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Why To Store Wheat And How To Use It After The SHTF

Mac Slavo
May 29th, 2019
SHTFplan.com
Comments (38) Read by 3,683 people

Storing wheat in case the SHTF is very popular among preppers and survivalists.  But so many don’t know what to do with all that wheat they’ve stored up.  Because of that, I’ve decided to detail one great way you can use your wheat after the SHTF.

There’s a reason preppers store wheat: it lasts a long time and is nutritionally hearty. Hard grains, (which include more than just wheat) such as buckwheat, corn, flax, mullet, Kamut, spelt, and triticale, if stored properly, have an average shelf life of 10 to 12 years, however, this can be increased to 30 years or longer with the correct equipment. Not to mention wheat is inexpensive and storage isn’t all that difficult.  To ensure the proper long-term storage of grains, use the following:

Food-grade buckets

Vacuum sealer or heat sealer

5-Gallon food storage bags

Oxygen absorbers

But all that properly stored wheat is useless if you aren’t sure what to do with it.   Make sure you’ve got a manual grinder so it’ll work in times when the grid is down. One tip is to only grind up the wheat as you use it because it loses its nutritional value as it oxidizes after being ground. This decreases the length of time it can be stored. But once you’ve ground up your wheat into flour, you can make simple yeast-free “Prepper’s Bread.”

You can make “Prepper’s Bread” in a solar oven, or over an open campfire. This also works in a Dutch oven! The four ingredients you’ll need are:

  • 1 cup of fine whole wheat flour (grind your own)
  • 2 tbsp. of olive oil (optional, also regular vegetable oil works too)
  • 1 tsp. salt (optional, add to taste)
  • 1/2 cup of water

Mix everything together and use a flat surface (a cookie sheet, a flat rock, etc.) dusted with flour to knead your bread for 5 minutes.  Then bake it on the cookie sheet or a rock over the campfire. Be sure to flip your bread often until it’s a nice brown color. Or bake the bread in the solar oven or Dutch oven for 20 minutes at 350 degrees.

This bread is nutritious and will help keep you full if you’re in survival mode. This recipe will serve about 3-4 people if eaten as a side with a meal or make about 3 sandwiches.

Wheat is a great option for preppers on a budget.  Money is often an obstacle for beginner preppers, but wheat is an inexpensive great start to a survivalist food supply.

I always suggest beginners attempt to make some things such as the “Prepper’s Bread” before the SHTF, just so there is an awareness of how it bakes and tastes, and changes that can be made to the recipe to better suit you. It’s also a fun experiment, one in which we learn what NOT to do beforehand.

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Author: Mac Slavo
Views: Read by 3,683 people
Date: May 29th, 2019
Website: www.SHTFplan.com

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38 Comments...

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  1. rellik says:

    I have over two hundred pounds of wheat berries in long term storage. We make our own flour and bake our own bread.
    Recently we found that our yeast has become impotent for whatever reason.
    I decided to make a natural sour dough starter. It seemed to be going well, bubbling and frothing, but by day 5 it didn’t smell right so I discarded. I’m going to try;
    ht tp://www.grainmillwagon.com/how-to-make-a-whole-wheat-sourdough-starter/
    to see if it works better.
    Unleavened bread will keep you alive like Tacos will, but
    a loaf of traditional bread is good comfort food.

    • We are big on wheat as well. Be sure to buy organic wheat in super pails for long term storage. Some people who
      think they are gluten intolerant are fine with organic wheat that is not GMO, and has no pesticides or herbicides. Wheat will store your lifetime if stored correctly. Scientists have sprouted wheat from 3,000 year old tombs in Egypt.

      Wheat can also be sprouted in a sprouting jar. About 1/4 to 1/3 cup of wheat will fill a 1 quart jar with sprouts in 5-6 days. Sprouted wheat has a lot of vitamins and other nutrients. You can put them in your bread and the chickens go crazy over wheat sprouts. My wife has a rotating jar system and the chickens get a jar of sprouts every day.

