October 4, 2022

Survival Foods With Long Shelf Life | Top 20 Options

Table
of
Contents

Whether
there’s
a
severe
storm,
hurricane,
tornado,
drought,
or
pandemic-related
curfew
forecasted,
being
prepared
for
the
unexpected
is
always
important.

You
never
know
when
a
disaster
will
strike.
So,
it
is
advisable
to
stockpile
as
many
survival
foods
as
possible
for
any
situation
that
you
encounter.
Shopping
for
survival
food
isn’t
exactly
the
same
as
shopping
for
everyday
groceries.

Instead
of
picking
what
tastes
and
looks
good
from
the
shelves,
what
you
need
to
look
for
is
long
shelf
life,
calories,
nutrition,
as
well
as
convenience.

With
that
said,
here
are
our
top
20
recommendations
for

survival
foods
with
long
shelf
life

you
can
consider.


Top
Survival
Foods
With
Long
Shelf
Life

Here
are
our
top
20
recommendations
for

survival
foods
with
long
shelf
life
.
Make
sure
to
have
these
in
your
pantry,
so
you’re
always
prepared
for
the
worst.


1.
Canned
Meat

These
are
the
ultimate
survival
food
for
any
survival
situation.
They
usually
have
a
shelf
life
that
ranges
from
2
to
5
years,
depending
on
the
type
of
meat
and
storage
conditions.

Canned
meat
will
supply
you
with
the
much-needed
nutrients
and
energy.
We
recommend
you
buy
different
types
of
canned
meat,
such
as
spaghetti
with
jumbo
meatballs,
canned
fish,
spam,
smoked
ham,
Vienna
sausages,
chicken
breast,
cured
ham,
potted
meat,
roast
beef
hash,
luncheon
meat,
and
any
other
good
option
you
will
come
across.

Note,
however,
that
once
opened,
canned
meat
can
last
just
three
to
four
days.
So,
it
is
wise
to
pick
just
the
right
can
size
to
avoid
wastage.
Small
cans
are
more
convenient
because
you
can
consume
one
at
a
time
without
any
leftovers. 


2.
Beans

Beans
are
among
the
best
all-around
survival
foods.
Did
you
know
that
these
dried
bipolar
seeds
are
more
nutritious
than
rice?

There
are
about
15
types
of
beans
that
are
loaded
with
calories
and
can
last
a
long
time
in
storage. 

Adzuki,
mung,
pinto,
kidney,
cannellini,
pigeon,
cranberry,
garbanzo,
pink,
lima,
navy,
black,
black-eyed,
black
turtle,
and
freeze-dried
split
pea
can
last
up
to
30
years
in
storage.
Dehydrated
soybean,
on
the
other
hand,
can
last
10
to
15
years.

One
cup
of
boiled
adzuki
beans
provides
roughly
294
calories
and
more
than
15g
of
protein.
Dehydrated
soybean
provides
about
298
calories
and
more
than
20g
of
protein.
So,
beans
are
also
a
great
source
of
protein.

You
should
buy
4
to
5
pounds
of
dried
beans
on
every
visit
to
the
store
and
stockpile
them
in
a
dark,
cool
place.


3.
Lentils 

Lentils
are
a
pretty
functional
food,
thanks
to
their
exceptional
dietary
composition.
They
have
an
amazing
nutritional
value
and
they
taste
pretty
delicious.

These
are
great
food
because
they’re
packed
with
protein
and
available
in
one-pound
bags.
When
you
prepare
lentils,
they
increase
in
size.
They
are
also
easy
to
cook
because
you
don’t
have
to
soak
them.
Just
add
them
to
boiling
water
and
they
will
cook
in
approximately
25
to
30
minutes.

Lentils
have
an
incredible
shelf
life.
If
stored
properly,
they
can
last
up
to
30
years.
Traditionally,
they
were
stored
in
clay
pots
for
use
in
famine
as
well
as
harsh
winter
conditions.

You
can
buy
them
already
packed
in
bags
or
you
can
get
them
in
bulk
and
store
them
in
airtight
containers
and
jars.


4.
Rice

This
might
come
as
a
surprise
to
you,
but
rice
is
indeed
one
of
the
best
foods
you
can
stockpile
for
survival
situations.

This
grain,
a
staple
of
any
good
emergency
food
storage,
can
be
cooked
in
different
ways.
One
of
the
most
popular
ones
is
steaming,
which
can
be
done
on
any
given
type
of
stove. 

