Starting Food Storage for New Families

Written by The Ready Store
Collecting enough food storage can be a daunting task for many younger families. We have some advice for them: Stick with it! You can do it!
There are many families that don’t know how, what or where to start with food storage. Here are some tips.

A lot of younger families wonder how they are going to afford to purchase food storage. With so many demands for our wallets, they wonder how they can pay for these items.
The trick is to do little by little, consistently. Provident-living-today recommends that you start gaining money by purchasing your family’s typical items in bulk.
When you find a good deal on something that you normally eat, buy a case of it. Store it and use it. It won’t take long before you’re only eating on sale items. Now you only need to buy the fresh stuff. Keep building your food storage by looking for food that is on sale. You’re now saving 30%-60% on your groceries. Use that money to reinvest in your food storage. (Read the original article.)

Begin to store the basics
You need to set a goal of where you want to go. There are a number of calculators online where you can determine how many pounds of your basic staples you’ll need. This calculator is courtesy of Rachel Bruner.

Many new families have a limited amount of space. They might not have space for a 50 gallon tank in their apartment.An inventive way to store water little by little is through stackable water containers. They allow you to grow your water storage by increments. There are many stackable so they can take up less space and if you need to move your water storage, they make that a little easier.
If you have a home or garage where you can store a larger container – like a 50 gallon tank, we recommend that you do that.

Where to store
Depending on where you live, you might have a limited amount of space. Leslie Probert gives the following recommendation to families who want to store food in an apartment:
I know one family put #10 cans in cases on their sides behind the couch. The couches were a generous distance from the wall, but they did not worry about that.  You can also make bedside tables, end tables beside the couches and a coffee table with cases of food and cover them with a cloth to match your decor. You could buy an inexpensive tablecloth or sheets and cut them up to fit over these.  Also in closets, if you hang all the short clothes like pants and shirts on one side, you can fit some food storage underneath.  Put a board on top if you need to put shoes also in that space. (Read more of Leslie Probert’s articles.)
If you have a home, you can dedicate some space in your home to set up a food storage area. Ideally, you should choose a room that maintains lower temperatures (40-60 F), isn’t next to a furnace and doesn’t change temperatures drastically depending on the season. Read our previous blog post about food storage location when choosing a space to start your food storage.
Updated February 1, 2012


  1. Ron Harder wrote:

    Can you suggest helpful suggestions for a disabled person without much money. I would be willing to take food which while still good may not be able to be sold at full price. Example dented cans, broken crackers. I need to stock emergancy supplies that will last that I can provide with my budget.

    July 9th, 2013 at 4:32 am
  2. Debbra wrote:

    One way you can work on your emergency supplies is when you go grocery shopping, buy one or two extra cans. Set these cans aside for your storage.

    Another way is to contact your local LDS church. They will have someone there who can teach you how to do your storage.

    Last is to read all of the articles here at the Ready Store. They have alot of teaching tools.

    October 6th, 2013 at 11:19 am
  3. Joanne r wrote:

    ron I think you should go to your food shelf many don’t take things there that require a little more cooking if you are willing to do a bit more work preparing. also I donate things there just hoping someone like you might get them. you could ask the lady at counter if she would put out a feeler for anyone who would help you prep. also our local discount store has some very cheap canned goods check their canned food aisles for deals god bless you.

    November 16th, 2013 at 9:55 pm
  4. Regina wrote:

    I recommend that anyone worried enough to start a food storage buy 50 lbs. of rice and 20 lbs of dried beans. This is not only cheap: it’s a whole bunch of meals; and it really lowers the anxiety level. Then I suggest what Debra mentioned and buying extra of something they use routinely when they do their weekly shopping. Then, they need to rotate the oldest stock out. And…don’t forget toilet paper. It’s a wonderful reminder of the benefits of civilization.

    November 22nd, 2013 at 10:56 am
  5. Patricia Wood wrote:

    Are there food shelf stores here in east Texas?
    I’m wanting to put a supply up of basics to last from 18 monrhs to 2 years. I know on my budget I need to start small. What kind of shipping costs for 6 cans at a time? Budget wise, would it be cost effective to purchase six #10 cans at a time?
    Pleasr help me with that information.

    November 23rd, 2013 at 12:58 pm
  6. Sheila wrote:

    You can start stocking by buying one or two extra cans of vegatables you like. Also, buy water in the jugs that look like a barrel, not the milk jug type. Since water needs to be rotated use those to take medication, that’s what I use them for, then when the jug is empty it is a great device to store dried food like sugar, salt, beans, rice, etc. Buy dented can goods that are usually on a sale rack, just make sure they aren’t leaking. Buy mason jars or call friends and relatives to see if they have nay extra they don’t mind getting rid of, buy new lids and use those, just make sure they are stored securely since they are glass, store them in cardboard boxes and put paper between each jar so they don’t bump each other. I’ve been prepping forever, after 11 hurricanes, ice and snow storms it became second nature, just recently have I started with the freeze dried food cans. Call the Salvation Army and see if they have a food pantry, if not they may know where one is near you. Good luck and God bless.

    February 4th, 2014 at 3:16 am
  7. debbie e wrote:

    Most bakeries use food safe buckets for icing and other products. If you ask they will often give them to you. Just clean out the icing and use them to store your beans, rice, sugar, etc. Great way to prep on a budget. The large mylar bags can be put in plastic buckets and sealed with a hair straitening iron, then resealed if you need to use some of your stored food. Look for the Flatirons at garage sales.

    May 3rd, 2014 at 9:35 pm

What Do You Think of That?