The Ultimate Prepping List

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There are so many things to think about when it comes to prepping. Sometimes it’s hard to narrow it down to a list. In many cases, we prepare for certain disasters, but the truth is we just never know what could happen. So, I have made the ultimate prepping list broken down into categories: 

  • Power
  • Cooking
  • Sanitation
  • Food
  • Medication
  • Water

The Ultimate Prepping List

The Ultimate Prepping List

Where Will My Power Come From?

Storms can knock out the power for hours, to several days, or even weeks! Mother Nature isn’t always consistent, so it’s important to have other power sources for when these things happen. Here are some basic things to consider when thinking about your power sources:

Wood Burning Stove

This would be something to consider getting, especially if you live in an area with cold winters. Of course, even places that never get ice and violent storms can sometimes have extreme weather (think Texas). If the power goes out, so does the heat. So, when it comes to power, you should also think about heat sources. 

Related: How to Stay Warm Without Power

Don’t forget about stocking wood, fuel, fire starters, and lighters. 

Backup Generator

For most of us, a backup generator is great to have on hand, especially if you will only be without power for a few days to a week. There are several options:


Lots of things in your home can be powered by batteries. In fact, your computer and phone just have rechargeable batteries, so it would be good to have a backup storage pack so you can recharge those. Stock up on all the batteries you would need! In addition to making sure you have batteries, grab some of the things you can use the batteries with, such as:

How Will I Cook?

You may have enough food to keep you and your family alive for a year, but it does no good if you can’t cook it! If you lose power, you may struggle to keep your food cold for longer than a few days, but things like pasta, baking bread, and other meals require you to be able to cook your food as well. Here are some very good ideas:

Read More of My Articles  How to Make Prepping Affordable

Related: Why Do I Need Different Emergency Cooking Stoves

In addition to a cooking source, you will also want to stock fire starters and fuel such as:

Related: Types of Fire Starters to Stock

What Will I Do With My Garbage?

Depending on the situation, you may need to be prepared to deal with your own garbage and waste. You can either burn your garbage or you can bury it. But, what about human waste?

Related: Proper Waste Disposal During an Emergency

Well, back in the day, we used outhouses. It was basically a hole in the ground with a building around it. A combination of lime, dirt, and ash can be used to cover the waste and minimize the smell and spread of germs. Be sure to protect your local water system from the waste.

Related: How to Deal with Human Waste

What Food Should I Stock?

It is important to have a variety of different kinds of food stocked. You especially need to have non-perishable items as it will be very difficult to keep things cold if the power goes out. Here’s a list of survival items you will want to stock:

  1. Wheat Berries 
  2. Salt
  3. Ready to eat canned food
  4. Protein bars
  5. Dry cereal or granola
  6. Peanut butter
  7. Dried fruit
  8. Canned juices
  9. Non-perishable milk (canned or powdered)
  10. Food for babies and infants
  11. Canned soups and chili
  12. Dry pasta
  13. Sports drinks
  14. Honey
  15. Baking soda
  16. Dry yeast
  17. Popcorn
  18. Instant Potatoes
  19. Crackers
  20. Beans
  21. Rice
  22. Lentils
  23. Oatmeal
  24. Nuts
  25. Pasta sauce
  26. Teas. 
  27. Oils
  28. Corn starch
  29. Pancake mix (add water)
  30. Eggs and powdered eggs
  31. If you have pets they’ll need food too

Foods You Can Grow

In addition to stocking up on non-perishable items and a variety of food, you should also learn to grow your own fruits and vegetables. Whether you have a yard or not, you can still learn to grow a few things on your own, from tomatoes to strawberries. If you aren’t sure where to start, along with this ultimate prepping list, check out my guides for what to plant each month of the year:

Read More of My Articles  What to Do Before a Tropical Storm Hits

Make sure you are saving or buying seeds as well. I get my seeds from SeedsNOW!

What Medications Do I Need?

If you are on prescription medications, you will want to have at least 3-month supply of your medication stocked up. It can be difficult to do this with prescriptions, but if you talk with your doctor about being a prepper, some will send in more than you need for a month. If your doctor won’t, look for a doctor who will. In addition to your prescriptions, you will also need to stock up on over the counter medications which include:

Related: 35 OTC Medications You Should Store

How do I Store Water?