      I once saw 75, 5 gallon buckets of wheat on sale on ebay for 600 bucks. It was an estate sale. That’s about 3,000 pounds of wheat, 8 bucks a bucket. I swooped on that deal and took my car hauler trailer over there and picked it all up.

      Honey and wheat go very well together. The Romans used honey and wheat. Add some honey to your prepper bread. You can also pan fry bread over low heat. Honey also stores forever. (Check out Medihoney for wounds and burns) It will crystilize, but you can fix that by putting the honey container in in boiling water. We store lots of honey.

    • Clown World says:

      It’s been killed by wallowing in it’s own metabolic wastes.

      The bread is composed of the same basic materials as the starter, so can rise without much help. (Humidity under a very clean rag would help.)

      Or, don’t keep the starter for so many days.

      To make wine, they kept it, in a cool cellar. To make balsamic, they kept it in a hot attic. I’m guessing that the same logic could be used against a sourdough.

  2. Mountain Trekker says:

    Good article Mac and so very true, many preppers talk about storing wheat but yet really don’t know what to do with all that stored grain. We really need more articles like this. Thanks, Trekker Out

  3. Don’t just store food. Use it. If you’re going to store wheat berries, bake. Buy a baker’s cook book. Or, copy a recipe for bread and use the same recipe regularly.

    Once you open a sealed bag, oxygen gets in and degrades the contents. So, keep one gallon bags. Instead of filling a five gallon bag for long term, fill one bucket with one gallon bags of wheat. Keep a one gallon jar or canister in your pantry. When it empties, go replace the flour with a one gallon bag of wheat berries that you’ve put thru the blender and turned into flour. Date everything. Buy removable stickers.

    When you open the next bucket of wheat berries stored in a five gallon bucket, you can remove one gallon of berries and simply reseal the five gallon bag, or you can put the remaining four gallons of berries into smaller one gallon bags, and back into the bucket.

    The point here is that, for me, it isn’t about storing food for shtf. It’s about storing food so that you can eat now, and that you’ll have reserves if you can’t run out to the store. Don’t wait for SHTF.

    .

    • Stuart says:

      Very good point HP. Nobody is going to learn how to bake when the world is falling down around their ears. We need to practice now so the skills will be nicely developed when needed and we won’t wast scarce resources learning new things.

      • Genius says:

        Whole wheat has an extremely long shelf life (if sealed well). I have over 1100 pounds of it. I got 1000 pounds on craigslist for 100 bux in double bagged long term storage triple cleaned form. Now that I think of it with all my buckets I have more like 1400 lbs. The thing about baking is the turds will smell it a mile away and come looking.

        • Genius says:

          Speaking of preps, here’s a cool item that is cheap and works great… A solar cigarette lighter! We bought 200 of them from alibaba for a buck a piece and I sell them at work for 5 bux. You can ignite many things with them a great survival tool! Check them out!

          ht tps://www.ebay.com/itm/Solar-Igniter-Firearms-Cigarette-Lighter-Environmental-Protection-Waterproof/362589630356?hash=item546c06af94:g:-E8AAOSwjCVcj2-0

  4. Stuart says:

    Wow, an actual SHTFplan article. Amazing… and welcome!

    • rellik says:

      Stew,
      Agreed.
      Although it seems we have saturated this site.
      Most the recent posters are well prepared and
      are so geographically diverse that much of our
      advice won’t apply.
      People that live in a city have different SHTF
      scenarios than people that live on “farms”
      with year round water, food, and solar power.
      I’m not worried about NBC warfare, but someone
      near a target center will be.
      I like the political stuff, but that can get rather,
      personal quickly and people with good SHTF
      info can get chased off because of religious,
      or philosophical differences.
      The beauty of this site is that you are not a small
      fish in a big pond like Breitbart, Hill, et al.
      Nor do you get banned for some perceived slight
      like you would on Free republic or Breitbart( I was banned last week).
      Hopefully comments will pick up when Biden and Harris are selected to run against Trump.
      Aloha.

