What Are Some Items That I Can Buy At The Grocery Store That Have A Long Shelf Life?

Discussion in 'Food Storage - Canning/Freezing/Butchering/Prep' started by branchd77, Nov 22, 2016.

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  1. branchd77

    branchd77 Administrator Staff Member Gold Supporter
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    I want to start a pantry at my house and fill it with items that have a very long shelf life. I know most companies will put a 1 year or so expiration date on products even if they last much longer. I just want to know from experience foods that have a very long expiration date that would be safe to store for many years then consume later. Thoughts?
     
  2. Arkane

    Arkane Master Survivalist
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    Buy what you eat and eat what you buy!
    Rotate your stock!

    Buying long lasting food is a waste if you cant eat it!
     
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  3. Keith H.

    Keith H. Moderator Staff Member
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    Everything has a shelf life in one way or another, by all means get in a good store of foods, but I recommend that you still use your stored foods & rotate. Canned foods have an expiry date on them, but it is still worth stocking them if you are going to use them. We keep a good store of baked beans.
    Dry foods such as rice, lentils, beans, cut oats & other grains will keep for a very long time, but they will over time lose their taste. We also store dried milk, but again it does get used & replaced. We also dry our own garden produce, everything from the garden can be dried.
    Keith.
     
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  4. JeffHart

    JeffHart New Member
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    I like this and people seem to overlook it. I buy Ramen noodles. They have a long shelf life. They are packaged, compact and ready to go. You can eat them with or without boiling with broth.
    It is a source of carbohydrates to keep your energy up.
     
  5. Keith H.

    Keith H. Moderator Staff Member
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    I forgot about that one because we don't use it ourselves. Good post Jeff.
    Keith.
     
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  6. SouthernMama

    SouthernMama Active Member
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    I agree with the others. Rotate the food stock.
    I buy lots of rice and beans, it will last a long time, but I rotate it out.
    We eat a lot of rice in the south, so rotating it out is easy for me.
     
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  7. jeager

    jeager Master Survivalist
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    What Keith H. said.
    Dry beans, rice, etc.
    I buy dry mixed beans for bean and ham hock soup.
    SOAK the dry beans at least 10 hours in a cool place to hydrate.
    ( make 'em not dry )
    google recipe for details.
    I have vacuum packed dry beans and likely they last a very long time.
    Vacuum packing stores is a good idea.
    Chocolate bars for instance. A sweet treat for a mood lift in potential hard times.

    Canned fish lasts at least 3 years and is good protein and can be eaten without
    heating.
    Tuna for instance.
     
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  8. jeager

    jeager Master Survivalist
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  9. jeager

    jeager Master Survivalist
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    Among the canned food items retrieved from the Bertrand in 1968 were brandied peaches, oysters, plum tomatoes, honey, and mixed vegetables.

    In 1974, chemists at the National Food Processors Association (NFPA) analyzed the products for bacterial contamination and nutrient value.

    Although the food had lost its fresh smell and appearance, the NFPA chemists detected no microbial growth and determined that the foods were as safe to eat as they had been when canned more than 100 years earlier.

    Bertram was a sunken boat.

    I wonder about nutrient value also but likely we won't eat 100 year old food.
    Except the Chinese that eat 100 year old eggs.
     
  10. Scarlet

    Scarlet Member
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    Wild honey because it doesn't have an expiration. It is also healthy than sugar so it's a good sugar substitute. Although, it's costly than cultured honey but the benefit outweighs the price. A good thing to store when you worry above shelf life.
     
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  11. Keith H.

    Keith H. Moderator Staff Member
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    I don't recommend that you buy canned fish, in fact even fresh fish is not recommended these days. Predatory fish are the worst, but all fish apparently have some form of contamination. If you want Omega 3, get it from other sources. Fresh water fish will depend on the area where you are catching them.
    Keith.
     
  12. explorerx7

    explorerx7 Expert Member
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    You may buy canned foods and noodles If you may wish to have products that will have a longer shelf life. However, the life of these foods is not infinite and they will deteriorate over time. The best that you could do is to use them before they expire and replace them with newer stuff that will give a longer shelf live so that your larder will be always adequately stocked.
     
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  13. jeager

    jeager Master Survivalist
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    peachpurple

    Try vacuum packing dry goods.
    I've been using one for years.
    I have chocolate bars I packed 10 years ago and they are probably 100%
    safe to use.
    Keeps bug out and as for rodents I put vacuum packed foods in plastic 5
    gallon bucket with lids.
    Lid need not be fixed super tight, just enough to keep bugs and mice
    out.
    Another neat trick is to use glass canning jars for storing dry grains
    and such.
    Dry beans, rice, and dehydrated fruits like bananas and apples and more
    can be vacuum packed with ease in glass canning jars with either a
    vacuum machine or in the oven.

    http://www.foodsaver.com/accessories-and-parts/jar-and-bottle-sealers/?

    utm_term=vacuum%20sealer%20for%20mason%20jars&utm_campaign=%5BFoodSaver%5D%20%5BADL%5D%20%5BNonBrand%5D%20%5BMSN%5D%20%5BSearch%5D%20-%20Vacuum%20Sealers%20-%20%28Broad%29&kwid=19620135747x3785234674x40993766&utm_medium=cpc&utm_source=bing&utm_content=Vacuum%20Sealer%20For%20Mason%20Jars

    For vacuuming in jars.

