How To Stockpile Lard, The Calorie Rich Survival Food Of The Great Depression

James Walton
By James Walton July 26, 2018 07:23

How To Stockpile Lard, The Calorie Rich Survival Food Of The Great Depression

Suicides exploded during the great depression. The stats are pretty alarming. They state that in 1928 22 people per 100,000 were committing suicide. These suicide jumps have happened over time and are often due to economic downturn.

The fact that the stock market suffers, and the DOW is dropping is not what makes people depressed. Its money and its food. Layoffs and scarcity are the conditions that walk people to the edge of a tall building.

While those suicide stats might alarm you, consider what we are dealing with today. Between 2009 and 2015 suicide rates in the U.S jumped to 30 people per 100,000! Yes, higher than the great depression. This is a huge tell in regard to the condition of this nation.

Lack of Food

As I mentioned a lack of jobs and food was the defining factor in this spike in suicides during the great depression. Men could not provide for their families and they offed themselves out of guilt and fear. It’s a terrible predicament to find oneself in.

We are even less equipped to deal with something like this today than in the past. People are weaker today, that explains why 30 per 100,000 are killing themselves when there is food and money to be had at every turn, if you are willing to put in the work.

One of the calorie rich foods that people used to survive the great depression was lard. This rendered pork fat was used in everything from frying, biscuits, cookies and preserving other foods. Let’s take a closer look at how you can stockpile lard, the calorie rich survival food.

What is Lard

How To Stockpile Lard, The Calorie Rich Survival Food Of The Great DepressionLard is rendered pork fat that has been strained of any meat bits or other impurities. Most lard is sourced from the belly of the pig, this area is also cured and smoked to make bacon. The fat is often collected and stored in a container for use and reuse.

Because lard is strained fat, it also has incredible staying power. You might be surprised to learn that lard can stay on your counter for as many as three months without refrigeration. This is a conservative number that lends itself more towards modern food safety rules and less toward historical use.

If you are old enough, you know that mom or grandma had a can of bacon grease or lard that never left the counter. It may have been as old as you when you were a child.

What is known about the environment in regard to bacteria is that there is not enough oxygen for typically dangerous bacteria like E. coli and Salmonella to survive. This is the good news. However, anaerobic environments, i.e. those without oxygen, can breed other types of bacteria. Things like the deadly Clostridium Botulinum which is the harbinger of botulism.

So, you must be aware and careful when storing lard. I will discuss a much safer method later in the article.

Related: Canning Amish Poor Man’s Steak

Making and Stockpiling

The basis of all lard is a superior quality fat. This fat is slowly rendered and strained. From here it can be stored in many ways.

How To Stockpile Lard, The Calorie Rich Survival Food Of The Great DepressionYou can buy backfat from most supermarkets and if you want to upgrade the quality to a pasture raised pork or something that’s fully organic or whatever derivation you might be looking for. With my experience a pasture raised pig is the very best you can get your hands on.

To best render your fatback, you want to cut it in strips and place it in a pot with a little water in the bottom of the pot. The water will keep your fat from getting too brown during the rendering process.

Place to pot over a low heat and let it work. Do not rush this process. You want the fat to slowly melt off. You might not be able to fit all the backfat into a smaller pot. You can add a little at a time and it will shrink as it begins to render.

How To Stockpile Lard, The Calorie Rich Survival Food Of The Great DepressionOnce you have rendered all of the fat you can strain this incredible cooking medium through a fine sieve and store it. The process is very simple, and storage is just as simple.

There are a few methods of storing lard and they all depend on the level of convenience you are looking for. If you have the ability to freeze your lard, you can do so in a plastic container or even a ball jar. I would recommend cooling the lard thoroughly before storing it in the freezer.

In the freezer your lard will hold up indefinitely. The product will hardly even change if it its well covered.

How To Stockpile Lard, The Calorie Rich Survival Food Of The Great Depression

In the refrigerator it is often said that lard will hold up in the refrigerator for up to 3 months. This is a highly conservative, food safety driven answer. Nothing wrong with that. The reality, you can keep that lard in a fridge for years. You might need to scrape a little mold off the top and every few months you might also want to reheat it and pour it into a new or clean container.

Remember, if you have a nice smooth surface you can manage things like oxidation and mold growth easier. If you have surface that is riddled with scoops and spooned out sections, it will grow mold easier and be harder to manage. This is why you should reheat and repour your lard if you are storing it in the fridge.

Lard without refrigeration

The very best method for storing lard without refrigeration is a pressure canning method.

When the lard is completely cooled, meticulously wipe off the rims of the jars to ensure that no pieces remain. Then place a warm, lid right out of the boiling water on top of your jar.  Fill each jar with just standard head space beginning right at the ring marks. Place a fresh sage leaf on the top of your cooled lard.

