When people see my stockpile, they either make a joke about me being ready for an apocalypse, or they ask me these famous words: What do you do with all of that stuff?! Or they do both.
Stockpiling has allowed me to save money on groceries – that’s why I do it. As for what I do with all of the items in my stockpile, well.. I use them! Over time, of course, because it’s not like I go through 10 bottles of shampoo before every shopping trip.
My favourite items to stockpile:
- Bathroom Tissue
- Facial Tissue
- Dish Soap
- Hand Soap
- Aluminum Foil
- Plastic Wrap
- Shaving Cream
- Pain Relievers
- Body Wash
- Bar Soap
- Shampoo & Conditioner
- Feminine Products
- Body Lotion
- Dishwasher Tabs
- Laundry Soap
- Paper Towels
- Zip-top Bags
- Frozen Veggies
- Frozen Fruit
- Canned Tomatoes
- Vegetable Broth
- Garbage Bags
… and whatever else will last awhile and that I can get on sale very cheap (or free!).
I’m very careful to only buy stuff for our stockpile that we can use before expiry, but sometimes, we just run out of time. If I ever notice that something is getting close to the expiration date, here’s what I do:
When items are close to expiry
- Make a plan to use them up – This really only works for food, and when I see something that is going to expire very soon, I make a plan to use that item before expiry. I re-adjust my menu plan to fit that item/ingredient in, and just make it work. I hate wasting food!
- Give them away – If I can’t use something in time, I will give it away to friends, family, neighours and local shelters and food banks. Many items, (including some foods) will last a few days to a few months past the expiration date, too. Especially things like deodorant, pasta, cereal, etc. So keep that in mind before you start throwing out “expired” items in your stockpile.
As a guideline, here’s how much you should be stockpiling:
- Items that can be frozen (meat, cheese, produce): 2 month supply
- Non-perishables (canned goods, packaged goods): 6 month supply
- Household & personal items (deodorant, cleaning supplies): 1-2 year supply
There is always going to be another sale just around the corner, so unless something is free, don’t buy it if your stockpile is already full to the brim (and then donate that free item right away to prevent cluttering up your stockpile).
I really believe that stockpiling is one of the best things you can do for yourself if you want to save money on groceries (including household and personal supplies), but it can easily get out of control if you’re not careful. Keep a stockpile inventory and only buy what you can afford, store, and actually need!