Prepper to Prepper: How to Set Up An Emergency Kitchen

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Prepper to Prepper How to Set Up an Emergency Kitchen via The Survival Mom

With all of the disasters that have happened lately, many families have been without electricity, and experiencing the joys of cooking and serving meals to their families in spite of the challenges. Others have electricity but not a full kitchen to work in. Their homes may be safe enough to live in, but without electricity, they can’t use some of the appliances in the kitchen. I asked my Facebook readers to share their experiences and advice about setting up an emergency kitchen. As usual, never fail to impress.

By the way, you are invited to join my Facebook page and participate in discussions just like this one. Click here to Like and join!

From Kacie:
I just moved into a new home that was being remodeled so we didn’t have any appliances. I used my instant pot several times a week and the outdoor grill the rest of the time.

TIP: The Instant Pot is a lifesaver, and not just for emergency kitchens. Read more about it here.

From Bethany:
I live in Florida and this scenario happens about once a year where we live. We lose power for about a week. So, we have it kind of down to a science on how to survive without power during this time. We tend to eat things that don’t need refrigeration or we use a propane camping stove or cook over an open fire. We can cook fried spam and eggs for breakfast, or the kids can eat pop tarts. For lunch it’s mostly peanut butter and honey sandwiches, and for dinner, I try to go all out and cook on the stove with a meat, instant rice, or another quick starch to cook, along with canned veggies. Or we can do hotdogs and chips one night. You just have to adjust. It’s not fun and we are always happy when the power comes back.

From Shane:
I was homeless for a year. I used a Coleman 2-burner stove. I wanted a rocket stove but couldn’t afford one, and had no secure place to have it delivered. Now I have 2 camp stoves, a folding Sterno, and a rocket stove is on my wish list. After a flood subsides there’s a LOT of dead wood around. Same for high winds; at the least, it knocks the deadwood to the ground, which then becomes free firewood. I know this means cooking outdoors because for safety reasons, you should never cook over an open fire in an enclosed place.

Some propane stoves are safe to use indoors, but double check the label to make sure. And, you can build your own rocket stove for almost free following these instructions.

From Kandy:
I think this scenario is why it is important to have canned goods and freeze-dried or dehydrated foods in storage. I have probably a 6-month supply of long-term food storage, most of it freeze dried. You can eat it right out of the can, if necessary. I’ve been able to make a yummy chicken salad with freeze-dried chicken, celery, and onions. No cooking involved. Fruits taste like candy right out of the can, they are so sweet, but nothing is added to them. It is 100% fruit that has been freeze dried.

I also think a Sun Oven is a good investment if you have no electricity and can access the yard. Also, if you can cook outside, just having a grill could be a lifesaver. But the most likely scenario with these extreme natural disasters is no electricity for days or weeks. So, having the ready to eat food on hand is the top priority.

TIP- Look into the numerous reasons why freeze dried foods should be part of your food storage, and check out Lisa’s favorite brand of storage food, Thrive Life.

From Jacqueline:
I live in Florida, but one summer I served as a missionary in Eastern Europe and loved how almost everyone there has an outside “summer kitchen”! Here at home, I would make a workstation around the grill with an outdoor table/countertop and maybe a bin for dirty dishes or for washing dishes. It’s close to rainwater collection, trash, and compost, which is a plus. Also, I could easily throw water on surfaces to wash them down. I could get my messy on!

From Elizabeth:
Cook like you are camping! We’ve been through a lot and any time something crazy happens and we are required to function without a full-service kitchen, we focus on the basics. Propane camp stove, candle or oil lamps, Dutch oven (read this for getting started using a Dutch oven), homemade rocket, or solo stove made from tin cans. Get creative. Heat up items IN THE CAN — unless it has the plastic lining. One-dish meals make things easier, too. Ask the kids to help! Their young minds are so ingenious!

TIP: For a fun and easy grilled cheese sandwich you cook over a campfire, read this.

