When it comes to stockpiling food, one of the essential things to consider is the shelf life of each food product.
Understanding the nature of the individual food and its proper storage or processes before storing is a must for preppers.
When shopping for food, think of how long you plan on keeping it and what you are preparing for: regular consumption or emergency prepping.
Stockpiling long-lasting food greatly helps in the preparation of emergency supplies for natural disasters that often give little or no warning at all. It also provides an edge in managing the stress brought on by the pandemic.
Why You Should Shop from the Chinese Store
You can never go wrong with a trip to the Chinese store to stuff your pantry with long-lasting foods.
The undeniable fact is that Asian stores, especially the Chinese stores, generally have less expensive food items. They also offer a large variety of exotic food items that you might want to try.
Moreover, you will be amazed by the savings as they offer affordable pricing in large quantities, from spices and food flavorings to condiments, dry noodles, and more.
In choosing long-lasting food to store in your pantry, it is wise to consider that you are fueling your body, whether it is for an everyday diet or for emergency preparedness.
The list of shelf-stable or non-perishable foods you might consider includes items that are energy-rich, protein-loaded, and, more importantly, nutritious in general to help you maintain good health.
However, if we plan ahead wisely, we can incorporate our preferences into other nutritious and delicious food varieties. Regularly stock and replace shelf-stable food or long-lasting ones even before any emergencies.
Foods with the Best Shelf Life
Chinese grocery stores have a lot more to offer when it comes to Chinese cuisine or even for preppers looking for long-lasting food items to prepare and store.
Grains offer versatility when it comes to food prepping, aside from being calorie-dense. They come with easy storage and a longer shelf life.
For long-lasting storage, choose white rice over brown or black varieties. The latter has a thin, oily film, making it prone to storage issues.
Other than rice, wheat berries, dried corn, popcorn, rolled oats, cornmeal, all-purpose flour, cake flour, pasta, quinoa, instant grits, and potatoes are all shelf-stable.
For rice recipes, you will have endless must-try meals that perfectly blend with other food items: congees, rice toppings, stir fry, and more.
You can make parched corn for light snacking or add it to stews, or you can make delicious and satisfying corn soup for dried corn.
Are you thinking of long-lasting, grab-ready ration bars? You can make some from your pantry cereals and seeds. They are high-calorie energy bars that keep you going during emergencies. You might want to include them.
Beans & Legumes
A wide array of beans and legumes offer protein-loaded nutrients and fiber, which are essential to fuel our bodies. They are versatile for preservation and mixing with other food.
Plus, they are easy to store for a long time without altering the quality of taste and nutritional components.
Shelf-stable beans and legumes include pinto beans, black beans, navy beans, kidney beans, chickpeas, lima beans, black-eyed peas, and lentils.
Suppose you are a fan of the rice and beans combo. You can try to make a shelf-stable, easy, adaptable, ready-to-cook bean and rice survivalist recipe. It is easy to prepare and will be a great addition to your go-to pantry during difficult times or even during ordinary times.
Regardless of whether they are saturated or non-saturated fats, they are critical to fueling the body.
They add flavor to food and give us energy.
Excellent sources of fats are lard, edible tallow, peanut butter, margarine and butter, vegetable oil, olive oil, coconut oil, coconut milk, and many more.
They can have a shelf-life of one to two years or more if processed and stored correctly.
Canned Meat & Other Proteins
Canned meat and fish are excellent sources of protein.
Regardless of whether you love or hate them, they are convenient and valuable to keep in the pantry: canned sausages, meat beef loaves, corned beef, meat chunks in brine, etc.
You can try making long-lasting recipes like pemmican, biltong, and jerkies from whole meat.
Have you heard about TVP—textured vegetable protein? It comes from soybeans and it is processed to look like meat and taste like meat, just like bacon bits and pork chunks.
TVP is an excellent substitute for meat. It is fat- and cholesterol-free and can last up to 20 years if properly stored. You can always play around with delicious recipes using TVPs.
How about dry-cured meat products? They are also long-lasting when stored unsliced.
The dry-curing process is one of the food preservation techniques that uses salt for curing, subject to air-drying and or smoking, depending on the meat and the intent for the food.
These are foods that don’t require cold storage: dry-cured sausages, dry-cured bacon, and whole country hams.