To preserve, you’ll use the pressure canning method of 100-120 minutes at 10 pounds of pressure. (Follow your manufacturer’s instructions for high altitude.)

Most preppers are short on salt and fat. Their stockpile is full of dried foods but when it comes to fat to cook in and salt to season with, most preppers are short. I used this process on pork backfat but if you were to do this with bear fat or any other fat, you can create your own cooking fat.

You may also like:

BOR banner don't step on itHow to Use Acorns as Survival Food

The Lost Superfood of the Ancient Incas (Video)

7 Super Cheap Foods To Stockpile That People Usually Throw Away

How to Tell When Your Canned Foods Become Spoiled?

13 Survival Foods You Should Always Have at Home

Please Spread The Word - Share This Post
James Walton
By James Walton July 26, 2018 07:23
Write a comment


  1. Emanon July 26, 13:35

    Disgusting. You shouldn’t try to make a survival food that increases the risk of heart disease and heart attack. Counterintuitive I think.

    Reply to this comment
    • Mimi July 26, 14:34

      Oh contrae’ my friend. Natural fats such as lard, coconut oil and similar products that were once considered verbatin are now being found as much more healthy for you than the alternatives.

      I encourage you to look into this.

      Reply to this comment
      • Mark July 30, 11:57

        keeping in mind in a survival situation you need to do what ever you can to make it through, and also todays foods to me are garbage, its more about the cash than your health,
        when I was young i can remember that tin can of bacon fat on the stove top.
        eating like that took my mother into her 80’s and my dad; 90 and still going strong…. moderation/hard work … like the old days.

        Reply to this comment
        • Dr.D July 31, 00:19

          Excellent comment, Mark and very accurate. They did not have all the gross, unhealthy additives that are found today, nor did they have the many “fast-food” unhealthy places. They ate at home often with food raised in their garden.

          Reply to this comment
          • Allen July 31, 03:41

            I heard the Food and Drug Administration unofficially back in 1998 or 1999 stated that it was healthier to drink the water out of the Hudson river, than to eat American processed food with all the junk they put in it.Over all if it’s company canned or boxed doesn’t matter it’s bad for your health in the long run. There are things put into your food that doesn’t even have to be on the label if it’s under a certain amount. What I have recently learned if a product is considered un-healthy and is forced to be removed they just add something to it change it’s name and put it right back in under a different name. But if it’s in a time’s like the above story or end of world as we know it and that’s all there is. I’m sure your not going to care or even read the label to see how many calories it has. Better to die of diabetes or some other sickness cases by your food 10 or so years later than to go hungry today.. Thus stocking food for those conditions anything with a long shelf life. Other people may say this is better than so and so. But a hungry stomach really doesn’t care. Emanon I bet my bottom dollar if your in that type of situation and all you can find is food bad for your heart and you haven’t eaten in 3 or 4 days you will happily eat it. And if you do complain I’ll just take it back and give it to someone else.

            Reply to this comment
          • proracr August 23, 14:13

            There are so many preservatives in processed foods these days that I am surprised that funeral homes have to embalm dead people.

            Reply to this comment
    • Nurse Nancy July 26, 14:49

      Actually it’s been shown that your body knows how to use and removed natural fats. Heart disease is far more common when using rancid, deodorized oils like margarine.

      Reply to this comment
      • Brannigan July 27, 00:42

        That, and slathering on sunblock. Far worse for your organs than the necessary fats. Not trans fat, but good old-fashioned fatback and bacon.

        Reply to this comment
    • Izzy July 26, 15:52

      Don’t ever eat store bought bakery products. Almost all use lard instead of shortening. Most frostings are lard based.

      Reply to this comment
      • Miss Kitty July 27, 08:59

        Not anymore. Most commercial bakeries switched to hydrogenated vegetable oil about 40 years ago (or longer) because it was cheaper and it opened product to the kosher/halil/vegan markets.

        Reply to this comment
        • left coast chuck July 28, 17:26

          And hydrogenated vegetable oil increased shelf life of the products making Twinkies and DingDongs have a shelf life, according to urban legend, of over 500 years.

          I recently read somewhere that Oreos make a good survival food as they also have an indefinite shelf life. Don’t know if that is true.

          I put away Triscuits and Saltines almost two years ago in their original packaging without any added protection. Recently I opened a box of each. They had definitely managed to absorb moisture through the plasticized paper inner packaging, the Saltines more than the Triscuits. They were edible, didn’t have any mold on them and the flavor remained. They had definitely absorbed moisture, although that could have been corrected by heating them over low heat if one felt the need. Smeared with peanut butter or some other condiment, the degraded texture was not noticeable to me.

          Two years was definitely past the “use by” date on the packaging.