From Rachel:
My house flooded last year, and after the first 2 months staying with family, we moved back in and lived in the gutted house while we rebuilt. My cooking station was a folding table with a microwave, electric burner, a pot and a skillet with a few cooking tools, and a few basic spices, plus a plastic box to store the dishes/spices in during the day. A basic utility sink with the faucet was $120, which we needed since the cabinets were all out. I had a 5-gallon bucket full of lentils, but they were not a good emergency food in this situation as they require too long of a cooking time to mess with on the little burner where you have to hold the pot steady. Canned goods, pronto pasta, and Spam made up a lot of our meals. We got folding chairs to sit in and used paper goods.

From Penny:
We had pipes burst and flood half the house once. I had no kitchen for a few months while the work crew gutted and fixed everything. I used my gas grill, toaster oven, an electric wok, and the microwave. I have since obtained butane burners, a camp stove, and even a crock pot that runs on small propane tanks.

From Vickie:
We had no power for 3 weeks after Hurricane Wilma. We used our camping stove and the side burner of our grill. /We had stocked up on plenty of fuel for both. I also used my flat griddle and college-sized microwave for lots of things because I had a generator.

From TJ:
I always have a grill with a side burner and extra propane tanks for just this reason. I also have extra cinder blocks for building a rocket stove, just in case we run out of propane. Lots of home canned goods to choose from.

TIP- This is just a quick set of directions for a rocket stove you can put together in less than five minutes. It works and gives you one more option for off-grid cooking.

From Heather:
I have a toaster oven/griddle/coffee maker combo, a George Forman grill, and a camping stove that I might use in that situation. I would probably only cook one real meal a day and do simple breakfasts and lunches. Even plain sandwiches taste better when popped in the toaster oven or Forman.

From Patti:
On an open fire, except for rainy days on a Sterno. I’ve had to do this many times. it’s like a very long camping trip. I rather enjoyed it. But I’m weird like that.

From Yvette:
A solar oven is a must have for us, I made mine from very cheap materials. Works great.

This website has instructions for making a very good solar oven for less than $20.

From Mary:
I have 7 solar cookers, butane burners, thermal cookers, wonder bag, backpacking stoves, wood rocket stoves, a wood stove in the garage, grills, a fire ring with grate.

TIP- Are so many ways to cook yummy meals outdoors. Eating cold ravioli or tuna out of the can gets really old, really fast. If you have never used a solar oven, now is the chance to learn. Eating cold ravioli or tuna out of the can gets really old, really fast. If you want to try some new recipes in your solar oven, look no further- 10 Great Collapse-Day Recipes for the Solar Cooker

Miscellaneous tips:

  • You may not have a whole lot of storage room, so plan on making at least 2 shopping trips per week. If you’re living in a small space, you’ll be needing every nook and cranny so it’s probably best to not have too much food at any one time.
  • A power outage might also mean you don’t have a working refrigerator. In that case, only buy small containers of foods that need to be kept cold (such as mayonnaise) and use a heavy duty ice chest. Many foods that we normally keep in the fridge do not actually require refrigeration, such as eggs and butter.
  • Be willing to ask for help from friends, neighbors, co-workers, your church, etc. People around you are wondering how they can help and often don’t know exactly what to do.
  • Use disposable utensils, drinking cups, plates, paper towels, etc. to cut down on dish washing.

Prepper to Prepper How to Set Up an Emergency Kitchen via The Survival Mom

9 Ways our Homestead Cooks Off Grid

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9 Ways our Homestead Cooks Off Grid I learned early in my prepping career that stoves can die on you! Particularly electric stoves. They are just not the best single option for the average home. The power goes out and now you are stuck with eating out or eating cold. When you talk about a …

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Survival Cooking: How to Use a Dutch Oven

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Of all the tools you can use to cook food off the grid, the best one (in my opinion) is the Dutch oven. Every prepper who is concerned about long-term power outages should get a Dutch oven and learn how to use it. Why? Well for one thing, a good cast iron Dutch oven can […]

The post Survival Cooking: How to Use a Dutch Oven appeared first on Urban Survival Site.