Uncooked
rice
has
a
very
long
shelf
life
when

properly
stored
.
When
sealed
and
stored
properly,
white
rice
can
last
up
to
2
years.
Brown
rice,
however,
has
a
shorter
shelf
life
of
around
6
months.

Rice
is
also
a
very
convenient
choice
for
serving
with
different
types
of
beans.


5.
Canned
Fruits
&
Vegetables

Surviving
on
carbohydrates
or
proteins
alone
isn’t
going
to
supply
you
with
a
balanced
diet
in
those
trying
times.
This
brings
us
to
the
next
important
food
item
in
our
listing:
canned
fruits
and
vegetables.

It’s
common
knowledge
that
fruits
and
vegetables
are
an
essential
part
of
any
diet.
But
fresh
fruits
or
veggies
will
hardly
last
a
week
when
stockpiled.
That’s
why
we
recommend
canned
fruits
and
veggies
to
get
the
nutrients
you
need
in
any
survival
situation.

When
shopping
for
canned
fruits,
get
the
ones
that
are
packed
in
water
or
their
own
juice.
Avoid
canned
fruits
that
are
stored
in
artificial
sweeteners,
salt,
syrup,
or
sugar.

Canned
vegetables
include
corn,
peas,
green
beans,
mixed
vegetables,
potatoes,
spinach,
carrots,
and
many
more.
Any
canned
vegetable
you
buy
shouldn’t
have
oils,
sugars,
or
fats
in
the
ingredients
list.

Canned
fruits
and
veggies
that
are
properly
stored
can
last
around
1
to
2
years.
But
the
shelf
life
may
deteriorate
pretty
fast
after
opening,
approximately
2
to
7
days. 


6.
Dried
Fruits

Dried
fruits
come
in
almost
as
many
varieties
as
fresh
fruits.

But
apricots,
prunes,
dates,
figs,
and
raisins
are
the
most
common
dried
fruits
on
the
marketplace.
Local
markets
and
health
food
stores
provide
many
more
choices,
including
papayas,
mangoes,
berries,
pineapples,
and
dried
apples.

Dried
fruits
are
rich
sources
of
nutrients,
bioactive
compounds,
and
carbohydrates.
The
most
calorie-rich
of
these
fruits
are
raisins
and
dates.
Dried
fruits
are
also
good
sources
of
sugars,
including
glucose
and
fructose.

Dried
fruits
can
last
roughly
6
to
12
months.
So,
it
is
advisable
to
rotate
them
to
make
sure
you
don’t
end
up
with
spoiled
fruits
in
a
survival
situation.


7.
Flour

Having

flour
in
storage

for
survival
is
a
good
thing.
You
can
use
flour
to
prepare
just
about
anything.
You
just
need
a
few
ingredients
to
make
quick
foods
like
banana
bread,
vegan
naan,
pancakes,
and
scalloped
potatoes
among
others.

All-purpose
flour
(regular),
white
cake
flour,
white
bread
flour,
and
self-rising
flour
can
last
up
to
12
months
at
room
temperature.
But
the
shelf
life
of
whole-wheat,
whole-grain,
and
oat
flour
is
slightly
shorter
at
1
to
3
months.

What
about
coconut
and
almond
flour?
These
alternative
options
to
starchy
flours
also
have
a
short
shelf
life
of
about
3
months. 


8.
Pasta

One
of
the
best
lightweight
foods
for
your
survival
diet
is
pasta.
It
is
extremely
tasty
and
a
good
source
of
carbohydrates.

Most
pasta
is
made
from
just
two
main
ingredients,
durum
wheat
semolina,
and
water.
Durum
wheat
is
different
from
the
one
used
to
make
bread.
It
is
not
only
harder
but
also
contains
a
lot
of
proteins. 

Some
people
may
be
worried
about
the
size
of
the
pasta.
But
there
are
hundreds
of
pasta
shapes
to
choose
from.

Spaghetti
is
one
of
the
thinnest
and
the
most
convenient
for
storage.
Other
suitable
shapes
that
may
not
take
too
much
storage
space
are
Calamarata,
Fusilli,
Macaroni,
Paccheri,
linguine,
pappardelle,
rotini,
rigatoni,
and
Riccoli
among
others.

Dry
pasta
in
a
bag
can
last
up
to
2
years
but
a
bag
of
pasta
that
has
been
opened
can
last
up
to
12
months. 


9.
Nuts

When
you
are
in
a
survival
situation,
you’re
going
to
need
a
lot
of
energy.
So,
it
is
highly
recommended
to
have
a
stash
of
nuts
in
your
storage.