    Oven canning of dry goods is simply using the heat of the oven to expand and drive out hot air from under the lids and when it cool it provides a seal.

    It's pretty hard to starve an ol' hillbilly.:p
    I have lots of tricks up my..............................ah, .............sleeve.:D
    I grew up quite poor.
    My first basket ball was a pigs bladder.
    Honest.
    The hoop was a 5 gallon bucket with the bottom rusted out and nailed
    to a tree.
    My dad never finished 3rd grade, mother the 9th.
    I nearly flunked high school with a D average.
    Decades later I earned 2 degrees and graduated with an A average.
    Lazy and stupid I ain't.:p:D:p:D
     
  14. jeager

    jeager Master Survivalist
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    Two degrees and about thirty certificates of completion from various
    training seminars including about 9 stays at O.P.O.T.A.
    ( a police academy where the Ohio State Patrol is trained )
    Then there is sniper and bomb school training...................................yadda, yadda.
    Ever here of Massad Ayoob?
    Then there are the 6 commendations for valor and..........................................
    But I digress.
     
  15. Tumbleweed

    Tumbleweed Expert Member
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    Honey has been found in the pyramids, and even after a couple thousand years, it is still good because honey kills any bacteria that gets into it. I think that even plain old sugar will keep for a long time as long as it is packed so that no mice can get into it. Most animals don't even bother with sugar; but ants are drawn to any kind of sweet stuff like sugar, molasses or honey.
    We store beans and rice in their bags and inside heavy plastic tubs, and I have also read that it helps to put some diatomaceous earth in with dried legumes and grains because the DE will kill any bugs that get int the stored foods, and since DE is safe to eat (and actually good for you, it does not effect the food itself.
    We also keep some canned foods, and try to rotate everything. Canned foods are heavy to try and haul along if you have to get out fast; but for a short term emergency, like the aftermath of a tornado, earthquake or hurricane, it is good to have some kind of foods that can be eaten as-is. Most canned food has liquid in it, and even if it is usually heated before eating, it can be eaten straight out of the can because it is fully cooked when canned.
     
  16. Jewelweed

    Jewelweed Member
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    Honey, as others have mentioned, and dried things like rice and beans do well.
    Items that are pickled - pickles, of course, but also peppers, cauliflower, herring, beets, etc.
    Freeze dried items like dried egg product, powdered butter, powdered cheese, etc do well as long as they stay sealed and in a cool, dry place. I'm fond of Harmony House products but you might want to try them before you commit. Their vegetable soup mix, tomato powder, and dried sliced potatoes have a 1-2 year shelf life. In a typical grocery store you'll be able to find dried egg and milk in the baking aisle. You can also find instant mashed potatoes.

    You may also want to consider survival specific food too. I'm really strangely fond of millennium bars for meals on the go and they were designed to meet coast guard standards. I like the flavor options and convenience. They have a 5-year shelf life and hold up well even under bad conditions. I can keep them in my car in the Florida summer and know that they'll still be edible if I want one. I haven't ever seen them in a typical grocery store but amazon has them in packs of 18 for less than $30 and each bar is 400 calories.
     
  17. kgord

    kgord Active Member
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    I was going to suggest dry beans as well, however, rice or any kind of dried food is going to last quite a while. Canned Soups with a high salt content should also be a possibility. These are just some of the things you can find when looking for long lasting materials and foods that will stand the test of time.
     
  18. GS AutoTech

    GS AutoTech Expert Member
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    I was also about to suggest ramen noodles. They're dirt cheap & easy to store. A great light weight staple or filler for any meal.
     
  19. TexDanm

    TexDanm Shadow Dancer
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    Peanut Butter, Dry beans, wheat and rice will keep for a longer time if you store them in 5 gallon buckets in Mylar bags with oxygen absorbers. I also like those little canned hams. You can eat them as is or even better put them in a pot with the beans and rice or other things like that noodles. All of the spaghetti and noodles have an almost indefinite shelf life if they are stored in seals dry containers. I have a lot of the span, ham and canned corn beef type things. I personally like the various just add boiling water type of packaged dinners they keep well and are easy to make.
     
  20. John Davis

    John Davis Member
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    You may Google the recipe for Pemmican. It's highly nutritious and can be stored for a really long period of time without refrigeration.
     