    • Karl V. says:

      Although I did smile at “Hard grains… such as buckwheat, corn, flax, mullet, Kamut, spelt, and triticale…”

      Don’t forget to scale, gut, and bone that mullet before you grind it into flour…. LOL

  5. sprouts. more nutritious than bread. can also feed rabbits. deer plot mix grown to plants 4 rabbits also. hang a cow or pig kidney about chicken head high. flies get to kidney maggots come out. chicken eat maggot. get books: Kurt Saxon The Survivor. + PMJB toodles!

  6. you can cook whole wheat grains as a cereal – or combine or use other grains too. If you soak it overnight, it will cook more quickly. You can sprout wheat for extra nutrition – use in salads sandwiches, etc. You can pop it on the stove much the same as popcorn. A good old book on the gazillion uses for wheat is the original Passport to Survival book.

  7. Yahooie says:

    The article mentioned a vacuum sealer. Anyone have suggestions on which is worth the money? I’m only prepping for me (at the moment and until I can convince my son) so there’s no need for large items or humongous capacities. (I know I need to change the solo bit; another thing to work on.)

    • rellik says:

      Good comment, but I get the idea that not too many people here vacuum bag stuff. Canning seems to be the favorite as you don’t need a freezer or have to power it.
      I do know if you harvest your own meats Vacuum bagging is not as good as butcher wrap and paper. The meat gets bounced around when you dig through the freezer for your steaks and the Mylar gets cut and you get almost instant freezer burn.
      Freezer burned meat is dog food. My dogs have eaten very well some years.

      • Genius says:

        I stopped vac packing grains and a few other things because the pointy ends poke holes in the expensive bags. Just store it in food grade buckets and sprinkle a little food grade diatematious earth in it. Vac packing is expensive so use it only for carefully selected items. I have read about people using 40 year old wheat stored in buckets and it was fine.

        • rellik says:

          Gen,
          Right on advice!
          BTW what are you going to do with #1100 of wheat?
          My stash is designed for a year, your’s would last two people
          6 years.
          Also the Diatematious earth will cut down on lice on your chickens.

      • Yahooie says:

        Thanks for the commentary guys. I agree with not vacuum packing wheat. My first husband had several large metal cans of winter wheat and the cans had very tight sealing lids. I used to grind it up to make bread pretty often. This was up in Michigan and bugs weren’t a big problem because there was always some cool (in winter very cold) place to stash things. The wheat can stayed usable right to the bottom.

        Some good bread came from there.

        I think I’ll stick with my current preservation methods unless I see a compelling reason to get a vacuum sealer.

  8. Bert says:

    Wheat is not very nutritional. I’d rather eat 50 calories total of one brazil nut and a half teaspoon of nutritional yeast to get the same nutrition as 450 cals of whole wheat flour, and not have the added digestion troubles from the grain.

    But go ahead and eat (and drink the shit that comes from) all the grains, all the corn and everything else fed to farm animals to fatten them up for slaughter as soon as possible.

    Eat like a pig, become one.

    That is one of the many causes of the American obesity epidemic.

    • rellik says:

      “Wheat is not very nutritional”.
      Huh?
      There are over 7 billion people on earth and most depend on Wheat! China, India, Africa, the Americas all eat lots of wheat.
      Rice is another biggie, but I’m very sure wheat is #1 for human consumption.
      I can dig it out but some old numbers for world production
      just for ratios only!
      rice 400 million metric tons.
      wheat 600 million metric tons.
      corn 600 million metric tons.

      • Genius says:

        Ya like everyone has brazil nut trees or any nut trees for that matter. The only nuts I have are pine nuts. I would burn the same calories picking and opening them as I got from the nut.

        • Anonymous says:

          Lots of Walnut and Chestnut trees here..Pine nuts are edible and are used to make “Native American” Peanut Butter..Lots of Blackberries and Raspberries here too..People need to learn the flora and fauna where they live instead of relying solely on items bought in a store or online..

      • Anonymous says:

        Bert is right;

        Wheat has few nutrients and any Dietician will tell you that nuts are packed with far more nutrients and are MUCH better for you..Just because Billions of people consume a particular food doesn’t mean it’s healthy for you.
        Look at how many hotdogs and burgers are consumed..Neither are good for you..