Nuts
have
been
a
basic
part
of
culinary
history
for
thousands
of
years.
Nuts
are
highly
versatile,
healthy,
and
delicious. 

Some
of
the
popular
nuts
that
you
can
stockpile
are
walnut,
pistachio,
pine
nut,
peanut,
macadamia,
hazelnut,
corn
nut,
coconut,
chestnut,
cashew,
Brazil
nut,
and
almond.
Nuts
are
a
great
source
of
fiber,
fat,
and
plant-based
protein.

Regardless
of
being
high
in
fats,
nuts
have
plenty
of
health
benefits.
They
are
rich
in
selenium,
fluoride,
zinc,
magnesium,
iron,
calcium,
manganese,
and
potassium.
This
superfood
is
packed
with
antioxidants,
which
can
help
protect
your
body
against
cell
damage.

If
properly
stored
in
airtight
containers,
nuts
can
effectively
last
up
to
12
months. 


10.
Canned
Soup

This
food
has
been
for
a
long
time
a
pantry
staple.
Canned
soup
has
a
good
shelf
life
that
can
range
from
2
to
5
years,
depending
on
the
type
of
soup
in
the
can.

There
are
many
varieties
of
canned
soups,
ranging
from
vegan,
organic,
plain
chicken,
noodle,
or
simply
tomato.
Find
the
kind
of
canned
soups
that
you
like.
We
recommend
shopping
for
soups
with
multiple
ingredients
for
the
best
nutritional
value.

The
nice
thing
about
canned
soups
is
that
they
are
ready
to
eat
out
of
the
can.
If
you
don’t
have
any
source
of
heat
and
time
is
of
the
essence,
you
can
pop
a
can
open
and
enjoy
the
soup
as
it
is.

Once
opened,
however,
a
canned
soup
should
be
consumed
within
3
to
4
days
before
it
goes
bad.


11.
Sugar
&
Salt

While
sugar
is
not
necessary
for
survival
in
tough
situations,
you
will
find
that
having
it
in
your
kit
is
a
good
thing.
This
is
so
because
some
survival
foodstuffs
tend
to
be
bland.
You
can
sprinkle
some
sugar
on
your
bland
survival
food
to
give
it
a
good
taste.
If
properly
stored,
white

sugar

can
effectively
last
up
to
2
years.

Just
like
sugar,
salt
will
also
help
boost
the
taste
of
your
survival
foods.
In
addition
to
improving
the
flavor
of
your
food,
you
can
use
salt
to
preserve
your
food.
You
can
rub
some
salt
on
your
steak
of
meat
to
prevent
it
from
spoiling
too
quickly.
Salt
has
an
impressive
shelf
life
of
around
5
years.


12.
Protein
Bars

The
protein
bar
used
to
be
sold
to
athletes,
but
now,
it
has
become
popular
with
everyone,
including
dieters
and
preppers.

What’s
in
it,
of
course,
is
lots
of
protein.
One
bar
can
have
as
much
as
a
third
or
more
of
the
protein
you
need
in
a
survival
situation. 

Protein
bars
offer
hyper
convenience
when
you
don’t
have
the
time
to
prepare
real
food.
But
some
of
these
bars
also
have
as
much
sugar
as
candy
bars,
while
others
may
be
packed
with
lots
of
low-calorie
sweeteners.

When
selecting
protein
bars,
pay
attention
to
the
serving
size.
Consider
bars
with
more
protein
and
carbohydrates
to
keep
you
fuller
longer
during
those
hard
times.
Don’t
select
bars
that
are
high
in
fiber
to
avoid
gastrointestinal
issues.

The
shelf
life
of
protein
bars
usually
ranges
from
6
months
to
1
year,
depending
on
the
protein
type.
So,
you
may
have
to
rotate
them
every
year
to
ensure
you
have
a
fresh
supply
every
single
time.


13.
Oatmeal

Oatmeal
is
a
candidate
for
long-term
food
storage
and
is
a
nutritional
powerhouse.

It
is
a
great
source
of
dietary
fiber,
protein,
niacin,
vitamin
B6,
riboflavin,
pantothenic
acid,
folate,
and
thiamin.
Oatmeal
is
also
rich
in
antioxidants
and
minerals.
This
meal
contains
5%
to
9%
of
healthy
fat,
which
is
what
you
need
in
a
survival
diet.

Oats
offer
several
health
benefits
for
a
survivalist,
including
enhanced
immune
response,
lower
blood
pressure,
lower
cholesterol,
better
bowel
function,
and
reduced
risk
of
cancer.

