What To Stock Up On In December

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Today, it’s all about what to stock up on in December. Oh, how I love to save money on items I need to keep our home flowing the right way.

December is a great month to stock up on so many items we all need. Let’s get started saving money right now.

It’s interesting to note that most businesses have over half their annual sales from October through December. So, they need to unload some items to be ready for the new items coming in January.

What To Stock Up On In December

What To Stock Up On In December

Baking Items

Be sure and look for some baking items you need to stock your pantry. The two top items that will be cheaper this month are flour and sugar. Please only buy the amount of flour you can use in 12 months or so. That’s the safest shelf-life for white flour.

Sugar will last indefinitely if it stays dry in an airtight container. I know a lot of us are cutting back on sugar, but if we have a longterm grid down, sugar will be our new best friend.

We can bake cookies, cakes, bread, and so much more that we can sell or barter with, besides knowing we have the food to keep our family full.

In some areas watch for clearance on flour and sugar because once the temperatures get too hot, some people stop baking altogether. This is a great time to stock up on baking items.

Cake Mixes

My favorite cake mixes are Duncan Hines. I use them as a base and add some really good stuff to add flavor and texture to the cake. If you haven’t made my chocolate cake you may want to try making it.

Plus, my mother taught me a secret on how to make your cakes really moist. I love a moist chocolate cake.

I have seen my favorite cake mixes for .75 to .95 cents for each box. Boy, what a savings. This is a great time to stock up on your favorite ones. Here’s the deal, you can volunteer to take a cake to a party because you’ll already have the mix ready to go on your pantry shelf.

Canned Food

Let’s make it a point to fill our pantry with some canned food items you and your family will enjoy all year long. If by chance you don’t use them up before they expire, you can donate them to your local food bank.

If you missed my post on which ones I suggest you stock, check out Canned Foods I recommend.

Some of the basic ones are vegetables and fruits. It’s nice to have a few cans of food we can save money on and eat right out of the can if we need too. Be sure and keep a few can openers on hand.

Garden Seeds

I want to encourage you to stock up on garden seeds anytime you have a little extra money. My heart and gut are telling me we must produce more of our own food. We don’t need several acres to grow food, yes, it would be nice. Mark and I have 4-foot square raised garden beds. I raise potatoes in large pots. It doesn’t matter about the quantity of food, it’s quality. We can grow food in pots, bags, or any container with drainage.

We all need to keep garden seeds so we can grow our food. My favorite place to buy my garden seeds is SeedsNow I have two of these containers below. They are perfect for storing my garden seeds. Photo Case 4″ x 6″ Photo Box Storage and my label machine is easy to use to organize my entire house. Brother P-Touch Label Maker

Garden Seed Container

Christmas/New Year’s Eve Items

Board Games

If you’re big into playing board games, watch for games that go on sale. My favorite game is Clue, and it was sold out. But there were plenty of other choices the day I checked.

It’s a great month to stock up on stocking stuffers at the lowest prices available. Just think about small tubes of toothpaste, toothbrushes, deodorant, shampoo, and conditioners.

We may as well fill those stockings with useful items over things we will toss two days later because they are broken or food items that spoil.

Watch for paper plates, cups, and tablecloths with the holiday theme for both Christmas and New Year’s Day. You will see them drastically reduced at the beginning of the month, so buy them when you see them on sale.

The closer we get to the actual day, the prices go up because they are in short supply.

After Christmas, you will see great markdowns, but the choices will be limited. So, if you have your heart set on a certain theme, snatch them with the first markdown.

Keep your eye on crackers that are marked down just in time for greeting friends and family on Christmas and New Year’s Day. Serve the dips you make, or the ones you buy along with the crackers, it’s a win-win.

Thanksgiving Leftovers

You will see all those Thanksgiving turkeys on sale because most people want ham or prime rib for Christmas. This is a great month to watch for a spiral ham or regular ham that will be cut in price as well.

Just think, you could make a ham dinner, ham sandwiches, and ham soup. You gotta love the options.

You can also stock up on some turkeys for your freezer. Last year I saw them get down below .50 cents a pound. If you have room in your freezer you may want to grab some.

Instant Potatoes

What To Stock Up On In December

Check the instant mashed potato aisle, as well as the ready-made mashed potatoes in the refrigerated aisle. I stocked up on StoveTop stuffing, it’s one of my favorites. They are super cheap this month.

