Becky's Farm Life

The simple life, living off God's land, one day at a time.

Stocking Food

Here is were I’ll list different ways of storing food. This is how we do it, you many find a better way. If you do, please let me know: share your ways too. When I add new things, I’ll do so at the top. So as you do not have to scroll down each time.


Canning Potatoes 

Canning Meats 

Why, What, How: I am storing and stocking up: Food 

  Store bought goods: What I have and what else  is needed for at least 1 year.


  What’s Stored, What’s else is needed for at least 1 year? (garden)

I got an e-mail from a friend. I didn’t know about the “loss leaders” , so I’m sharing it with you to. Thank you Carol.

I was reading on your blog page about tips on saving money.  I don’t know of a lot of people know that the sale ads contain what are called “loss leaders”.  They are on the front and back pages.  They are the sale items that the store loses money on in order to bring you into the store.  You’ll save the most by concentrating on those items.

A price notebook is also a good idea for items that you buy.  Set it up with the name of the item.  When you go to one store, check out the prices of the items on the list there.  Do the same when you go to another store.It may take awhile to do this but it is a great way to keep price of which stores have the best prices especially if you record their sale prices.  Sometimes I record prices into the notebook from the receipt. From Carol  L.


Yes, we do have a milk cow, who gives 3 1/2 gallons of milk a day. And yes, I can and freeze the milk. But I also keep the dried milk on hand( 3-5gal. buckets, about the time I run out, it’s on sale again and well keep 6-8 months in a cool dark place.). If I can’t get feed for her due to no money and or no food to buy, and when she dries up- I’ll have milk. We use a lot of milk both to drink and cook with. What I do with the dried milk: make cheeses , hot cocoa mix, in baking. The many uses of powdered milk-great site for more ideas;


Expiration Dates on stored food

I use a big black pen to write the date in big letters on front of package, then as I buy new, I put it where the dates go from oldest to newest.  I just look around my stores at the dates facing me. Then once a month, I go though and pull every thing that needs to be eaten that month, and bring in to the house.  Most can goods are good for years, but as the years go by they loose some nutritional value with age. If you are buying for your stockpile, look at the expiration dates as you buy, I have moved cases of food to get food that has more than a year from exp. date( I do put the other cases back like I found them). The oldest food is always on top or in the front. No store people have said any thing to me as long as I put things back.  It your money, and with money being tight, why not buy the freshest you can. It takes a little more time, but if your like me you have more time than money.


Also see Recipes tab for freezing milk, eggs: and canning milk, cheese and butter.


Bakery stores usually will give you empty buckets. I go to Ingles and get them. They  are food grade, I wash them up, and they are ready to go. They come in different sizes. I got one that had garlic butter in it, I could not get the smell out. So I use it for a feed bucket for the chickens. If you live where power goes out a lot like here: you can all store water in them. Then stack two high and cover with a cloth and it looks like a small table.


When storing RICE, put a bay leaf in with rice to keep bugs out. An used 2 liter bottle works will, just run tape around lid. And you can stick the bottle just about any where.


When storing FLOUR, put in a bay leaf or a stick of spearmint gum, to keep bugs out.


When storing OIL ( veg., corn, etc) Put in a place that gets very little light and is cool.


  1. Here’s another tip for storing dried goods such as rice, flour, beans, powdered milk, instant potatoes, and even marshmallows. I put things like this in my freezer. Just remember things in paper bags such as your flour you can put bag and all in a freezer bag don’t forget to take the air out then seal and freeze. That way your flour does not absorb the moisture. I do this allot as like most people I do not have the shelf storage. I only keep in the house what I need. Bay leaves work good too if you do not have allot of that kind of stuff to store.

    Comment by Becky | October 6, 2008 | Reply

  2. I am fascinated by your website and lifestyle. I visit frequently. I am from suburban Baltimore and although I cannot do a lot of what you do I find it inspiring. Anyway, I was looking at your pantry and am wondering why you store your canned goods upside down. Is there a reason for that?
    Thanks and Good luck with everything.

