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Gluten & Dairy Free Thoughts on Preparedness

A question was asked about preparedness  and I have wanted to address some issues from a gluten and dairy free perspective.

This is not a post discussing if you  should or shouldn’t prep.  This is not a post on whether a Christian should or shouldn’t prep.  If you want my take on these, I highly recommend you read this post by my friend Enola Gay:  Preparedness Appologetics.  She and her family are further along in their preparedness than my family, but one can only start when their eyes have been opened.  And you can only do what you can.

No one will ever be completely prepared for every and any eventuality.  I do believe that I can prepare to be ready for some of the more likely scenarios.  But I did say that this post is not really about all those issues.

All of the places you go to get recommendations on how much and of what to have on hand rarely deal with food restrictions.  Much of what is “recommended” to have on hand is not something I  can even eat!  The beginning of our preparing was before I discovered my problem with gluten.  And only recently has my ‘problem’ with dairy become even more of a problem.  I seem to be ‘troubled’ most Monday afternoons and have finally narrowed it down to… the hidden, dairy-laden food at church!  So storing a bunch of dairy would not help me survive some kind of disaster.


Trying to buy up all the packages of gluten free crackers or buying them by the case (or cases) takes up far too much valuable space.  I don’t know about you, but I have a limited amount of space for storage and need to maximize the space I do have…  getting the most bang for my buck, as the saying goes.

I’m not saying do not buy any prepackaged items.  What I am saying is don’t make them the bulk of your food storage.

My goal it to store the basic ‘from scratch’ foods we need to eat a healthy, well balanced diet.  For baking I store a variety of rices, whole buckwheat, whole sorghum, whole millet, certified GF steel cut & rolled oats, quinoa in whole and flaked versions and pearl & granular tapioca.  These I will use whole and ground up for baking.

I also store a variety of seeds and nuts.  These I repackage into small vacuum sealed bags, then in a 5-gallon bucket.  Chia seeds are my favorite preparedness food stuff.  The nutritional content is wonderful and they can be used in a variety of ways!

For cooking I have stored a variety of beans, dehydrated lots of fruits & vegetables, have purchased some canned items in cases and have powdered coconut milk in 5 pound bags, powdered stevia in 1 pound bags, bulk spices in large containers, evaporated cane juice and sucanat in 5-gallon buckets.

So where will I get my calcium?  Chia seeds!  Magnesium?  Hemp seeds (no it’s not THAT hemp).  I don’t like the taste of flax and the chia and hemp have a better nutritional profile and are better keepers.

What should you store?  What grains do you tolerate well?  What grains are you already baking with… you do bake some of your own gluten free cakes, breads, and such don’t you?  Some???  That is one reason I joined the Ratio Rally.  I made me get up off my… baking behind and start baking my own gluten free breads, cakes, muffins, scones, pies, biscuits, crepes, popovers and brownies!  I have learned so much, especially how freeing it is to bake my ratio.  I don’t need any recipes… I can make them fit the ingredients I have on hand!  Now THAT is truly being prepared.

Store what you use and use what you store.



photo from Shorpy.com

That is one reason I am so very fond of my ‘new’ (but from a very old & favorite cookbook) Rice Flour Muffin Recipe & Rice Flour Muffin Variations!  It is very simple, uses ingredients that I always have on hand and is versatile!  Flavor variations will make ‘survival food’ so much more pleasurable!

What kinds of things do you think are important in being prepared for TEOTWAWKI or even just a current job loss?

Blessings, ~Aunt Mae  (aka~Mrs. R)

Other posts that may be of interest:

A Common Sense Look at Soaking Grains

Breakfast Mix

Black Berkey Water Filter Failure

A Few Thoughts on Expiration Dates

How to Clean a Trout or other fish

Art thanks to art.com

photos thanks to shorpy.com

This post also linked here: The Better Mom, What joy is Mine, Raising Arrows, Finding Heaven, Homestead Revival, Far Above Rubies, Time Warp Wife, Growing Home, A Pause on the Path, Thankful Homemaker, Raising Homemakers, A Wise Woman Builds Her Home, We Are THAT Family, Deep Roots at Home, A Mother’s Heritage, Women Living Well, Intentional Me, Raising Mighty Arrows, Our Simple Country Life, At the Picket Fence, Best Post of the Week, Serenity Now, Homemaker by Choice, Comfy in the Kitchen, Finding Beauty,

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{ 11 comments… add one }

  • Pamela June 19, 2012, 5:12 AM

    What a wealth of information you have here. I’ll be back to read some more and try some of your recipes.

  • What Joy Is Mine June 24, 2012, 8:05 AM

    Thank you for sharing how you make preparedness work for your family even with diet restrictions. I’m glad you shared it at WJIM this week.

  • Jacque Line June 26, 2012, 4:39 PM

    Thank you for this thoughtful post. I learned a lot, and it will help us as we take this journey of preparedness…

  • Carissa September 10, 2012, 3:51 PM

    So glad I found your site! But now I’m brewing with more questions – What all do you do with chia and/or hemp seeds? What cooking supplies do you plan to use in an emergency? (e.g. dutch oven? hand grain grinder? etc.) We are just getting started, and hubby feels like we don’t have enough time, or enough money, to do it all. So we’re trying to gather as much info as we can! =) Thank you again for your wonderful post(s)!

