Do This With $100 NOW

With more bad news every day regarding the supply chain and the food supply, it is no longer a luxury to have extra food on hand. With more drastic food shortages already being forecast in the near term for 2022, consider spending $100 now to stock up on food.

How Much Food Can $100 Buy Right Now?

According to economists, the real rate of inflation is now 15%. That means for every $100 you have for groceries, it buys $85 worth. Most of this the public doesn’t see because for many years food has been packaged in ever-smaller sizes, while prices remain the same. This is why it is vital to spend at least $100 now on some food staples as the economy continues to erode the value of your money. Your money will buy more today than it will next week, and so on until further notice.

Taking my own advice, this is what I spent $100 on this week:

  1. One dozen 64 ounce canning jars. (I had to buy these online and pay for shipping since they were sold out everywhere in my area).
  2. 24 cans of diced tomatoes at a dollar store.
  3. Three 4 lb. Bags of pinto beans.
  4. One 20 lb bag of long grain white rice
  5. 10 cans whole kernel corn
  6. 10 cans sliced peaches

Here’s the breakdown on cost. I rounded up to the nearest dollar and included approximate sales tax as a separate category.

Jars (12 total), including shipping – $42.00
24 cans diced tomatoes – $24.00
Pinto beans (three 4-lb. bags) – $4.00
White rice (one 20-lb. bag) – $10.00
Canned corn (10 cans) – $7
Canned peaches (10 cans) – $10.00
Tax: $3.00
Total $100

I decided to buy more beans and rice, because when combined, beans and rice form a complete protein and have more fiber, making them superb in nutrition. Beans and rice are also cheap and give you the most bang for your buck. I chose pinto beans because they are the most versatile of beans, and can be prepared any number of ways. They also taste great by themselves. I combine plain beans with diced tomatoes and canned corn and slow cook them. By adding different vegetables and spices to them, you can make a complete nutritious meal in one pot.

Once I get the jars, I will clean them, sterilize them along with the lids, and dry can the beans and rice. I dry can without oxygen absorbers because I hand-pump the air out of the jars using a brake bleeding vacuum pump and a wide-mouth Food Saver accessory. I will have more than what I dry can, but I will use it up in the next few weeks of normal meals. The filled jars will be placed into storage and rotated or stand ready to help my neighbors should the need arise.

How many meals can I make with this food?

According to the USDA, 1 cup of dried beans equals 3 cups of cooked beans. So a filled 64 ounce jar contains 8 cups of beans and therefore represents 8 meals of beans for two people (1 ½ cups per person) per meal.

A 2-lb. Bag of dried beans = 5 cups
A 4-lb. Bag of dried beans = 10 cups
1 cup of beans uncooked = 3 cups, cooked.
So I purchased 30 meals of beans for 2 adults (1 ½ cups of cooked beans per person).

White rice
There are approximately 2 ½ cups to every pound of rice (long grain white). So the 20 pounds I purchased equals 50 cups.

1 cup of uncooked rice equals 3 cups when cooked. So the 20 pounds of rice I bought equals 60 cups of cooked rice which equals 30 meals for 2 people (1 ½ cups of cooked rice per person).

The 24 cans of diced tomatoes can be added to 24 of these meals, along with half a can of corn for 20 of these meals.

The remaining rice can be the foundation for additional meals of other canned soups and stews I have stored. Yet the beans and rice alone represent one month of meals of beans and rice for 2 people, plus an additional month of rice for other meals for two people.

Quick Reference Guide

A one quart canning jar holds 4 cups, and a 64 ounce canning jar holds 8 cups.

2-lb. bag of beans holds 5 cups.
4-lb. Bag of beans holds 10 cups
1 cup of uncooked beans = 3 cups of cooked beans (a large serving is 1 ½ cups per person).

A 1-lb. bag of rice (long grain white) holds 2.5 cups
A 10-lb. Bag of rice (long grain white) holds 25 cups
A 20-lb. Bag of rice (long grain white) holds 50 cups.

1 cup of uncooked rice (long grain white) = 3 cups of cooked rice (a large serving is 1 ½ cups per person).

As you can see, $100 can still buy a lot of food. Before prices go higher, I urge you to add to your food storage now.

About the Author: This is a guest post by PJ Graves. PJ is a retired award-winning radio broadcaster, news reporter and writer, whose reporting has been featured on national radio networks and whose articles have been on Survivalblog, Prepper Website, Rapture Ready and various online news magazines. In addition to writing,  PJ runs Golden Page Media*, a digital publishing business with free email newsletter featuring innovative ways to save money, side-gigs, prepping tips and little-known ways to change careers without going into debt or paying for training.  She enjoys home church, living in Amish Country, exploring historic sites, classic films, cooking, volunteering at a local food bank, and small town living.

3 thoughts on “Do This With $100 NOW”

  1. Pintos were bred for a flour bean. If they get ‘old’ and dried out, grind them, mix 20% with another flour, and there’s no bean taste, but something like chestnuts. That’s what the elder ladies in centuries past aimed for, a good-tasting bean.

