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Weekly Prep Buys - Progress Without All The Pain!

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My wife and I are "closet preppers," and I regularly stalk this forum for helpful info.

I thought this might be of help to some ...

We now work a "Monthly/Weekly" Purchase System for our regular food preps. We intentionally purchase an extra $12-$20 of food each week with our regular grocery bill for moderate-term storage (with ongoing rotation). We buy things that we use all of the time, anyway, so that we don't have any weird, unusable, items going out of date and rotting on our shelves. Thus, all regular purchases of non-perishable food for the kitchen pantry first make a trip through the basement to be rotated into storage, with the shortest dated items rotated upstairs.

Keep in mind that we also store pasta, rice, sugar, pinto beans, oats, wheat, and popcorn in bulk. (Wheat and regular pasta aren't much use to me, personally, because I have celiac disease/gluten enteropathy, but I figure I can trade it someday).

Here is the list that we use, for four weeks out of each month ...

Monthly Extra Buys

Week 1
___ 4 Cans Corn
___ 4 Cans Green Beans
___ 4 Cans Pork & Beans
___ 4 Cans Black-Eyed Peas
___ 1 Case Bottled Water
___ 5 lbs Sugar

Week 2
___ 4 Cans Sweet Peas
___ 4 Cans Carrots
___ 2 Cans Tuna in Water
___ 2 Cans Vienna Sausages
___ 1 Bottle Chicken / Beef Bullion
___ 4 Cans Diced Tomatoes
___ 5 lbs Sugar

Week 3
___ 2 Jars / Cans Spaghetti Sauce
___ 1 Jar Peanut Butter
___ 1 Bottle Ketchup / Mustard / A-1
___ 1 Box Iodized Salt
___ 2 Cans White-Meat Chicken
___ 1 Box Iced Tea (Decaf Family Size)
___ 5 lbs Sugar

Week 4
___ 1 Bottle BBQ Sauce or Italian Dressing
___ 1 Folgers Coffee (270-cup tub or larger)
___ 10 Packets of Kool-Aid (Various Flavors)
___ 1 Bottle Vegetable / Canola / Sunflower Oil
___ 5 lbs sugar

This list matches our regular use and personal priorities. Everyone's list will ,of course, be a bit different.

I'm just wondering if anyone else uses the same strategy of small, weekly buys in addition to bulk purchases.
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· Two is one, One is none
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I think these are great lists, and I think you are right, the key is to, buy every week never stop. You cannot have to much. I would however add a couple of cans of long term food storage like freeze dried or dyhydrated to the list in gluten free as well. Its nice to not have to rotate everything. Good luck.
 

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There is no perfect system. Trying to devise a logical, economical purchase plan is a puzzle to me. I absolutely hate wasting food, and it seems all manner of stocking inevitably will contain some amount of waste.
I recently joined Sams to have access to the bulk beans and rice. Much of the rest of the stuff, I don't know how much good its going to do me.

But that's OK. Surplus can be donated to food shelves if no emergency arises, or bartered with if one does. Better too much than too little generally speaking.
 

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What, exactly, would go to waste? :xeye:

We rotate this stuff every month. That includes the bottled water.

Like I said in the initial post, everyone's use list will be different.

Anyways, I can't buy flour ... a sack of flour is a sack of pain and diarrhea for a Celiac like me. :(
wasted space between the bottles, look at all the round bottles in a square box, all those corners. Calculate out the space, how many liters or gallons of water in the space then compare if you buy one of those 2 gallon square jugs, usually on the bottom shelf at the grocery store.

flour was just one example, I'd buy brown sugar, confectioners sugar, salt, pepper, chili powder, etc, etc, etc. Don't just buy bags of sugar. Make week 1 for sugar, week 2 salt, week 3 brown sugar, week 4 for various other spices. Spices like beef/pork/chicken rub can go a long way towards helping eat canned or frozen meats.

I've tried to organize by recipe. Take for example chili. I have a big container of the chili powder the 6 cans of beans, 6 cans of sauce, 6 boxes of cornbread, and 6 individual lbs of hamburger in the freezer, so that makes 6 meals of chili. Then 6 sloppy joes, 6 spagetta and sauce, 6 of this, 6 of that (I'm at the 6 month level of preps currently).
 

· Badass Moderator 🤷
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I, too, used this strategy for the first 6 months or so ... once I had a nice backstock up and running then I started only shopping sales. Now I easily have a year's worth of stuff that we use regularly put up.

That stock is my "breathing room" ... I've yet to figure out these folks that worry about stuff going "bad" ... especially canned goods. I never pay attention to the use by date. Just FIFO (first in first out).

Now I am concentrating on FD DH stuff in the 10# cans for a couple of reasons. First, I noticed a lot of what I stocked from the grocery store along with my canned goods was seasoned dehydrated potatoes, noodles, minute rice, etc. It is a lot cheaper (and healthier) for me to make my own seasoning mixes and concoct my own side dishes. Second, I just like that little extra layer of protection.

Unlike you, we live "in town" but like you are have access to an unlimited water source. Well, at least I think it is unlimited now ... If this drought keeps up the lake over here is gonna be a mud puddle ... :(

You are doing a fine job!! (IMHO)
 

· Premium Member
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We do used canned veggies now, so we buy like we use. Since we don't use a lot of canned meats, we tend to avoid those. Besides, there's too much to shoot off of of the back deck. :thumb:
It makes sense to buy what you use. I don't use many canned meats either, but I at least have a bunch stocked back for when I need them. I only use them now to learn to use them in recipes later on.

I use mostly dehydrated veggies (and fresh) rather than canned, so that's why I buy them that way. I find they're cheaper overall and taste much better. But unfortunately, that means I can't buy a few "extra" when I grocery shop. I have to order them in bulk to make the savings worth it.
 

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I think folks do the best they can with what works for them . If this suits the OP's needs and budget then it's great. Now that we are well past the 3-6 months worth in the pantry, we pick something and build that each month, plus I buy what's on sale in bulk. I go on a big shopping run once every 3-4 months, picking up only sale and coupon deals in between now.
 

· Cautious Optimist
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Discussion Starter · #27 ·
flour was just one example, I'd buy brown sugar, confectioners sugar, salt, pepper, chili powder, etc, etc, etc. Don't just buy bags of sugar. Make week 1 for sugar, week 2 salt, week 3 brown sugar, week 4 for various other spices. Spices like beef/pork/chicken rub can go a long way towards helping eat canned or frozen meats.
Gotcha. I do buy those other items, just not so much in my "regular grocery buys" strategy. I have an expansive collection of various spices and rubs in my preps. Almost to the point of ridiculous. (I'm pretty much a "king of the coals" around here. :D: ) I go heavy on the sugar because of three reasons: first, the current rapidly soaring price, second, it's use in mixing high vitamin-C drinks with the Kool-Aid (as well as in my good southern sweet tea and coffee), and finally its value for barter.

Brown sugar has a limited shelf life. Instead, I have ample access to sorghum (a buddy raises and sells it), so I can always "mix my own" brown sugar. And I already have enough salt to start a new ocean ... :xeye:

To each his own ...
 

· Cautious Optimist
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Discussion Starter · #28 ·
I think these are great lists, and I think you are right, the key is to, buy every week never stop. You cannot have to much. I would however add a couple of cans of long term food storage like freeze dried or dyhydrated to the list in gluten free as well. Its nice to not have to rotate everything. Good luck.
I just don't care for the price and preparation, myself. I prefer to buy what we already use, supplemented with bulk storage of staples. Plus what we raise and can here at home.

Personal preference. :)
 
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