Since I have not yet made the change to lighter and more easily stored freeze-dried food, I have to check my stored items for their 'sell by' dates and signs of aging. I try to rotate many of these items into my every day pantry, but since I am not able to eat the quantities I have stored, they get donated to my local Food Bank before they (supposedly) expire. For an explanation of how expiration dates are measured, see this from the USDA.
I make a habit of going through the stored goods about once a month, so I always know what is ready to rotate out. The Food Bank appreciates the donations, nothing goes to waste and I keep fresh food in my regular pantry and prepping supplies.
Replaced with Fresher Versions
Eight 32 oz. cans of pasta sauce from Trader Joe's that are close to the sell by date. I have a matching amount of dry pasta that has a while to go yet, so only the sauce is being replaced now. These are only $1.99 each, so it is not a big amount to spend to keep food fresh.
Two 10 count boxes of instant coffee 'tubes' from Trader Joe's. These have creamer and sugar included and are supposed to make one cup of coffee, but I find myself using 2 to make a stronger cup. From a suggestion in a comment on my post last week (Thanks Gwen!), I will be experimenting with the Vietnamese equivalent, and a taste test will be coming soon.
Removed and Not Replaced
8 oz packages of Trader Joe's Mango slices that are in the buckets. I put them in for the obvious use as a good tasting, naturally sweet snack but mainly for the fiber. Most of the food in my buckets and BOB is pretty high protein (canned chicken or tuna) and low bulk, so extra fiber to prevent constipation is a Very Good Thing. I keep a good supply of mango on hand as a replacement for candy or other sugary snacks.
A big box of Instant Oatmeal in the bulk storage bin.
I like oatmeal and eat it for breakfast several days a week. I do use the slow cooking variety at home, but the instant was purchased specifically for my BOB and the Bucket of Holding. Well, actually the Tote of Holding, but it is still stored for emergency use.
What I like about this is that it includes:
- Maple & Brown Sugar - 18 packets
- Apples & Cinnamon - 15 packets
- Cinnamon & Spice - 14 packets
- Original - 5 packets
- Heartier texture
- Great taste
- 25% less sugar
- Buy things that you like to eat now so you know how they will taste in a pinch.
- Have your stored goods packed in an easily checked manner. Rotation and use are a priority.
- Be open to suggestions and ideas from others. Good finds are hard to come by.
Purchased This Week
- Quaker Instant Oatmeal from Sam's Club: $9.87
- Eight 32 oz cans of Pasta sauce from Trader Joe's: $1.99
- Two 10 count boxes of instant coffee tubes from Trader Joe's: $1.99
As always, if you have comments, suggestions or corrections, please post them so we all can learn. And remember, Some Is Always Better Than None!
NOTE: All items tested were purchased by me. No products have been loaned in exchange for a favorable review. Any items sent to me for T&E will be listed as such. Suck it Feds.