three-month supply alternatives

Choosing how to approach your three-month supply is highly personal. I've waffled back and forth with several methods and have finally settled on the one that I think will work best for our family. But just because it is best for us, doesn't mean that you have to approach things the same way. The sub-goals that I'll be using can be applied to most of the following methods of gathering your three-month supply. Continue to follow along, but feel free to use your own approach. The goals should help you regardless.

Here are some different methods of tracking/collecting a three-month supply:

Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner Menus
Create a menu for breakfast. Buy 93 days worth. Then work on lunch and finish with a dinner menu. (This is the method that I'm using. I'm choosing to use this method because it allows me to work with smaller menus, yet still buy items in bulk.)

One-Week Menu
Create a 7-day menu for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Work on getting one-week's worth of food. Continue acquiring food in weekly chunks until you have 14 weeks of food.

One-Month Menu
Create a 31-day menu. Multiply by three for three-months worth. Shop sales to acquire your food supply.

Three Month Menu
Figure out your entire menu for three months. Shop for ingredients in bulk.

Breakfast/Dinner Method
Make two separate menus for breakfast and dinner. Double the amount for dinners and count the double towards lunches. This is the method that my sister uses. She doesn't want to keep track of separate menus for lunch and dinner.

Test Method
Live entirely off foods you have in your pantry for one week (or one month). Keep a detailed list of everything you use. Use that list as a weekly/monthly menu and shop accordingly.

What method do you use? Please post your approach and I'll either add it to this page or devote a post to your ideas!


Sara R said...

We aren't super precise about it. I got used to my system when the counsel was a year's supply, not 3 months. So I got used to doing this a year at a time. I prefer it that way. It's easier for me to keep track of the inventory if I just do it once per year, rather than four times per year. Plus preserving garden vegetables has a big push just once per year. I'm used to thinking about this annually.

I made up a master list of ingredients and typed it on the computer. I started out with the ingredients I already had in my storage, and what I wanted to get. I looked at my recipes (we have a family cookbook of our favorite recipes) and added any "storable" ingredient. I also looked at other people's lists got some ideas from them.

I guessed how much of each item to store. Sometimes I figured out how many cans of tomato sauce I would use in a week; other times I just guessed how much I would need. If I wasn't sure, I buy more than I think I need. Most items store longer than a year if you don't use it all.

Once a year I walk around the pantry with my master list (printed from the computer) and count everything. I make a shopping list of the items that need replacing, and I place that in my household notebook. I look for those items over the next few months, trying to get a low price. But some items never go on sale, and eventually I give in and buy them.

We aren't on a strict budget and we have a small savings account, so this works. We would have to figure out another method if we needed to be careful about spending even amounts each week.

Wendy said...

Thanks Sara. Good ideas.
- Wendy

Admin said...

I do a newsletter for my ward. I was wondering if I could use your information on why a three month supply is important in my newsletter. I would of course provide a link to your blog.

Wendy said...

Admin -

Thanks for asking. Please feel free to use it and thanks for including a reference.

Jelly said...

I've just found your blog through google. It's brilliant:)

It's great to see ideas for a one week storage & also a one month one.

For the past few months I've really been stressing out about my food storage. I'm a very fusser eater & couldn't work out what to store.

I'm now gonna just work on a one week food storage & double it etc. I'm single, so just having to think of a one week storage will help me a lot.

The only problem I do find is that all the food mentioned is American & as I live in the UK I don't understand half on the food that's mentioned:)

Thanks for a great blog:)

Wendy said...

Jelly -

It's okay if you don't understand the foods mentioned. In fact, it's better if you just store what YOU eat! Also, feel free to ask when you are confused. I'm always happy to make a clarification.