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Old 10-10-2016, 03:11 PM
craezie craezie is offline
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Default starting from scratch--what CANNED food should I store?



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Due to various life circumstances and a move, I am starting my preps almost from scratch. We are living in a desert area with major water supply vulerability, so I would like to start with around a couple dozen cases of canned food to feed my family in case of emergency or shortage. I am choosing to store primarily canned because we don't need additional water to make it edible.

What foods should I buy first? We do not use any canned food and very little processed food on a regular basis, other than italian tomatoes and chicken broth. My plan going forward is to donate short date items to the food bank each year before expiration, and replenish as needed. I really need help here, as I just am no that familiar with eating canned foods. Organic and minimal additives would be my preference, but I wouldn't be above eating Spam if it were the only option!

If you were to design a month or two diet of all canned food, what would you want? Best bang for the buck?
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Old 10-10-2016, 03:17 PM
swamppapa swamppapa is online now
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What will you and yours eat out of a can ?
Stock that.
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Old 10-10-2016, 03:20 PM
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spam and bottled water. a few packages of pilot crackers to go with the spam
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Old 10-10-2016, 03:39 PM
Florida Jean Florida Jean is offline
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Canned fruit -- plenty of liquids to cut the need for water storage. Kids will generally eat without argument [as long as it isn't something they hate -- I hated canned nectarines for some reason when I was a kid, don't know about now, totally off my eating reginme]. The fruit doesn't have to be canned, those little plastic cup serving sizes are very handy and last quite a while.

Lots of kids like/eat those canned vienna sausages [they come in multiple flavors now]. Any of the beefaroni, spaghetti-o type of products.

Note, I am keeping child focused as adults will generally eat anything.

Peanut butter [baring allergies, and there are other types of buttered nut products, sunflower and so on]. Regular peanuts, almonds and so on.

Various types of baked beans to go with the vienna sausages.

I figure canned vegies are your problem because there is so much difference between fresh prepared and the canned version. [ canned Peas the most extreme example]. Just test and see what yours will eat. They might just love X. Who cares if that is all they get if that balances out their diet. Children often prefer the same menu more than adults.

Check out the various V8 drinks as a vegie option.
Do keep a stock of fruit juices [the more real stuff with vitamins, not powdered drinks with the water added like Hawaian punch]. More liquid backup.

The one quart size whole milk that doesn't need refridgerated. Get at Dollar Store.

[And, yes, I will mention it, those 'last for nearly forever small plastic servings of jello and pudding'.]
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Old 10-10-2016, 03:46 PM
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First, store what you eat. Second, eat what you store. Rotate, don't donate. If you've gotten stuff you'll eat then it's not a hardship to do that and when you go to the store replace what you've eaten.

If you have 12 cans of split pea soup on the shelf, keep track. When you've eaten two or three buy replacements and put them at the back of the pack and pull the older ones forward to be used next.

If you don't like what they put in commercially canned products, learn to can your own. It's work, but fun and totally satisfying. Such a wonderful sense of accomplishment to look in your pantry and see colorful jars of yummy food you created. Last week I put up 24 jars of corned beef and black-eyed-pea soup and I know every natural ingredient in there. Tomorrow I'm starting on the french onion soup. I have to make a lot of that because it's pretty popular around here and disappears quick.

In a disaster situation I think it's most important to have meat and protein sources stored. It's enough work to grow a garden to subsist on, it can be impossible to grow a cow. A lot of people don't like canned meats unless it's part of a stew or soup type of dish.

Start now finding meals you'll like that can be made with stored foods. When exhausted, frustrated, scared and/or injured is not time to say "Surprise, you're used to eating only the freshest prettiest food, but from now on we're eating this funny unfamiliar stuff you've never encountered before!"
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Old 10-10-2016, 03:54 PM
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Start with a plan otherwise in 2 years you will be sitting on a bunch of expired spam. I eat food past the expiration date but trust you see the perspective of not rushing to waste money.

Recommend you begin with what you normally eat. Buy a lot more and rotate to keep fresh. Add items that have extended shelf life. A simple rack that rotates cans is great for saving space and eating the oldest first. Then go with long term storage (#10 cans, Mylar bags, etc). Without a plan it's just impulse buying.
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Old 10-10-2016, 03:59 PM
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Personally,I like soups and stews,and chili type canned meals.There are so many companies,and each have a pretty big variety,that they are always coming out with something new.
How do I know if I like a new offering?
Pretty easy,I buy a can and try it-if I don't like it,I'm out a buck or 2..and don't buy it again.
Maybe you should try this option before you start buying things by the case with the intent of giving it away when it expires?
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Old 10-10-2016, 04:06 PM
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Just a couple of examples-- if you're not inclined to can your own, Dinty Moor makes a decent tasting beef stew-- Beef stew over rice, fruit cocktail, retort packaged milk, brownies made from emergency "just add water" mix.

Home canned pork roast with the broth thickened, crusty home made bread, mashed potatoes (instant, or from the storage bin) for a open-faced hot pork sandwich, green beans, chunky applesauce with cherries.

Ok, now I'm hungry.
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Old 10-10-2016, 04:09 PM
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Like stated before, Vienna smoked sausages (BBQ flavor is best), canned pork and beans, fruit like pears in heavy syrup is awesome. And of course spam and dingy Moore stew.