Christmas Trees/Decorations

Last week I saw some Christmas trees marked down 40-50%. For some reason, people have been putting their trees up early. I’m guilty of that this year.

When I went to Target a few weeks ago there were so many trees, and now there are limited choices. I’m not sure we will see many artificial trees left after Christmas, at least where I live, that were 70-80% off.

You can get so many decorations right now at 40-50% off and it’s only December 1st! If you buy in December you will find so many great buys on Christmas decorations of all kinds.

The Christmas lights are marked way down, put them in your emergency stash if they are 60-70% off, right?

Cosmetics

I’m not big into cosmetics, but I know a lot of people are, and you may as well save money on them. Look for those buy one get one free coupons this month.

I’m talking about eyeliners, mascara, blush, and lipsticks. Take a friend and split the cost. Or just stock up on the ones you use the most. Some companies are giving away free items even with the buy one get one free.

Some of the more expensive cosmetics that don’t usually go on sale will have discounts of 30-40% off. This may be to entice people to get dressed up for that holiday party coming up.

Frozen Pies/Pie Crusts

Oh my gosh, I saw some pies today that were frozen and all you do is serve after thawing. There were some where you do need to bake them. How easy is that? I may have to go back and get one of those Key Lime pies.

Thank goodness, whipping cream will start going down in price. I picked up a pint of organic and it was $5.49. Yep, I put it back and went for the non-organic. Eventually, I hope all products will become organic.

I’m a huge believer in organic, don’t get me wrong, but not when the cream is twice the price. I have to think again before paying the higher price. Luckily, now the whipping cream will be cheaper and I can pick up some organic for less than $3.00 a pint, fingers crossed.

Kitchen Items

What o Stock Up On In December

Kitchen items are definitely my weakness, probably since it seems like I spend most of my day in the kitchen. This is a great month to pick up a new hand mixer, toaster, coffee maker, can opener, pressure cooker, or whatever you feel is needed to complete your kitchen stash.

They will all be on sale, so grab some for gifts. Not just Chrismas gifts, but wedding and birthday gifts as well. Or if you have a child or grandchild going off to school, they may need a hand mixer or a toaster.

Toys

What To Stock Up On In December

On the first of the month many of the stores will have coupons. Often emails are sent letting you know about discounts on toys in the toy department. You may even see coupons to buy one toy and get one toy free, of equal or less value.

Be sure and sign up for emails with your favorite retail stores because sometimes you will hear about pre-sales that the rest of the world doesn’t know about.

You may even be able to save another 10% if you sign up for your favorite retail stores’ app. Some stores give you a discount if you order an item online, pay for it ahead of time, and pick it up at their customer service counter. It’s a win-win for saving money and time.

Wrapping Paper

What To Stock Up On In December

December is a great month to stock up on wrapping paper. Yes, you will find a lot of Christmas designs, but it’s also a good time to pick up plain colors for other holidays. Here are some wrapping paper storage containers.

You may not see pastels this time of year, but you will see white, red, and shades of green. White wrapping paper is great for wedding and graduation gifts.

If ribbon goes on sale, stock up on Tulle since it goes with those paper bags with handles. It’s also perfect for dressing up a gift box with plain colored wrapping paper.

Unique December Holidays

  • December 1: Eat a Red Apple Day 
  • December 2: National Fritters Day 
  • December 3: National Roof Over Your Head Day 
  • December 4: Wear Brown Shoes Day 
  • December 5: Bathtub Party Day 
  • December 6: Mitten Tree Day 
  • December 7: Pearl Harbor Day 
  • December 8: National Brownie Day 
  • December 9: National Pastry Day 
  • December 10: Nobel Prize Day 
  • December 11: National Noodle Ring Day 
  • December 12: Poinsettia Day 
  • December 13: Ice Cream Day 
  • December 14: Roast Chestnuts Day 
  • December 15: National Lemon Cupcake Day 
  • December 16: National Chocolate Covered Anything Day 
  • December 17: National Maple Syrup Day 
  • December 18: Bake Cookies Day 
  • December 19: Oatmeal Muffin Day 
  • December 21: Humbug Day 
  • December 23: Festivus
  • December 24: Christmas Eve
  • December 25: Christmas Day 
  • December 27: National Fruitcake Day 
  • December 28: Boxing Day 
  • December 29: Pepper Pot Day 
  • December 30: Bacon Day 
  • December 31: New Year’s Eve

Final Word

Let me know what you find this month at clearance prices. Also, let me know what items you feel should be included in my “what to stock up on in December” post today. If you saw some other bargains, I will add them.

