We’ve written a lot about canning recipes over the years as a way to prepare and store customized meals over the long term.  While canning opens up the door to limitless possibilities in terms of being able to enjoy all kinds of meal options during a prolonged crisis, it shouldn’t replace keeping a diverse supply of canned and dried goods on hand as well.  The following recipes illustrate how easy it is to convert items in a good stockpile into a nutritious and satisfying meal in a matter of minutes.

Canned Chicken and Rice Soup


4 quarts of chicken stock

3 cups of canned chicken (shredded or diced)

1-2 cups of canned sliced carrots

1 large diced onion

1 cup of rice

2 bay leaves

1 tablespoon of bullion

Salt and pepper or other seasonings to taste

Preparing the Recipe

Combine the chicken stock, bay leaves, bullion and seasonings into a pot and bring to a simmer.  Drain the liquid from the canned chicken and cut the meat into smaller pieces if desired.  Drain and rinse the canned carrots, and dice up your onion.  Add the rest of the ingredients into the pot, cook over low heat for about 20-30 minutes, and you’re good to go.

Bean and Rice Soup


1 cup of rice

¼ cup of kidney beans

¼ cup of lentils

¼ cup of barley

1/8 cup of chick peas

1/8 cup of green beans

1 tablespoon of bullion

Seasoning to taste


All you need to do is open the bags and cans, drain the water, give them a rinse, and combine all of the ingredients into a large pot.  Add in about 6-7 cups of water, bring up the heat to a boil before reducing to a simmer and cooking for about 2 hours or until the beans become tender.  If you want to presoak the beans before cooking, let them sit in a pot or bowl of cool water overnight before preparing the recipe.

These are just a couple of examples of how easy it is to mix and match canned and bagged items that we have in our stockpiles into nutritious and tasty meals.  However, you can only do this if you have the right items on hand.  Consequently, it’s important that you consider the wide-range of ingredients that go into a lot of common recipes and stock up accordingly.  It’s really easy to overlook things like canned meat or certain vegetables because we rarely use them under normal circumstances.  However, it would be a shame to not be able to enjoy these resources because we didn’t stock up beforehand.

Take an inventory of your stockpile, and compare what you have with what’s available in stores.  Chances are that you’ll be able to dramatically increase your meal options by filling in these gaps, and all of this can be accomplished without canning foods beforehand.   Best of all, most canned products are ready to eat, which means that you can just warm them up instead of wasting a lot of precious resources on cooking in the midst of a prolonged crisis.