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Emergency kit foods- Shoebox pantry challenge

Discussion in 'Other Every Day Carry Items' started by madkins007, Nov 10, 2009.

  1. madkins007

    madkins007 Loaded Pockets

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    Here is the challenge: To create a food kit (pantry) that can fit in a typical shoebox, cost under about $30 to assemble using readily-available items, and be used by two adults in an emergency setting.

    No prizes other than bragging rights. Don't worry a lot about drinks, or great nutrition (short term, it is not a big deal, and a couple multi-vitamins can ease things over.) Assume some meals will be skimpy or non-traditional, but bonus points for avoiding that. Bonus points also for light-weight, low water needs, and easy prep. Oh, and I would not count the cost of items you can scavenge from the typical kitchen as long as you do not use entire containers of it.

    Here is the deal. Most survival and emergency prep lists I see tend to go in one of two directions- lots of heavy, bulky canned food, OR ultralight- freeze-dried, pellets, etc. I don't wanna spend a lot of money, or haul around a heavy suitcase- the water is already a lot of weight. Ultimately, I want to combine the pantry kit with a mini-kitchen kit and use it for power loss emergencies, evacuations, and even spur of the moment picnics and overnights (which are also a great time to test the process and replenish aging foods.)

    I've got a buncha ideas, but I would LOVE to see what this creative group can come up with.
     
  2. copierguy_mobile

    copierguy_mobile Loaded Pockets

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    Hey, this might be a fun exercise. I've got a couple of questions.

    How many meals do you want to fit in? I would think a couple of days worth would be pushing the limits of a shoe box (unless we're talking about the shoe box my ski boots came in :p )

    How long do you want to be able to store this kit? Might want different sorts of things or packaging if it's not gonna get a refresh every so often

    What's in the "kitchen kit"? so we know what we've got to work with.

    -Greg
     
  3. vivek16

    vivek16 Loaded Pockets

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    Fill it with snickers bars. They're great emergency bars. :)
     
  4. copierguy_mobile

    copierguy_mobile Loaded Pockets

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    :lolhammer:

    I had that though too (then I decided he was serious). Stuff it full of Powerbars and powdered Gatorade. You'll be fine for weeks and you won't even need that emergency spork.

    Just poking fun... I'll save the serious suggestions for later.

    -Greg
     
  5. ryball

    ryball Empty Pockets

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  6. madkins007

    madkins007 Loaded Pockets

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    Couple of adults a couple of days, and I should be able to leave it alone for, say, about 6 months without thinking about it.

    The 'kitchen kit' is a mini stove (alcohol or fuel tab) and a small cooking kit- couple of pots, few utensils, couple of plates and cups... nothing too elaborate.
     
  7. madkins007

    madkins007 Loaded Pockets

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    I know that in an emergency a typical family would do fine on a lot of kinds of food bars and any of a dozen kinds of liquids for a few days, and indeed a couple boxes of such foods are in my car winter emergency kit right now, but that does not help with the 'use it for an impromptu picnic' element', or with using food as a comfort/morale element in an emergency.

    Just think... there you are, cold, lonely, bored out of your mind... and you have a choice of food bars, or an actual quasi-meal. I may have to use bars as stretchers, lunches, etc. but if all I have are bars, i might freak out! :knuppel2:

    Can't wait to see the ideas roll in!
     
  8. madkins007

    madkins007 Loaded Pockets

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    Yeah, right. Like I am going to spend that kinda price on Mountainhouse stuff like that ;)

    I am wondering about twinkies, dry beans, and peanut butter. It looks like we have a nice Italian meal going, then things get a little... odd. Beans are great, but I don't wanna use that much fuel or time in an emergency. Do you have some other thoughts?
     
  9. revs
    • In Omnia Paratus

    revs Loaded Pockets

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    Well, if you use my shoe boxes, then you can get a lot of food in them. Size 15 and almost always 8" or higher boots. :) Positioned right I could probably put 4 MREs in one of my shoe boxes. Take them out of the plastic and then I know I could. But you don't want MREs.

    Canned/pouch tuna, chicken or salmon
    microwave packets of rice-shelf stable and should last 6 months. Can heat them over a small stove, also.
    ramen noodles-can be used for all kinds of pasta dishes.

    I have a link to a website with backpacking recipes that look fairly decent for something like this. I have actually tried a couple and they were alright. I will have to see if I can find it.
     
  10. ryball

    ryball Empty Pockets

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    peanut butter and twinkies is dessert. ;D Actually, I just put twinkies in because they will outlast us all, and peanut butter has good nutritional value.

    dry beans you soak, so cook time isn't really that bad. Same with rice. Ooh, noodles + rice = pilaf...