You can store water in a variety of different ways. It is recommended to store 1 gallon of water per person in your household per day. I would recommend increasing that to 4 gallons of water per person per day. I would also recommend having at least a month worth of water stored for each person. 

  • 55-gallon water barrels
  • Waterbricks
  • BlueCans

Water Sanitation

No matter how much water you store, if a situation lasts longer than you prepared for, you are going to have to find water. But, you want the water to be safe to drink you need to read my post: How to Make Your Water Safe to find out what you need. 

Other Items to Stock

Besides the above items in this ultimate prepping list, you will also need other essential items. Here’s a list:

Final Word

The best way we can be prepared is to break down what we need and stock up a little at a time. Don’t feel pressured to get all of these items on my ultimate prepping list during one shopping trip. Pick and choose what you will need and get one thing at a time! May God Bless this world, Linda

Copyright Images: Wood Burning Stove AdobeStock_139391005 by Casa.da.Photo

35 thoughts on “The Ultimate Prepping List

  • April 4, 2021 at 6:48 am

    Soapbox time:
    The MIND is the first thing you’ve got to get right in order to survive or do well during an emergency.
    This is a good list that will be beneficial in most scenarios.
    Stop thinking “it won’t happen here”, it “only happens to others” and “someone will do something”.
    HOAs are not your friends. Your paying someone to tell you how to live. It’s frustrating when people whine about they can’t do this or have that but I’d like to do something to be prepared. Look in the charter. There is zero contingency for emergencies. Stop pretending.
    Politics aren’t your friend. Especially if you live in liberalville that again can’t do this or have that. Don’t immediately say you’ll move either. Fix it
    Your budget needs fixing. If your mind is set in maxing out house, vehicles, nails and games to impress then no you won’t have other items that can assist you in emergencies.
    It is a lifestyle. It’s a way of thinking. It’s actually thinking. It has an element of doing requiring action.
    That stimulus money hit. Consider fixing one area such as a generator.
    Look at this list again and fix one thing on it this month.
    You don’t to go full blown doomsday prepper and build a castle like on tv. In fact please don’t.
    Exit soapbox stage right.

    • April 4, 2021 at 7:52 am

      Hi Matt, I LOVE LOVE LOVE your comment! I read the part to Mark about the HOA is not your friend. We’re paying someone to tell you how to live. You are amazing! I totally agree about maxing out the house, vehicles, etc. AMEN. You said my thoughts exactly. Linda

    • April 4, 2021 at 8:02 am

      Matt, I agree with all you said there 100%. But, it is not soapbox, it is just common sense. It goes along with my recent comment about personal responsibility. If someone won’t do for themselves, why do they think it is someone else’s responsibility? Too many make excuses rather than preparations. Many folks around me, to whom I have been talking preparations, have started waking up in the wake of our recent freak cold weather fiasco here in Texas. Sometimes God just has to give us a slap in the face to wake us up. We have a saying here in Texas, “Remember the Alamo!” I am going to start a new one, “Remember February 2021!” Maybe I can use that to jumpstart more folks’ personal responsibility to get their preparations started. LOL!!!
      Happy Easter!!

    • May 8, 2021 at 12:57 am

      Matt you should maybe stay on that soap box for awhile. That is all good advice.

  • April 4, 2021 at 7:14 am

    Linda, one of the best posts you’ve made. No wonder we love you so much. You are so good to us. A lot I knew, and a lot I learned. Thank you so much for all you do for us. You are my hero!

    Matt, good reply! You are right. The mind set is very important. I know that it CAN happen to me. If it happened when my Mother was a child, it can happen to me just as easily. The Great Depression was real. My parents and grandparents learned from it and I learned a lot from them.

    • April 4, 2021 at 7:54 am

      Hi Deborah, you are so cute! You made my day, girlfriend! Man, I wish we were neighbors! I believe another Great Depression is near, the housing bubble is going to explode. Hang on for the ride. Linda

      • April 4, 2021 at 10:32 am

        Linda, I wish we were closer neighbors, too. I’ve believed a Greater Depression is coming for the past several years. I believe it will be the worst ever. I’m preparing for a rough ride. You hang in there, too. We need you on our side.

