Category Archives: Beginners

Learning to Use Flour Made from Whole Grains

It is so easy to store whole grains for 10 to 30+ and they are so healthy and life sustaining for us, it’s no wonder that they are part of most food storage pantries. I also store several types of whole grains so I have variety in my diet and don’t get sick of eating foods made from the same hard white whole wheat, but having hundreds of pounds of whole grains won’t help me much if I don’t know how to use them. That is why this past 2 years I have been slowly learning how to use these different grains.

This past 2 years I have decided that it is a good thing that I have decided to learn how to use these whole grains before an emergency happens in which I am forced to use them. I have had many failed baking projects but I am getting much better now. I feel a lot more confident that we could live off our food storage now than I did when I first started. I also found that I like using whole grains in my diet and it has made our family healthier, plus it’s good on our budget. I can get bulk grains for cheap, I got 45 lbs of hard white wheat for about $20 at Costco the other day.

One of the biggest focuses of my learning to use whole grains has been using the flours I make from them in my grain mill. I recently found a resource that has opened my eyes to how many different things I can make. While searching for recipes using a grain mill, I found that is a picture catalog of whole grain recipes from across the web with links to the recipes. I just want to make all the recipes on the website! I have only tried 3 recipes so far but they were good.

The first recipe I tried, that I found through, was buttermilk whole wheat pancakes. After eating these pancakes I threw away my Buisquick pancake mix. We now have pancakes twice a week and my 2 year old gets mad that we don’t let her have more that 3. They are so easy to make too, just mix it all together and cook them up. I use powdered buttermilk in this recipe because it stores well and I keep a few containers in my food storage, an unopened container can keep for over 2 years. I have substituted the whole wheat flour for spelt flour or Kamut flour at a 1:1 ratio and it still works good. I have also put oat flour in these and it works, I add 1/2 cup oat flour and subtract 1/4 wheat flour to make this work because oat flour is lighter than wheat flour.

 The second recipe I tried, that I found through, was whole wheat oatmeal buttermilk bread. This bread had an incredible taste to it, and yes I am on a buttermilk kick lately. I have only tried this recipe once so far. I didn’t bake mine quite as long as I should have because I didn’t want the top to get to dark but I should have let it bake 5 to 10 minutes longer. This made one huge loaf, I think I will double the recipe and make it into 3 loafs so they will be a little smaller. I used freshly rolled oats that I made from whole oat groats using a Marga oat roller I borrowed from a friend, I’m sure this made all the difference in the taste.

I am really considering buying an oat roller for myself but that is a $120+ investment so I will have to save for a while. I hope my friend will let me borrow it some more so I can get more familiar with it and how to use rolled oats. I would really like to learn how to use oats more as a flour, rolled, and whole. I can make steel cut oats in my Wonder Junior hand grain mill but I haven’t tried it yet.

If there is one thing I have learned about making bread in the past 2 years is that I usually have to make a recipe a few time before I get it right. This is because everyone measures flour differently, mixes or kneads with different methods, has different temperatures for rising, has different degrees of fineness of whole grain flours, has different ovens, and on and on……. So if a bread recipe doesn’t come out quite right, you might give it another try or two.

The  third recipe I tried, that I found through, was Pumpkin-Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies. Many of us have made the Weight Watchers Pumpkin Cakemix Chocolate Chip Cookies but I have always wanted to remake them with whole grain flours. This recipe is much different than that recipe because of the amount of rolled oats but it was quite similar in many ways as fare as taste and texture.

I used freshly rolled oats again for this recipe since I have my friend’s oat roller on loan. But the real key ingredient in this recipe is the pumpkin. Canned pumpkin puree is something I think everyone should have in their food storage. It has so many good uses and can turn plain baked goods into extraordinary.

I also used Kamut flour in place of the whole wheat flour because I like the taste of Kamut and spelt flour over whole wheat in pastries and cookies. These cookies came out as a real treat, even 2 and 4 year old kids eat them up.

The best advise I can give to someone wanting to learn to use whole grain flours more is to just pick out some recipes and give them a try. Sure your going to have some failures but you’ll start to find some that you can do well. Its a whole lot better to figure out what works well now that to try to figure it out later when you have to.

Why all the Wheat? and how do I use it?


Once you get past the short term food storage, long storage life becomes a big factor. There are very few food items that will last for 5 or more years. Wheat is probably the best storage food in history, and it still is. When properly stored, wheat can store indefinitely. Wheat was designed, by God of course, with an outer shell that protects the inner part of the grain and all of it’s nutrients.

Wheat is full of life sustaining nutrition that makes you fill full. Wheat is full of proteins, fiber, and other important nutrients. Wheat is an ancient staple and many in ancient history may not have survived without it.

There are so many ways to use wheat. Wheat can be as whole cooked kernels in many uses as cereal, in soups, in salads, as a side dish, mixed with rice, and much more. To be honest, I currently only use wheat to make flour for breads. Because flour does not store well, it is best to store grain and grind it into flour. I will address grinding flour in a future article but I use a Wonder Junior hand grain mill to do it. Wheat flour can also be used for deserts, soups, meat extender, thickener, and the list goes on and on.

My favorite way to get wheat is in pre-packaged 5 gallon buckets. It is best to find a bulk foods seller locally since it is expensive to ship 45 pounds of wheat. I have bought wheat from local places like: specialty kitchen stores, Bulk food stores, Costco, LDS cannery, and even Walmart.

I highly suggest that first item you buy for your long term food storage, after you have a short term food storage established, is hard red or hard white wheat. I also suggest that you begin experimenting to learn how to use it instead of waiting till you need it.