          Reply to this comment
          • Shari March 19, 16:16

            I have learned a lot working with naturopathic doctors and medical doctors in my business. The FDA has instructed food producers to remove hydrogenated fats/oils from foods within the next couple of years. The reason for this is the hydrogenated molecules so closely resemble water molecules that the cells in our bodies can’t differentiate between the two. Once they have absorbed the hydrogenated molecule it hardens and the cell can no longer absorb other nutrients. It begins to break down but has lost the ability to communicate with other cells so it is not able to be repaired or replaced. This creates apoptosis and the cell becomes degraded and essentially toxic. This creates all kinds of health issues and over time and with continued consumption, health will fail. I don’t allow anything with this ingredient in my home, period. I also encouraged my kids to stop letting my grandchildren eat anything with this ingredient as well as high fructose corn syrup. The result is that headaches have stopped, ADHD is no longer evident, and weight was lost. The obesity in children is not necessarily how much they eat, but often what they are eating. These two ingredients are poison in my book.

            Reply to this comment
          • Meledie March 19, 18:55

            Why the sage leaf before pressure canning? This totally mystifies me.

            Reply to this comment
          • BIGFOOT June 30, 10:11

            The use by date is just a scheme by the food companies to increase sales . if the can is not rusted ,dented or something to cause it to loose its seal it should still be good 10 years from now instead of just 2 years.

            Reply to this comment
      • bert July 27, 23:39

        almost all “store bought bakery products” will not be made with lard, shortening is cheaper for them and considered to be more shelf stable in a non refrigerated bakery case. Given that I agree that you should avoid store bakeries

        Reply to this comment
      • jls1946 January 30, 17:05

        That’s ok. I use lard in my cooking.

        Reply to this comment
    • Homesteader July 26, 16:28

      My cholesterol numbers improved to where my doctor put me on once a year testing instead of every three months when I made the switch from stuff like Crisco (solid and oil) and Mazola to lard. Not saying it’ll work for everyone but it worked for me. Also, I find that foods cooked with lard are more satisfying in smaller portions than with ersatz oil/shortening.

      Reply to this comment
    • cindi July 26, 16:52

      sugars are a much bigger culprit with regards to heart disease than “good” fats ever were.

      Reply to this comment
    • Marcia July 26, 17:51

      85 grams of lard contains 82 milligrams of cholesterol. But, 85 gms is almost 3 oz., and I can’t imagine anyone eating that much lard. So, let’s say 1 oz, or 28 grams is 27 mg of cholesterol. People on a low cholesterol diet shouldn’t eat more than 20 mg. total, per day. Butter, on the other hand, has 190mg of cholesterol per once.
      Ghee, or clarified butter, having no milk solids or water content, is a bit higher in cholesterol but can be stored unrefrigerated or in canning jars like lard. Butter, on the other hand, can quickly turn rancid. Margarine, only if a good brand that is non-hydrogenated, is zero cholesterol. It will separate if left unrefrigerated, and will dehydrate if left in the freezer more than a year. Comparing these numbers, lard isn’t quite so bad, but a high quality margarine is best.

      Reply to this comment
      • NornaO July 28, 00:12

        Our brains are made up of 80% cholesterol. It is imperative that we eat our good fats like chicken skin, avocado, bacon, lard, butter, etc. I have been eating these good fats for over 15 years, I am 65 years old and my doctors cannot believe how good my blood work is, especially my cholesterol. Contrary to what a medical doctor will tell you, there isn’t a disease out there (including heart disease), but I don’t blame the doctors. The way they were taught in medical school was to just treat symptoms and get customers for Big Pharma. No margarine is good for you, even high quality. I have been studying about nutrition for 15 years and have learned from some of the best doctors around (all naturopathic).

        Reply to this comment
        • Hoosier Homesteader July 30, 02:43

          Norna, I agree 100%!
          Our bodies are intelligent and self-regulating. Just put the right things in it and it’ll take care of itself. I’ll take lard any day over the alternatives.

          Reply to this comment
        • Nursestacie February 7, 00:38

          And from what I’ve read, margarine was originally produced to fatten up the turkeys for thanksgiving. When the turkeys wouldn’t eat it, they flavored it and sold it to the population as a “butter alternative”… I guess to fatten ya up!?

          Reply to this comment
      • left coast chuck July 28, 17:37

        If properly stored, butter will last a long time. I don’t know the definition of “long time”. I do know that during the 19th century butter was shipped from England, around the Horn of Africa to Hong Kong and India.

        I believe it was shipped in containers filled with sawdust. Everything I have read about such shipments is that they were welcomed by the English folks who were stationed in those two far-flung posts of the British Empire.

        Certainly temperatures in the hold of a sailing vessel rounding the Horn and beating its way up the east coast of Africa would be in the high 90s as there was little ventilation in the holds of sailing vessels and certainly no a/c.

