5.17.2010

Fat Pantry

I don't know who coined the term, fat pantry, but I'm a believer in this concept. Don't know what a fat pantry is? Let me explain:

A fat pantry is a pantry (or shelves, cupboards or whatever) where you keep a large stock of foods that you regularly eat. I've heard some call a fat pantry their own personal store. The idea is that you stock up when items are on sale (or regularly if it's something that never goes on sale) so that you always have several of an item on hand. Then you can shop out of your own pantry.

This is the way my mother shopped. She could make hundreds of recipes on the spot without having to go to the store because she had shelves full of things that she regularly used. In fact, I only remember a handful of times that she had to purposefully pick up something at the store for a recipe. She just always had one of everything on hand.

Now, I use the same method in my own home. It's taken some time to get a well-stocked or fat pantry. But I try to have some of everything on hand.

There are so many great things about using this method. First, I am able to always save money on my groceries -- I rarely have to run to the store (and use gas) to get an item that is likely not on sale. I buy a lot of my foods on sale -- and when it is discounted I stock up. The second great thing about this method is that I am never locked into a menu. Planned for enchiladas, but really in the mood for wild-rice soup? No problem - ingredients for both are usually on hand. I can make the majority of my favorite recipes right now because I have all of the ingredients in my "fat" pantry.

Finally, if you think about it, a fat pantry can also be a three-month supply in disguise. A three-month supply is an important part of a good family home storage plan. I recommend following the family home storage plan outlined by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. In their plan, a three-month supply is just one of four important steps in gathering a complete home storage. By having a full fat pantry (three-month's worth) you can complete this part of the storage plan. You also gain some of the promised blessings of peace by knowing that your family is better prepared.


Do you have a fat pantry? How do you make it work for your family?

7 comments:

Christy said...

I love to tell my husband I'm running to the store and then I go to the basement where the food storage is. I save a lot on food by stocking up when it is on sale or buying in bulk from Amazon.

tuxgirl said...

One thing I've learned is that some of my recipes can be modified so that my fat pantry needs fewer things. For example, there's a dish I like that requires ketchup, and quite a few that require tomato paste. If I use tomato paste and water in the first recipe instead of ketchup, it actually tastes about the same, but I only have to store tomato paste...

Wendy said...

Good idea tuxgirl! There are so many ways that you can apply your idea.

Christy, I often go two weeks without making a grocery store trip. I'm sure that I save money by just not shopping period.

Thanks for your comments.

jennifer said...

I’ve never heard it called that, but I like it. Something I’m working on is finding cute, functional baskets to put our “fat pantry” items into for evacuation. We might never have to worry about taking all our food with us, but if we did, having it already in a container would be key to getting out fast.

Wendy said...

I like the idea of the baskets, Jennifer. It seems like it would help with general organization as well.

thegirlwiththeplan said...

I love my fat pantry- though I refer to it as the three month supply. I usually take inventory and replenish every three months or when Macey's has their case lot sale. Hanging a few reuseable grocery bags on a hook on your pantry shelving unit is a great idea. Easy to grab and go if you had to.

Wendy said...

Yes - bags on the door is a good idea, too. And we all have plenty of those around!

Thanks for your comment.