Whether you want to stock up on nonperishable foods for a remote cabin, whether you want an emergency shelter ready to go, or whether you think you may not get a chance to do much shopping for a while, long-term food storage can be done by doing more than just grabbing a few aluminum cans and calling it a day.
Getting ready-to-eat foods that do not require heating or preparing can save you time and money down the line if there are issues with transporting or storing food safely. Always store food in areas that are not warm, get little light, and have no accumulating moisture. This increases their shelf life and keeps pests out.
Include Canned Meat for Protein Source
Getting enough protein is crucial for any diet, especially in situations where it is necessary to do lots of physical work each day. Canned meat is the ideal source of protein and requires no preparation or refrigeration. The least expensive type of canned meat is tuna, coming in at less than a dollar per six-ounce can. Since tuna has excellent protein to calorie ratios, it is good to have in large numbers. Canned turkey and salmon are also excellent lean meats. Red meat can be beneficial but has more cholesterol and calories.
Freeze-dried Fruits and Veggies
Fruits and veggies are easy to find and store, capable of retaining their flavor and shape for several years. Carrots and green beans are especially healthy and easy to store, either in sealed cans or pickled to maintain their taste. Fruits like tomatoes and pineapple have more acid than raisins or apples, and can be dried to keep longer but will only last about a year or so. Preserving fruits in sugar will allow them to last as long as canned vegetables. Check out dailybread.com for more fruit and vegetable storage solutions.
Do Not Forget the Grains
Grain itself will keep the longest of all even if it is not stored properly, but an air-tight container will let you save up rice, flour, oats, and cornmeal for several years. If you do not have an oven or a heat source, grain can be softened in water but must be eaten immediately.
Dairy Products Options
While dairy products are nearly impossible to keep longer than a few days without cold storage, you can get powdered milk in order to get enough calcium. Soy milk can be purchased in air-tight packages and does not go bad if it is not kept cool. Nuts and beans may be dried and stored easily for several years without worry.
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Chelsea Smith writes for dailybread.com, the authority for short and long term stored food.