        Even today we do not put the butter we use daily in the refrigerator. It sits out on the counter until consumed. On very hot days, and SoCal has experienced some record hot days recently, it does not turn rancid. It get soft, sometimes when the temperature is in the low 90s it is very soft. I don’t know what it would be like if the temperature here reached into the low 100s as it has in some locals or even the mid 110s in Palm Springs and other low desert locales, it probably would be soup and might be advisable to move it to a cooler location.

        I don’t know how long it takes butter to turn rancid obviously the week or ten days or so that a 1/4 pound of butter sits on the kitchen counter is not enough to turn it rancid.

        Certainly it can go for long periods of time in fairly warm temperatures if protected somewhat as evidenced by the experience in the 19th century of shipping butter from England to India or Hong Kong by sailing ship. Those voyages generally lasted 3 or more months depending upon a variety of circumstances. Then once landed, it was shipped overland by horse drawn carts or even bullock drawn carts to its final destination, especially in India.

        Reply to this comment
        • Mimi July 31, 16:36

          I visited the Butter Museum in Cork, Ireland a few years ago – fascinating! this town provisioned almost ALL British and Scandinavian ships sailing across the Atlantic. the butter was packed into tins and VERY HEAVILY SALTED.
          The salt was rinsed out before using -but acted as a preservative for long-term storage without refrigeration.

          Reply to this comment
    • Aurora Meat Block July 26, 18:08

      I make survival food to survive. I usually look at shelf life and calorie count. I’ll let you worry about disgusting. Don’t swing by shtf I got hard tack to. OMG AAAAWWWWW🤢🤢😲😲

      Reply to this comment
    • Ellis34 July 26, 18:21

      i think the point is having a variety of different things that you store in your cashe. Ladd is like butter. It got a bad rap for a long time.
      You will need some fats to cook your foods and oils can go rancid fast in many conditions. When it comes down to it, it’s all personal preference. Just prepare to your own needs and desires. (But I love home-made flour tortillas)

      Reply to this comment
    • DarrenGold July 26, 18:51

      Recent studies are beginning to show that saturated fats in the diet are not the evil they were considered during the last half of the 20th century. Best to keep your eyes on new information than to stick to knee-jerk “disgusted” reactions. And..ever had doughnuts made with lard? They are amazing.

      Reply to this comment
    • nell July 26, 20:20

      the point is survival! you need the energy that the lard can provide, and if it come to survival you will need all the energy you can muster. just being super active like negate most bad issues with any food

      Reply to this comment
    • older prepare July 26, 21:20

      I think everyone pretty much answered this comment. When one is STARVING, fat is needed. You, Emanon, are NOT thinking in SURVIVAL MODE. You would die from starvation before heart attack.

      Reply to this comment
    • JJ July 27, 18:19

      Oh, recent studies report health is better with lard than other carcinogenic oils with preservatives/gmo elements and margarines which isn’t even food!!
      AND..for your information –olive oil use works to prevent several types of female cancer–breast cancer and colon and ovarian.
      So, research more, please. is a great daily read. 🙂

      Reply to this comment
      • Lisa March 19, 21:58

        I’d like to grow my own olive trees. They are “illegal” here in the valley of the sun. Grow and preserve your own food. then you know what you have.

        Reply to this comment
      • Lucille August 28, 07:26

        You are so right. That is why rabbit are not great survival meat. You will starve eating just rabbit they have no fat to speak of.

        Reply to this comment
    • Claude Davis July 30, 08:30

      In a survival situation your body needs calories. When you’re starving, heart disease is not high on your list of priorities. In fact lard will keep your body from starting to break down its own organs for energy.

      Reply to this comment
      • dp August 24, 19:39

        allen – yes, exactly.

        If you want to lose weight and be healthy… eat fat. Not just any fat – eat healthy natural fat.

        your body will thank by not storing fat, and thinking that you are starving to death…

        Reply to this comment
    • Allen July 31, 03:44

      I heard the Food and Drug Administration unofficially back in 1998 or 1999 stated that it was healthier to drink the water out of the Hudson river, than to eat American processed food with all the junk they put in it.Over all if it’s company canned or boxed doesn’t matter it’s bad for your health in the long run. There are things put into your food that doesn’t even have to be on the label if it’s under a certain amount. What I have recently learned if a product is considered un-healthy and is forced to be removed they just add something to it change it’s name and put it right back in under a different name. But if it’s in a time’s like the above story or end of world as we know it and that’s all there is. I’m sure your not going to care or even read the label to see how many calories it has. Better to die of diabetes or some other sickness cases by your food 10 or so years later than to go hungry today.. Thus stocking food for those conditions anything with a long shelf life. Other people may say this is better than so and so. But a hungry stomach really doesn’t care. Emanon I bet my bottom dollar if your in that type of situation and all you can find is food bad for your heart and you haven’t eaten in 3 or 4 days you will happily eat it.

