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2 Week Challenge: It’s Time to Use Up the Pantry!

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146With every natural disaster that happens, our thoughts turn to pantry stockpiles and how many supplies we have on hand.  Now is no exception, with the recent 9.0 magnitude earthquake and resulting tsunami in Japan.  At our regular shopping trip this week, we noticed people had started their food hoarding already.

Remember that being prepared with a sensible stockpile is NOT the same thing as hoarding.  Will we use up 50 pounds of flour? Probably not.  What about 100 bags of beans?  You get the point! 

In a practical pantry stockpile we want to have about 3 months’ supply of foods we will actually use, even if there is no disaster.  Check out our list Emergency Preparedness for the Pantry: Checklists To Get You Ready to get started putting together your pantry supply. 

2 Week Challenge: Use Up Your Pantry

Over the next two weeks, I challenge you to live of of our pantry groceries so that you can 1) save on your grocery shopping and 2) start your stockpile over fresh with new foods.  My family will be doing this pantry challenge too.

During the use-it-up phase, you may be putting together some strange meal combinations. That’s alright!  We had frozen pizzas one night with roasted asparagus on the side as our veggie! 

Use up  the oldest foods you have in your pantry first.  Use up the foods you don’t like to cook and therefore, keep getting pushed to the back and forgotten (just get them out of your pantry for good). 

So whip out your menu plan template and start filling in meals using the inventory in your pantry.  You should have enough on hand to only buy minimal ingredients, fresh produce, and milk during your grocery shopping trips during the 2 week pantry challenge.

Let us know how you do in the comments below!

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Danelle Ice is an entrepreneur in Los Angeles and mom of 3. She is the creator of and Danelle is also known as internet personality SimDanelle, the first virtual person. Danelle is a beauty guru on YouTube, vlogger, blogger, and new media darling. She is a current brand ambassador for for Keurig and previous AMD Tech Mom, Kraft Foods Delicious Byte brand ambassador, and Purex Insider.


  1. Katie
    Mar 31, 2011 @ 14:53:25

    I got my mother to do this a few months ago! My sister and I had temporarily moved home from college and she had way too much food for 4 people, let alone 2!

    She struggled with it at first, especially since I was determined to throw out anything that was expired or would expire before we could use it (we literally had a battle over some old brownie mix). I also worked on pairing down her spices. She has a tendency to buy spices she already has and she buys them in bulk from Sam’s!

    Once we got it paired down and organized, making dinner was so much easier and eventually she saw how much better it felt, from health and organizational standpoints, to eat more fresh food and cling to fewer processed and canned foods.

    It was definitely a chore, but well worth it! I even got her to let go of her 20+ year old upright freezer after thawing and preparing all the food that was in there. My mother and my father, the vegetarian, simply have no use for an upright now that their 4 children have moved out :-)


  2. Michelle
    Apr 17, 2012 @ 09:41:11

    I’m so TIRED of giving all my money to the grocery store and barely having room in my pantry or refrigerator…Something tells me that we need to do this…BAD!!


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