    • ~Aunt Mae (~Mrs. R) September 10, 2012, 10:09 PM

      Hello Carissa,
      Thank you for your kind words about my blog. I am glad you felt my blog was worthy of your time.

      Preparedness is a topic of large proportions. I will answer your questions in future blog posts in more detail, but don’t want to leave you hanging now either!

      First things to address are the time & money issues. The Lord determined when you would be made aware of the need to be prepared. So He has given you what time you have. He has also given you what means you have to use in your preparations. No one has enough money or enough time to “do it all”! None of us will ever have everything we will ever need in our preparedness supplies. We will need to trust in the Lord to provide for our needs with what preparations we have been able to gather.

      Another aspect of this is to prepare as best you can for the scenario(s) you believe are the most likely. No one family can provide for themselves everything they will ever need to eat, wear, use… whatever. No one family can prepare for any and every eventuality or TEOTWAWKI prediction. They are not all going to happen. We have looked at all the possibilities, what has occurred elsewhere, prayed for the Lord’s guidance and began making our best efforts at preparing gathering what we can when we could.

      Skills will also be a means of providing for yourself, whether it be in your sewing, knitting, crocheting, woodworking, gardening, gunsmithing, medical knowledge or skills, etc. Not an exhaustive list by any means!

      The cooking supplies I have already gathered are my cast iron pans and dutch ovens and stainless steel cookware. I also use it NOW so I know how to use it and take care of it! I am working on learning to use my cast iron waffle iron as an example. We have a gas stove, so as long as the gas service works I have a means of cooking indoors without electricity. We have an Aqua Rain gravity-feed water filter which we use daily. I have a treadle sewing machine to sew without electricity and some supplies & manuals to do some repairs on other peoples non-electric sewing machines. That is for a start. More to come in a longer blog post!

      I use the chia seeds in my breakfast mix, which is very healthy, needs no cooking and I think is one of the perfect preparation foods!! It is easy to vary the flavor and it is tasty! This is one use. I also make “chia pudding” which is chia seeds in your beverage of choice (milk or non-dairy type) with a little sweetner till it’s thick. Yum. You can also add it to lemonade or juice and drink it or to smoothies. I have ground chia seeds that I add to my baking, sauces, syrups, etc. Hemp seeds I am still playing with. I will probably use them in protein bars or something like that.

      Carissa, we began our preparedness about 3 years ago. I can clearly remember the same initial panic of wondering how we could ever “get it all done in time”! We have been able to gather a few supplies over the past few years. As of March 2012 my husband has been unemployed. My ability to continue with my preparedness has been greatly diminished to say the least!! We have begun to use some of the things we were able to gather, and I have been SO thankful that we have these things set aside and available! This isn’t how I envisioned using these supplies could be the understatement of the year. There are still many pieces of equipment I would still like to have (a hand grinder being one of them), but now have no money to save to get them! I do have a means of grinding using electricity… We have done what we can and the means to do more has been taken out of our hands. I am working on establishing my home-based business (handmade soaps, durable hair clips, custom wedding ring-bearer pillows and am working on some other things for my online store).

      Relocation… we can’t all relocate either! That is another decision that has been taken out of our hands with my husband’s unemployment. So we continue to prepare as we can, where we are.

      I hope this helps you to get started. Remember that no matter how much or how little you have been able to prepare is more than if you hadn’t begun to prepare at all! Let me know if you have any other questions and you may want to sign up for email notification of future posts to catch all the ones about preparedness.
      Blessings to you and your family, ~Aunt Mae

  • Katie@simplefoody March 17, 2013, 3:34 AM

    We store grains like millet, brown rice, quinoa, and non gmo corn. The above grains can be ground into flour or cooked up like porridge.

  • Courtney April 29, 2013, 7:17 AM

    I have a question on preparedness. I have some cast iron skillets and dutch ovens that I used before we found out we had to do GF with the kidlets. Do you think they’d be safe to use? They are well seasoned, so I was wondering if I’d have to strip the seasoning off and re-season them to make them good for GF use. My daughter is very reactive to gluten and flour, so I’m wondering if it’d be worth doing or if I just need to get new cast iron cookware. (Seriously hoping that I don’t have to, I love my cast iron!)

    Thanks for any advice and tips on this!


    • ~Aunt Mae (~Mrs. R) April 29, 2013, 1:12 PM

      Hi Courtney,
      I too love my cast iron cookware! I also have good news for you. You DO NOT need to re-season or purchase new cast iron if you have previously used this for gluten and are now needing to cook gluten free!!

      And in case you were not aware, you can safely wash your cast iron with soap and water. Despite all the hype, washing cast iron with soap and water does not reduce or eliminate the seasoning on cast iron! I have been washing my well seasoned cast iron pans for many years with soap and water and each and every piece is still just as seasoned and non-stick as the day they were done being seasoned!

      Enjoy your already seasoned cast iron with confidence that your dear daughter will not be contaminated from your favorite cookware!

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