7 Survival Foods That Will Save You in a Power Outage

Favela's are informal housing in Brazil.

A fully stocked pantry is a must for every household these days. With so much uncertainty worldwide as well as chaotic weather patterns, it is smart to have a plan. Along with a stockpile of water, this list can help you get started on that path to preparedness. You need to be ready for when the lights go out.

These seven foods are ideal for inclusion in your survival pantry. They all share several similar and necessary benefits.

They all must have a long shelf-life.
Storage is simple and uncomplicated.
High portability is a plus.
No refrigeration is required, with leftovers excluded.
Little to no electricity or power is needed to cook them, or they can be eaten as is.
High nutritional value is packed into small portions.
There is no salt added or at most, just a trace amount.
Raw Nuts

Nuts are the powerhouses of nutritional value with checkmarks in all the important boxes. Nuts are high in calories, protein, fat, fiber, vitamins, minerals and carbohydrates. They are an almost perfect superfood.

For a relatively small serving size of approximately one ounce, they pack a mighty punch. A mix of several types of these nuts is the best way to reap the most benefits per serving as their stats vary.

Walnuts, Macadamias, pecans and Brazil nuts all weigh in at the top of the list. They have about 200 calories per serving along with 18-22 grams of fat. Their protein at 2-4 grams/serving is lower than some of their counterparts below.

Pinenuts, pistachios, peanuts and almonds boast about 6-7 grams of protein. Their fat and calories are lower than the heavyweights listed above, but still beneficial.

Buying unsalted, unshelled nuts in bulk is the cheapest way to stock up on this important food. Your local grocery stores may have bulk bins with different varieties available. You may also find sources online.

Store in air-tight containers, out of direct light. Vacuum sealing manageable portions is an alternative to the larger quantities.

Dehydrated Foods

Dehydrating foods has been around for centuries with the original sun-drying and smoking methods. It’s even easier now, but no less beneficial in creating a top-rate survival food. Along with being an easy process, there are a lot of benefits to using dehydrated foodstuffs.

Jerky is one of the most popular dehydrated foods. By removing all the moisture from slices of meat, a portable and nutritious meal on the go is born. It is customizable with the type of meat and any spices or flavorings you desire to add. When properly packaged, jerky can last for several years.

Dried fruits and vegetables are also high on the list of must-have foods. The removal of the moisture doesn’t take away a bit of the great taste and nutrition value. They are eaten as dried chips or they can have a bit of water or other liquid added to plump them back up. Top choices for dehydration include:

Apples, apricots, bananas, berries, cherries, grapes, pineapple, plums and peaches.
Beans, broccoli, carrots, celery, corn, greens, herbs, onions, peas, pumpkin, squash and tomatoes.
Canned Fish or Meats

Canned protein in the form of fish or meat is another staple in the survival pantry. Canned meats are readily available and are cost-effective. Chicken and beef are the easiest to find and stockpile.

The top canned protein choice is that of wild Alaskan salmon. If you find Alaskan “sockeye” salmon in a can, you’ve found gold. It is the healthiest choice of all with the massive servings of Omega-3 fats as well as protein. Tuna is another good choice that is also simple to prepare and consume.

Canned Fruits or Vegetables

High acid content in some canned fruits and vegetables can affect the shelf life. It may reduce it to just about 2 years. There may also be extra sodium added in some products. But there are several things that are a plus which causes them to still make the list.

Lower cost compared to some foodstuffs.
Easy to eat or prepare, a good addition to other stockpiled foods.
High nutrition values on many of the varieties.
Easy to rotate on the shelf or in the pantry if it is something used on a regular basis anyways.
Highly accessible and easy to stock up on quickly.
Peanut Butter

Peanut butter is one of those foods that can sustain a person during a disaster or power outage. Just a tablespoon or two a day will provide the required nutrients for survival. It is full of vitamins, minerals, proteins and fats the body needs to function.

Peanut butter goes on sale often, many times with coupons. It is found just about everywhere and is an easy keeper with a 5-6 year shelf life if stored properly. Buy the no salt or sugar added, “natural” brands whenever possible.


Honey is another of those perfect gifts from nature and one of the oldest. Jars have been found in ancient Egyptian tombs with perfectly edible honey still inside. It may crystallize and even turn black, but it just never goes bad.

The benefits and uses of honey are many. Besides using it as a sweetener and for cooking, it is a star in the medicine cabinet. It has antioxidant, antibacterial and antihistamine qualities. Honey is a natural energy booster, has a calming effect and aids in digestion. The list is quite long and full of reasons to have this in your survival pantry.

Purchasing local honey is the best choice if possible. Store it in sealed containers out of direct sunlight at room temperature.

Powdered Milk

Powdered milk is one of those foods that you could actually survive on by itself. It is full of high-powered nutrients that can sustain a person for quite some time. It is also something that children and nursing mothers should never go without.

Aside from drinking it, use powdered milk in recipes for an easy way to reap the nutritional benefits. Adding a little honey and vanilla can improve the taste for finicky drinkers. It can also be a base for soups with dried vegetables or herbs or in baking.

It is not difficult or expensive to stock up on powdered milk. Larger, more economical quantities are available online. The opinions on its shelf life vary, but it will last for at least 5-6 years.

Survival Life Association has more information on the foods you need to have ready. Start planning your pantry today.

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