Five foods to add to your “forever food” prepper pantry

When storing food in your survival stockpile, you need to make sure that each item can be used in various ways, whether for cooking, medicinal, household, or other purposes. Doing this ensures that you can get the most out of your shelf space and available items when SHTF. (h/t to

What are “forever foods?”

Listed below are five “forever foods” that can last for a very long time in your pantry. Some of them can also be used to barter for other items that you may need during a survival situation.


Bouillon cubes are used to add flavor to foods. They often contain enough salt to preserve them from spoilage, but bouillon cubes may eventually lose their flavor. To avoid this, store them in an air-tight container and keep in a cool, dry place.

When SHTF, you can use bouillon cubes:

  • As a starter for homemade soups and stews.
  • To flavor pasta, potatoes, or rice (add bouillon to the water while the food is cooking).
  • To make a base for gravies and sauces.
  • To season meats.


Cornstarch is the powder made from the starch in corn kernels. Cornstarch is often used as a thickener for sauces and gravies, but it also has cleaning and medicinal uses.

When stored properly, cornstarch can last for several years in your stockpile. Keep cornstarch away from any moisture and store it in a cool and dry place. (Related: Beyond Cooking- 11 Amazing Uses for Cornstarch.)

Below are some more uses of cornstarch:

  • Carpet stain remover –If you have greasy spots on your carpet, pour cornstarch over it and let it sit for about 20 minutes. The cornstarch will absorb the grease and freshen the carpet. Once you’re done, vacuum the powder away!
  • Chafing remedy –If you have sensitive skin and a tendency to chafe, dust a bit of cornstarch on your problem areas before putting on your clothes.
  • Sunburn relief – Add some water to cornstarch to make a simple paste that can cool off sunburned skin and soothe inflamed skin.
  • Window cleaner – Even if cornstarch is super fine to the touch, it is naturally abrasive at a microscopic level. Add one tablespoon of cornstarch to window cleaner for spotless windows.

Distilled liquor

Aside from being a “forever food,” you can use distilled liquor as a bartering tool for other items such as ammunition. Whiskey is usually the most stable distilled spirit because it doesn’t contain any sugars. The more sugar a liquor has, the faster it will deteriorate. While opened bottles of base liquors can be stored for a very long time, they may lose some flavor.

Consider storing these base liquors in your pantry:

  • Brandy
  • Gin
  • Rum
  • Tequila
  • Vodka – Can be used to clean wounds.
  • Whiskey – Perfect for bartering.

Distilled white vinegar

Vinegar, which may contain 5-20 percent acetic acid by volume, is commonly used as a cooking ingredient or for pickling.

Distilled white vinegar may contain five to eight percent acetic acid.

Other types of vinegar include:

  • Balsamic vinegar
  • Cider vinegar
  • Malt vinegar
  • Rice vinegar
  • Rice wine vinegar
  • White vinegar
  • Wine vinegar

In time, vinegar will lose its acidity. Vinegar can absorb water from the air, and this will dilute its concentration of acetic acid. If you store vinegar long enough, the acetic acid will break down or decompose and you will be left with a less acidic product.

Distilled white vinegar can be used in dressings, marinades, and sauce. If you’re going to make pickled food, used fresh distilled white vinegar.

When SHTF, you can use older gallon jugs of vinegar as a bleach, a cleaning solution, or as a fabric softener. Distilled white vinegar is also safe to use as a fruit and vegetable wash. Add two tablespoons of vinegar to a pint of water.

The shelf life of distilled white vinegar is almost indefinite, as long as it is stored properly in a cool, dry area.

Maple syrup

Unopened bottles of maple syrup stored in a cool, dry area will last a long time. However, once a bottle of maple syrup is opened, it can only last for at least a year. Store opened bottles of maple syrup in the freezer to make them last longer.

Check your pantry and make sure you have these “forever foods” so you can cook and clean even when disaster strikes.

Browse more articles about essential food items that you’ll need when SHTF at

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