A lull in quarantine, a stretch of good health — and a calm before winter storm and flu season — is an ideal time to stockpile emergency food supplies, says a University of Vermont nutrition expert.
Before loading up several shopping carts, take the time to plan for a stockpile of ingredients for healthy meals that have a long shelf life, recommends Susan Bodette, an educator with UVM Extension’s Expanded Food and Nutrition Education Program.
“Before you restock, first check your pantry, refrigerator and freezer to see what you already have,” Bodette wrote in a news release. “Discard any expired food.”
Beyond family favorites, she adds, remember that food for infants, children and folks with special dietary needs should be high on the shopping list — as well as chow for pets.
Other tips from Bodette:
- Include staples from all five food groups (fruits, vegetables, grains, protein foods and dairy), especially those that have little or no salt or sugar added; and whole-grain pasta, rice, bread and cereal.
- Cans and jars from your latest shopping trip should be moved to the back of your shelves: Consume the older stock first.
- Freeze extra bread, cheese, milk and tortillas — they’ll last longer there than in the refrigerator.
- Keep dried goods in tightly sealed or screw-top containers to maintain freshness.
A sample “2-week storage-friendly shopping list” for a family of four can be found on the Expanded Food and Nutrition Education Program website (www.uvm.edu/extension/efnep).
Planning for extended periods at home need not be grim, UVM’s Bodette concludes — and she has added some enticing recipes.
After your three-bean salad, vegetable fried rice or baked chicken nuggets, you might consider trying her cranberry granola, rise-and-shine breakfast cobbler and a slice of autumn apple cake.
More: ‘Like we’re going into quarantine’: Americans plan to stockpile food this fall over fears of COVID-19 surge, election unrest
Contact Joel Banner Baird at 802-660-1843 or [email protected] Follow him on Twitter @VTgoingUp.
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This article originally appeared on Burlington Free Press: Stock up with a two-week food supply, urges University of Vermont nutritionist