        • April 4, 2021 at 12:32 pm

          HI Deborah, life is good if we have a team like this group! Linda

    • April 17, 2021 at 5:23 pm

      Been preparing since we readied for Y2K, n dont regret a minute, one thing I’ve recently been made aware of is that we’ll be going through 3 1/2 years when we as Christian’s will not be able to buy/sell. You talk about preparations, it’s a different ball game vs. preparing for storms n even economic collapse. But God is able n we’ll get it accomplished with the Lord’s help. PTL.

      Keep prepping, trust the Lord to lead .n guide n you’ll be able to lead others to survive. A real survivalist.


      • April 17, 2021 at 5:43 pm

        Hi Jerry, wow, I remember Y2K, crazy times! Life is good when we have faith in God to direct our preparedness! Linda

      • April 18, 2021 at 8:12 am

        Jerry, I started prepping in Y2K as well. Just not a diligent as now. My husband thought I was being silly. Not so much now. In fact, he is getting on board. Especially since Covid hit.

  • April 4, 2021 at 8:11 am

    Happy Easter to Linda and all you great folks who comment on her blog. Stay ready because, as Linda says, it is not a matter of if, it is a matter of when. It is not a matter of how bad, but a matter of bad enough to make your preps worthwhile and possibly save your life. One thing that I would pass on, and I have said it before, don’t lament the fact that you occasionally have to throw away a few preps because they have expired. Look at those as a form of insurance premium. They were there if you had needed them before they expired. How many times have we all paid insurance premiums on various insurance policies without ever filing a claim before the end of the term and a new premium payment is due? To me that is what expired preps are, an interim insurance premium.

    • April 4, 2021 at 12:31 pm

      Hi Harry, Happy Easter my friend! Thank you! I can still remember you talking about the insurance premiums. That is the best comment EVER! How many times do we pay that house insurance premium, and never have to use it? Thank goodness, so far. If the cans are expired, let them go, and don’t look back. Happy Easter to all today! Linda

  • April 4, 2021 at 9:37 am

    I think my fellow Texan Matt said I all. Keep the soapbox going.

  • April 4, 2021 at 2:03 pm

    I find it interesting that in recent years more friends have stopped laughing at me for my prepping and started asking for advice. I happily steer them in your direction. A caring attitude and good, practical information without all that lecturing about things that don’t really matter in the long run. Thank you!

    • April 4, 2021 at 3:34 pm

      Hi Alice, oh you are so nice!! Thank you for your kind words. I’m glad to hear your friends understand now what YOU have been doing all along. An example is everything. Good job, Linda

  • April 4, 2021 at 3:46 pm

    Linda, I always enjoy your articles and this one was excellent. I also like Matt’s comments. a few things though. First about learning to grow food, you should tell people to focus on open pollinated and heirloom seeds–since they are the only seeds that will breed true. Second they should also have hybrid seeds availble to get in a first crop during desperate times as hybrids are generally more disease and pest resistant than heirlooms.

    Third, where is the section on How to defend your family during tough times? How about learning how to barter?

    • April 4, 2021 at 4:49 pm

      Ray I’m glad to hear I’m not the only one saying have hybrids for that first year of starting or the big increase.

      • April 4, 2021 at 5:21 pm

        Matt, I do believe people need to learn how to grow heirlooms/open pollinated plants so they can learn to save seed and make their gardens more sustainable. But there’s a learning curve involved with many heirlooms and in desperate times no one can afford a poor crop. You and I know that hybrid vigor will produce a crop when heirlooms might fail. Sure, once that seed is gone it’s irreplaceable but that first year’s garden could well prove critical to survival.

        I’ve been growing heirlooms for decades, but I still resort to hybrids on occasion. For instance, I have three asparagus beds. Two of them are heirlooms and one is hybrid. All should be producing asparagus for the next 20 years.

        Personal taste gets involved too. My wife loves Short n Sweet carrots, a hybrid, so I grow them for her. I love Kuroda and Scarlett Nantes which are both heirlooms. You know the drill.