    Ground rice (or whole, then wet ground in a food processor) make two things, sourdough and rice vinegar. For sourdough, use goji (a fungus) or just add a cup of yogurt to the mash. Either way, please bring grain to a boil and let it cool before adding a starter. This prevents things like botulism which can be in grain and kills any eggs from gnats and so on. For beer drinkers, this is the brew. Extra water from a grain is grain vinegar, and those are expensive because they’re tasty.

    Living in Arizona, any tienda (Mom and Pop store) will carry both rice and pintos in 50 lbs sacks and usually a lot less expensive than buying in even big box stores. And, packed in Mexico, no dirt is allowed. Our 2-quart jars were purchased in Pennsylvania ordered through a Mennonite store. Dollar Store, my pick! Hunt’s tomato sauce is a buck, as well, but with salt. Sweet corn, we like frozen and if need be, can parch (dry) it. Canned peas are for salads. Right now, the peas are up in the garden, and will soon bloom. What we need is more green onions, and bought bunches in the store to plant and cut as needed. They should bear with 4-5 heavy cuttings before they give up the ghost. What can be chopped and dried or frozen. Right now, tan garbanzo beans can be planted (it’s early spring here) to make bushes most animals and bugs dislike. They like the same weather as peas. Walk in God’s beauty

  2. Michael

    Hi Red!! 🙂

    I miss the point of processing dry beans and rice in canning jars. I’ve been storing mine in 5 gallon pails in a cool dry place and eating from the old stock (over 2 years old) without issues. Did a bean pot for this week just yesterday. Adding few bay leaves if you must, to discourage bugs.

    Store what you Eat, Eat what you store. First IN, First Out. thus, avoid losing foods to forgetfulness AND Learn how to enjoy those foods before you’re in a pickle.

    An older posting of mine about cheap survival foods.

    Mercy Buckets

    Proverbs 14: …20The poor man is hated even by his neighbor, but many are those who love the rich. 21He who despises his neighbor sins, but blessed is he who shows kindness to the poor. 22Do not those who contrive evil go astray? But those who plan goodness find loving devotion and faithfulness.…

    2 X 5 gallon Buckets and lids = 9.28
    2 X 8 pound dried GV pinto Beans = 11.96 100 calories per 1/4 cup dry (or about 1/3 cup cooked) 8 grams protein x 206 servings = 20,600 calories and 1,648 grams protein
    1 X 20 pound GV White rice = 8.98 160 cal per 1/4 cup dry (or a bit over 1/2 cup cooked) 3 grams protein X 202 servings = 32,320 calories and 606 grams protein
    6 X 12 ounce GV luncheon loaf various flavors = 13.08 180 calories per 2 oz serving, 7 grams protein X 36 servings = 6,480 calories and 252 grams protein
    26 oz container Iodized Salt 54 cents
    3 oz black pepper 2.68
    2 oz jar chili pepper (pick the spice you like here) 3.98
    4 pounds pure cane sugar 2.08 Calories NOT Counted just flavoring for Japanese Sweet Beans, Sweet Rice and so on.
    16 oz cooking oil 2.00 (Get the BEST Bottle you can leaks suck) Calories not counted just needed for cooking say refried beans and such.
    130 count adult multivitamin 4.88
    120 count 500 mg Vitamin C 3.96
    25 +25 Beef and Chicken Bouillon cubes 3.76
    Box of 100 black tea bags 1.00
    Total cost 68.36
    Total calories 59,400 /2,000 calories per day adult = 29.7 Man-days
    Total Protein 2,506 / 30 days = 83 grams protein daily WELL over min needed here.

    Mercy Bucket part two adds one more 5 gallon bucket with lid, an extra 20 pound WM GV White Rice and space for extras to double the 30 man days to 60 with still 40 grams protein. Cost + 8.98 for rice, + 4.64 for bucket and lid (WHY do folks spend so much time looking for “Free Buckets” and wash them forever…) = an additional 13.62 or about what I spend on a Burger Combo and a Shake….

    Prices at Walmart as of last week are but a tiny bit higher, for example salt is now 59 cents for the 26 ounce container.

    Beans and Rice WITHOUT Seasonings is not fun. Humans Need Salt. In fact, I’d suggest adding extra salt in the Mercy Bucket part 2.

    The real reasons I don’t like heat processing beans-rice. Hard to ensure the core of that half gallon jar is at bug killing temps (the reason to heat, yes?) so a false security. AND when you heat treat beans you CANNOT Plant them in your awe*hit garden for More Beans.

    Also why are you not saving and cleaning your food jars of the correct size for canning lids? My Grandmother survived the Great Depression very well, providing for her family and boarders at her home using recycled jars to keep bugs and rodents out of dry foods.

  3. Rebecca

    Wow, I haven’t seen any dried beans at .50 a pound in many years. But realize I live in a rural Northern state with no bulk stores nearby and no Azure Standard drops (yet!). January is the month I rotate out our 1+ week emergency bins that can be a grab and go if needed. More variety in those than just rice and beans; canned chicken, tuna, tomatoes, pasta, veggies, fruit, oatmeal and my fave – canned coconut milk and curry paste. Coconut milk is high in fat, calories and flavor and a great way to jazz up flavor.

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