      Reply to this comment
    • Allen August 24, 15:23

      As you’ve been told already by other comments about what you think is disgusting. Keep in mind those that say the other with their research and all is based on profits. Most of the US has changed from Lard to Veggie Oil eating what the label says as low cal and other things. But we live in a time where there are more fat people, heart problems and cancer than any time in recorded history. I for one got away from what the Food and Drug Administration was saying and other health food things lost weight and got healthy all their stuff is for profit. You may not be old enough to remember but cigarettes where once endorsed by doctors. And anyone looking to make a buck can get a doctor to endorse their product. I’ve been given medication that the side effects where worse than what I was taking the medication for. But yet a doctor prescribed it. I went the herbal way and cured it. with no side effects. You see all these diet plans but yet people still getting fat. Already proven by health research that low fat milk by the way helps you gain weight. but advertisement says different and so do profits. Hell pasteurized anything is more harmful to your body than most anything else you can eat or drink. But that is not what the big dollar supplies say. Emanon Eat healthy is eating for the most part like your grandparents did. without all the things that free Enterprise puts in your food.

      Reply to this comment
      • dp August 24, 19:36

        allen – yes, exactly.

        If you want to lose weight and be healthy… eat fat. Not just any fat – eat healthy natural fat.

        your body will thank by not storing fat, and thinking that you are starving to death…

        Reply to this comment
    • cerebralvomit May 4, 03:57

      Pick your poison, Starvation or a food that your body will utilize in it’s entirety because you are starving will keep you alive.

      Reply to this comment
    • Good Fats June 30, 02:37

      Watch “Oiling of America”. See what the seed oils do to our bodies. Seed oils could very easily be the cause of the heart problems.

      Reply to this comment
    • Good Fats Intake June 30, 02:38

      Watch “Oiling of America”. See what the seed oils do to our bodies. Seed oils could very easily be the cause of the heart problems.

      Reply to this comment
    • Peggy August 28, 21:25

      Would you rather starve to death now or worry about heart disease later. In a survival situation it will be eat whats available or go hungry. You will not be able to be so intolerant.

      Reply to this comment
    • Galla November 23, 15:33

      Bravo! It’s great that folks are realizing just how healthy natural pastured animal fats are and how we have been mislead for generations! Doubters do your research – it is amazing stuff, especially in skin care too!

      Reply to this comment
  2. River Rat July 26, 13:45

    What about storing commercial lard off shelf at grocery store? If unopened can you keep it for long periods? I’m not in position to render my own but can buy lard.

    Reply to this comment
    • Homesteader July 26, 16:55

      That lard will still go rancid after a while, even unopened, unless you have a good, cool place to store it. Since the kind I buy does not contain preservatives, I store it in the refrigerator. There are some brands that do contain preservatives that will probably last longer. Don’t know how you feel about such preservatives, but I try to limit them as much as possible.

      The lard can probably be repackaged into jars and processed in a canner but I haven’t tried it yet. Not really sure how to do that, i.e., how long to process, pressure or water bath, etc. However, that would be expensive since, where I live, a 1 pound tub runs between $3 and $4 each whether they contain preservative or not.

      Reply to this comment
    • JJ July 27, 18:30

      I have a 5 gallon bucket of Field lard in the freezer.
      It cost about $25 years ago.
      Now?? A 4 lb. carton is $ do the math.
      Great investment.

      Reply to this comment
    • left coast chuck July 28, 17:42

      The Mexican butcher where I got my pork fat for my experiment in making lard told me when we were discussing it that he didn’t buy off-the-shelf lard because of the chemicals they put in it. He preferred to make his own lard using the fat from the shop. He also said that to his taste it didn’t taste the same as the lard he made from pure pork fat.

      I am sure he selected only the best cuts of fat. After all, he was a man who had worked in butchering for a long time and knew what fat he wanted to make the best lard.

      He told me he only used lard in his cooking, that he didn’t use anything else. I took that information as coming right from the pig’s belly, so to speak.

      Reply to this comment
  3. Dandon July 26, 14:06

    How long will caned lard keep

    Reply to this comment
  4. Mad Fab July 26, 14:11

    You will want to cube the pork fat fairly uniformly before rendering. Back and belly fat are wonderful to cook with, but if u want to bake with it , use the leaf lard from around the kidneys.

    Reply to this comment
  5. Mimi July 26, 14:36

    We butcher our own pork and have the processing plan render the lard for us. We freeze it and it is WONDERFUL for cooking and baking.