    I'm going to check the pantry when I get home to see if I can come up with anything else.

    dehydrated mushrooms?
     
  11. knifeguy

    knifeguy Loaded Pockets

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    A movie is out right now that includes a hunt for twinkies after most of mankind is gone. :lolhammer: It was a very good movie.
     
  12. ryball

    ryball Empty Pockets

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    Lipton dry onion soup mix!
     
  13. Stutoffee

    Stutoffee Loaded Pockets

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    Off the top of my head, Im thinking of Supernoodles (bacon flavour - yum!), cpl of tins of spam, some tinned fruit in syrup, cpl of large chocolate bars, maybe some hard crackers?
     
  14. Manatakui

    Manatakui Loaded Pockets

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    Just an FYI, Twinkies are typically rotated out every six weeks (or is it months?), they aren't some "last forever" type of food.

    I tried this out - before upgrading to a rolling under-the-bed storage unit; from the list I made, I had in my initial setup, as per the contents list I wrote:

    6-7 cans of Vienna Sausages
    1 can creamy peanut butter
    2 stacks saltine crackers (effectively, half a box, such as Zesta)
    1 box poptarts (can fit one additional pack of poptarts into a single box, though)
    2+ packs of crackers/other snack food

    As it was, it was quickly supplemented with other items, especially as the campus food grew progressively worse as the semester advanced. Nonetheless, though, it made for a nice "I need a snack" or a "I don't feel like going anywhere" kind of go-to place, and best of all, it effectively cost all of $10 (if even that) to put together. No, it's not the most nutritious or always the tastiest, but it's definitely better than nothing. Just make certain you drink plenty of water whenever you eat something that contains nuts. :)
     
  15. madkins007

    madkins007 Loaded Pockets

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    Wasn't that a Family Guy episode?
     
  16. madkins007

    madkins007 Loaded Pockets

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    I'm not married to the shoebox size, just trying to put some semi-realistic limits on the size/weight of the emergency food stores. It could as easily be a couple-three gallon-size Zip-lock bags or something.
     
  17. laurent

    laurent Empty Pockets

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    I'd go with stabilized bread (don't know how that is called in english, but it's kind of toasted bread), pâté (like Spam ^^)
    [​IMG]
    because it's fat and proteinic, Swiss chocolate and dried fruits for dessert. Add some dehydrated soup (for fibers) and bottle of water, and your box is ready.
     
  18. Blackheart

    Blackheart Loaded Pockets

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    Sounds a lot like my winter kit for the vehicle:

    A box of ten cereal bars (power bars don't do well in temperature extremes), a one pound jar of peanuts, some packages of ramen noodles (I actually like these things), a few cans of Hormel stew (turkey and beef), a bag of dried fruit, some hard candy (Jolly Rancher), a half gallon of water in two stainless steel bottles (can be thawed using engine heat), and a Jetboil stove to warm things up with.

    All of these things I have no problem with consuming occasionally to cycle through.
     
  19. Narcosynthesis

    Narcosynthesis Loaded Pockets

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    There was a Family Guy episode where they went in search of the twinkie factory after the apocalypse, but the op was talking about the film zombieland where one of the side stories is one of the charachters love of twinkies and search for them after civilisation has gone... Awesome film actually :)

    As for an emergency food store, I would be tempted to look into some some of the premade backpacking type foods such as http://www.craigdonmountainsports.com/wayfarer-meat-balls-pasta - They look to be a good balance of getting a proper meal (with a good choice) in a portable package, and can be eaten hot or cold if needed - so the minimum of fuss and bulk while still being proper foods. A few of those per day alongside a range of chocolate, energy bars or dried fruit and nuts should keep you going for a few days. Also a 3 year shelf life, so fairly safe to be left unattended with only periodic date checks. Shop around and they should be available a fair bit cheaper than the site I linked to (a local shop that I knew had them, so not really the cheapest available)

    Probably not as cheap as tinned food may be, but designed for hiking and backpacking so should carry with the minimum of fuss and give you the energy to keep you going either out on the move or at home.
     
  20. revs
    • In Omnia Paratus

    revs Loaded Pockets

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    Found the website to backpacking recipes. All are dehydrated so will need a little water to prepare. But weigh very little. If you make them at home with a dehydrator, then they are a little more inexpensive.

    http://www.trailcooking.com/ Check the recipes on the left side menu. Hope this gives you a few ideas.