When shopping for food storage, calories per person per day and meeting daily nutrition needs are crucial and take first priority. But let’s talk about one other aspect of eating from your food storage that you may not have considered—menu fatigue.
14 Tips for Food Storage Shopping – Tip 6: Be Concerned About Menu Fatigue
Menu fatigue essentially means that without a variety of food in your supply, you’ll get pretty tired of eating the same things day in and day out. With just a little bit of planning and for almost no additional cost, you can have variety in your food storage that rivals how you eat day-to-day.
If a crisis were to happen, and you needed to eat from your food storage for several weeks or months, what would you be eating based on what you’ve got now? Compare that to the variety of foods you eat in your daily life, and consider expanding your food storage inventory to include food you haven’t yet.
One way to add variety is to purchase several different types of MREs or Freeze-dried entrees. This also adds a certain level of convenience to your food supply. MRE’s can be eaten right away without any preparation required—although many will be more tasty if you have a way to heat them before eating. Freeze-dried entrees require only water and the time required to reconstitute and warm up.
The best way to add variety to your food supply is to think about meals you make NOW, and buy the ingredients you’ll need to make them. Then think about how you could change that meal even slightly. Brainstorm different spices or vegetables that would give a new and distinct flavor to the dish, and buy those additional ingredients. With one or two small purchases you can change a variety of your ‘go-to’ meals into something new.
For example, if you love pasta, think about how many different dishes you could make starting from two or three simple ingredients and adding an item here or there. Buy a can of spaghetti noodles, a can of tomato powder, and a can of spaghetti seasoning. You’ve already got the makings for one meal. Now what if you add some onion, mushrooms, and pepper dices? Or replace the tomato powder with the creamy soup base, and the vegetables for some chicken and asparagus pieces, and you’ve got another delicious pasta dish. Add some additional water, seasonings, and more vegetables if you’d like, break up your spaghetti into small pieces and you’ve got a delicious and creamy soup. Add some tomato powder to the soup and you’ve got a creamy tomato soup (you can keep the pasta and asparagus in it or not). You can do the same thing by starting with rice and the creamy soup base. Continue thinking along these lines and there’s really no end to the variety you can get from your food storage.
The key to eating from your food storage for longer than a few days is avoiding menu fatigue while still getting proper nutrition. By purchasing a variety of grains, legumes, dairy, meats, fruits, vegetables, and seasonings, you can do just that.