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Best Foods to Grow for Survival

best foods to grow for survival


Knowing the best foods to grow for survival is important when it comes to preparedness.  If there is ever a collapse scenario food won’t be readily available on store shelves.  You will be forced to rely on the emergency food stockpile that you have built.

If that collapse scenario is a long-term recovery event then you will eventually run out of that food in your stockpile.  That is unless you have a huge room to store many years’ worth of food supply.  In most cases, you are not able to afford that type of supply.

So that will leave you with two options.  You can either scavenge food or grow your own.  If you are Billy Badass you may be able to bully others of their food and supplies.  However, many of us don’t have that type of heart.  I typically prefer to avoid conflict at all costs.

With that being said, the best option at that point is to grow your own food.  Fortunately, I was raised with the responsibility to tend to our family garden.  But many people do not have the experience or know how to grow a garden.

Learning How to Garden Now is Important

If you attempt to learn in a collapse scenario it can cost your life.  That is why it is important to know the best foods to grow for survival.  From there you will want to practice growing a garden so when the time comes you can easily grow one.

While you are eating your stockpile is when you should begin growing your survival garden.  That way by the time you run out of the food you will already have a supply that you can eat.  On top of that, if you grow enough you can use what you don’t eat as bartering items.

Having a survival garden is not only important for collapse scenarios but also economic and personal financial crisis.  During the Great Depression, many people were dependent upon their gardens to survive.  That was also a different time.  Many people in those days knew how to grow a garden.

Learn What to Grow

What you can grow is dependent upon where you live, the amount of sun you receive and your soil type.  You should be aware of what foods can be grown during certain seasons.  For example, a lot of foods cannot be grown during the harsh winter months.  That is why it would be important to grow food that can be stored during those months.

Having a survival garden is uniquely different from a regular garden. Simply put, a survival garden is designed to produce enough crops to permit you and your family to live on the harvest alone.  Regular gardens these days are grown sometimes to be sold or paired with foods that can be bought at stores.  When deciding the best foods to grow for survival you will want to consider in some important aspects.

4 Important Aspects of Best Foods to Grow for Survival

  1. Big yield crops

If you have a family then there will be many mouths to feed.  You also may be limited to the amount of land that you have for growing food.  Therefore, you will want to grow foods that produce big yields with a small area.  Another bonus of having foods that produce big yields is that the leftovers can be used for bartering.

  1. Crops that can be easily stored

As I mentioned before, a lot of foods cannot survive harsh summer or winter climates.  Therefore, you will want to grow foods that can be stored during those months.  There are a few options when it comes to preservation.  You will want foods that can either be dehydrated, freeze-dried or canned.  You will also want to look for foods that have long shelf lives.

  1. Crops that are perennials

A perennial is a plant that lives for more than two years.  Typically plants can only be grown annually.  Once they are harvested they die and need to be replanted.

With perennials, they can be picked off of the plant and it will regrow another one.  Some of the perennials mentioned below may not grow perennially in all locations.  If you live in extreme summer or winter climates then they may not be able to survive.  You will want to research your temperate zone to know for sure.

  1. Cold weather crops

Having plants that can grow in colder temperatures will extend your survivability.  That is because you are not able to grow or harvest many foods during the winter.  The winter months can be deadly if you haven’t stored up enough food beforehand.  By being able to grow food during winter months ensures that you will have some sort of food that will keep you fed.

So the previous points are important aspects to look for when considering the best foods to grow for survival.  Now that we have discussed those I am going to provide my list of what I consider to be the best foods.  Not all the foods will meet every criterion.  However, I will mention the important aspects regarding survival under each.

Best Foods to Grow for Survival


  • Beans are high in protein, vitamins, and minerals
  • Packed with calories that will provide you with energy
  • Perennials, so that can be eaten straight off of the plant
  • Extremely long shelf life when dried
  • Provide the soil with nitrogen that other plants need to grow
  • High yield plants


  • Long shelf life when dried
  • Harvesting is easy and doesn’t need threshing
  • Don’t need much room to grow


  • Doesn’t need to be dried to have a long shelf life
  • Can be stored in a cool, dark place for up to 6 months
  • Having a cellar or basement would be a great place to store
  • Big yield production
  • The downside is that they need a reasonable amount of space to grow


  • Easy to grow in a range of different climates and soil types
  • High in carbohydrates that will provide you a lot of energy
  • Rich in Vitamin C, calcium and minerals
  • Immune to cold fronts
  • Can be grown without a lot of irrigation
  • Can be stored for several months without the need of processing or electricity
  • Don’t need a lot of space to grow. A 10-foot row spaced 12-18 inches apart can yield up to 30 pounds of potatoes


  • Can be stored through the winter months
  • Should be stored in cool places like a refrigerator or root cellar
  • The downside is that you will need sandy, well-draining soil to grow them


  • Easy to grow the plant
  • High in nutrition
  • Perennial


  • Can be grown in late fall or early winter
  • High Yield
  • Can be dried and froze to store for longer amounts of time


  • It will leave your breath kicking but provides a delicious flavor to foods
  • Highly nutritional and medicinal (works as antibiotic and antiviral)
  • Boosts immune system works as an antioxidant and reduces high blood pressure along with cholesterol
  • High Yield


  • Easy to grow indoors with small potters and placed on window seals
  • Many different types including:
    • Rosemary
    • Thyme
    • Basil
    • Bay leaves
    • Parsley
    • Mint
    • Onion
    • Ginger
    • Chives
    • Oregano
  • Big yield
  • Shelf life can be extended by drying them out
  • Perennials


  • Easy to grow
  • Can be mixed with a lot of meals
  • Big yield
  • Easy to be canned for storage purposes
  • The downside is that they do need a reasonable amount of space to grow

Before Getting Started

Now you should keep in mind that not all of these foods will be easy to grow in a lot of locations.  The is due to the climate and soil types.  A good resource to use to know what plants to grow is The Old Farmer’s Almanac.

There are many other foods that can be grown for survival.  However, these would be my recommendations for the best foods to grow for survival.  Finding good seeds to plant can be tricky.  I recommend picking up some survival seeds from Open Seed Vault.

Open Seed Vault provides variety packs with instructions for each vegetable.  They claim that they provide enough seeds to plant over an acre of food.  I don’t have an acre of land to test but they have the best reviews that I have found.


Altogether these would be my recommendations for the best foods to grow for survival.  There are many more people who are more knowledgeable and skilled in this area than me.  So if you have any feedback or suggestions then leave it below.  Your feedback helps the community prepare the smart way now so that we can thrive later.


best foods to grow for survival