    Comment by Felina | November 4, 2008 | Reply

  3. I was wondering the same thing Felina.

    Comment by Jackie | November 6, 2008 | Reply

  4. Felina and Jackie,
    I too was wondering how long it would take for someone to ask. lol I do this because we have a lot of dust living on a dirt road. This saves me from having to wipe the top of the can off before opening it. Just a time saver.
    Thanks you two for asking. Have a great day.

    Comment by jordansfarm | November 7, 2008 | Reply

  5. Becky, i had someone ask me if i had ever
    canned onions, an i have not have you
    if so how are they done?
    please let me know
    thanks Grandma

    Comment by Grandma | November 15, 2008 | Reply

    • I freeze onions. I chop them up really fine and put them in an ice cube tray, then fill with water and stick them in the freezer. When they are frozen, I pop them out and put them in a freezer bag. When I want them for an omelet or in a casserole, I just take a few ice cubes out…I don’t measure them, I just fill the trays, but you could…the ice melts and the onions cook up just fine.

      Comment by Sherri | December 9, 2012 | Reply

  6. Grandma,
    No, I have never canned onions by themselves. I always can them in soups, stews and with meat. Onions usually store well for a long time in a cool, dark place. Hope this helps some. Have a great day.

    Comment by jordansfarm | November 16, 2008 | Reply

  7. Hello
    I have just started pressure canning>>
    I have canned ham and beans >> they are sealed >> but they appear to be more mush than bean >> what have I done wrong??>>
    I cooked every thing and then put them into jars and canned it at 15 lbs for 90 min.
    Hope I have given you enough info for you to be able to help me.
    I am so glad I found your website
    this is a gold mine!!

    Comment by Vera | November 19, 2008 | Reply

  8. Thanks for the info
    love your site you have some good info on it

    Comment by grandma | November 19, 2008 | Reply

  9. Vera,
    I have not canned(dried) beans before. But my close friends who do, do not precook the beans. They do soak them overnight, then can them. Hope this helps. They say it works great. Thank you for stopping in, have a great day.

    Your welcome. Have a great day.


    Comment by jordansfarm | November 20, 2008 | Reply

  10. Hello again Becky
    I was wondering about the room with the air conditioner for food storage.My hubby is going to make one so I can age cheese there and put canning.
    Do you find it kicks on often?I was just wondering about the power bill thats all.I guess in the basement untouched it should stay cool enough to kick on rarely.Just wondered.

    Comment by karen | January 19, 2009 | Reply

  11. Karen,
    The AC only kicks on if it gets really hot, as there is also three freezers in there too.(which put off heat, and this is great for winter months.)The power bill does go up some when it’s really hot, does not go up in the winter. In the summer, I keep the temp. at 70, and the winter: we use a small heater to keep it at 40. Neither or used unless it gets really hot/cold. Hope this helps. To us, the power bill going up some for a few months, is still cheaper than not stocking and knowing we have food. And the bill does not go up that much (maybe $20-$30 if it really hot/cold, and this usually only last a few days to just a few weeks)as the heater and AC are for small areas.Have a great Day.

    Comment by Becky | January 20, 2009 | Reply

  12. I read your recipie for canning milk. But it does not say how long it can be stored after, or how to store it. Can you just keep it on the shelf, or does it still need to be kept cold?

    I recently moved to a small 10 acre tract, and we are trying to start a farm. I have a few goats and chickens so far. We have a long way to go. Money is tight and I need to make things last. Driving to town to get groceries when the price of gas was over $4 a gallon cost us over $20 in gas alone. So I try not to go to the store often. That means I have to freeze things to keep it longer. Gloria

    Comment by Gloria | January 23, 2009 | Reply

  13. Gloria,
    Sorry it’s taken me so long to answer you.
    I store my canned milk in a cool, dark place(with my canned veggies). I have used canned milk that is over a year old, still good. Milk can be frozen too, for drinking. I have drunk some that’s been in the freezer over a year, and still good.
    Thank you for stopping in. Hope this helps. Have a great day.