Anitra Kerr on the radio talking about Grains for food storage:

Listen to internet radio with Preparedness Radio on Blog Talk Radio

Starting Your Long Term Food Storage

Once you have a good short term food storage started, it is time to start thinking about the long term food storage. I suggest you start with few good staple foods and branch out to other items when you have a good supply of the few items. There are some food items that store well for several years and provide the things your body needs to survive. We would like to introduce you to a few of those things in this post.

(We mention some of the shelf lives of these items which we found from several different sources on the internet, some people say the shelf life may be indefinably on most of these items which I could believe after reading this Shelf Life article.)


The one item your body will not last long without. There are several ways to store water, and we may cover that in another post, but find one that works for you and your available storage space. Storing water can be done with water jugs, 300 gallon water tanks, or everything in-between. You may also want to invest in a way to purify water for drinking, if money is an issue you can always boil water when the time comes to use it.

Water is important for many reasons. First, you need it to drink. Second, many foods (especially food storage foods) require water in the cooking or preparation process. Third, you will need water for cleaning purposes. There are more reasons to store water but these are the most essential reasons.


Hard red wheat can out last you if stored properly and it gives you many of the nutrients you need to sustain life. It is my opinion that wheat will give you the best bang for you buck when it comes to longterm food storage. The best way to buy wheat is in commercially packaged 5 gallon buckets (about 45 lbs. of wheat). Packaging your own wheat leaves room for error and doesn’t really save you any money. I buy my buckets of wheat from a local kitchen store or from Costco, there are some sources online to buy it also but the shipping may be high due to the weight.

Wheats can be prepared in many different ways. Some of these ways might include: soups, cereals, breads, and more. It’s not just for bread flour. If you plan on using it for bread, you will want to invest in a good grain mill at some point. Another item you may consider buying is a pressure cooker, we hope to post an article on pressure cooking grains in the future. If you just had wheat and water and a way to cook, you cold survive for a long time but probably not comfortably.


When packaged properly, most dry beans will stay good for 10 years to 30 years. Beans you buy from the grocery store, in the plastic bags, will have a shelf life of about a year or more. As with wheat, beans have a high protein content and are a good source of other important nutrients. Beans can be uses by themselves or as an ingredient to a meal, you can even make bean flour with a grain mill and use it to thicken soups. Most dry beans require you to soak them for 12 hours before cooking. If you have a pressure cooker you can cook beans in it after a 1 hour pre-soak, got to love a pressure cooker.


When packaged properly, dry white rice will stay good for 25 years or much longer. Brown rice, on the other hand, does not store well. You may get 1-2 years on well packaged brown rice (not a good long term storage item but not bad for short term storage). White rice does not have a lot of nutritional value but will give you a good item to mix up your meals. You may also add cracked wheat to your rice to give it more nutritional substance, that is assuming you have a hand grain mill to grind it to cracked wheat. A pressure cooker can also come in handy when making cooking rice, cooking time would be lowered to about 5 to 7 minutes. If you haven’t got the hint yet, a pressure cooker and a grain mill can be very great tools in your longterm food storage and I suggest you consider them both at some point of you prepping. I would suggest that you also buy you white rice food storage in commercially packaged 5 gallon buckets.


When packaged properly, it can last 20-30 years, or longer. I prefer to buy commercially packaged # 10 cans of pasta, the packages at the grocery store usually only last 2-3 years. Pasta comes in many different forms and, as rice does, add more variety to your meals. Pasta is also easy to prepare, which can be a plus in stressful times.

Powdered Milk

When packaged properly, powdered mill can last up-to 20 years or more.  Again, I prefer to buy commercially packaged #10 cans of powdered milk, the boxed at the grocery store don’t last near as long. Many recipes call for milk and I for one don’t have a cow or plan on ever having one, unless it is butchered in my freezer. Powdered milk can also provide much needed nutrients at times of need.

You Got to Start Food Storage Somewhere

So your ready to start preparing with food storage but there are so many things you could start with, how do you know where to start. You may ask yourself these questions: “Which item is the most important?” “What will I need first?” “How can I afford all this stuff?” “How long do I have to get prepared?” and so on…. My suggestion, unless you are rich, is to put off some of these questions for later and start simple by storing a little of what you already use.

Storing What You Already Use

So how do you begin storing what you already use? I find the easiest way is to pick an item once or twice a month, or more if you can afford it, and buy extras of that item next time you are grocery shopping. What type of items should you pick? Well, that depends on what you normally eat. My family uses canned corn about 4 times a month, so next time I go to the grocery I would buy 8 cans (or more) instead of 4 and put the extra 4 in my storage room (or under your bed if you don’t have a storage room). Over time, you will have great food storage base to bring some comfort and security to your family without braking the bank.

The beauty of buying things you already use is that when something does happen you won’t have to figure out how to use the things you have stored, plus you may even enjoy the food. Don’t forget some of the comfort foods you sometimes eat. We always buy extra boxes of brownie mix, chocolate chips, and other items that we use in deserts also because they can bring some joy in hard times.

Rotating What You Store

You will want to rotate the items you store to keep your food storage from expiring and going to waste. This means that when you buy more of an item you have in food storage that you put the new items into your storage and use the oldest items for your regular meals. One thing I learned in doing this is that I am sometimes tempted not to buy more of an item I plan on using because it is in my food storage. Try hard not to do this as it will deplete your food storage instead of building it. Always buy the items you plan on using and rotate them with the items in your food storage and soon you will have an organized system of a growing food storage.

Got This System Down, Now What

After a 6 months to a year, you should have a good base to your food storage with items you usually use. The question then is “Now what do I do”. Well, don’t stop with your new system of storing what you use, you will want to at least maintain this storage and keep it rotating. When you have reached this point, it is time to come back to the the questions I suggested you ignore at first and take your food storage to the next level. As to what that next level should be, I won’t go into that in this article because I just want to give you an easy simple way to get started.