Food Storage Calculator: 1-Year Of Bulk Foods

Food Storage Calculator

Use this food storage calculator to calculate quantity guidelines of ‘bulk’ foods based on 1-year of preparedness. The calculator is based on recommendations that I found issued by the LDS, who are a popular source of information in the realm of food storage.

In an uncertain world there is certain good sense in planning for the unexpected…

To access the food storage calculator:



In addition to the bulk food items listed in the food storage calculator, there are many additional complimentary food-related items which you might consider adding for long-term storage (so far as their ability to store well) – things like condiments, spices & herbs, flavorings, etc..

A good food storage is a diversified one, so consider a combination of dry bulk items, canned foods, dehydrated foods, freeze-dried foods, purpose-packed long-term foods (kits, #10 cans, packets, some processed foods, etc.). Diversify.

The items which are considered bulk ‘dry’ foods should be stored properly for long term. Grains and other dry goods should be sealed in buckets (Mylar bags, oxygen absorbers).

It is a very important principle to rotate your foods (even your bulk) to minimize spoilage.


Food Storage Calculator results for 1 adult for 1 year:

TOTAL GRAINS: 300 pounds (Wheat, Flour, Corn Meal, Rice, Pasta, etc.)

TOTAL FATS &OILS: 13 pounds (Shortening, Veg. Oil, Peanut Butter, etc.)

TOTAL LEGUMES: 60 pounds (Dry Beans, Lima, Soy, Peas, Lentils, etc.)

TOTAL SUGARS: 60 pounds (Honey, Sugar, Brown Sugar, Molasses, Jams, etc.)

TOTAL DAIRY: 75 pounds (Dry Milk, etc.)

COOKING ESSENTIALS: (Baking Powder, Baking Soda, Yeast, Salt, Vinegar)

WATER: (at least 1-gallon per person per day)

See the Food Storage Calculator for specifics.

(I neither agree or disagree with the LDS information as presented. But I do believe that it provides insight into one’s own food storage plans)

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  1. In 1972 I worked with a Mormon lady, she was more like a mother to the other employees. She would gently prod those who would listen to store food. She got me started on this. Back then the advice was the basic four; wheat, powdered milk, honey and salt. That was the first time I ever saw wheat and held some in my hands. It was actually pretty cool seeing the dried wheat capable of being stored for generations and with a little work turned into life saving food. The powdered milk brought back negative memories from my growing up poor, yuck! Later I would read Howard Ruff’s book and Kurt Saxon’s news letters. Saxon was ahead of his time and had some really good ideas. In my search for more information someone told me about the book “The Anarchist Cookbook”. So I went to a bookstore in 1978 and ordered it. When it arrived and I went in to pick it up the lady behind the counter didn’t want to give it to me. Her exact quote is that whoever wrote this should be in jail. But I had paid for it when I ordered so she gave it to me, I half expected to be arrested while walking to the parking lot :>) Today advice is readily available thanks to the internet. The trick is figuring out what is good and what is not. I still put more faith in my old Mormon friend’s advice and Kurt Saxon’s writings than most of what I hear or read today. I have a lot of wheat put away and two ways to grind it and a couple ways to eat it without grinding. Rice is my grain of choice though, so much easier to prepare.

    1. hey, gonewiththewind…

      re “The Anarchist Cookbook”……

      I have not read this/seen this.

      Would you give us a few highlights/points?

      1. I checked and found there are several copies of this book available including CD versions.

      2. You can see it here:

        An interesting side note. A few years back I decided to sell a lot of the books I owned. Some really nice books and some that I payed a lot for. I of course got pennies on the dollar for them and the buyer at the bookstore only got excited about the Anarchist Cookbook. He gave me top dollar for it and said he could sell it easily.

        I also had a “almost” complete collection of Mother Earth News including the first 44 issues. I was really into that stuff back then. I got a good price for those too. Now a days my favorite magazine is Sunset where I can read articles about great places to travel to or camp. I love being retired.

      3. just be careful, some of the recipes are faulty/will backfire/can kill you. make sure they’re legit first, I don’t want anyone to get hurt.

  2. I currently work with a pile of Mormons and at times get very influenced by their thinking. As far as the “survival instinct”, quite honestly, they have there poop together.

    All of the “clan” I talk with have gone from 1 year supply to 4-5 years, with everything they need to outlast us all. General speaking of course.

    I mean, you should see some of theses guys storage OMG. And if you think they don’t like firearms, well one I know particularly has enough storage to occupy France….. ok ok bad example, but you get my drift.

    The only thing I see with the “calculator is it puts a large emphases on starch’s, Wheat, Rice and the like. Yes good food for long storage, but like Ken I see a huge need to compliment those with a LOT of other things. I mean, seriously I could not eat 300 pounds of the Wheat group in 5 years all alone 1. :-(
    Most, like myself, I know store a LOT more of the beans/lintels than wheat products. With that said, if you can store what is recommended it WILL be a great jump on survival and if nothing else good for trading.

    Or at least IMHO

    1. Kim-Chee, best dang way to ferment, IMHO, I toss all kinds of “stuff” in it.
      Actually 5 years is not really that hard once you get started. In fact 5 years storage is a good spot to start cycling out the storage. BUT I do have a ways to go.

