Pantry Items Everyone Needs In Anticipation Of Hurricane

Tom Gaffey
by Tom Gaffey

If you live along the coast, or in a region prone to severe weather, then you are likely aware of the danger of hurricanes and tropical storms. They can completely demolish homes and entire communities in their path. In some cases, you might even be ordered to evacuate your home when a hurricane is expected to hit. In other circumstances, it is your responsibility to hope for the best but plan for the worst. As you begin preparing your home and gathering emergency essentials, you might wonder exactly what you should buy at the grocery store to properly prepare your pantry for a hurricane.

In anticipation of a hurricane, it is important to have your pantry stocked with essentials in case you lose power. You need enough food and water to last your household for at least one week. Focus on items like canned meats, soups, and vegetables, as well as powdered milk and dried fruit. You can also purchase fresh food, but ensure any bread is well-sealed and fruit is under-ripe when purchased.

Hurricane preparedness is important for anyone who lives somewhere where severe tropical weather is a real risk. While taking care of your home, yard, and vehicles is important, you also need to remember your kitchen pantry. Below are some of the most essential items you should purchase at the grocery store in anticipation of a hurricane.

Tips On How To Properly Pack Your Pantry Before A Hurricane

Buy Supplies For At Least A Week

Make sure you have enough food and water to last everyone in your home for several days, ideally a week. It is important to remember that even though hurricanes move through areas in a matter of hours, the aftermath can be long-lasting. Often areas are left without power and experience flooding or blocked roads for days or weeks.

Buy Food You And Your Family Enjoy

Another key is to try and get foods you and your family actually like. Just because you are preparing for the worst doesn’t mean you need to buy the worst. If you hate spam, don’t buy it. If you love peanut butter, buy two jars instead of one.

Find A Healthy And Safe Balance Of Fresh And Shelf-Stable

It is great to have shelf-stable food, but that doesn’t mean everything needs to be canned or dried. You can buy fresh fruits, but buy under-ripe ones. Bread can be bought fresh and eaten for the first few days. Save the dried and canned stuff for day three and beyond.

Buy Foods That Require Little To Zero Preparation

Most importantly, buy food that doesn't require a lot of cooking. If something involves more than a quick boil, avoid it. Your ability to heat items during a power outage might be limited, so go with the easiest foods to prepare you can find.

16 Items You Need In Your Pantry To Prepare For A Hurricane

1. Bottled Water

Drinkable water is by far the most important item you need to stock up on before a hurricane. In most circumstances, a few cases of water, or a couple of giant jugs should do the trick. Remember you don’t need to buy a bunch of plastic bottles. You can use sturdy re-sealable jugs and fill them from your normal water supply.

2. Vitamin-Rich Fruit Juice

In addition to water, you might want to consider getting some fruit juice. Look for shelf-stable juices, like canned pineapple or bottled juice. Look for varieties that are loaded with vitamins, not sugar. It is important to keep your body full of nutrients to avoid becoming ill.

3. Dry Mix Or Canned Soups

Soups are popular and very easy meals to prep when you lose power after a hurricane. You can potentially eat canned soup cold (although make sure there is no botulism risk). You can also get dried soups that just require some hot water, like instant ramen.

4. Multi-Grain Bread

If you head to the store a day or so before a hurricane comes, load up on multigrain bread. Buy one or two loaves, and use them for all sorts of sandwiches, like tuna and peanut butter. You can leave them in the freezer or deep freeze r if you have one so it stays fresh longer once you lose power.

5. Powdered Milk

If you like milk in your cereal or in your coffee, get some powdered milk. You just add water, which you already have, and you have drinkable milk for any of your needs. It isn’t quite as tasty as regular milk, but it does the job.

6. Crackers

Crackers are a great snack to have on hand in case of a hurricane. They are filling, and a great vessel for things like peanut butter and even canned tuna. Some crackers, including saltines, are known to help settle the stomach if someone feels sick after the storm.

7. Canned Meat

It is important you don’t neglect your protein intake, even after a natural disaster. Luckily, there are tons of canned meat options that are loaded with protein. Spam, corned beef, Vienna sausages, and others are among the most popular.

8. Protein Bars

If canned meat isn’t appealing, consider protein bars. These are delicious, and the odds are everyone in your family will eat them. They are also vegetarian, making them a perfect option for most diets.

9. Peanut Butter

Peanut butter is a pantry staple. It also comes in handy during a hurricane. It is shelf-stable, protein and nutrient-rich, and delicious. Make sure you have a fresh jar (or two) when preparing your pantry for a hurricane.

10. Dried Fruit

Fresh fruit might go bad in a few days, especially in hot weather, but dried fruit will last you throughout your time of need after a hurricane. Buy vitamin-rich dried fruits you love. Avoid purchasing dried fruits with added sugar. Instead, look for dehydrated natural fruits if possible.

11. Nuts And Seeds

Another variety of nutrient and protein-packed snacks are all sorts of nuts and seeds. Pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, almonds, cashews, and more are all loaded with protein and nutrients. They are delicious, crunchy, and most people enjoy them. Try to get unsalted nuts and seeds to reduce sodium intake and unnecessary thirst.

12. Quick Oats

Quick or instant oats are a filling meal that requires very little prep work. If you have an alternative cooking method when you lose power, you should have no problem boiling water. These oats just require hot water and no prolonged cooking time.

13. Pre-Cooked Rice And Pasta

Rice and pasta can take 20 to 30 minutes to cook, but luckily there are now pre-cooked options. There are ample types of rice, couscous, quinoa, and pasta that are already cooked, seasoned, and shelf stable. These taste better warm, but they don’t require a heating element and are a great and easy meal.

14. Instant Coffee

If you need your caffeine, regardless of an impending hurricane, then make sure you have some instant coffee. While instant coffee isn’t ideal, you might be shocked to find there are some high-quality instant coffees on the market now. You can easily mix most of them with room-temperature water.

15. An Alternative Heat Source

If you have food that requires boiling water, make sure you have a backup heat source. There are a variety of stovetop alternatives when your electricity is out. Just pick an easy, reliable option that works for you.

16. Green Bananas And Unripe Fruits

With so much canned and instant food, a little fresh flavor goes a long way. Purchase some under-ripe fruit to put in your pantry before a hurricane. This will allow you to have some fresh fruit for upwards of one week.

Final Words On Pantry Items You Need In Case Of A Hurricane

There is a lot you need to do to prepare for a hurricane. Preparing your pantry with essentials is one of the most important things you can do to protect your family before a major storm. Stock up on water and non-perishable items like canned soups and meat, as well as dried items like powdered milk, quick oats, and dried fruit. Try and find pre-cooked and shelf-stable items like cooked rice and pasta. You can also buy fruit and bread, but keep the bread in the freezer and buy green bananas.

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Tom Gaffey
Tom Gaffey

Tom Gaffey is an expert writer who currently resides in Washington D.C. Tom has a passion for real estate and home improvement writing, as well as travel and lifestyle writing. He lived the last twelve years in Hawaii where he worked closely with luxury resorts and event planners, mastering his knowledge of aesthetics and luxury products. This is where he found his passion for home improvement and a keen interest in DIY projects. Currently, Tom resides in Washington D.C, and also working on his debut fiction novel.

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