Critical Items for Survival Shelters

Critical Items for Survival Shelter

After reviewing 123survivalplan, a video that is supposed to provide the public with 37 critical food items that are considered ‘must have’ for any prepper, doomsday and survivalist plan. However, it turned out to be a 10 minute long commercial to influence you to pay for it. Yes, we love capitalism but it doesn’t bode well for our sense of patriotism to charge Americans for information about survival. So, in response we will provide our own list.

Before we hit the precipice of disaster any good prepper and survivalist should have a minimum of 6 months worth of food (usCrow has set the minimum lower due to recessive incomes). Any given grocery or goods store has a maximum of 3 days worth of goods to last if their supply chain is cut off in the event of a disaster, and that doesn’t include the looting factor.

Grocery Stores are gone when the SHTF

There’s nothing worse than facing a disaster, running to the grocery store to buy what you need to survive and finding out the shelves have been picked dry…and now your family is going to starve. At the very least, you should prepare for your family’s sake. Keep in mind, water isn’t listed but that item should be obvious. In addition, MRE’s (Meals Ready to Eat) are specifically for field use and not intended for long shelf lives, you should have them for when you are mobile and field operations where you will be away from your headquarters from 2-3 days. You can purchase these items at cost by clicking the links.

23 Critical Items for Survival

  1. Flour → Flour has to be stored in a freezer to give it a 2 year shelf life, if you do not put it in the freezer it’s shelf life will be cut down to a narrow 6 months.
  2. Honey and/or Maple Syrup → Believe it or not this has an indefinite shelf life and provides ample nutrition, since you won’t see sugar on this list consider this a must have.
  3. White & Brown Rice → Again this is another marvel of storage because rice has an indefinite shelf life and will sustain you and your family with massive calories and protein.
  4. Beef Jerky → High in protein with a 1 year shelf life as long as it remains unopened and stored in your pantry. Be sure to check the Best Used By Date because many retailers put their oldest beef jerky that is due to be expired at the front of the shelf. Reach in the back and make sure you get the freshest!
  5. Wheat White or Red → Excellent addition to your survival pantry with a 30 year shelf.
  6. Whey Powder → Excellent for protein and takes up little space with a 15 year shelf life.
  7. Yeast → If you’re in it for the long haul and plan on utilizing your flour for bread making you will need yeast to get those buns rising with a decent 2 year shelf life.
  8. Powdered Eggs → 15 year shelf life and essential for keeping your prepper breakfast diverse.
  9. Powdered Milk → Crucial to some of your survival culinary recipes with a 20 year shelf life.
  10. Lima Beans – Excellent source of protein with an ample 20 year shelf life.
  11. Dehydrated Apple Slices → 15 year shelf life and a tasty little snack to satisfy your hankering for something sweet and lean.
  12. Granola → 5 year shelf life and sits in your stomach like a rock!
  13. Rolled Oats → Great for hearty oatmeal in the morning and it’s 30 year shelf life makes it one of the must haves for your prepper bunker.
  14. Jelly → We don’t expect you to make your survival efforts bland and tasteless so use this tasty topper to sweeten things up with a fine 5 year shelf life.
  15. Natural Peanut Butter → Very short shelf life of 6 months! However, everyone loves peanut butter so at best you should rotate out these jars mainly because it’s tasty and high in protein.
  16. Egg Noodles → This can be applied to Ramen Noodles too but they are very tasty and have a 2 year shelf life.
  17. Canned Luncheon Meat → Lasts anywhere from 2-5 years and provides proteins and fats which we suggest to use sparingly until winter.
  18. 3600 Calorie Ration Bars → These are great as a last ditch because they are indented by portion and have a 10 year shelf life that we often use on field operations. Tastes like dry cake but packs a wallop of nutrition.
  19. Multivitamins → Not food but we have to stress this item, especially if you have children, malnutrition can lead to a cornucopia of dangers. Most multivitamins have a recommended 5 year shelf life and you should have enough to last for 6 months at the very least.
  20. Dehydrated Food Products → This can be applied to freeze dried meals, fruits and etc. that can provide diversity to your survival plans with typical 2 year shelf lives.
  21. Salt – Lasts forever and required by your body to sustain life.
  22. Butter and Margarine – Lasts 15 years and will most likely be required for your menu.
  23. Potatoes Dried – Lasts 20 years and always a good addition for supper.

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About Administrator Ryan – The Survival Site for Americans – Mission: Provide Americans guidance to preserve their life, liberty, and happiness. usCrow regularly publishes unique survival articles written by service members, private contractors and civilians specializing in; emergency management, combat medicine, combat, survival, prepping, etc. Authors are permitted to publish any article relevant to the protection of American lives. Readers are permitted to share online articles. Administrator Ryan has been the primary handler for usCrow since it's founding and has written hundreds of articles for this and other survival sites, while assisting in CMF coordination efforts.

32 suggestions on “Critical Items for Survival Shelters

  1. Pingback: 23 Critical Food Items for Survival

  2. I would like to add alcohol infused fruit cake. Very calorie dense and packed with nutrients and never expires. My favorite is to use 151 Baccardi rum. Soak all the fruit and nuts in the rum for 3 months nefore making the cake. As soon as the cake comes out of the oven while still warm pour 1 cup of rum over cake. Let cool and vacuum seal it. Jay Leno ate a slice of fruit cake on his show that was 125 years old.