Using a Wood Burning Stove to Cook Off Grid

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Using a Wood Burning Stove to Cook Off Grid Using a wood burning stove to cook off grid is not as easy as many people would think! Sure, anyone could start a fire in the stove, put food into a pot or pan and heat it up but would it taste good? Will it be …

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6 Ways To Make Coffee When The Power Is Out

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Coffee can be the one staple that adds a sense of normalcy in hard times. You might even be one of those diehard coffee lovers who ritualize their coffee brewing. But what happens when the electricity goes out? There will come a time when the shit hits the fan and you find yourself facing the […]

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The Ultimate Guide To Cooking Without Power

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Here it is! The only guide to cooking without power you’ll ever need. In this mega-post we’ll cover: 12 Ways To Cook Without Power 9 Off The Grid Cooking Tips 17 Handy Tools For Cooking Without Power It’s funny how cooking without power is regarded as a survival skill when for thousands of years, it […]

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World’s Smallest Stove: Olicamp Ion Micro Titanium

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I’ve often talked about the importance of keeping your bug out bag as light as possible. There are many ways to do this, but one of the best ways is to replace some of the items in your bag with lighter versions. For example, mini flashlights and radios as opposed to the standard size. Or […]

The post World’s Smallest Stove: Olicamp Ion Micro Titanium appeared first on Urban Survival Site.

20 Genius Yet Easy Campfire Recipes

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In my opinion, fall is the best time to go camping: The weather is cool and less humid, campgrounds are usually a lot cheaper, and fall colors are more beautiful (to me, anyway). If you’re thinking about camping this fall, don’t just eat canned food and trail mix. Cook something delicious that everyone will love. […]

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How-to recipe: Make Southwest Chicken Corn Chowder from storage foods

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Survival food is sustenance that can be made easily during a survival or emergency situation with simple, long-term storage food items, cooked outdoors, using off-the-grid methods.

This chowder recipe comes from the late Jan LaBaron’s  food storage cookbook: ” Jan’s Fabulous Food Storage Recipes: Converting Stored Foods Into Usable Meals.

Southwest Chicken Corn Chowder

1 dutchoven

This recipe adapts readily to Dutch oven campfire cooking.


3 Tbs dehydrated onions

1/2 tsp garlic granules

1 small can diced green chilies (or 2 large, fresh roasted chilies of your choice)(or use dehydrated)

2 c freeze dried corn or dehydrated

I c dehydrated or freeze dried potato dices

5 c water

1 c white cream sauce (Pick your favorite white cream sauce recipe)

2 tsp oregano

1 tsp cumin (ground)

1 Tbs chicken soup base

1-1/2 c freeze dried chicken (or canned chicken)

Tortilla chips for garnish, if desired

In a small stockpot, add water and bring to a boil. Add potatoes, onions, garlic, green chilies, oregano, cumin and chicken soup base. Simmer until vegetables are tender. Now add the freeze dried corn, cook for another 5 minutes. In a separate bowl, mix together 1-1/2 c waster and cream soup base until smooth, slowly add the cream soup base to soup mix that has been simmering. Once this is incorporated, add the freeze dried tortilla chips and additional cheese if desired.

– from “Jan’s Fabulous Food Storage Recipes: Converting Stored Foods Into Usable Meals”

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9 Easy Steps to Make Your Own Charcoal

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One of the simplest and most popular ways to cook without power is with a charcoal grill. But what if you run out of charcoal? If you’re living through a long-term disaster, you can’t just run to the store for more. Instead, you’ll need to make your own. Fortunately, charcoal is not that difficult to […]

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How to Make Easy Emergency Bread

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Note: To make this bread, I used the buddy burner candle and tin can stove from my last two tutorials. In case you missed them, here’s how to make a buddy burner candle, and here’s how to make a tin can stove. Bread is considered the staple of […]

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Chuck Wagon Cooking: When the Power Goes Out

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Cooking without electricity for an extended period (months) is not the type of cooking many of us have ever experienced. Of course, we cook over open fires when camping overnight or when the electricity is out for a few days, but when the power is out for weeks or months and the propane bottles run empty cooking becomes much more difficult.