Please keep prepping and take stock of your food storage. Thanks again for being prepared for the unexpected. May God bless this world, Linda

What To Stock Up On Each Month:

Copyright Images: Deposit photos_95115104_m-2015, December Christmas Calendar AdobeStock_234388405 by MagicalKrew

24 thoughts on “What To Stock Up On In December

  • December 2, 2019 at 1:54 am
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    Most food shelfs can no longer accept expired canned goods. I just wish manufacturers were required to show the expiration date with enough contrast that you can both find it and read it.

    Reply
    • December 2, 2019 at 11:05 am
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      Hi Penny, you are so right. That’s why I wrote if you do not use them before they expire donate them. I wish they were easier to read as well. Linda

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      • November 27, 2020 at 7:34 am
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        And,, the sad thing about food banks not accepting such canned goods is that most of the dates are a “BEST BY” which in no way is an “EXPIRATION” date. Our local food bank here in the Texas Hill Country will accept canned goods up to one year past a “BEST BY” date. We donate canned goods to them frequently because God has blessed us and we are able to help our fellow man. And, our local food bank screens folks so they only distribute to the TRULY needy.
        Most canned items are usable way past a “BEST BY” date. I recently found a can of Spam that had migrated to the way back portion of our pantry. The “BEST BY” date was some time in 2012. I opened it, smelled it, tasted it and ate the whole thing. It tasted just like freshly bought Spam and I had no repercussions from eating it. So, much for expiration. LOL!!!

        And, you mentioned stocking up on sugar. We had been somewhat deficient in our sugar stores, just because we don’t eat that much refined sugar. Plus, if you buy it in normal bags, you have to repackage it. I recently found that Sam’s Club sells a six pound bag of organic cane sugar, branded “Wholesome.” While it is somewhat more expensive than regular sugar, it comes in a heavy duty plastic bag that does not have to be repackaged for storage. To me that makes it worth the extra expense. Just drop enough of those in a five gallon bucket with a gamma lid and you have instant long term sugar storage.

        Okay, enough rambling. I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving and did not eat too much. LOL!!

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        • November 27, 2020 at 7:53 am
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          Hi Harry, I agree those bags of organic cane sugar would be awesome to stock. It’s totally worth the extra expense and less work. We had a small but great Thanksgiving. The Spam story, so many cans will last a very long time! I love it! I did not eat too much, I could hardly eat a piece of pie afterward. But I had whipped the cream, so, yeah bring it on! I learned from a reader I can freeze whipping cream in the carton, that was a game changer! Life is so good! Linda

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  • November 27, 2020 at 12:21 pm
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    Linda, your “What to stock up on” posts are among my favorites. Oh, and I love your seed storage method. I plan to steal it. I do have to disagree with you about the shelf life of white flour. It may only be a year if you leave it in the original bags, and even then it could go buggy. But if you store in in Mylar bags with plenty of O2 absorbers it will stay good much longer. I use “stackable” type Mylar bags, add more O2 absorbers than are probably needed, then place the bags in food grade, 5-gallon buckets. As an experiment, I recently opened a bag of flour that was four years old and made some cookies. Tasted great, no problems. My wife used the same flour for a cake with similar results. Since it’s sealed in Mylar I doubt our low humidity here in Az has anything to do with how well it lasts, but if a person is concerned about high humidity they can add desiccant packs as well.

    I plan to repackage cake mixes we buy on sale the same way–though I haven’t done so yet, there’s no reason to think it won’t work.

    I completely agree with Harry about the best by dates on canned goods. Those dates come from marketing people and lawyers and NOT from nutritionists.

    Oh, on a completely different note, I’ve completely revised and updated my non-fiction Prepper book, “Bugging In: What to Do When TSHTF and You Live in Suburbia.” I’ll let you know when I have it edited and re-release it.