An
unopened
bag
of
oatmeal
can
last
up
to
2
years
in
storage.
But
the
shelf
life
may
reduce
to
around
1
year
after
a
bag
has
been
opened. 


14.
Honey

One
of
the
best
survival
foods
you
can
store
is
honey.
It
is
a
tasty
and
healthy
gift
from
nature,
and
its
diversity
for
both
medicinal
purposes
and
cooking
makes
it
a
good
survival
food.

It
is
a
natural
sweetener
that
contains
antioxidants
and
antibacterial
properties.
It
is
expensive
but
it
lasts
nearly
forever
if
stored
properly.
If
it
crystallizes,
simply
warm
it
up
to
reconstitute.
Honey
will
provide
a
nutritious
alternative
to
sugar
and
should
definitely
be
a
part
of
your
survival
food.

When
stockpiling,
buy
little
at
a
time
as
you
find
it,
and
make
sure
you
shop
for
100%
pure
honey.
Try
to
find
honey
from
a
farmer
or
look
for
organic
honey
from
a
store.

In
a
survival
situation,
you
can
use
honey
in
cooking,
baking,
and
spreading.
You
can
also
apply
it
on
wounds
for
its
antifungal
and
antibacterial
properties.
It
can
also
soothe
things
like
quiet
coughs
and
sore
throat.

Honey
provides
around
64
calories
per
tablespoon.
This
means
a
spoonful
can
give
you
some
immediate
energy
boost
in
a
survival
situation. 


15.
Alcohol

You
may
easily
overlook
alcohol
when
prepping
for
survival.
But
it
is
one
of
the
most
essential
things
to
have
in
your
survival
stash.

Alcohol
can
be
used
in
several
ways
in
a
survival
situation.
You
can
use
it
as
fuel
with
a
compact
alcohol
stove.
You
can
use
your
alcohol
stove
to
boil
some
water
for
making
tea
or
coffee.
Alcohol
is
a
good
disinfectant,
which
you
can
use
to
disinfect
tools
and
wounds.

You
can
use
alcohol
for
cooking
and
food
preservation
in
a
survival
situation.
You
can
preserve
fruits
in
alcohol
to
improve
shelf
life.
Alcohols
you
can
stockpile
for
survival
situations
include
vodka,
whiskey,
and
rum.

An
unopened
bottle
of
alcohol
has
an
indefinite
shelf
life.
But
the
shelf
life
will
drop
to
1
or
2
years
after
opening
the
bottle.
It
will
simply
lose
its
flavor
and
color.


16.
Maple
Syrup

Maple
syrup
is
known
for
its
color,
flavor,
and
thick
sugary
consistency.
It
is
packed
with
more
calcium
when
compared
to
milk.

It
has
been
adding
natural
sweetness
to
food
for
as
long
as
people
have
been
able
to
extract
it
from
the
maple
tree.
You
can
spread
it
on
top
of
wild
rice
oatmeal
and
cranberry. 

One
serving
of
maple
syrup
will
supply
you
with
manganese,
zinc,
iron,
potassium,
and
calcium.
Maple
syrup
is
high
in
sugar
but
it
has
fewer
calories
than
brown
sugar
or
honey.

Maple
syrup
can
last
in
the
pantry
for
approximately
12
months
before
opening
the
bottle.
But
once
opened,
the
shelf
life
will
deteriorate
if
not
stored
in
the
refrigerator. 


17.
Coffee
&
Tea

When
disaster
strikes,
you
will
need
something
to
boost
your
energy
levels
early
in
the
morning.

Coffee
and
tea
contain
caffeine.
This
central
nervous
system
stimulant
is
very
effective
for
increasing
energy
levels
and
fighting
fatigue.
Coffee
and
tea
also
support
heart
and
brain
health
and
could
increase
longevity.

If
stored
properly,
an
opened
bag
of
instant
coffee
can
have
a
shelf
life
of
around
12
to
18
months.
Tea,
on
the
other
hand,
has
an
average
shelf
life
of
around
2
years. 


18.
Nonfat
Dry
Milk
&
Powdered
Milk

Nonfat
dry
milk
has
one
of
the
longest
shelf
life.
The
problem
with
the
nonfat
dry
milk
is
that
it
has
a
horrible
taste.
This
type
of
milk
can
last
up
to
20
years
in
the
pantry,
though.
It
can
be
a
great
source
of
fat,
sugars,
dietary
fiber,
carbohydrates,
potassium,
and
sodium,
but
you
will
have
to
put
up
with
the
awful
taste.