    Comment by Becky | January 28, 2009 | Reply

  14. To store fresh eggs for up to 1 year. Rub warmed mineral oil on your hands and coat the entire surface of the fresh egg with the oil. Replace the egg in the egg carton with the point down. In cold climates they can be stored in a cool, dark place. You can place them in a refigerator and rotate once a year.

    Comment by Cathy Facer | February 11, 2009 | Reply

  15. Cathy: Thank you for your comment as it will also help others who stop in here. Thank you again. Becky

    Comment by Becky | February 15, 2009 | Reply

  16. I can pork n beans in tomato juice. I soak navy beans for several hours or overnight and then process them with the pork and tomato juice for 90 minutes at 12 – 15 lbs. My husband loves them:)

    Comment by Grand B | March 26, 2009 | Reply

  17. Grand B,
    That is wonderful. And thank you for sharing this with us all. I’ll being trying it soon. Thanks again and have a great day.

    Comment by Becky | April 1, 2009 | Reply

  18. Becky, Do you have a recipe for canning peppers? chili and banana peppers?

    Comment by Katye Birdsong | June 5, 2009 | Reply

  19. Becky, I love your site. It is teaching me so much. I’m dehydrating potatoes for the first time. When I sliced them paper thin, put in boiling water for 8 minutes, then plunged into ice water – they, of course, turned to mush. I still dried them, and will use them for potato flakes. Can you tell me how much time you blanch potato sliced before dehydrating? And, I don’t see the reasoning for cutting them paper thin. I’d like to use them in layered casserole – but, I’m going to can the others (thanks for your info on that!!)

    Comment by Sharon | July 10, 2009 | Reply

    • 2 minutes for blanching for dehydrating spuds.

      Comment by Molly | September 26, 2009 | Reply

    • I dehydrated potatoes last year for the first time. My excitement got the best of me and I just “winged it” without doing any reading or research. I sliced some potatoes very thin and others I grated, then I just threw them in the dehydrator without doing anything else. A year later, I can just open any of those packages, soak them in water for a few minutes, drain, pat dry and fry them, layer them in casseroles, or make hash browns. Every batch has been great!

      Comment by Sherri | December 9, 2012 | Reply

  20. Becky, how do you make salsa?
    an if you do what is your recipe for that
    thank you

    Comment by grandma | July 30, 2009 | Reply

    • To make salsa: blanch you tomatoes to remove the skins (blanch the tomatoes in boiling water for 30 seconds or until the skins split) drain tomatoes and run them under cold water. Chop your onions, garlic and whatever else you want to add to your salsa. Put all of it into a big pot and bring to a boil. Boil it all for 5 minutes. To process: to each quart jar add 2 tablespoons of lemon juice then your salsa. Process in water bath canner for 15 minutes (pints) 20 minutes(quarts)
      You NEED to add the lemon juice, it creates a higher acid environment to prevent spoilage. Just buy the generic lemon juice concentrate in the plastic green bottle.

      Comment by Molly | September 26, 2009 | Reply

  21. Hi there. I’ve been visiting your blog since November, I guess and I have learned so much from you! I have decided to do a “little” homesteading of my own by trying my best to grow as much food as I can in my tiny little space in the suburbs. For this growing season I only have tomatoes and some herbs. Right now I’m researching and getting stuff together to have 3 raised beds for the next season so I can plant lots of vegetables. I also want to plant at least 3 apple trees, so maybe I’ll have some apples in a few years.

    I’m wondering is you’ve ever done any dehydrating or drying. My granny used to dry green beans (shuck or shucky beans) She’d take the beans, run a thread through them and hang them to dry somewhere. Then for Thanksgiving and Christmas, she’d make a big pot of shucky beans. Now, I have no idea where to hang the things. I have an attic above my garage that pretty much stays hot and dry, I’m wondering if that would be a good spot for them. Also, I have no idea what to do with them once they’re dried. I don’t know how to properly wash them or cook them, etc. Do have any ideas how to do this?

    Thanks so much and I hope all is well with you and your family and especially your new grandbaby!


