recipe, purchase your year supply worth and cross that meal off your list. πŸ™‚
Feel free to use any of these Food Storage Excel List Forms if they’ll help organize the process for you. (There are 4 lists on this file… just check the tabs on the bottom for the different lists. Oh, and the ‘FS Menu’ list will automatically do the math for you… that’s what the little green arrows you’ll see in the boxes mean.) And click HERE if you need an explanation of what the different lists mean.
And again, don’t forget to be restocking, or doing regular inventories so that you’re not taking two steps forward and two steps back. The goal is to be making progress! πŸ˜€

Anyway, hopefully this style will resonate with some of you and make your food storage life a lot easier (thanks Deena and Robin for sharing it!). πŸ™‚ And hopefully we’ll eventually be able to find a style that suits everyone’s tastes and needs. So, on that note, if you’ve got a system/style that’s working for you, don’t forget to send those in to share with others. πŸ™‚
Happy Prepping!