    Reply to this comment
    • andy July 26, 16:11

      Same here. Been doing it for many years. Cut it in 1″ or so cubes, put in crock pots (run 3 when rendering), ladle the melted fat off, strain thru cheesecloth, and let cool overnight. Put in 1 qt containers, put in freezer. Two pigs generally does us more than a year.

      Reply to this comment
    • Illini Warrior July 27, 12:35

      check with the slaughter houses or directly with the rendering plants – there’s your best $$$ per pound for rendered lard >>> especially if you’re willing to take it in a 5 gallon bucket …

      Reply to this comment
  6. left coast chuck July 26, 14:42

    While trichinosis has been mainly eliminated in the pork that is sold in this country, there is a high likelihood that bear meat will be infected with this parasite. Bear meat, before it is consumed must be thoroughly cooked. Most articles I have read recommend boiling the meat, throwing away the water the meat was boiled in and then further cooking the meat.

    In just the last year or two I read an article in either Field & Stream or Outdoor Life in which a guide recounted the infection of a hunting party hunting in Canada, including the author, who had become infected with trichinosis because they failed to thoroughly cook the meat of the bear they had killed.

    While his infection with the parasite was subdued, apparently it is never fully eliminated from the human body and so although he was over the effects of the initial infestation, he still carried the parasite in his body and had to guard against its reactivation.

    Early settlers used bear fat and ate bear meat. I don’t know if the infestation of bear with trichinosis is a recent thing due to bears raiding garbage pits and garbage cans or if bear meat has historically been infested due to their habit of eating carrion.

    The trichinosis parasite infests muscle tissue and it may be that because it infests muscle tissue and not fat tissue, rendered bear fat is safe to eat. I don’t know enough about the issue to be able to make a factual statement. I only know that bear meat can be infested with trichinosis and so it must be consumed with caution. I believe that the temperature at which bear meat is rendered is not high enough to kill the trichinosis parasite. Again, my knowledge is limited. If you think you might be consuming bear meat and rendering its fat, you might want to do further research into the matter.

    Reply to this comment
    • Graywolf12 July 26, 16:32

      Unless the laws has changed bear meat is the only game animal that you do not need to bring out the 4 quarters in Alaska. That is because of the possibility of being infected with Trichinosis. I left in 1971, so that may no longer be accurate.

      Reply to this comment
    • Beowulf July 26, 17:42

      One of the guys I work with, his brother in law died from eating bear meat. It seems that bear meat in the spring time has a lot of toxins due to their hibernation. If you are going to eat any bear products it is probably better in the summer to fall months for safety reasons.

      Reply to this comment
    • Miss Kitty July 29, 22:22

      Bear fat goes rancid fairly quickly which is why it’s not usually recommended for cooking.

      Reply to this comment
  7. Damien July 26, 15:35

    If you mix fats from different animals (assuming infestation is not an issue) does this change the shelf life of the finished lard?

    Reply to this comment
  8. Aurora Meat Block July 26, 16:06

    I own a small butcher shop in Nebraska. Dirt raised hogs usually offer the most back fat. If you can use a half or whole hog a year ask your butcher to save the fat “and grind it” making it so much more easy, quicker and you can separate all the fat from the proteins. Far more efficient even in a crock pot. We render lard on request for any hog customers or prep it for DIY

    Reply to this comment
    • Dinie November 2, 03:40

      I do my lard in the crock pot from the pasture raised hogs that my neighbor grows. It’s easier and you have less scorching or burning of the product. I struggle with what to do with the cracklins though. We’re working on raising our own pigs soon. And I’m going to teach a couple friends how to slaughter a hog soon as well. I did it with my family for most of my childhood and teen years. In the last 5 years I haven’t done it, but I’m eager to butcher my own again.

      Reply to this comment
      • dp November 2, 04:43

        cracklins make excellent dog treats. They can also be mixed in with bone meal, diatomatious earth, sweet potato, and non-grain fiber (dried grass, etc) to make healthy dog biscuits.

        Reply to this comment
        • Graywolf12 December 7, 19:34

          When I was a kid they made an excellent treat for ME.

          Reply to this comment
        • Diniec February 6, 16:12

          My dogs DO love them. They will beg for some if they can smell them at all. I have been putting it in eggs and using it as a bacon replacer in recipes that I can mix it in. Nobody seems to notice. Although if I mention it to my husband he complains that there is no meat on it. He still eats it though.

          Reply to this comment
  9. Labienus July 26, 16:14

    Just because something has high calories or carbs doesn’t make it some semi lost survival food. It’s lard. Literally half the southern United States has it.

    Reply to this comment
  10. Thomas July 26, 16:38

    I can most of my lard in small 1/2 – 1 pint jars so am not opening a large jar and exposing it to possible contamination. The small jars are easier to to handle and just leave on the counter next to the stove. I don’t have enough solar panels to also run my fridge or chest freezer so I am concerned with mass food loss when the power goes out.

