What to Always Keep in Your Pantry

Before we know it bad weather will be here.

Every year it seems to hit us harder and harder throughout Canada. Many people are not prepared and often caught off guard. we all know to keep an emergency bag with a first aid kit on hand, but what about other necessities? What if you were snowed in or without power for days? would you be able to manage? If you have a generator with fuel or a woodstove, you will be fine for heat. But food may be a problem without power even if only for a short while.

Having a well stocked pantry is essential this time of year. You can buy a little extra with every grocery store shopping trip and not even feel it in the pocketbook. My grandparents always had a well stocked pantry full of foods they canned themselves along with dried goods. My parents as well, but it included more canned items from the store. Seeing them being prepared like this for times when money may be thin or weather may cause issues made me be more prepared. I always stock up on fried goods and canned foods when they are on sale.

You really never know what may happen. Foods with long shelf-lives and expiry dates longer than a few months are good to keep on hand. Once we were without power for 10 days in the middle of winter due to a crazy storm. Luckily we had a generator and lots of food as well as a woodstove.  The woodstove allowed us to keep the house warm and cook using our cast iron pan.

Since Fall is here and our Canadian winter will be coming fast and furious, I wanted to share this important list with you.


What to Always Keep in Your Pantry

Peanut butter

Nuts and trail mixes



Granola bars and power bars

Dried fruits

Canned meat

Pasta or rice

Canned fruit

Canned soup and stew and chili

Bottled water

Powered milk

Sports drinks


Sugar and seasoning 


These are all great to have on hand and have a long shelf life. They will keep you going if you are without power for a while. These can all be eaten on their own, combined together for a recipe or combined with fresh ingredients as well. I personally like to rotate my nonperishable foods  every once in a while. I add the new to the back and move the old to the front so it gets used first. If you take advantage of grocery store sales when stocking up you can save big. Tight on money? Buy a few items at a time and before you know it your pantry will be stocked. A stocked pantry is also great when you are running low on groceries and need  quick meal. My teens often raid the pantry when it is ‘make your own meal’ night here.

I should add that we always have a weeks supply of dried dog food on hand as well for our pets.

What do you have in your pantry?


  1. Cheryl Grandy says

    I agree, there are many reasons to keep a stocked pantry. I buy extras of things on sale, so I always have lots in my pantry, but I haven’t checked lately to see if what is there would get us by in an emergency like a power outage. Thanks for the reminder.

  2. sarah alexis says

    Lots of good suggestions up there! Peanut butter and canned beans is a huge MUST have for my family!

  3. Elva Roberts says

    I do have a good stockpile of food in my pantry. After I read your post, I really concentrated on what I should have. I found it a great help. I do have to add some items like canned and powdered milk to my stash. Thank you so much for your recommendations.

  4. Darlene Demell says

    That is a great list to keep on hand. You never know when you will need these things. There are some things listed I wouldn’t have thought of. Thanks for the post.

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