The following list includes shelf-stable items that can last for long periods of time without refrigeration. These items are particularly useful when regular grocery trips cannot be made during stay-at-home orders, or in preparing in advance for emergencies and disasters.


  • Canned fruits and veggies – green beans, corn, peaches, pears, pineapple
  • Canned meat & fish – chicken, tuna, salmon, turkey, vienna sausages
  • Canned soups
  • Canned beans
  • Canned juice
  • Jelly or jam

*Be sure to look for low sodium varieties!


  • Boxed pasta noodles, rice, or other grains
  • Sandwich bread (can freeze until needed if power is available)
  • Nuts
  • Oats
  • Peanut butter
  • Crackers or cookies
  • Granola bars or protein bars
  • Dry cereal

Cooking essentials

  • Flour
  • Canned or powdered milk
  • Oil
  • Sugar
  • Salt & Pepper

Helpful Links:

“Grocery rules for your coronavirus lockdown: Buy beans, freeze milk, don’t hoard, and more” — Here is a list of foods that are not only nutritious but versatile too. They can be eaten solo; combined with other ingredients to assemble mini-meals; or used as the base for several recipes.

“What to Buy for Coronavirus Preparation, According to Experts”  — A checklist of essential foods and other goods to make sure you think about before heading to the grocery store.

“Forget baked beans: How to prepare a healthy ‘pandemic pantry’ in an age of coronavirus” — Find tips on how to keep a nutritious pantry and healthy diet during the pandemic.

“Staying home due to the coronavirus? Here’s what to stock in your fridge and pantry” — List of foods from fruits and veggies, proteins, grain/ grain alternatives, and extras to stock up on in case of a 2-week quarantine.

“Coronavirus grocery list: What items you need to buy in case of self-quarantine” —Another list of good food items to buy in case you or your family have to be quarantined.

“What Experts Say To Stock Up On For Coronavirus Preparation”  — A list of pantry items, frozen foods, home supplies, and medication to stock up without panic-buying.

“The smart way to stock up your kitchen during coronavirus lockdown”— Freezer, pantry, and refrigerator foods to keep and advice for the elderly and chronically ill.