Food items you should never buy in bulk

Stocking up isn’t always the solution.


It may seem like a great idea to buy everything you can in bulk, but that’s not necessarily the case. Often buying bulk foods mean saving money and cutting down on wasteful packaging, but a handful of items can go bad well before you’ve had a chance to work your way through them.

“Be realistic,” says Epicurious Food Editor Rhoda Boone. “Check the expiration date. If the item has one, think about if you’ll really use the amount you’re buying in that time. You’re not really saving money if you’re going to throw spoiled food away.”

How to Vacuum-Pack Salad in a Jar for Less Than $6

How to Vacuum-Pack Salad in a Jar for Less Than $6

Find much more at…

1.You can usually find the Ziplock hand pump at Walmart or other large grocery stores along with the other plastic bags, or look online.
2. See this post on my blog if you are curious about vacuum-packing other ingredients or lettuce besides romaine in with your salad.…

Costco Deal Alert: 308 Total Servings of Entrée ARK II One Month Food Storage


308 Total Servings of Entrée ARK II One Month Food Storage

Normally: $109.99
Shipping & Handling included *

$0.36 cents Per Serving, Up to 20-year Shelf Life 1,492 calories per day for one adult for 30 days | Item # 763340
(This is not an affiliate link… just figured I’d pass this deal along.)

How To Make Your Own Super Pails


Start with 5 gallon buckets.  They don’t have to be special buckets, just the typical five gallon buckets you might get at Home Depot or Lowes.  Some people like to use food grade buckets, but since we’re using mylar bags it’s not going to be an issue.


Mylar bags


Put mylar bags in buckets.



Pour rice/wheat/whatever food you’re storing in mylar bags.


Write contents and date on the side of bucket


Put 2,000 CC oxygen absorbers into bucket


Squeeze as much air from bag.  Then place board over bucket and put edge of mylar bag on board.  Then use a standard clothes iron to seal the edges together.  Edges will melt and stick together forming an airtight seal.


Mylar bag after sealed.



It can take 2-3 days before the bags seal up tight.  If there is still gas in the bags and you’re sure the oxygen absorbers worked and there is no puncture in the bags, the remaining gas may be nitrogen I’m told.

Not pictured: The final step of putting gamma lids on the tops of the buckets.



Gamma Seal Lid Variety Pack – 6 Colors Brand New

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Gamma Seal Lid Variety Pack - 6 Colors Brand New

Gamma Seal Lid Variety Pack - 6 Colors Brand New Rating:
List Price: unavailable
Sale Price: $49.95
(as of 03/12/2013 02:06 UTC - Details)

Availability: Usually ships in 1-2 business days

Product Description

Brand New Colored Gamma Seal Lids - 6pk Keep organized with this variety pack of 6 brand new gamma seal lids. Colors are: Green, Red, Yellow, Orange, Blue and Black. Why throw away a perfectly good bucket when you now can Gamma Seal it? The Gamma Seal lid permanently transforms your 12" diameter bucket into an airtight/leak proof storage container. Now a bucket can be used for hundreds of household storage applications! Simply snap the patented adapter onto your bucket and spin-on the removable lid. Specially engineered gaskets ensure that the lid and adapter are properly sealed to guarantee airtight protection, The Gamma Seal lid fits virtually any 3.5 to 7.0 gallon bucket (including 20 liter). * Fits 3.5 to 7.0 gallon buckets/pails * Easy to open/close * Airtight * Heavy Duty * Durable * Double Gaskets Pet Foods: Airtight/Keeps Pests Out Dry Foods: Seals for Freshness Paint/Hardware: Great for General Storage Boating/Camping: Keeps Contents Dry


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Picked Up A Couple Of 25 Pound Bags Of Red Wheat At Walmart Today

I needed to pickup a few things from Walmart and anytime I’m out I make a point of buying something for long term food storage.  Or ammo, if they have it.

For you newbies, take note: The best way to stock your pantry is to buy a little extra every time you go shopping.  It’s a much more reasonable approach to stocking your pantry for hard times, rather than expecting your going to go out and buy everything you need in one fantastical shopping trip.

But I digress.

Walmart didn’t have any of the ammo I was looking for (you can never have enough .22lr).  But they did have two 25 pound bags of hard red wheat.  They were the last two bags in the entire store, so either there’s been a run on hard red wheat or there just aren’t that many of us who buy whole wheat anymore.

So I snagged the last two bags.

Which Came First: The Chicken Or The Powdered Egg?

When I first met my wife in Costa Rica, she was living on a piece of property that had chickens running loose.  I thought I had won the lottery. It turned out that the chickens belonged to a Nicaraguan woman who lived in the house behind her’s.  Well, I still feel like I won the lottery with my wife, but unfortunately she doesn’t know a thing about raising chickens.