That would be the bare minimum starting to prep list on canned stuff.
Old 10-10-2016, 04:18 PM
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Canned potatoes
Canned fruits
Canned meats
Canned chili
Canned tuna, salmon and sardines
Canned tomato products such as diced, stewed, and sauce.
Canned spaghetti sauce
Canned corn beef hash
Canned salsa
Canned olives
Canned mushrooms
Canned soups

Using the above with staples like rolls, bread, beans, rice and noodles you can come up with quite a few meals. If you can eat canned vegetables then add them to your list.
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Old 10-10-2016, 04:34 PM
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You mentioned 'organic' and 'bang for your buck' so I think you should look into organic soups like Amy's or Campbells.
They come in a wide variety of flavors and since they contain lots of veggies and come in low sodium, gluton free etc... you can find some pretty healty options. I would add some freeze dried meats to your storage and you can add a serving or two of freeze dried meat to your soups as they heat up. The meat will use excess water in the soup to rehydrate...

http://www.amys.com/products/product-categories/soups
https://www.campbells.com/campbell-soup/our-soups/
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Old 10-10-2016, 04:36 PM
Kansas Terri Kansas Terri is offline
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Do you and your family like spaghetti? Then find a spaghetti sauce you like and when it goes on sale, buy it.

Also buy noodles, of course, and store them so the pantry moths cannot get to them.

You might try a few canned foods before you buy them: I find roast beef in gravy makes a killer soup base, but roast beef in broth does not.

Canned fruit is good for a dessert.

I see you like Italian tomatos? Get some. In the future when you use some of them, then when you replace what you have eaten then put the new cans at the BACK, and then all of your tomatos will never get old.

Do you folks like crackers? They store well.

Do you folks ever eat tuna casserole? That is canned tuna, canned cream of mushrooms, and noodles.

Etc.
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Old 10-10-2016, 04:38 PM
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I would start by taking the kids to the store.

Get a variety of canned proteins. I bet the kids would love some Chef Boyardee.

Get 1 can each of various items, and have a tasting every couple days. If you like it, put it on a list, and buy more. If you don't like it, throw it out or feed it to the dog.

I did something like this with my husband, a picky eater.
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Old 10-10-2016, 04:39 PM
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I almost never eat anything from cans either, but I stock up on certain canned foods when they're on sale (after trying just one). My local grocery store often has soup on sale - just yesterday I bought 8 cans of various Progresso soups because they were 4 for $5.
With soup I tend to go for those with meat and vegetables in them, but you could also add your own veggies or pasta/rice to make a more substantial meal.
Also: canned chicken, canned ham, refried beans, canned vegetables, Chef Boyardee
Old 10-10-2016, 04:42 PM
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Buy what you eat, rotate as you eat it. I made the mistake starting and have stuff out of date I won't eat. So it gets given away. But tuna has a nice shelf life. Most everything is good way past its best by date. Smell is bad and/or check if the can is swollen,if either DO NOT EAT.
Old 10-10-2016, 04:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jfountain2 View Post
You mentioned 'organic' and 'bang for your buck' so I think you should look into organic soups like Amy's or Campbells.
They come in a wide variety of flavors and since they contain lots of veggies and come in low sodium, gluton free etc... you can find some pretty healty options. I would add some freeze dried meats to your storage and you can add a serving or two of freeze dried meat to your soups as they heat up. The meat will use excess water in the soup to rehydrate...

http://www.amys.com/products/product-categories/soups
https://www.campbells.com/campbell-soup/our-soups/
+1 on Amy's for organic. Bit more expensive but taste good and is organic
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Old 10-10-2016, 04:48 PM
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For the next two weeks keep a journal of everything you use from a can. That'll tell you what you routinely use and what you normally eat.

Store that stuff. Store what you eat, eat what you store.
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Old 10-10-2016, 05:14 PM
craezie craezie is offline
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We literally eat almost nothing from a can on a regular basis. This is why I don't think the rotation thing is going to work well for us. 80% of our food (meats, eggs, breads, and veggies) comes from farmers market, with only things like rice, pasta, and dry beans as pantry staples.

I reviewed my pantry, and there are a few other canned and jarred items (besides the italian tomatoes and chicken stock) we use and eat on an occasional basis. tuna in olive oil, anchovies, kalmata olives, marinated artichokes, roasted red peppers, pumpkin, coconut milk (for curry), applesauce and mandarin oranges. I will buy a dozen each of things things and rotate, but most of those foods are not ideal for a disaster situation (mostly due to calorie density).

I guess I'm looking for ideas of things that are versatile and calorie dense. I will look into finding some soups and chilis we like. We do eat those things, I just usually make a large batch from scratch (cheaper, healthier and easier for a larger family).

I cannot think of any canned meat (other than tuna) or vegetable that we would find desirable to eat on a regular basis, however in an emergency I would not want to be without something.
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Old 10-10-2016, 05:24 PM
Kansas Terri Kansas Terri is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by craezie View Post
with only things like rice, pasta, and dry beans as pantry staples.

tuna in olive oil, anchovies, kalmata olives, marinated artichokes, roasted red peppers, pumpkin, coconut milk (for curry), applesauce and mandarin oranges.
Start here. Also, since you like it, the makings of curry.

I can tell you from experience that tuna is not tasty if you eat it 3 times a day, but, for a start, start here. Then work in variety
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Old 10-10-2016, 05:44 PM
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Canned beef , chicken, turkey and pork from Keystone meats are pretty basic, just some salt added, you can find them in some stores or order online. https://keystonemeats.com/
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