A
great
alternative
to
nonfat
dry
milk
is
powdered
milk.
It
is
very
palatable,
delicious,
and
easy
to
prepare.
Powdered
milk
is
rich
in
iron,
vitamin
C,
vitamin
A,
zinc,
and
calcium.
Powdered
milk,
however,
can
last
up
to
2
years
in
an
unopened
package.


19.
Hardtack

Hardtack
is
a
type
of
bread
that
has
a
long
history
in
North
America.
It
was
also
known
as
biscuit,
ship’s
bread,
cracker,
and
pilot’s
bread.

This
unique
bread
is
made
of
high-quality
grains.
It
is
packed
with
calories
that
can
help
you
increase
your
energy
levels
in
survival
situations.
An
average
piece
of
hardtack
can
provide
you
with
around
75
to
125
calories.
This
hard
water
cracker,
however,
tastes
bland
and
you
may
have
to
top
it
up
with
a
sweetener
like
maple
syrup.

Hardtack
is
easy
to
prepare
in
a
survival
situation.
But
you
can
store
lots
of
them
in
an
airtight
bag
for
long-term
use. 


20.
Potato
Flakes

You
can
transform
instant
potato
flakes
into
delicious
comfort
food
during
a

survival
situation
.

With
just
boiling
water,
potato
flakes
can
become
potato
soup
or
mashed
potatoes.
You
can
blend
potato
flakes
into
flour
for
making
tasty
and
dense
potato
bread.
This
food
contains
about
100
calories
per
ounce.

When
sealed
in
airtight
bags,
the

shelf
life

of
instant
potato
flakes
can
range
from
10
to
15
years.
But
the
shelf
life
usually
drops
to
around
6
to
12
months
once
you
open
the
bag. 


FAQs


What
else
do
I
need
for
survival?

In
addition
to
the
aforementioned
survival
foods,
you
will
also
need:


Water

Water
is
not
food,
but
it
is
one
of
the
most
important
additions
to
your
survival
kit.
You
can
only
go
for
three
days
without
water.
So,
it
is
extremely
important
to
have
a
good
supply
of
water.
Water
is
a
basic
element.
So,
it
will
never
go
bad
in
its
pure
form.
Just
make
sure
the
bottles
are
properly
sealed
and
stored
in
a
dry,
cool,
dark
place.


Vegetable
Oil

You
might
not
see

vegetable
oil

as
a
key
survival
element,
but
it
can
come
in
handy
during
survival
situations.
Apart
from
cooking,
you
can
use
vegetable
oil
as
a
fire
helper,
rust
proofing,
preservation
of
food,
medical
purposes,
and
skincare.


Are
MREs
and
freeze-dried
foods
the
same?

These
two
are
not
the
same.

MREs

(meal,
ready-to-eat)
are
precooked
and
they
usually
retain
all
the
moisture.
Freeze-dried
foods,
on
the
other
hand,
are
reconstituted
with
water.

Freeze-dried
foods

have
an
extremely
long
shelf
life
and
taste
much
better
compared
to
MREs. 


What
methods
can
I
use
to
preserve
food
for
survival?

There
are
a
few
methods
you
can
use
at
home
to
preserve
food
for
emergencies.
The
most
common
ones
that
are
easy
to
do
are:


Dehydrating

As
the
name
suggests,
this
method
simply
involves
the
removal
of
moisture
from
the
food.
Without
moisture
microbes
die
out,
increasing
the
food’s
shelf
life.
Foods
that
you
can
easily
dehydrate
at
home
are
fruits
and
vegetables.
Another
survival
food
made
through
the
dehydration
process
is

powdered
egg
.

This
should
not
be
confused
with
freeze-drying.
If
you
want
to
know
the
difference,
read
our
guide
on

freeze
vs
dehydrated
.


Canning

Canning
can
be
a
safe
and
economical
method
of
preserving
food
at
home.
Proper
canning
practices
include:
wisely
selecting
and
washing
fresh
food,
hot
packing
food,
peeling
some
fresh
foods
before
canning,
and
using
jars
with
self-sealing
lids. 


Final
Thoughts

Don’t
wait
until
there
is
a
storm
on
the
horizon
or
an
emergency
to
start
stockpiling
survival
food.
Early
prepping
gives
you
all
the
time
in
the
world
to
pick
and
store
all
the
important
things
you
will
need
to
survive
a
disaster,
an
emergency,
or
a
pandemic.
Our
detailed
guide
should
help
you
get
started.

Original Source