If you’re like most of us, building your food storage supply can be a daunting project which needs enough knowledge about effective food storage tricks. Not only it can be costly but it also requires decision making as to what kind of food to store, when it needs to be rotated, and how much to buy per person. One of the biggest hang-ups, however, is where to store your food. With a little creativity, there are likely places you can store food in your home, no matter what your living situation is. Scroll down and find out excellent places to store foods especially when an emergency occurs!
Food Storage Tricks | 20 Clever Places To Keep Extra Food
1. The Faux Wall
Do you have an extra space in the center of your room? Bring the walls in! Some preppers have found out that by hanging a decorative curtain a couple of feet out from the wall, they will have a good storage for cans, mason jars, plus more food storage containers behind. This essentially creates their own wall-sized cupboard.
This can make a practical option for the living room, dining room, or other living areas. It is still aesthetically pleasing which beats storing things in mylar bags, for example.
2. Food Storage Entertainment Center
How about creating your own “food storage entertainment center” out of large boxes of food? This can be done easily by stacking boxes into your desired shape for a TV stand and then draping with fabric.
Tuck the fabric in tightly for a sleek, modern look, and then set your TV, DVD player, speakers, remotes, or anything else you want on your new food storage furniture! This can also double as extra storage space for other things such as weapons and ammunition.
3. Create False Bottoms in Cupboards
If you have a broom closet, pantry, low cupboards in the kitchen, or other areas in the house with leftover vertical space, creating a false bottom allows you to incorporate food storage.
To do this, simply layer the floor with cans of the same height and then cover with a piece of plywood to create your new “false floor.” Besides storing your food supply, you can also use these as long-term storage for things like documents and bug-out money.
4. Under The Stairs
Many homes already have converted space under the stairs into some kind of storage, but if not, create some simple shelving for this awkwardly shaped storage space, and cash in big time! Under the stairs typically works the best for cans and other items which are small enough to fit in versatile spaces. Try your best to ensure that the containers are as modular as possible to save on storage space.
5. Cupboard Door Spice Racks
Free up some cupboard space by creating a spice rack on the inside of a cupboard door. Purchase a lightweight, slim profile rack which can be screwed to the inside of the cupboard door, then transfer your spices to it. This leaves your main cupboard area open for storage. The spice rack can be created simply and economically with pegboard, Velcro, or magnets!
6. The Coat Closet
Are you actually using your coat closet? Many people actually don’t. This could be a great untapped area for food storage preparation! Create inexpensive shelving, stack cases of cans, or whatever else you want. Even if you are using your coat closet to hang coats, you can still utilize “leftover” space by using the false floor technique (above), or the high shelves. Make sure you place this in an inconspicuous space to ensure maximum stealth.
7. Under the Bed
This extra space is a perfect place to store your food. One easy way to utilize this location is to line the reachable perimeter with boxes of food. To be more organized, you can incorporate a simple rotation system. You can do this by storing foods of the same type in rows running underneath your bed. Make sure to follow a first-in, first-out method. Sort your food according to their shelf life so nothing goes to waste.
8. Decorative Containers
Speaking of “aesthetics,” another good option for snagging some additional space in the living areas is with decorative containers. Think wicker baskets, hope chests, and hollow footstools. Stuff these containers chock full of food, and never notice the difference!
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9. Behind Furniture
Pull out your couches, beds, etc. and store food in the space created behind them. This is similar to the faux wall concept. Cover with a fabric, tabletop, or another simple textile.
10. High Closet Shelves in Kids’ Bedrooms
If your kids have closets with high shelves, this could be a good option for your food storage house. Chances are, they can’t reach the high shelves to use them anyway, so this area is frequently underutilized.
Alternatively, some people opt for a false floor in kids' closets or a wall of cans stacked on one side. While these containers certainly aren’t out of the question, having your food storage lower to the ground in kid’s closets might tempt them to be sneaky and get some.
11. Laundry or Utility Room
Do you have a laundry room, furnace room, or other “back of house” area? Odds are, there is some space to use for food storage. The nice thing about these locations is because they aren’t frequented by guests, you don’t have to be fancy about how it looks.
