Porridge: The Ultimate Prepper Breakfast?

UK Prepper stockpile - porridge oats

Oh yeah, I’m deadly serious, that’s what this article is about. This might be a website to teach people how to survive disaster but it’s also a website for the British Isles, so today we’re talking about good hearty breakfasts just like our Nans would have wanted.

I LOVE a good bowl of porridge in the morning, and I especially love it because you can get everything you need straight out of your store cupboard, all long-life, no refrigeration required.

It’s stupidly cheap and easy to stockpile, it’s warming and filling, and for just a little more space in the cupboard you can also stockpile dozens of different toppings to keep things interesting and stop you going stir-crazy and eating your family. Mix a tablespoon of peanut butter to add protein and fat and it will keep you full until lunch and help you recover from even strenuous exercise, which is a definite plus if other sources of protein are in short supply.

After I started a larder, I got into the habit of eating a bowl of porridge with a spoonful of peanut butter in it for breakfast on days when I was going on a long run or a hard gym session for these exact reasons, and after 2 years of it, I can safely say that it works (I eat other things for breakfast on some days too, not just porridge. I might be a doomsday lunatic but I’m not that weird).

If it seems like I’m advocating for porridge a little too enthusiastically, just remember why: this is a disaster prep site, and it’s a nutrient-dense, filling, stockpile-able food that you’ll be glad to have if you ever need to fall back on it.

Why You Should Pick Up Some Oats For Your Stockpile

They’re Cheap

You can pick up 2 kg of oats for a pound or two in basically all major supermarkets – and considering that about 50g of oats makes one bowl of porridge, that’s 40 days’ worth of breakfast! Toppings are usually only a pound or two, as well – think peanut butter, honey, jam, chocolate spread, frozen berries etc. When blackberries are in season you can even forage them to sweeten tomorrow’s breakfast and get your toppings for free!

Same thing with strawberries and raspberries, which are both hardy plants that produce large harvests even in small spaces and can be grown easily in gardens. (Strawberries can grow well on windowsills or in small pots indoors, but raspberry gets a bit tall for that.)

They Last For Ages In The Cupboard

If oats are kept in a cool, dark, rat-free place, they will keep for months or years. Use the “best before” date on the bag as a guide, and make sure to keep them in an airtight container to make sure they last. That’s all you need to know to store them well, so they’re very easy to add to your stockpile.

You can make porridge with milk, but your access to fresh milk may be disrupted, leaving you breakfastless – so make sure to stock up on long-life milk like UHT or powdered milk, or get used to having your porridge with water like a psychopath. Alternatively, you can do what I do and double down on the oats, using oat milk in place of cow’s milk. Oat milk lasts for months and doesn’t need to be refrigerated if it’s unopened, so it’s another ideal stockpile food. The same is true for most milk alternatives, so experiment and see what you like best!

They Make For A Surprisingly Complete & Healthy Meal

Oats are much more nutritious than they have any right to be, even without any additions. They contain carbs, of course, but are also 11-17% protein, which is much higher than other grains.

They also contain a whack of vitamins and minerals, including:

  • Manganese. A trace mineral important for development, growth, and metabolism, which is often found in good amounts in whole grains.
  • Phosphorus. A mineral important for bone and tissue health.
  • Copper. Copper is believed to be important for heart health and can be hard to find in many components of a traditional Western diet.
  • Vitamin B1. Also known as thiamine, this vitamin is found in many foods, including grains, beans, nuts, and meat.
  • Iron. Absolutely essential due to its function in oxygen binding in red blood cells.
  • Selenium. An antioxidant that’s used in various processes in your body. Insufficient selenium levels are associated with increased risk of impaired immune function and cognitive capability – both things that you’ll want to avoid, disaster or not.
  • Magnesium. Sometimes tricky to find in other food sources.
  • Zinc. 

They’re Quick To Make

A few minutes on a pan over a hob, hot plate, or open fire, and you’re done. Very low effort, quiet, and quick.

There’s A Ton Of Variety Available

“Eating porridge every day” sounds like a nightmare until you check out the variety available. Here are a few ideas to help get your chef’s hat on.

Store-Cupboard Porridge Toppings To Keep You Cheery On Cold Post-Apocalyptic Mornings

Here are a few options for things you can keep in the store cupboard and use as porridge toppings to keep things interesting on those cold, rainy, post-apocalyptic Monday mornings. This is just a few ideas, and many of them stack well – so feel free to get creative with it!

  • Peanut Butter
  • Nutella
  • Honey
  • Chopped Nuts
  • Salt (even if you’re not Scottish, believe it or not)
  • Dried Fruit (dried banana is especially good)
  • Maple Syrup
  • Golden Syrup
  • Cocoa Powder
  • Dried Coconut
  • Almonds
  • Walnuts
  • Cinnamon
  • Chia Seeds
  • Sesame Seeds
  • Stewed Plums
  • Demerara Sugar
  • Nutmeg
  • Vanilla
  • Pumpkin Pie Spice Mix
  • Whatever Else You Think Will Work!

With a freezer, you can add frozen berries, yoghurt and other frozen perishable goodies to your porridge.

If you’ve got a garden, then the addition of fresh berries, like blackberries, raspberries, blueberries and strawberries all enter the equation too.

There’s enough topping variety out there to keep things interesting for the next hundred years – and the vast majority of that variety is long-lasting and shelf-stable, or can be easily grown or foraged.

If I haven’t made a strong enough argument for this king of breakfasts yet, then I can only assume I didn’t have enough porridge before writing it. I’ll have an even bigger bowl tomorrow and come back stronger.

Help Keep This Site Alive!

Maybe a blog about porridge isn’t the best way to pitch my Patreon, but I’m working to create a valuable prepping resource for the UK that isn’t just a mass of adverts and pushy sales tactics – and that’s not a super great way to pay your bills.

It would mean the world to me if you took a look at the Start Prepping Patreon – different levels of support bring in different extra goodies like a weekly threat-monitoring summary newsletter, the ability to request content, and even a custom one-to-one bugout planner service. You can find that HERE.

Thanks for reading, and thanks for all your support. Don’t forget to have a good breakfast.

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