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  21. JimLE

    JimLE Expert Member
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    knorr rice and pasta sides is a good alternative route..at $1.00 a pouch can be well worth it..it's just a matter of going with the furthest use by date,at the time their bought.just last night,i fixed and ate taco flavored rice.in which i added some taco meat that i had fixed up and canned,earlier this year..im down to 5 pouches of the knorr sides.so they've been added to my shopping list..
     
  22. Born Prepper

    Born Prepper Member
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    Agree.

    No point buying food you don't like.

    I buy things I eat on a weekly basis, and rotate them through my supply cupboard. Beans, canned soup, nuts, cereal bars...
     
  23. OneFoot

    OneFoot Active Member
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    take it from my ancestors in Hawaii when WWII broke out everyone in the islands started to stockpile.
    SPAM, Top Ramen, Twinkies!, corned beef hash keeps well ive had one maybe 4 years old that tasted fine.
    Rice, Pinto beans. oh and i know its a little pricey but throw some Jerky in there! its allready packaged and ready for the end of the world.
    -OneFoot--
     
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  24. Blackfish

    Blackfish Well-Known Member
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    Canned foods from grocery stores and The Church of Latter Day Saints are the way to go. I have cans of black beans I bought in 2009, "expired" long ago, but I am still eating them with no problems.

    Right now, my Smith's store in Las Vegas has Campbell's and Progresso soups on sale for as little as 89 cents per can; the good stuff, not the itty-bitty cans. Every time I walk in the store I grab ten or twelve and put them in my pantry. I am overstocked!

    The Church of Latter Day Saints, if you are fortunate enough to have one near you, sells canned foods with a shelf life of thirty years in their lovely stores at very reasonable prices.

    Rotate your supplies. Learn how to identify problems with canned goods. When in doubt--toss it out!
     
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  25. Old Geezer

    Old Geezer Master Survivalist
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    Back a few years ago, I got canned goods from LDS Church folk. That stuff lasted and we went through it; it was fine. I appreciated the LDS Church folk, thus I recommend making friends with them and going with them when they go to their regional cannery where they make-up their own cans.

    In the state within which I'm currently living, I've made no LDS Church friends. Have been buying extra canned goods I normally buy -- just rotating a pantry of such. Bulk stuff / quart jar cases, this I've put back in beans and rice. Just recently put back bunch of quarts of pasta we use all the time. Put some oxygen absorber packs in these jars. O2 absorber packs have a shelf life in their blister packs, therefore when you get these packs, use them.
     
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  26. Old Geezer

    Old Geezer Master Survivalist
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    I keep a larder at work and eat this food for lunch. Some nasty events will occur during working hours. Duh!!! What if you get exposed to a biological hit while at work, get trapped there, can't get back due to some fill-in-the-blank incident? No one can predict this stuff. I know no crystal ball distributors.

    Shoot. Think about the times you've gotten stuck in your car. That candy bar and a drink was good stuff wasn't it. Keep a jug of clean water in your vehicle.
     
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  27. Morgan101

    Morgan101 Master Survivalist
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    Honey; Salt; Sugar; Soy Sauce all will last forever. Rice and Beans are great. Pasta will keep a very long time. Even Ronzoni says their pasta is good for a year past its expiration date. Ramen noodles are great and super cheap. You can always throw them in with a can of soup to make it go farther.

    It is somewhat of a comfort food, but could serve a purpose, especially, if you have kids. I keep Jell-O in my food stores. It will last well beyond the Best By date when it is stored in the original, unopened package.

    Buy what you eat, and eat what you buy. Rotate your stock. All has been said before, but it isn't rocket science. You just have to be conscious about reading labels.
     
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  28. Snyper

    Snyper Expert Member
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    My wife bought a whole case of Balsamic Vinegar that a store was going to throw out "because it was too old".

    I guess they didn't know the best kind is aged for 100 years.

    She paid pennies on the dollar and we've been using it for around 20 years now.
     
  29. coffee

    coffee Expert Member
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    I cannot help myself... I am sure this is not the right place to suggest this... But buy lots of cans of tuna (packed in oil)... you see, the oil is good for you, and if you make a small hole in the top, center of the can, and role up a small piece of paper towel and insert it into the hole and light it it will burn off the oil as fuel and provide light or source of heat or heat up water to make coffee or whatever. When all the oil is used up, open the can and eat the tuna.
     
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  30. coffee

    coffee Expert Member
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    Also, do not forget salt & pepper & salt substitute(needed for re-hydration formula). Oatmeal (old=fashioned kind, not quick fix), and me, I love grits, real, not 1-minute type. I also buy powdered with sweetners: drink mixes, like lemonade, pink lemonade, Tang, etc. and sticks of instant coffees and lots of tea bags. Dried potatoes, like scalloped potatoes, stuffing mix, mashed potatoes. And don;t forget some hard candies and dried fruits. Most do not consider this food, but stash vitamins, lots of them.
     