      1. I guess I’m a bean nut, I store 4-5 hundred pounds, and mostly Anasazi Beans I get from Adobe Mills here in the Four Corners. I Vac Pack them in 5 gallon Mylar with O2 Absorbers, but you really don’t need to. I’m currently using some I had in just a bucket with nothing done to them, They are as good as the day I bough them.

        No I don’t have a Green House, I do all my :starts” in the house, have HUGE windows so I get lots of light. Actually have 8 type of tomatoes, 2 types of Cabbage, Cauliflower Broccoli 9 types of peppers and stuff already planted in the garden…… sure wish it would have not snowed last night… HAHAHA Tenting the garden sure does help….

        I have a good tough hand mill, I might give the Beans a try, good idea..


  3. Holy Cow! The grain amount is like eating .82 lb loaf of 12 grain bread a person, a day. I have to keep my girlish figure, please, especially don’t want to look fat and plump after SHTF. :-)

    I use about 35 lbs. of dry grains a year (flour, pasta, wild rice, brown rice)

    Outside of storage, I use only 20 lbs of sugar a year, that includes my jelly and real maple syrup with that amount too.

    Beans and lentils aren’t a big part of my diet (except in winter) with the meat I have available in nature’s store during warm months. I love beans but they don’t like me that much, and well, you know, I don’t work in winter and am alone, but the dogs don’t mind.

    Everything on that list if I stored that much, I could feed two more family members for a year along with me. Good for trading I suppose or in case family makes an unexpected visit.

  4. I can assure you stardust that family will show up looking for a handout and a few friends. God bless us all.

  5. Coffee, both instant and drip.

    now, I know we have discussed at fair length that most things last well past date stamped on lid (yrs past?)

    but I am just wanting to check, wondering, if anyone has any specific knowledge/experience with long term storage of

    Instant Coffee, Factory seal on inside of jar
    Drip Coffee, again, Factory sealed

    I have had chance to buy up good supply of above, both marked with Nove 2015, and I am assuming there is no way either can actually “go off”?

    any one know? Freeze Dried coffee seems like the kind of item (to my mind) which should last years and years.

    any info appreciated.

    1. @Anon
      I don’t personally drink coffee, but from what I do “think” I know is, As most know it’s the “oils” in food (long term stored) that spoil and become rancid. With this said I would think that the “freeze dried” crystal instant coffee would last a heck of a long time. Where as the Drip is already ground with the oils in it still making it more likely to spoil. From what I have heard the best to store is the whole bean. But I have found with other “stuff” like coco and chocolate if it’s factory sealed and kept cold, 5 years past exp. date is no big deal.
      Sorry I could not be of more help.

      1. NRP

        thanks for info/tips…I sort of also am thinking five yrs, at least.
        Mostly what I got was freeze dried instant, as I say vacuum sealed/lidded to boot. I too think it will last years and years.

    2. Just opened a brick of drip coffee that “expired” in 2008. 12 years in storage and it tastes fresh as any other.

  6. all this talk (and yes I believe it all) about limited oil shelf life, has made me wonder,

    how about if the oil is Factory Canned? Does that extend shelf life?

    have seen some oil (olive?) come in big cans, others seem to come sealed in glass bottles.

    and, have seen (online) canned butter and cheese..etc..

    is this shelf life extend if the containers are not opened/cans are not opened, or is it much the same?

  7. @Anon
    I store Dried Shortening and Butter Powder from, both have a shelf life of 10 years. Or more I’m sure if kept cold and dry.

    I also keep Olive Oil, Crisco Shortening, and Coconut Oil in the freezer. I cycle it out and have used them as old as 4 years so far with no problems.

    They also have Powered Cheese that’s not to bad, so I just ordered some (2 weeks ago) for long term storage.

    Like I have said before, I guess I was a prepper long before it had a name. :-)

    1. good info, have not tried the dried shortening/butter. had dried cheese was good, but the stuff I had still said limited shelf life (cant recall how long)


      1. Just a little FYI, Wally World does sell AF’s stuff, at a large discount to the site. Everything I have ordered is at minimum 10 year shelf life (depending on storage conditions of course)A LOY of the stuff is 25 year SL. I know their butter/shortening is 10 year SL.

        1. If you’re interested, I did a search on ebay and found even better prices than wally world

    2. NRP,
      You should try freeze-dried cheese! Great as a snack right out of the #10 can or re-hydrate for cooking.

      1. Odd that you should mention DF Cheese. I’m here staring at 2 10# cans, it’s cheep enough I may just pop one open and give it a try

        1. What did you think? Unfortunately, I like it too much!

          Just remember when eating FD foods without being re-hydrated, your stomach is much fuller than you think! A friend and I taste tested lots of FD foods, cheese, blueberries, pineapple, chicken, peas, etc. All really good! But, we ate more than we should and were really really too full before we realized it.

        2. the only problem (I think) with these type of purchased “stores” in these “cans” is that I don’t believe they are really “cans”. I think they are some sort of coated cardboard, that at first look, seems like a “can”>

          I recall Ken posting a while back, about some strawberries (?), that when he opened looked “not too good”, and he chucked them.