    Reply
    • November 27, 2020 at 4:38 pm
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      Hi Ray, thank you so much. I’m such an avid bread maker I have to have fresh flour. You know I don’t use Mylar Bags or oxygen absorbers because of the experience I had with a church DIY dry can it yourself. I have heard the USDA shut them down because they were not following safer guidelines. I read that on Google. I wanted to know why the food I did myself there went rancid. $1200 worth. I call it a learning curve, a big mistake. That was about 8 years ago. Lesson learned. After that, I have chosen to buy from professional companies like Thrive Life, Honeyville Grain, Mountain House, etc. I will watch for your book, thank you! Linda

      Reply
    • November 27, 2020 at 5:28 pm
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      Ray,
      I would be interested in your book as well. While we live in a rural area, our daughter and SIL live in Suburbia due to their employment. I certainly would be giving them one of your books when it is revised and updated. So, please post that on Linda’s blog when it is ready.
      Thanks,
      Harry

      Reply
      • November 27, 2020 at 8:49 pm
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        Harry and Linda,

        I’ll keep you both posted about the book. I’m keeping the same cover, so it shouldn’t take long to get it out there. I’m certainly shooting for before Christmas. Normally, I recommend Preppers buy print versions but with all the links I’ve posted in the revised edition it would probably be more useful to get the much cheaper Kindle version.

        Harry, I’ve been told by past readers of the earlier version that the book is helpful to people who live in rural areas also, but it is intended for those stuck in suburbia, like your daughter.

        Linda, I understand why you don’t use Mylar bags and O2 absorbers. A bad experience can leave permanent distrust, but they’ve worked quite well for me over the years. I wonder if the people you were using them with didn’t put enough O2 absorbers in, or if the bags weren’t well sealed.. I always use more than the “recipes” call for. I use Mylar bags and O2 absorbers on almost anything I don’t can, freeze or vacuum seal. I even use that method on some of the things I dehydrate, though much of that gets vacuum sealed in mason jars. Oh, and I also buy from Thrive Life, Augason Farms, Honeyville Grain, Mountain House and Saratoga Farms, among others. I even have both A and B MRE’s with the self-heaters. But whatever works for you and whatever you have confidence in is best for you. There is, after all, more than one way to skin a cat (and isn’t that a weird way to say there’s more than one way to achieve a goal).

        Reply
        • November 28, 2020 at 4:42 am
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          Hi Ray, I love the hard books over the Kindle type books as far as survival type books. In case we lose power, etc. the hard copy is always better. As far as the O2 absorbers, I took two classes on how to use them. I was given used ones at the church as in “opened” ones that would not work. It was a church volunteer place, they had no clue how to use O2 absorbers. At the classes I took, they suggested when in doubt use more of them. They showed us how to weigh the goods and we all had a calculator to determine the correct CC’s to use for different types of food. I applaud you for using them. I have read a few blogs on “how to use O2 absorbers with Mylar bags” and I have yet to find one that is doing it correctly. I don’t want to be responsible for other people’s food storage. THIS is why I will not recommend them or write a post on how to use them. Linda

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          • November 28, 2020 at 9:13 am
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            Linda,

            Maybe I have success with them because I use heavy weight Mylar bags and put more O2 absorbers in than are “required.” Also, whenever I open a package of O2 absorbers I immediately place the ones I’m not using in a mason jar and screw dow the lid. This keeps them fresh for the next time I use them. The ones I am using go in the mostly filled Mylar bag. I squeeze as much air out of the bag as I can without spilling the contents (or in the case of flour, shooting a plume of flour dust up into my face 🙂 then I immediately seal that bag with my hot jaws clamp heater. This process has worked well for me for years now and I’ve never had any spoilage. Were you sealing dehydrated foods? I could see spoilage happening if foods that were not dehydrated we exposed to air that still has oxygen in it.

            To preserve a 5-pound bag of flour in Mylar I use “stackable” Mylar bags. These have a narrow top. Think of it as a flexible, oversized, upside down light bulb. The narrow top makes the bags a bit harder to fill than a regular rectangular Mylar bag, but I’ve found my canning funnel fits perfectly and makes filling them much easier. Once they are filled, I throw in at least three, one hundred cc O2 absorbers, squeeze as much air from the bag as possible and heat seal the bag. If was using a larger bag for a larger quantity I would use more O2 absorbers.

            I’ve always been perfectly okay with sifting the weevils from any bags of flour that didn’t get used up soon enough, but my wife is extremely bug averse, which is what got me started with the whole Mylar bag thing.

            I’ve also vacuum sealed flour and other dry goods in Mason jars, which accomplishes the same “remove the oxygen from contact with your food” goal.