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  31. Dallas845

    Dallas845 New Member
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    Also important to check the canned good's condition. True they have a very long life, but may be contaminated due to other factors. This article explains it nicely. https://zamonthly.org/2019/01/09/prepper-pro-tip-beware-of-botulism/
     
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  32. Keith H.

    Keith H. Moderator Staff Member
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    Good post, Trump has been trying to bully Australia into lowering it's food safety regulations so it will accept food items from America. We won't purchase any food items from the US, China or Thailand.
    Keith.
     
  33. Radar

    Radar Expert Member
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    Headlines about instant noodles are ....doctors are saying they are bad for the kidneys and to not eat them frequently.
     
  34. Pragmatist

    Pragmatist Master Survivalist
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    Good afternoon Radar,

    I, too, learned of the warnings about the instant noodles. It was about Ramen brand.

    These individual meals (if not hungry) are popular because they are easy to carry and easy to rapidly cook.

    Thus, my question is whether our markets offer a counterpart product that's relatively healthy eg spaghetti (I learned from National Broadcast Commentator Michael Savage of San Francisco that spaghetti is now called pasta.) ?
     
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  35. Keith H.

    Keith H. Moderator Staff Member
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    I wonder if it is the noodles per se, or the sachet additives?
    Keith.
     
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  36. GrizzlyetteAdams

    GrizzlyetteAdams Crap Creek Survivor
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    Both! Most brands fry the blocks of noodles. (Very few air dry them.) The dough to make the noodles is made with substandard flours (very likely GMO) and chemical preservatives.


    I have not tried this, but this single serve pack of instant ramen noodle soup is made with organic noodles, and the seasoning packet contains no MSG and is lower in sodium than the cheap "regular" ramen noodles.

    https://www.vitacost.com/koyo-ramen-asian-vegetable/?isrc=vitablog081717melissaneiman

    I have not tried these either, but here are some 100% organic instant Ramen noodle soups. Note: most of the packages serves 8 (for individual servings, break off desired amounts of noodles).

    https://www.vitacost.com/productResults.aspx?N=0&ss=1&Ntt=organic ramen noodles


    .
     
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  37. Duncan

    Duncan Expert Member
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    Here're some excellent sources. You can treat them as part of your Year's Supply, but the trick is to use them on a daily basis and replenish them as used; DON'T just save them for "emergency" use.
    • Brown rice
    • Quinoa
    • Peanut butter
    • Honey
    • Oats
    • What berries (Hard Red and Durum)
    • Corn meal
    • Powdered milk (skim is easier to get, whole milk is more nutritious)
    • Dried legumes of all kinds: (split peas, lima beans, kidneys, navy, frijoles refritos, frijoles negros, etc.)
    You should keep all of this stuff in airtight 3-1/2 or 5-gallon buckets with "oxygen eater" packets and Gamma lids.
    Also, you'd need a mill for the wheat (hand-operated, of course). They're expensive, but worth it.

    Remember:
    • Store what you eat
    • Eat what you store
     
  38. Old Geezer

    Old Geezer Master Survivalist
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    re: In the Grocery store

    Canned meats last a couple of years or more. You should cycle these. Don't buy something you do not already consume. Spam now comes in bacon flavor. Little miracles.

    Your survival stores are actually just large pantries. My people put back food every single year. As a kid, I routinely opened jellies and jams that were 2+ years old. Every supper, we had biscuits or cornbread.

    Put pasta (we like the small macaroni) in a jar, place piece of paper at top, place one or two oxygen absorber packs on top the piece of paper, then seal the jar. Do the same with rice and dried beans. Cycle these jars. Who doesn't like pasta? I love beans. Every so often buy more O2 absorbers. When the SHTF, you'll be starting off with cases of food. I'm at least 20 lbs overweight -- post SHTF, I will stop being the glutton I am now.

    Sugar keeps forever. Buy powdered Kool-Aid and Tang. Buy bouillon cubes to flavor your rice. I grow Thai peppers, dry them, grind them and store them. All of these flavorings make bland food not bland. With flavorings, food goes further in that the brain sez, "I'm full," earlier. Buy-up salt & jar it to keep it from getting damp.

    This isn't rocket science.

    Oh, we are starting to get zucchini from our garden. You can shred zucchini and dry it or freeze it. These shreds can, in future, be made into zucchini bread. This bread is heavy and filling.
     
  39. Old Geezer

    Old Geezer Master Survivalist
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    We posted the same ideas at the same time. Synchronicity.
     
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  40. Archer Garrett

    Archer Garrett New Member
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    I don't even want to tell you how far past the expiration my peanut butter is. Get's better with age. ;)
     
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