    Reply to this comment
  11. mbl July 26, 18:08

    For the pressure canning part of the article, I wish the author had supplied a little more information; is it 100 minutes for pints and 120 for quarts (~0.5 litre and ~1 litre if you use metric).

    Also, I’ve heard more than one canner say if you want to can sausage, it’s best to refrain from adding sage to it as the sage turns bitter. I’ve not canned sausage so do not know from experience if this be true. This does seem to contrast though, with the author’s suggestion of adding a sage leaf on the top.

    I’ve rendered lard a couple times. The cracklings, which are the bits that turn brown, make for excellent snacks, or if you don’t like them, the birds certainly do!

    Reply to this comment
  12. Clergylady July 26, 22:19

    Lard is wonderful. Best pie crust and biscuits imaginable. A bit of that bacon fat to season gravy and you’re on your way to great eating. I actually eat little fat except by choice or planning. I grew up vegetarian and even oils were not high on the list of important things to eat.
    Later discovered meat and milk fats were natural and health… On the food lists for diabetics. I’m not Not diabetic but I don’t handle fats too well b u t a bit of real butter, sour cream, half and half over slices fruit, butter on toast… Are all wonderful.
    Nix the trans fats.
    Canning some lard makes perfect sense. I kept a coffee can of bacon grease by the stove for years. My mother in law had cans and cans put away in bottom cupboard shelves. I think it would have kept forever.

    Reply to this comment
    • JJ July 27, 18:36

      Because in Tennessee, you can’t make cornbread without bacon grease!!

      Reply to this comment
    • Hoosier Homesteader July 30, 03:01

      My mother, who passed in 2011 at 95, lived in an orphanage when she was a little girl because her mother couldn’t put enough food on the table for all eight children during the depression of the 30’s. Mom told me she remembered sitting on the front steps of the orphanage with a slice of bread that had lard spread on it. She said it was a treat. …I’ve never tried that, but I don’t think I was ever as hungry as my mom might’ve been in that orphanage.

      Reply to this comment
      • Dinie November 2, 03:44

        My grandparents told me stories of eating that same thing. I think it was just a butter replacement sometimes. My grandparents had a small farm to raise all of their kids through those hard years. I can’t imagine having that many mouths to feed and no money. Creative food planning for sure. I need to work on my meal planning skills.

        Reply to this comment
  13. IvyMike July 26, 23:33

    I had an off the grid fiesta with some Mexican friends a couple years ago,they built a fire ring out of stones and got a good mesquite fire going, charred serranno peppers and tomatoes and made that into a sauce. Then they broke out a big copper kettle and set it in the fire and put 2 of those big cubes of lard in. They had killed a hog and cut it into fist size chunks,once the lard was boiling hard they started cooking those chunks of hog till it was golden brown, pulled the meat off the bone and shredded it and we made tacos on corn tortillas somebody’s wife had made with that smoking hot pepper sauce. Never had a better meal, squatting in the dirt with a bunch of illiterate rancheros drinking ice cold Buds and howling at the moon.
    Lot of recent studies saying lard is good for you, don’t ever think you have the final answer to a question, that’s how doctors and lawyers end up so ignorant.

    Reply to this comment
  14. Bob July 27, 06:04

    75.00$ for gas or electric per caner full,seems high to me.

    Reply to this comment
  15. lc65 July 27, 15:07

    Your brain is almost 100 % fat. Mothers milk is very high in fat content for this very reason. Brain health requires it !

    YOUR BODY NEEDS FAT ! Especially when performing hard labor. I have a friend that has eaten bacon and eggs for breakfast everyday of his life, he is 75 years old and ZERO heart problems.

    Reply to this comment
  16. cindi July 28, 00:06

    how do i stop getting notifications! yikes, there are a lot of people commenting!

    Reply to this comment
  17. Jen July 29, 20:22

    It’s pork fat. It’s not survival food. It’s an ingredient to flavor food. God help you if you eat straight up animal fat. Disgusting.

    Reply to this comment
    • Homesteader July 29, 22:21

      Haven’t you ever heard of people spreading lard on bread just like butter and eating it? My dad, did during the Depression, because he didn’t have butter. When you’re hungry, you’ll eat just about anything, even things you would otherwise dream of eating.

      Reply to this comment
    • Miss Kitty July 29, 22:29

      It’s used like any shortening, not for eating with a spoon, anymore than you would eat straight up Crisco. It also has vitamins like D and K that are essential to good health. Don’t be so quick to dismiss it until you’ve thoroughly researched it – or eaten home made home fries sauteed in bacon fat!