      • Yahooie says:

        Rellik, I agree. Wheat as it is farmed corporately (bio-engineered and laced with Roundup) is a travesty. Wheat grown from older varieties and organically is wonderful stuff. I must carefully choose which wheat product to consume or suffer assorted gut-clenching results and that puts me in a poor mood.

        I like bread and other wheat-based goods (in moderation; gotta watch my figure) so when I began encountering gut problems, I asked my doctor since I feared the gluten problem. She said perhaps it was how the wheat was grown referring to the chemicals, etc., and suggested I try alternate wheat products. I did and my guts have been pretty happy. It does make me wonder if the grand gluten free craze is actually due to most people feeling what I did.

        I also wonder if that’s the problem with cattle since they are fed this vicious form of grain. There is also the problem that cows were meant to graze vice being penned up and fed stuff like that.

        • Plan twice, prep once says:

          I found a website that specializes in old world heritage wheat seed. Some of it is quite expensive. Several varieties can be made into bread that people with a gluten intolerance can eat without problems.

          They have issues keeping inventory, apparently very wealthy people buy bulk quantities and have bread made for their table. If you can grow wheat in some quantity they will make a deal for certain high demand varieties for a share of the crop.

          Problem with heritage wheat varieties is it tends to grow tall and a percentage of the stalks break in storms and the wheat that touches the ground becomes spoiled and inedible.

          Modern hard red wheat is virtually all related to an experiment where a couple hundred pounds of wheat seed was irradiated in the 50’s and planted in the southwest. Out of the several acres planted one plant was found that was slightly smaller, but very stout and it produced a good quantity of viable seed. That plant was self pollinated and virtually all modern hard red wheat grown in the world is descendant from that one plant.

          That one plant literally tripled crop production, but now there are millions of people who can’t eat anything made from it, due to gluten intolerance. That nuclear radiation apparently changed the gluten protein that it produces.

          I hazard to say humans have grown wheat for most of recorded history and likely longer. The relationship became symbiotic. People with an intolerance to old world wheat likely died. The people and the plants they grew became intertwined. I’ll further hazard to say that given enough time our knowledge of genetics will reach a point where all children born will have food allergies removed from their genome.

          Modern genetics will also produce hackers, picture a genetic clown that releases a cold virus that causes people to have children with horns, tails, or tentacles, just for a laugh. We live in amazing times.

    • Clown World says:

      b said, “Eat like a pig, become one.”

      In the olden way of talking, fattening food was “nutritious”, and health food was for hunger pain — in other words, just to have something to keep you full in a famine.

      If you carry buckets of water, firewood, poop — to be a pig is the opposite of wasting. That was the justification for subsidizing our cheap and easy, staple foods, which most of us would never be able to eat, without corporate welfare.

      They were mad at Bernie for saying the bread line was a good thing. In context, the alternative was no bread.

      I am in favor of planting nuts, pseudo cereals, actual grains, or anything helpful, for the sake of security, but processing would be used to make these things more nutritious. You were not given the teeth of a beaver, the guts of a termite, and the gizzard of a turkey. You were given opposable thumbs and a mind. So, what is most natural.

    • Clown World says:

      Bert as in Bertholletia?

  9. Plan twice, prep once says:

    In the SHTF, take some stored wheat and plant it, even just a tiny plot, it’s great bait for deer etc.

    It may be dangerous to go hunting in the woods and fields, other people may just ambush and shoot you for your weapon and ammo. Let dinner to come to you, easy cheesy.

    Last spring I took a ten year old can of hard red wheat out of my preps, and split it into three groups; some I sprouted, some I planted, and a bunch I ground into flour and made bread. It was all good. Very good germination rate for the stuff I planted. Never got to sample the wheat I planted, it attracted a herd of deer. Plant a little every week to keep the deer coming back.

    • Anonymous says:

      Is hard red wheat the best to store? And, who is a good supplier?

      • Plan twice, prep once says:

        Many suppliers for wheat in # 10 cans, prices fluctuate so buyer beware. You can save money for a large supply if you buy in bulk and get 5 gallon pails to vacuum seal it in with O2 absorbers.

