Option 2: Dehydrated Foods


  • Price: $0.20 – $3.00/oz
  • Days of Survival per $100: ~ 5 Days
  • Cost Per Day of Survival: $15-$25
  • Official Shelf Life: 4 – 20+ Years
  • Storage Conditions: Made to store at room temperature but lasts the longest at between 50°F –  60°F

Note: These numbers vary greatly as dehydrated foods can have a variety of moisture content levels which affect the shelf life (higher moisture = shorter shelf life). Typical professionally packaged dehydrated foods have a water content of 2%-3%. Also, because dehydrated foods can be home made or professionally produced, prices vary greatly.


Shelf Life of Various Dehydrated Foods (Stored at Room Temperature)

Fruit – 5 Years
Vegetables – 20 Years
Milk – 20 Years
Eggs – 10 Years
Meat – 6 months – 1 Year (Meat stores best in Freeze Dried form)

Shelf life of Various Dehyrdrated Foods (COMPLETE LIST)

Shelf Life of Various Dry Foods (Foods that are Naturally Dehydrated)

White Rice – 30 Years
Brown Rice – 6 Years
Beans – 20 Years (except Soy Beans)
Soy Beans – 9 Years
Flour – 5 Years
Pasta – 30 Years
Quinoa – 8 Years
Rolled Oats – 30 Years
Yeast – 2 Years
Wheat – 30 Years


  • Very light weight
  • Extended Shelf Life
  • Possible to store dairy and other perishables long term
  • Can be produced at home
  • Dry foods require no processing prior to storing
  • Only practical way to store fruit for long term


  • Quality of dehydrated foods vary greatly
  • Re-hydration prior to consumption can be necessary
  • Very difficult to store meats using this method

A Note About These Calculations: The numbers reflected here for “price”, “days of survival per $100”, and “cost per day of survival” are based on my research and are a result of averages. They are by no means exact and are only meant to be used as a general guideline and overview of each option for long term food storage. One “day of survival” is based on a 2000 calorie per day diet. If you eat more, make adjustments accordingly. Shelf life is based on storing the food at room temperature (widely considered to be 65°F to 72°F) unless otherwise noted. The Dehydrated Foods Section calculations are considered extremely general at best. Dehydrated food can be produced at home fairly inexpensively or in a professional factory where additives are put into the foods to preserve freshness for a longer duration of time. This is what accounts for the broad number ranges in this section.

Option 1: Canned Foods

Option 2: Dehydrated Foods

Option 3: Freeze Dried Foods

Option 4: MRE’s (Meals Ready to Eat)