We don’t currently have chickens.  We have the space for chickens and most likely at some point in the near future we’ll start raising chickens.  But at this point in time, we still like to travel and we haven’t yet been in our current location long enough to have built up a network of friends and neighbors that we would trust enough to come over and take care of the chickens.  (We’re working on that!)

So for now storing powdered eggs makes the most sense.  The powdered eggs I’m now storing are the OvaEasy powdered eggs.

Initially I got online and ordered a case of the Thrive Scrambled Eggs: Six #10 cans for about $230.  I wish I hadn’t, but not because they aren’t a good product: I’ve tried them and they’re excellent.  But the benefit that the OvaEasy eggs have over the Thrive Scrambled Eggs is that the OvaEasy eggs come in individually sealed packages inside the #10 cans.  

I like that.  It means I have redundancy.  It also means that I can open up one package at a time and not have to worry about the other five packages going bad if I don’t finish them in time, for some reason.  The OvaEasy eggs are also cheaper.  If you have Amazon Prime (free shipping) you’ll pay about $50 less than if you order the Thrive Scrambled Eggs.

In all honesty, I need to incorporate more protein in my food stores.  My problem is that I am allergic to MSG (mono-sodium-glutamate).  I get terrible migraines fro mthe stuff.  Unfortunately, it is a food preservative they put in canned meat, beef jerkey


Easy To Cook And They Taste:  Meh…  “Just Okay”

 The OvaEasy eggs are easy to cook.  Each package comes with it’s own scoop.   You mix it by adding two scoops of OvaEasy for every three “scoops” of water.  Once you mix them, they look just like regular eggs and fry up like regular eggs, too.

As for taste?  They taste good, albeit a little bland.  More like egg whites than full eggs.  I’ve read that if you mix these with regular milk instead of water, they taste much better.  I haven’t tried that yet, but once I do I’ll add my impressions to the end of this article.

I’m not slamming the OvaEasy eggs, though.  This is truly a great product and I’ll be ordering more.  I think if you add some salt, pepper and maybe a little salsa you would be hard pressed to tell the difference between this and real eggs.    ** Actually, these are real eggs, they’ve just had the moisture evaporated from them.

Do I recommend the OvaEasy eggs: Absolutely.  They make an excellent supplement to your food storage and add much needed protein.  With a side of corn bread, my test plate was clean in a matter of minutes if not seconds.



Here’s Who I Buy Mylar Bags And O2 Absorbers From– And Here’s Why

I’ve placed a couple of orders with USA Emergency Supply for mylar bags and oxygen absorbers.  The first order I got lucky with.  I set them on a shelf and didn’t open them for probably a month.  The company sent me another batch of O2 absorbers with a note that basically said: “Our manufacturers mislabeled some of the batches we sent out.  We don’t think yours was affected but because we’re concerned about our reputation in the industry, we’re sending you another batch free.”  (This was before I had the blog, too.  So it wasn’t like they were trying to score points).


That’s how a business should be run.  Sure– it’d be nice if there wasn’t a mistake in the first place.  But stuff happens.  It’s how a business handles it that shows what they’re made of.  Now… if it happens again, I might begin to question their quality control.  But so far, so good!

I compared the prices to what a local “prepper store” was charging, before I purchased.

For a mylar bag to use with a five gallon bucket, USA Emergency is charging: $1.27 per bag.  (Plus shipping). prices for mylar bags at USA Emergency with the price my local prepper store was selling them for.

My local prepper store is charging: $2.50 per bag.

The Math


Oxygen absorbers came in a bag, and then the bag was wrapped in plastic.

Mylar bags: So, ten bags from USA Emergency at $1.27 = $12.70.+ shipping (which came to $4.99 but also included the O2 abosrbers)  = $17.69.

Compared to my local prepper store:
Ten bags at $2.50 = $25.00.  + tax = $26.81.

Oxygen Absorbers: Twenty 1000cc oxygen absorbers from USA Emergency came to: $9.47, bringing my grand total for both Mylar bags and O2 absorbers to: $27.16 (shipping included).

O2 absorbers from my local prepper store: Their web site isn’t showing the quantity but the highest cc they carry is 500 cc and their price is $9.95 (plus tax).  (I’ve been using 2000cc for each 5 gallon bucket… so you can see how much more expensive buying locally from a brick and mortar business is.  Or at least from this brick and mortar business!

Now, I like to support local businesses as much as the next guy.  But this fella’s markup was just ridiculous.  I understand he’s gotta pay for the brick and mortar storefront– but if your business model can’t offer the best price (and I’m not talking about competing with China) .. then maybe you need to re-evaluate your business model.