top of page

What To Buy As Fall And Winter Set In

Pantry staples on countertop with store receipt

We all remember the shortages on store shelves when the pandemic hit in March of 2020, and we are

still feeling the effects today with shipping issues and stores having trouble finding employees to help restock.

While disinfectant wipes and masks may not be as necessary, now that the pandemic has subsided, having essentials on hand helps keep us feeling in control. If we need to again “hunker down” because of a storm or flu, we can relax knowing we are ready.

Panic shopping – what we see when a storm is approaching – usually results in forgotten items or missed opportunities, especially as the milk and bread sections are often empty. It’s better to stock up gradually on the things you need day-to-day so you only need to worry about those items that have expiration dates sooner than a month.

Consumer psychologists say that having a two-week supply of the following items can provide a sense of normalcy and control in our daily lives, and helps us to feel safe and prepared.

Recommended pantry staples:

  • Applesauce

  • Baking essentials (baking soda, baking powder, salt, powdered eggs)

  • Beef jerky

  • Canned meats (tuna, chicken, Spam, crab)

  • Canned soups, fruit, and vegetables

  • Cereal

  • Chicken, beef, and vegetable bouillon cubes

  • Coffee, tea, and hot chocolate

  • Comfort food (cookies, candy bars, chocolate, chips)

  • Condiments (ketchup, mustard, mayo, salad dressings)

  • Crackers

  • Dried beans, lentils, peas

  • Dried Milk

  • Evaporated or condensed milk

  • Flour

  • Formula or baby food

  • Holiday Meal items (cranberry sauce, wild rice, stuffing, etc.)

  • Instant soup mixes

  • Liquid seasonings (soy, vinegar, Sriracha, steak sauce, ketchup)

  • Nuts and dried fruits

  • Oats

  • Oils (olive, vegetable, coconut)

  • Packaged foods (macaroni and cheese, instant mashed potatoes)

  • Pancake mix

  • Pasta

  • Pet Food

  • Powdered drink mixes

  • Protein bars (these are the best tasting), granola bars, or fruit bars

  • Rice

  • Spices

  • Sugar and/or sugar substitutes

  • Trail mix or canned nuts

· Note: If you have a generator that will power your freezer, frozen foods such as pizza,

chicken/meats and pre-made casseroles are good to have ready to heat and serve.

Cleaning supplies, hand sanitizers and personal care

  • Baby wipes

  • Bleach or Pinesol (the EPA approved Pine-Sol as an effective cleaning agent for most infectious diseases at the start of the pandemic)

  • Diapers

  • Disinfecting wipes

  • Dishwasher and laundry soap (see our post on why using a dishwasher is better than handwashing here)

  • Dish soap - for items that don’t fit in the dishwasher

  • Electrolyte fluids (Gatorade or Pedialyte) or electrolyte drops you can add to any beverage.

  • Hand soap and sanitizer

  • Kleenex

  • Paper towels

  • Plastic gloves

  • Sponges

  • Swiffer wet and dry floor cloths

  • Toilet paper

  • Toothpaste, mouthwash, and dental floss

Air purifiers

Home air purifiers can filter out airborne particles that could contain Covid-19, flu, and other air bourne diseases. “ HEPA filters can capture 99.97% of tiny airborne particles. AHEM (the Association of Home Appliance Manufacturers) has a database of vetted air cleaners.

Despite popular belief, live house plants do not clean the air in your home. A study in the Journal of Exposure Science & Environmental Epidemiology debunked the myth by analyzing 12 reports on the subject over the past 30 years. They are, however, stress relievers and lovely to have in your home.


Studies show that virus droplets fall to the ground faster in humid air. You don’t have to saturate your air for this to happen, but since most heated air in a home is dryer air, a humidifier will help reduce the number of droplets that can be inhaled.

Be Prepared to Treat at Home

Medication could also be hard to get if the pandemic worsens, so experts advise you to stock up on the following over-the-counter medicines:

  • Pain Relievers

  • Allergy pills

  • Cotton balls

  • Cough and cold medicines

  • Eye drops/contact solution

  • Hydrogen peroxide

  • Stomach and diarrhea treatments

  • Vitamins (C and D are recommended for boosting your immune system)

You should also have a well-stocked first-aid kit and know how to administer emergency first aid, like stopping traumatic bleeding and CPR.

LifeVac device with two attachments, instruction sheets and plastic bag container

A new device that helps if someone is choking, the LifeVac, is also good to have on hand. In a choking emergency, it is easier and more effective than the Heimlich maneuver.


Sources: makeit,, Anna Shvets from Pexels, Pixabay,



Rated 0 out of 5 stars.
No ratings yet

Add a rating
bottom of page