Century eggs from Peking duck, chicken, or quail are also attention-grabbing among preppers, and Chinese stores have them. These are eggs that are preserved over a couple of months.
Related: How To Make Century Eggs
They are rich in protein and other vitamins and minerals, making them a popular protein snack. They have lots of known benefits and are an ancient Chinese food popular among preppers.
Baking Essentials From The Chinese Store
Regardless of how much you indulge in baking, these baking essentials are handy to include in your list of recommended long-lasting food to keep on hand.
They come in handy for making pastries, especially when the kids are around and going out for supplies is limited.
Have you heard about hardtacks, trench cakes or fruit cakes, skillet bread, and peasant bread? These are some of the resilient foods you can make that offer a great deal of nutrition. The Internet is a good source of information for almost everything you need to bake these.
Baking essentials include flours, syrups, powdered milk, baking soda, baking powder, cocoa, corn starch, yeast, pure vanilla extract, powdered sugar, Jell-O mixes, and more.
Herbs, Spices, Food Flavoring & Seasoning
Culinary herbs add flavor to dishes.
They come from edible plants with delectable flavors, zest, and taste to give consumers a new food experience.
Like culinary herbs, spices are used in almost all food preparation to provide flavor and get rid of blandness.
These include peppercorns, cinnamon sticks, chicken bouillon, garlic powder, chili powder, paprika, cumin, cayenne pepper, ginger, coriander, and more.
Altering the food’s basic taste to a whole new flavor is the essential function of the seasoning. Many of these items, like salt and granulated sugar, last forever if properly stored.
Pure honey has an indefinite shelf life that will allow you to savor its natural sweetener function for a lifetime.
With time, it will look a bit off as it crystallizes. Don’t worry. Use it again by soaking its container in warm water, and the honey will go back to its normal state.
Beverages From The Chinese Store
Beverages can help you stay energized and quenched.
Whether facing a crisis or just having an ordinary day, it is good to have these readily available: – instant coffee, tea, and rehydration juices and powders.
For rehydration, always have these available so you will not get weary quickly.
Almost every Chinese store has different options of flavors and forms you can choose from.
Dry Noodles & Pasta
Chinese stores have shelves full of noodles and pasta. They are easy to prepare and delicious. Noodles are perfect for quick cooking and also offer a variety of flavors to try. They are excellent pantry items with a long shelf life and meet the energy-giving and quick-cooking criteria.
Fruits and Vegetables From The Chinese Store
Chinese stores offer a wide variety of canned fruits and vegetables for very reasonable prices compared to other grocery stores. Asia has an abundance of fruit and vegetable produce.
We all love consuming fresh food, but it is not readily available to us at all times.
Most canned fruits and vegetables contain the same amount of nutrients as fresh and frozen produce.
Food technology has improved a lot over the years, and some canned foods now contain more vitamins and minerals than fresh ones. Fortification of vitamins and minerals is possible.
Canned fruits and vegetables are wise options to consider, plus they’re always ready to eat and go well with other foods.
Dehydrated vegetables are also a great addition to our pantries. They are a healthier alternative to many snacks, and you can add them to salads, oatmeal, baked goods, and smoothies.
Since they rehydrate in liquid, they’re also easy to use in recipes without losing their nutritional value.
Dehydration or drying of vegetables tends to extend the shelf life for years and allows for flavor concentration. They’re the perfect addition to your long-lasting food list as they, too, are incredibly lightweight and take up little space.
Dried fruit is also an incredibly healthy food that’s easy to take anywhere for a snack on the go. It is also versatile since you can add nuts, oats, salads, and more. These dried fruits include raisins, dates, prunes, figs, apricots, peaches, apples, and pears.
Dried nuts should be stocked sparingly. Consider only the best nuts for your overall health and food storage. Almonds are the healthiest and offer convenience for storage. Next are pistachios. Research how to keep them fresh longer. Otherwise, they will get rancid quickly.
After getting your pantry items at the Chinese store, the knowledge of how you can make your food last longer is worth reiterating.
Remember, even food with a known shelf life can invite quick spoilage if you don’t ensure suitable storage conditions against heat, light, oxygen, moisture, and pests.
Taking these into consideration will help your food last for several years without going bad and will prevent you from starving during emergencies.
You may also like: