All About Nuts and Beans: Your Survival Pantry’s Dynamic Duo

Let’s take a look at your survival stockpile. Is it looking good?

Okay, so you’ve got some grains and potatoes for your carb sources. That’s great. You also got some dehydrated fruits and canned veggies. Double great!

How about your protein source? Wait—are you going to rely solely on meat? The frozen and canned ones? Well, I don’t know about that, buddy. You know frozen meat only lasts for so long, right? Will your freezer even work when SHTF?

Meat Isn’t the Only Protein Out There

an assortment of nuts

Unfortunately, in a survival situation, protein and fats from meat prove to be quite hard to store. And you can’t live on canned goods forever as well. But here’s the good thing: we can always rely on good ol’ beans and nuts.

They are great sources of protein and fat. Now don’t underestimate the power of these simple fares just yet. They might not be the fanciest type of food out there, but the truth is that nuts and beans should be mainstays in your survival pantry.


Some people consider nuts as nothing but snacks. We preppers should know better, though. Nuts are, in fact, awesome survival food. They are ridiculously high in protein, fats (the good kind), fiber, and B Vitamins.

Nuts also have significant calorie content, making them convenient and handy energy sources. And in emergency situations where food may be tight, keeping your energy up is everything. Ever wondered why they are mainstays in every hiker’s pack? This is because they provide a lot of energy without taking up much space.

Another reason why nuts should be part of your survival stash is that they are very shelf-stable. When prepared and stored properly, nuts can last for a couple of years. In comparison, frozen meat can only last for 4 months max—given that your freezer is even working.

In storing nuts, ensure they are thoroughly washed before they are dried or roasted. This is important since raw nuts may have insects or parasites that can be harmful when ingested.

You can also use oxygen absorbers and mylar bags. Keep them in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight.

Another way to store nuts is to convert them into nut butter. Peanut butter, for example, can last for about 2 years at room temperature. You can learn how to make your own peanut butter using roasted peanuts here.

Now, which type of nut should you keep for long-term storage? Here are our top picks:



An ounce of walnuts contains 4 grams of protein and carbs and as much as 18 grams of healthy fat. The omega-3 and 6 fatty acids in walnuts are essential in many body functions. Walnuts are also rich in antioxidants, vitamin E, and B vitamins.



28 grams of pistachios contain about 156 calories. Pistachios are also rich in good cholesterol, essential B vitamins, and vitamin E. They pack a lot of fiber, which helps with digestion.



Almonds are pricier than most nuts but are also more nutritionally dense. They are rich in calcium, iron, and B vitamins, with each serving packing as much as 163 calories.



Peanuts are an inexpensive superfood.

Did you know that 100 grams of peanuts can give you as much as 570 calories? The same serving can also give you about 25 grams of protein, which is higher than most nuts. Peanuts also contain vitamins and minerals like manganese, magnesium, and phosphorus.


cashew nuts

Cashews don’t have as much dietary fiber as their cousins, but they pack loads of minerals and antioxidants that are great for heart and eye health. A 100-gram serving contains a whopping 553 calories and can make up 36% of your required daily protein intake.



Pecans are not only delicious but can also give you 690 calories a serving and are filled with nutrients like zinc, magnesium, and phosphorus. If you want to complete your daily healthy fat intake in one go, you only need to get yourself some pecans.



Like its cousins, hazelnut is rich in vitamin E, B vitamins, and tons of good mono and polyunsaturated fats.


a variety of beans

Let’s face it—a lot of people don’t like beans. No, that’s an understatement; many people simply detest beans. To most, beans can be a sign that hard times are upon them. Okay people, let’s not be dramatic. Don’t count beans out just yet.

Here are a few reasons why they should be in your survival pantry:

  • Beans can be stored easily. Keep them in mylar bags or food-grade buckets with desiccants, and they can last for as long as 2-10 years. Beans are also versatile food—if you’re creative enough, you can make many delicious and filling dishes from them.
  • They pack a ton of protein, complex carbohydrates, folate, iron, and soluble fiber. These minerals help build healthy muscles and connective tissues and aid the circulatory and digestive systems.
  • They also prevent heart disease, lower cholesterol levels, and have anti-cancer properties. The complex carbohydrates in beans also aid people with diabetes by preventing sudden spikes in their blood sugar.

If they’re all that beneficial, why do most people hate beans?

For one, they are notoriously infamous for causing flatulence. A gassy stomach is something you don’t wanna have, survival situation or not. The good thing is this can easily be remedied by simply soaking and rinsing them properly before cooking.

If you’ve got some dried herbs like fennel, you can mix them with your bean dishes to help prevent flatulence. Soaking your beans also has other benefits. It helps soften the beans and significantly reduces cooking time and fuel use.

Here are some dry beans that you can store in your survival pantry:


lima beans

Lima beans, or butter beans, are good sources of dietary fiber that can aid digestion. They contain no cholesterol and are very low in fat. Make sure to cook them well for at least 10 minutes, as uncooked lima beans can be toxic. This recipe incorporates some onions and chicken broth into your usual lima bean fare, making it tastier and more filling.


pinto beans

Pinto beans have been a survival staple for ages. Many of our forefathers gathered them for the winter. Today, they’re more of a burrito staple, but their value hasn’t changed. Pinto beans are rich in calcium and magnesium and are low in saturated fat. Check out how you can prepare a filling pinto beans meal with this recipe.



Garbanzos (aka chickpeas) are high in calories, essential amino acids, iron, and phosphorus. They usually come in cans and are the main ingredient in hummus, a healthy Middle Eastern dip that you can easily make at home.


black beans

Black beans share the nutritional benefits of their cousins, but they might be the most versatile of the bunch. They go well in burritos, soups, or with good ol’ potatoes.

Final Thoughts

Nuts and beans are the dynamic duos of your survival stockpile. Make sure you have generous supplies of both, as they have lots of nutritional and storage benefits. These foods may be simple but are great protein and energy sources. Even when you’re short on meat, you can rely on nuts and beans to see you through lean and difficult times.

Got any tips for storing nuts and beans in your survival pantry? Let us know in the comments below!

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