          • November 28, 2020 at 11:29 am
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            Hi Ray, thanks again for sharing how you use Mylar Bags. To be honest, I cannot do one more thing. My food storage items must be simple and easy to do. I have plenty of food storage, I’ve been doing this for 50 years. Need I say more. God help us get through this darn pandemic. Linda

          • November 28, 2020 at 9:49 am
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            Linda, the main reason I’m recommending the e-book version of Bugging In is because of the clickable links. It makes it easier for readers to check out the sites I’m recommending (including yours). Otherwise they have to type the URL into their browser, which can be a pain. But my own Prepper library is all hard copy because if TSHTF my Kindle Paperwhite will eventually make a good paperweight.

          • November 28, 2020 at 11:27 am
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            Hi Ray, oh my gosh, the Kindle will become a paper weight!! I had to giggle over that one! LInda

  • November 27, 2020 at 8:11 pm
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    I like to pick up extra cookie/cake decorations. It’s the little touch you can add to an unexpectedly needed sweet. I love the sprinkles/colored sugars red/white for valentines, green for St Patty’s, etc:) Many of the tips and such for home decorators are also on sale during xmas shopping period.

    Around this time there are also paper/cellophane sales which can be used generically for celebrations be they birthdays or surprise pancakes at Gramma’s. I know these items aren’t strictly emergency type items but having them on hand can simplify your life also.

    Reply
    • November 28, 2020 at 4:32 am
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      Hi Nancy, oh how I love your comment! I have 17 grandkids and when they were little I loved using “sprinkles” it’s so fun! Oh, and the colored sugars are the best! I believe they are great “emergency items”. It’s the little things that will help lift people’s spirits after a disaster. Children or adults, great tip, we need these! Thank you, Linda

      Reply
  • November 28, 2020 at 11:46 am
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    Linda, this is totally off topic but if you love to laugh I heartily recommend The St. Mary’s Chronicles novels by Jodi Taylor. It’s time travel made human and hilarious. Taylor’s wit seems endless. It would give you something to read in your copious spare time. The first in the series is “Just One Damned Thing After Another” and the title alone sold me. I’ve read them all and just pre-ordered her latest.

    Here’s a link (not via my affiliate hook up) https://www.amazon.com/Just-Damned-Thing-After-Another-ebook/dp/B08739BH9S/ref=sr_1_1?crid=1FI1RT7FSPXD8&dchild=1&keywords=just+one+damn+thing+after+another&qid=1606589139&s=books&sprefix=Just+One%2Caps%2C214&sr=1-1

    Reply
    • November 28, 2020 at 2:48 pm
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      Hi Ray, thanks so much for the book ideas! I hope she has an audible book because I walk and read! Thanks for the heads up, my friend. Linda

      Reply
      • November 29, 2020 at 11:54 pm
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        Linda,

        Let me know how the audible version is. I’ve only read her books–and I mean ALL of them.

        Reply
        • November 30, 2020 at 6:43 am
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          Hi Ray, oh my gosh, I love audible books! I will let you know!!! Linda

          Reply
  • November 29, 2020 at 5:51 am
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    Great list, Linda! I’d suggest that folks add checking out the clearance aisle in any store you shop in. I do this frequently, but December seems to have some of the best deals as it literally is the last chance for stores to get some items sold & off their inventory.

    Ray, thanks for the info on mylar bags & O2 absorbers. Will also be looking forward to your book!

    Reply
    • November 29, 2020 at 5:56 am
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      Hi BDN, I agree, December is a great month for sales. We’re all waiting for Ray’s book! Yay! Linda

      Reply
  • December 5, 2020 at 10:37 am
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    Good info. but to add to the mix, white flour can be stored in 5-gal. containers with strong lids for over a year if you add a hand-full of dry bay leaves. It works great and I have used this method for years. The flavor of the flour is also good with no flavor from the bay leaves. Just remove the bay leaves when you open the container. Also, I use cake mixes for making cookies. See “I Can’t Believe It’s Food Storage” . You make them with cooked beans instead of fats. They taste great and it’s a good way to use your food storage, Our favorites are chocolate cookies with mint chips and the oatmeal ones with chocolate chips and dried cranberries. there are others, too.

    Reply
    • December 5, 2020 at 11:14 am
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      Hi Cheryl, oh my gosh, I need to get some recipes to make cookies with cake mixes. I went to Walmart and they had my favorite Duncan Hines cakes mixes 2 for $2.00. Generally, $2.49 each. SCORE! Oh, and some brownie mixes, so I grabbed some of those. Chocolate is my best friend!! LOL! Linda

      Reply

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