Stack food along with a wall shelf, use a free cupboard or slice the space any way you please to fit in what you can. Many laundry rooms will actually have some version of an emergency floor drain, so if you have space, it’s not a bad place to store water either.
12. Dead Space Above Cupboards
Depending on your kitchen, you may have a couple of feet of unused space between the tops of your cupboards and your kitchen ceiling. This space can make for great additional food storage. So as not to add any significant weight to the supports holding your cupboards walls, the best item to store are lightweight foods. Pasta, soup mixes, and other dry ingredients. Freeze dried meats which withstand moisture can work here too.
13. Empty Suitcases
Unless you’re a frequent traveler, empty suitcases can make great places to store extra food. Suitcases are modular and will take up the same amount of total space whether they are full or not. Put these bad boys to use, and fill them with your non-perishables! If you have sealed Mylar bags pouches as part of your food storage, these work great for maximizing the area inside a suitcase
Bonus: If you accidentally leave some food in your suitcase, the first meal after you land could be free!
14. Crawl Space or Attic
Storing food in a crawl space or attic is not the most highly recommended location. These are areas subject to extreme temperatures, moisture, critters, and limited access. Still, if you have these options available to you, and need the space for your food supply, they are worth considering.
Think about keeping your dry goods and other “non-foods” in these locations–toilet paper, paper towels, toothbrushes, first aid items, deodorant, etc. Check back shortly after some time stashing them and evaluate whether or not this is a good spot.
15. Bed on Cinder Blocks
Lifting your bed up on cinder blocks to create extra space is a time-honored tradition. Although you should be careful to make sure the bed is still steady, you can sometimes double or triple the total “under the bed” volume you have at your disposal with this technique.
Cinder blocks are extremely cheap and can be purchased at any hardware store. If you are really trying to get your bed up high, stacking two cinder blocks lengthwise under each leg is much more stable than stacking one vertically. They’re a cheap way to make a food shelf, so save yourself some dollars on the way.
16. Exterior locker
If you have already tapped out all the nooks and crannies you have inside your home, an exterior locker might be worth considering. As the name suggests, these are tall, upright storage units which can hold a considerable amount.
They can be placed against the side of the house, in a carport or garage, against a fence, or anywhere else. While having your food stores outside is less ideal, it’s better than nothing! If you are going to go this route, get a locker that weathers well (not metal!). Also, they can be expensive, so to save money, try to find one in your local classifieds.
17. Cupboards Above The Fridge
Much like the dead space above your kitchen cupboards, the cupboards above your fridge are often underutilized. Because they’re hard to reach, they’re frequently forgotten about or become a catchall for junk. For even more storage space, take the doors off of those little cupboards, and store food items not only in the cupboards but also in front of them on top of the fridge. Cover the whole area with a simple fabric curtain.
18. Behind The Door
When raiders come inside your home, the last thing they'd look at is behind your door. Take advantage of this little blind spot and hide some food in a small cubbyhole behind your door. You can build a little hatch that goes into a small storage under the floor and then cover it up with a plant or a coat rack.
Who would ever think of storing food in the garage? You, for instance. You won't find many people who would comb through a garage looking for food. It's an excellent place to hide your food in, as long as they aren't perishables. Check for little alcoves under your desks or workstations for good hiding places for your food.
20. Gun Cabinet
Any prepper or survivalist worth their salt should be able to fully secure their gun cabinets. It should be the most secure piece of furniture in your home. With all that security, it becomes an extra place to hide your food in. As long as it is kept out of sight, you can store your canned meals with your guns and ammo. Just make sure not to overstock.
Want some tips on how to build your own food storage for survival? Here is a video from City Prepping:
There you have it, 20 ideas to maximize the space you have for additional food storage locations. Along with all of these food storage ideas, goes the reminder to put your “longest term” storage away from the deepest. These are the items you will rarely use which don’t need to be readily accessible. Above all, as with any prepping, the most essential principle is to be realistic about how and where you store your food. The places where you can store food certainly aren’t limited to this list. Don’t be afraid to get creative, have some fun, and go for it!
Do you have any other suggestions for storing food in your home? Let us know in the comments section below.
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Editor’s Note: This post was originally published on July 23, 2018 and has been updated for quality and relevancy.