          Lately I saw instant and perking/drip coffee on big sale. I bought lots of the instant, but not much of the drip, as when I checked it, is seemed to be in those “phony cans”….Might be a risk for moisture for long term storage.

          1. @Anon, All of the #10 cans (the typical size from long-term food storage companies) that I have ever purchased have truly been metal cans. Whereas I discovered that all of my smaller #2 cans (smaller than #10) had been hard pressed paper with a foil lining.

            That said, when purchasing from the grocery store, and if you’re purchasing for long-term storage, the ‘soft’ cans (made of the pseudo-paper-foil containment) will allow moisture and humidity to gradually get inside (depending on your storage conditions) – and they are certainly not air-tight…

          2. Thanks Ken. Good to know. It would never even have occurred to me, if not for that post of yours. I realize, once I pick them (coffee “cans” ) up and feel them they are not metal..but, it hadn’t really registered prior.

  8. Has anyone had experience with canned Ghee (butter with all the solids removed)? I purchased some advertised at 5-7 yr. shelf life. It’s wonderful to cook with, just need to know if it’s really shelf stable for that long.

    1. I have not, although I have heard good reports. I would not doubt the SL of the product. Of course cold and dry.

  9. Random comment re: grain storage…

    Rice is my go to… my fav is organic brown rice I get a Costco.
    Though I have buckets that I am slowly increasing for our long term supply
    (both brown and white rice for me and other grains oat/wheat for the non-GF among us).

    Anyway, I just calculated that I my normal rice portion (about 3/4 cup dry before I cook in my rice cooker) 365 a year that = 144 pounds.
    Probably at least 144 lbs, plus a little more imagining that other things I eat may not be available.

    My hubby who is 6 feet and weighs about 2x what I do, I could see easily eating 300 lbs grain a year.
    Plus two DD tween and teen could eat at least as much as me.

    We are talking lots of grain and/or other stored dry food stuffs to get through 1 year. I am gradually stocking up on Augason Farms (through Walmart website) as able… best price and free shipping over $50.

    Our renewables (assuming good weather to grow pasture and crops)
    fruit trees
    some gardening

    May we keep learning ways to be renewable and sustainable…
    Have a healthy, safe, and productive week peeps! :)

    1. @ Shepherdess
      That my friend is a LOT of rice… HAHAHA
      I guess I should not say anything though; being more of a beaner than Rice-head I do cook rice about 1-cup of rice mix a week (1/4 Wild or Brown to3/4 cups of White) compared to 3-4 cups of Beans, Nice thing about Rice (white rice) it will store a long long long time if kept right.
      I guess I’m just hooked on Anasazi and a LOT of other beans/lentils, not Pinto though.
      Wondering how you store your Rice? Mind sharing your method?

  10. I’ve been teaching myself old timy wrays of survial. Back in the 1800 they made everything themselves which in the last 8 yrs I’ve been doing from pastas, dried eggs, home made breads, and hoome made baked items , long term storage of various items, health items such as homemade medicines, and the list goes on and on.
    I’m taking myself back to the way my grand parents lives via the advice they kept giving us.
    Back then it was called real homesteading, not prepping. Ha there was no such word as prepping back then.
    All my grand parents kept telling us was “always be prepared for anything, you never know what will happen from bad weather to war, to natural desasters.
    Since the last 8 yrs, I’ve gone through being stranded for two weeks or longer front ice storms to hurricane Irma, hurricane ante back to back, all that knocked out electricity for two to three weeks each time, no internet, phones etc. Cancer bad surgeries that went Rye and much much more.
    Each time I had more than enough of everything I needed for the animals on this farm and my self plus.
    We made it through it all and basically I had fun. I had nothing to worry about or stress about.
    People now days has forgotten the old ways of life and are to dependant on societies ways, and the ease of grocery stores.
    Me I depend on God, myself and my knowledge from my grand parents survival, homesteading ways and the knowledge I taught myself by research,
    I’ve also cut out a lot of junk such as all the reprocessed junk, chemicals and go crap they put in all foods in grocery stores.
    Rule of thumb, if you can buy it, you can make it not only to live healthier but save a ton of money as well. All your paying for is middlemen and nasty chemicals the government tells you to use and eat. As I look back I should have made all of my own stuff and built my own structures instead of living the wrong way of life. I now feel that I would not have gotten colon cancer stage 3 if I wouldn’t have followed societies ways years ago.
    I feel much healthier canning, and processing my own foods and eating 100% grass fed meats, making my own cheeses and other items to eat and clean with, I’m a much happier person knowing I can and am able to live as they did back in the 1800 with out fast foods, preprocessed foods, and build things myself that I need around her.
    I’m a 58 yr old woman and take pride in everything I am able to do for myself and my small farm like they did in the olden days. Ha prepping in deed, just a way of life for me on a Dailey basis.

    1. Hey Debby

      I like your post. I also learned a great deal from my grandparents. You are correct, to them, it was just livin. The older I get the smarter Granny gets……..

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