  3. Good list,am glad to see the energy bars as you like it or not may have to leave,seems a good bang for the buck size/weight wise.Any thoughts on other good in the pack food.I realize that if one can hunting/trapping/fishing knowing edibles in your region good skills to have but as may find need to keep moving looking for the best bang for buck in on the move nutrition.That said,am doing a bit of hiking with the pack and trying to stay at a decent level of fitness,that it is also a fun way to spend time makes that a no brainer.

  4. Missing something I feel strongly about — add lentils to the list, and almost perfect food. It forms the primary diet in some cultures (Nepal), and I have existed over 3 weeks in the Himalays with a diet based on lentils and rice.

  5. Save Sugar packs from where you eat. Snag all you can, great for treating a wound for infection. Add a capsule of golden seal to it for an infected wound.
    May also pour honey into a wound.
    I also carry sugar packs for someone suffering from hypoglycemia.

  6. The date posted on the packaging is NOT the true expiration date, even if it says that it is. The printed date is really the “Sell By Date”. Peanut butter for example is edible for over two years after the sell by date.

  7. Pingback: Critical Items for Survival Shelters |

  8. The number one quick prep meal of anti-gov fighters in the bush is meatless Beans and Rice. It is a high energy, easy to make, low cost meal that keeps them going until they can find other sustenance as they encounter it.
    ( meaning, take it from whom ever! ) Any good prep plan would have this meal plan included in the provisions stored. I do!

  9. Flour can be stored for YEARS in a mason jar sealed with a jar sealer attachment using a vacuum sealer. I have cases of jars stored and they are fine–I open one about every other month.

  10. Home made syrup made from your stored foods, better than commercial syrup from Hershey’s (sorry Hershey’s):
    1 cup cocoa –1 cup cold water
    2 cups sugar — 1/4 tsp. salt– 1 TB vanilla
    Mix cocoa and sugar; add salt and water.
    Bring to a boil; remove from heat. Add vanilla.
    Store in fridge when cooled.

    My husband loves it.

  11. Might i suggest bullion cubes. Hot cup of broth is always welcome in cold environment

    Yes, when I need a cup of warmth, I go to the cabinet for chicken cubes.

  12. If you eat too much Lima beans it could be poisonous. I would recommend mixing it up but making Limas reach the table a few times a week.

    • I’d hate to be the barer of bad news Yvette but chocolate has a relatively low shelf-life in comparison to other long-term food storage items. Chocolate as a whole can last anywhere from 12-24 months with proper sealing and storage, time varies based on the type of chocolate (white, dark, brown, liquid, solid and etc.).

      Luckily for you and all chocolate lovers of the world, you can make your own! Cocoa beans can be stored for up to two years and the seeds for cocoa plants (theobroma cacao) can be added to your seed vault. So while you’re depleting your chocolate stores you can be growing and harvesting cocoa beans for chocolate production. In addition to eating your homemade chocolate you can also barter these items after SHTF.

      Just imagine Yvette, you could be the queen of chocolate post-disaster… :)

  13. I make it a point to stock up on grain alcohol and herbs to make medicinal tinctures.

    When WROL comes, that means no hospitals/clinics, and people will probably raid the stores.

    Good to know how to grow / make your own medicine.

  14. Great article, most of these items are relatively cheap and can be bought in bulk at Costco and etc. without raising any red flags with the government tracking prepper purchases and all.

  15. how can butter or margarine last 15 years??? processed in a canner to make it shelf stable or is there something else?

  16. Dehydrating your own goods will save you money in the long run while still achieving long shelf lives when used in conjunction with O2 absorbers and thick 7ml bags, as long as you are a diligent person. It comes down to ease, Mountain House does all the work and provides a quality product but can be pricey, and you should also widen your stored food’s diversity, eventually you will get tired of gnawing at beef jerky every day.

    Thanks for visiting!

    • Thank you Michael for your quick response! I feel as if I have gone back to school and am learning so many new and helpful things. i appreciate the time and energy you have invested in the creation of this site and I will be a frequent visitor!

      • Thanks Kay, it has taken a lot of work to get to this point after my initial death blow from 11-6, but fortunately many people are joining up and helping out. Good Americans with outstanding character, and I wouldn’t of expected any less. Keep checking in there is so much more coming up.

  17. If a person has a food dehydrator, and uses a packaging system such as a “Seal A Meal”, would this provide a long enough shelf life or would it be better to purchase jerky from the store? Thank you for the info…and I love this site, very educational.

  18. What about dried beans in general? Black beans. Kidney beans. Garbanzo beans… Why are only Limas considered good?

    • Lima Beans have a unique taste from Black and Kidney Beans, which I’m sure most people would have had their fill of. However, they are intensely nutritious with Manganese, Fiber, Iron, High Carbohydrates, Protein, Folate, Magnesium, Potassium, Low in Sodium and Copper. So beyond personal preference they are very good for you.

  19. Thank you Jim, but we have to stress this isn’t what we would consider a ‘Starter List’ but a list of absolute essentials that will provide a better bang for your buck in the long run when stocking your survival and prepper bunker.

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