      Reply to this comment
  18. Miss Kitty July 29, 22:30

    It’s used like any shortening, not for eating with a spoon, anymore than you would eat straight up Crisco. It also has vitamins like D and K that are essential to good health. Don’t be so quick to dismiss it until you’ve thoroughly researched it – or eaten home made home fries sauteed in bacon fat!

    Reply to this comment
  19. dp August 1, 16:58

    Any time that you are on a low calorie diet your body is eating it’s own natural fat reserves… why would you think that the body has a problem with processing natural fats?

    Natural fats are your body’s high calorie reserve food of choice.

    Reply to this comment
  20. msneuropil August 2, 23:53

    I was raised by grandparents that lived rural Texas during the depression. Lard was used for so much more than for just food…just for those younger preppers to know. Putting myself thru nursing school way back…I worked in a dietitian department. In my memory I saw some changes that I see as a pretty direct link to our obesity problem in the US. One of those changes was going to hydrogenated AND veg oils instead of using lard and/or tallow to fry foods in. Try this experiment. FRY your kids a big pan of french fries…IN LARD. Another day…FRY your kids a pan with veg oil hydrogenated or not.. and see how fast each kid fills up. Lard in particular satiates the appetite…AND therefore, you tend to eat less. Pigs in the US back before the 50’s…were essentially raised for the FAT they produced. It was used for machinery and simply things like allowing a screw to enter the wood by hand driving so much easier. In the late 60’s and 70’s the commercial pork started getting less fatty. Back then, I believed the hype…and I stopped using lard but as I’ve gotten older…and with more information under my belt…I see society is so much more obese due to the food police…and LARD is NOT the enemy and I use it AND BUTTER because I use LESS of it than processed foods and feel more satiated. IF your prepped Lard seems like it has turned, and it will do so, depending on long term storage, it is NOT a waste. You can use it for candles and my fav is lye soap. I’ve done it for decades, although, I’m not a fan of candles…they can serve a purpose. IF you have tons of salty bacon fat that smells off…deodorize it and make soap out of it. Search that and you will see there is a way to use OLD lard even if it smells off.

    Oh a lighter note..IF your a nursing mother…and become engorged…find someone with freshly rendered lard and slather it all over your breasts. You will find relief and milk will start coming. I didn’t believe my grandpa (who raised hogs) but was so desperate I did it. IT worked, fast. But he said it had to be fresh, not stored or store bought. Just saying. Lard can make all sorts of skin remedies in a survival situation.

    Reply to this comment
  21. Leslie August 12, 15:01

    My in-laws who used lard for all baking lived to 98 and 101 years old without dementia or Alzheimer’s! Mom’s pie crust was the best! Pie crust with butter is amazing too! When I first met them, I could not believe they used lard but then I got more into health. We never gave up butter and eggs and have had our own free range chickens all but maybe 12 years of our 46 year marriage. We are on no medications at 67 and 68, have good blood pressure and don’t even know what our cholesterol is! My husband still weighs the same as High School and wears the same size pants! Us and our 7 grown kids don’t have obesity problems and are all pretty energetic. We all like to dance!
    We have raised sheep for meat and I rendered all the tallow. I could not believe they had so much fat on grass, some hay and apples! Lamb tallow really fills you up fast, is so satisfying and tasty and you don’t get hungry again for a long time. I have that stored. I also make soap out of every fat I can get my hands on, even bacon grease! I have used venison, any veggie oils, beef, chicken, turkey, and coconut oil in my soaps. My soap is the best at washing stains out of clothes and keeping your skin soft, even chapped winter hands!
    I have had to rediscover this myself after all that old wisdom was lost!

    Reply to this comment
    • dp August 13, 23:00


      Your comment really opened my eyes to the possibilities, besides food, of lard.

      Thank you for your comment. 🙂

      Reply to this comment
    • Keith December 28, 15:16

      Hi , Leslie , Iwould love more recipes and and information from you on what you do and make . I’m starting the process of wanting to make soap, since I make deodorant . Iwould love your ideas to further my knowledge . thanks so much.

      Reply to this comment
  22. August 17, 05:16

    Asking questions are in fact fastidious thing if you are not understanding something
    completely, except this piece of writing presents
    pleasant understanding even.

    Reply to this comment
  23. Lucille February 20, 16:06

    So I can my lard, what then is the shelf life, stored properly?

    Reply to this comment
  24. Dr.JR March 19, 17:47

    I have a lot of lard put back. It is great to eat on toast just like butter.

    Reply to this comment
  25. BIGFOOT March 24, 00:19

    I had rather use lard & butter knowing that it is not 90% toxins & die tomorrow than live 20 years & die eaten alive by cancers

    Reply to this comment
  26. Tina September 20, 03:12

    Why put a sage leaf on top of it?

    Reply to this comment
View comments

Write a comment


Follow Us