    • April 4, 2021 at 7:14 pm

      Hi Ray, I agree the need to learn to barter, and how to defend our family is critical. Baby steps for some, leaps for others. Linda

  • April 4, 2021 at 7:23 pm

    Thank you Linda, this is a wonderful post! Wishing you & yours a blessed Easter.

  • April 5, 2021 at 1:59 am

    This is one fantastic edition of yours! This exemplifies the KISS principle. Very practical & understandable. Have I told you lately how much I love you?
    One little note: butane won’t vaporize worth doodly below 32*F; therefore no flame. Even when it’s more like 40* or 50*, if your rate of demand from your butane source is too high, butane will chill itself below its vaporization temperature while you’re trying to use it. If you’re prepping for a possible exposure to low temperatures, propane is a better choice. Even propane gets slow to vaporize below freezing. Even though less convenient, white gas (Coleman fuel) is superior to either.

    • April 5, 2021 at 6:53 am

      Hi Gary, oh my gosh, I totally forgot about the KISS (Keep It Simple Stupid)!! Wow, great thoughts on the fuel types, thank you!!! Linda

  • April 5, 2021 at 1:06 pm

    Linda, I love, love, love your blogs! I read them every day and save the ones I really want to re-read, etc. But I have to admit, one of the best things I love the most about your blogs is the comment sections. I LOVE Matt from Oklahoma and Harry the Texas Patriot. I get such a kick out those two, their no-bulls#*! approach to things, etc. There is always something in everyone’s posts that can be learned from and applied/tweaked to ones’ area/living circumstances. Keep up the amazing work!

    • April 5, 2021 at 3:50 pm

      Hi Robbie, oh you made my day! We really are blessed to have those two in our group! We have kind people with knowledge willing to share their thoughts, skills, and so much more. I really appreciate it too! Life is so good when we have positive people with good hearts working together. Linda

  • April 5, 2021 at 3:22 pm

    Great post, Linda.
    I think communications and having a plan for what to do if the whole family is not together when the emergency hits are both prominent needs. It does come down to using your brain/mind to really think about the “what ifs”. What if the kids are at school, mom and dad are at work. Do the kids know what to do and where to go/wait for mom and dad?

    When my daughter was in school, every fall the school sent out a paper telling the parents to make up an emergency bag: parents contact information (I also included a signed note that she could be picked up by *** or go to *** home); storable food (jerky, cup a soup, granola bars, hard candy, water additives, hot cocoa, tea, etc.). I also included a metal mug for heating or serving the soup and/or water as well as tissues and other “female” necessities (as she got older). I used my FoodSaver to vacuum seal the bag then labeled it with her name, address, my phone#. We always carefully cut the bag open so she could eat the jerky and other foods but kept the non-perishable items in the bag to be replenished the next year. The teacher kept this in a bin in the class room in the case of emergencies.

    One could also make up bags of this sort for the car but include water as well.

    • April 5, 2021 at 3:55 pm

      Hi Leanne, oh my gosh, I remember making these for my grandkids with my daughter. We used my FoodSaver to seal the stuff. It’s a great reminder even for homeschooled kids because these are great to have in the car should an emergency arise. Making a plan for every scenario should be done ASAP. Great comment as always. Linda

  • May 7, 2021 at 9:22 pm

    Hi Linda. Great article. But I’d like to see “lighting” added to the list as well as “power.” Whether it’s finding the key you dropped in the driveway or delivering a baby at midnight, lighting can be critical. I found this out in 2003 when I took a job in Canada and 2 weeks later the lights went out in the entire Northeast for a few days. We were not prepared. We did not have so much as one candle with us. When the sun went down it got dark. Later on, after retiring, I wrote The Non-Electric Lighting Series. Perhaps the most useful book in the series is “Olive Oil Lamps &c.” Vegetable oil lamps have been around since biblical times. Worth a look:

    • May 8, 2021 at 8:19 am

      Hi Ron, your series of books is awesome!!!! Thanks for the link! Linda

  • May 8, 2021 at 1:06 am

    Linda, Thank you for a great job!


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