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Your Emergency Food Cupboard

Your Emergency Food Cupboard

What’s there to eat if you can’t get out to the grocery store? The Basic Shelf Cookbook from the Canadian Public Health Association is a practical guide to nutritious, simple meals. It’s also useful for people who are learning to cook. The following list is a slightly condensed version of their basic ingredients, which keep well if stored properly.

Basic Shelf Cookbook coverGrain products

(store in tightly sealed jars or plastic containers)

Rice (white, brown) and grains

Pastas (white, whole wheat)

Bread crumbs

Vegetables & fruits

Carrots (keep in refrigerator)

Onions (keep in a cool, dark place)

Potatoes (keep cool and dark, away from onions)

Tomato paste

Canned vegetables

Canned vegetable soups (e.g. mushroom, tomato)

Canned fruit

Meat alternatives

Canned beans, peas and lentils

Dried beans, peas and lentils (store in tightly sealed containers; keep cool and dry)

Peanut butter

Canned light tuna

Milk & alternatives

Skim milk powder (store in a cool, dry place)

Fats & oils

Soft, non-hydrogenated margarine

Vegetable oil


Salt and pepper

Bouillon cubes or stock – beef, chicken, vegetable

Dry mustard

Garlic powder


Soy sauce


Worcestershire sauce

Dried herbs (e.g. basil, oregano, thyme, etc.)

Spices (e.g. paprika, cinnamon, chili powder, etc.)

Baking ingredients

(Perhaps not so much an emergency food, but an important source of pleasure!) (Keep in containers in a cool, clean, dry place.)

Flour (all purpose, whole wheat)

Sugar (white, brown)

Baking powder

Baking soda

Corn starch


Rolled oats

Vanilla extract (artificial)

Basic Shelf Cookbook

The beauty of this cookbook is that all the recipes reflect the basic shelf ingredients. If one or two other ingredients is needed for a recipe, they are noted at the top of the recipe. For example, the list of ingredients for Broccoli and Mushroom Gratin lists Basic Shelf + Broccoli.

You can purchase the cookbook on-line at ,

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