        With commercially packed wheat in #10 can you can get a 20 to 30 year shelf life. Home packed in pails should be good for 10 years. My preference is cans, they are rodent proof, high reliability, longer shelf life, and not all your eggs in a few baskets.

        Wheat; there are two main types, white and red. White wheat makes a better tasting bread, but is slightly harder to grow and tends to hold more moisture that reduces the shelf life. Red wheat has a lower moisture content and stores better. Red is more like a winter wheat, it can be planted in the fall, it grows until a killing frost, over winters, and then takes off in the spring. It can be harvested late spring, early summer then a second crop can be planted for a fall harvest in many areas. I have both white and red wheat in my stores.

        Final thought, grinding wheat into flour is not easy. A good flour mill isn’t cheap or easy to work. I’d love for others to add comments on this subject. There are some good cheap electric grinders, but that assumes you have a source for electricity in the SHTF. I have a Victorio and am disappointed at how difficult it is to hand grind two cups of flour to make a loaf of bread.

        • Plan twice, prep once says:

          Part two, making bread.

          Grinding your own wheat. With whatever grinder you use, put a strong neodymium magnet where the flour falls, it will remove metal lost from the grinding plates. Yeah I saw that in the first ounce of wheat I ground. Yuck.

          Remember, you are grinding whole wheat. It produces a heavy dense loaf. Consider buying some cans of gluten to add to your bread made from ground whole wheat in your preps. Not that I don’t like eating heavy dense loaves, but in peace time, it’s a lot of yummy calories. Oh yeah dipped in olive oil and spices, LOL!

          I’ve been working on various recipes for bread. My wife finally put her foot down and said she was gaining too much weight. Only make it for special occasions. My kitchen sink bread is awesome. I use about every spice in the cabinet. One secret is a touch of pretzel salt as a finishing touch.

          My sister and her hubby were here, I made my home made kitchen sink bread. He ate about half the loaf. Sis was telling him to stop, I was cracking up. In the SHTF, I’d be making a loaf every day or three.

          Bread makers secret. The main difference between a true French bread and a true Italian bread is the Italian bread should have a half to one teaspoon of olive oil added to the mix. The magic of the oil is it adds days to the shelf life of the bread. Truth is what most stores market as Italian bread has no olive oil in it. It’s just a bigger fatter loaf of French bread and it goes stale in one day. That is by design, so you toss it into the trash.

          My next bread secret. I keep a sterile bottle of distilled water in my kitchen. I spray stale bread with it and toss it into a 400 deg oven for 6 to 8 minutes to give it new life. If you made bread with olive oil, just lightly toast it for out of the oven flavor even days later.

  10. I use to buy 25lb bags of wheat from the Mormon’s Bishop Store for like 5 dollars. I must have 500lbs. of wheat berries. I was lucky and found a beautiful Country Living grinder on craigslist for $100 bucks. You can sprout wheat berries, boil it, grind it and use it in a number of ways. Good article!

  11. Look up depression cooking on youtube or? says:

    20 years storing here. Lots of grain and I use it regularly so with the floods in the USA and them not being able to plant yet I hope ya`all get stored up now. Recently I got hung up on depression cooking and its very interesting. They all had gardens back in the days and helped one another but they were able to get meat and or fish. They did a lot of baking of buns, breads, cakes and so on as flour was cheap. Were not looking at cheap now.
    Prices will double on grain products as I understand it by the end of this year maybe. The weather is not getting better don’t count on next years crops.Get your staples. Thats what Id say to a newbe .

    • Plan twice, prep once says:

      Depression days, grandpa said that most neighbors had a specialty. Be it making whine, beer, preserves or bread.

      They learned very quickly to barter during the depression. Everyone had a vegetable garden. I grew brussel sprouts a few years ago. Learned why people grow them, they taste like crap, but they are good to harvest fresh into December even January in a mild winter. Asparagus are the first green veggy in the spring. Plant a bed of asparagus and it’s good for twenty to forty years,

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