Making Coffee

We need to keep our priorities straight here so coffee first the old-fashioned way.

Coffee is brewed using a handful of grounds to one cup of water. You would grind your own beans using a hand grinder. Whole unroasted (green) beans would be the best way for Preppers to store large amounts of coffee.

This is easy to make, but difficult to perfect so experiment some. To make, you simply put the grounds in the water and boil. You can add eggshells to help settle the grounds, and in some cases, a splash of cold water added just before pouring will help settle the grounds as well. A dash of salt will help with bitterness. If you don’t want to deal with having grounds in your coffee you can also use a stainless steel coffee percolator.

Green coffee beans can be roasted in a skillet over a campfire. You simply roast until brown, but it requires patience and you cannot walk away to gather firewood while the beans roast.

There are several stages to the roasting process and you can ruin the beans if you let them roast too long. The beans will turn yellow, and then crack to emit steam in the first stage, and once the beans turn brown you can stop if you want, or continue on to create a darker roast. It all depends on your taste.

If you leave the beans roasting, you will hear another crack (second stage) and the beans may begin to act like popcorn because the heat is rapidly evaporating the moisture from the beans causing them to bounce.

Less moisture means a darker roast, but you do not want to burn the oils and sugars in the beans, so for your first time, it is better to stop after the first stage, then grind a handful, and see how it tastes. As you gain more experience you can advance the roasting process to make a very dark roast.

Next Is Fried Bread:

  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 1 package active dry yeast
  • 2 Tb sugar
  • 2 eggs, well beaten
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 3 1/2-4 cups all-purpose flour, sifted
  • Vegetable oil

Heat the milk until warm (115° F), and be careful you do not scald the milk.

Then pour into a large bowl and add the yeast and sugar. Then stir in beaten eggs and salt. Slowly mix in the flour until mixture forms smooth and elastic dough.

Cover with a damp cloth and allow the dough to rise until it doubles in size. Sprinkle flour over your work surface. Divide the dough into 10 or 12 pieces roughly the size of a lemon. Flatten into discs. Leave the dough to rise for another 10 minutes.

Heat oil to 350 degrees in a deep fryer, large pot, or skillet and then fry dough discs one or two at a time for three to five minutes, and turn once to make sure both sides fry evenly (Legends Of America, 2016).

Making Venison or Beef Jerky

Jerky is not just survival food because it can be used either as a main meal or as the basis for other recipes like stews and protein broths. The word jerky is derived from the method in which the meat is removed from the bones. It was jerked away quickly to leave behind much of the sinew.

Three pounds of fresh meat equals about 1 pound of jerky.

 Method One: 

Hang the strips of meat on racks made of willow to dry in the sun and/or in the smoke of the campfire. Smoke will help repel bacteria and insects. It can take days to dry the meat sufficiently.

Before refrigeration and vacuum sealing, the meat was dried until extremely hard, so hard, in fact, it could not be chewed easily, if at all. It was often soaked in warm/hot water to create a broth or pieces were shaved off and left in the mouth to soften before chewing. It had to be hard to last for months out of refrigeration.

Method Two

Rub the strips of meat with dry salt and then place in a stone crock (today it’s called Earthenware or stoneware) for 24 hours. The salt will pull the moisture out of the meat. Do not add liquids while the meat cures. Remove the strips and hang in the sun or smokehouse to dry until nearly brittle (Legends Of America, 2016).

 Pantry Essentials for Chuck Wagon Cooking

  • Flour
  • Sugar
  • Vinegar
  • Potatoes
  • Salt, Pepper
  • Beans and Onions

Legends Of America. (2016). Retrieved 2016, from

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