    Comment by Rhonda | August 11, 2009 | Reply

    • To dehydrate potatoes was well and Peel (optional) slice thinly and blanch for 2 minutes, dip into diluted lemon juice. Pat dry and dehydrate using cookie sheets in an oven on the “warm” setting, or use a food dehydrator. I imagine that you could string them up, just put a knot in between each slice so it will get the proper air circulation between the slices. A really easy way is to take some nylon screen that window screens are made from and tack it onto a frame (like an old window frame) and place your slices on the screen and cover with a clean cloth. turn every day. To cook either add to stews or to use in something like scalloped potatoes, simply soak them for 30 minutes in hot water before using in the recipe, Don’t throw out the soaking water! You can use that to cut the amount of milk you use! Hope this helps.

      Great website, I love it!

      Comment by Molly | September 26, 2009 | Reply

  22. Sharon,
    I never dehydrated potatoes, just canned them.

    Sorry, I do not as we do not eat salsa.

    Thank you both for stopping in.

    Comment by Becky | August 14, 2009 | Reply

  23. Love your site! I am an avid food safety person………and love all your tips for storing, canning, freezing! I have 2 boys 11 & 15 and the 45 year old one!
    They are eating me out of house and home!! I have tried to prepare fresh safe food for almost 20 years, and they eat everything! I buy large amounts when on sale, my friend and I love coupons and store sales…..we are big on buying “loss leaders” as you put it!! Love the tips on the eggs/freezer…….used to do it long ago, but must re-try!
    looking for a good scratch recipe for muffin miz/general mix to make in large batches and add things to…..any suggestions?
    Curious on various types of flour that can/should be used?
    thanks again!
    Diana Nole

    Comment by Diana | September 6, 2009 | Reply

    • To make freezer hashbrowns,wash the spuds and peel(peeling optional) Shred the potatoes, soak in diluted lemon juice mixture(couple tablespoons lemon juice to a quart of water) Drain shredded spuds. Pat dry. Parboil the shredded spuds in oil (med high frying) for 1 minute. Then drain onto paper towels or an old clean cloth. When cooled off, bag up into freezer bags. This is a great way to do french fries as well. The trick is instead of parboiling the spuds in water like you would do for freezing, you parboil (lightly fry) in grease instead. This ensures your spuds turn out crispy. All restaurant hashbrowns and french fries are parboiled in oil first, then they fry them. A tip I can give:before bagging up the hashbrowns…after you have parboiled them in grease and drained them..put them in a single layer on a cookie sheet and freeze. Then bag them up. This will make it so they don’t “clump” together in a solid keeps them in a single shredded mass. Same principle as when you freeze whole berries.

      Comment by Molly | September 26, 2009 | Reply

  24. okay, here’s another question… boys love potatoes…… can I shred/freeze potatoes to make hashbrowns/patties?

    Comment by Diana | September 6, 2009 | Reply

  25. I just found your site and really enjoyed looking at it and for all the ideas you have posted. But I also find no recent posts are you still blogging?

    Comment by sandra | May 14, 2010 | Reply

  26. can you can garlic. I love the garlic at the stores that are minced but was told you can’t do that is it true.

    Comment by Pia | July 24, 2011 | Reply

  27. Becky have you ever bottled any squash we have a lot in our garden
    an want to know if i can bottle it? please let me know
    thank you dar

    Comment by darlene | August 30, 2012 | Reply

  28. I have a question. I recently canned tomatoes using a water bath method. They were Cherokee purple heirlooms, which I blanched, removed the skins, added lemon juice from a bottle, put in hot jars, topped with hot sauce (however, there was not much room in the jars, so not much hot sauce was added), the tomatoes were warm, not hot, then placed in a bath for 15 minutes. I got a phone call while this was going on and confused another veggies bath times with the maters, ugh! They all sealed, but now I’m afraid to serve them. Oh, I also added just a few pear and cherry tomatoes in with the purple. What do you think?

    Comment by Kathy | August 12, 2013 | Reply

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