Extreme Dollar Store Prepping: A Must-Have List

Extreme Dollar Store Prepping: A Must-Have List

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Are you a Dollar Store Prepper? If not, then it is time to get your act together and start building that stockpile! We learned with Covid-19 that the world as we know it can end at any moment, so it is important to be prepared for anything. Whether there’s an emergency, natural disaster or just the momentary shit hitting the proverbial fan- with our Extreme Dollar Store Prepping List you’ll always be ready for what comes next.

Extreme Dollar Store Prepping: A Must-Have List

The worst thing about the early COVID pandemic was the panic buying. While FEMA says to have at least 3 days of emergency supplies like food and water on hand, it really should be 3 months – or more!

Why Dollar Store Prepping Rocks…

What if I told you that for just ten bucks a week, you could have 520 incredibly value-worthy shelf-stable items in your stockpile.

Now, more than ever, this is an important thing to consider. Have no fear – the best thing about our list is that you are shopping at your local Dollar Tree – so even someone with the tightest budget can pull out success with this list and build up their preps!

Is it really a bargain?

The key thing to remember when stocking up on food is that if it is something that you or your family doesn’t like? Don’t buy it. Why make yourself eat stuff you absolutely hate when things are already stressful? It isn’t a bargain if it isn’t something that you would like to actually eat. It just wastes your time, money, and space to add it to your inventory.

Personally, I find that thinking of what you DO like is a great way to start. Do you like spaghetti with red sauce? Tacos? Fritattas? Pancakes? Make a quick list of 7 to 10 meals that you DO like and that can be your “hit list” of items to stock up on.

I roughly did that with this list – these 21 items are bargain-priced for basic items that help build pasta, rice, or bean meals, and even soups. They are all at a better price than the local grocery stores.

But it gets better…

Dollar Tree Takes Coupons!

Dollar Tree does accept manufacturer coupons. They do not accept competitor store coupons, such as those for Walmart, Target, or Dollar General.

  • Coupons used at Dollar Tree must always be originals and cannot be photocopied. They must be completely intact and not altered or modified in any way.
  • Coupons can not be over $1 in value.
  • Dollar Tree accepts one manufacturer coupon per single item purchased and has a maximum of four of the same manufacturer coupons accepted for each customer per day. For printable coupons from the internet, Dollar Tree will accept up to two printed coupons per customer per day.
  • When coupons are used on a purchase, Dollar Tree requires that the item purchased does exactly match the product listed in the coupon’s description including the appropriate brand, size, quantity and etc. in order to be accepted by the cashier.

Whew.

But — some of what I am going to talk about are name-brand items – so you could get them for less than a buck – or possibly FREE – just by adding a coupon to your transaction!

Another thing to consider

You can order online and have items shipped either to your home or your store! Yes, you might have to buy a full case – but most items come in a case of 12. So…that week you spend $12 instead of 10. oops!

On the other hand, you can get as few as 4 items on select items in their “Smaller Quantities” lines!

21 Hot Dollar Store Prepping items

Let’s get started with my list of 21 Amazing Dollar Store Prepper Items to add to your stockpile!

1) Pasta

Take your pick – macaroni noodles, spaghetti noodles, even penne pasta has been spotted at my local Dollar Tree. One-pound boxes for a buck – and with name brands like Barilla? You know there are coupons out there!

barilla pasta coupons

Compare that to my local grocery store that is sliding down into 12-ounce boxes and, if you are lucky, the sale is 4 boxes for $5. (sigh)

2) Dried beans

This was a hard-to-find item in the early COVID days as there is no easier meal than a quick bean or lentil soup. On our Operation $40K site, I whipped up a list of lentil recipes for everything from sloppy Joes to pasta sauce. (see it here). Bean soups – bean burritos – so many options that you can simply toss in the crockpot and leave cooking all day to whip up a great, and simple meal.

dried beans

Dried Northern Beans make a killer soup with a can of diced tomatoes and a can of sliced carrots added – just add onion and a little chicken broth!

Seriously, I could go on and on about how well these keep and how many uses you could get.

3) Rice

This is a 2-pound bag. Keep in mind that In the Egyptian pyramids, they found pasta and rice that we could still eat today. It keeps almost indefinitely in a cool storage location.

Fried rice, rice pudding or custard, even as a filler for a casserole – it is a great way to help keep a belly full.

dollar tree rice

4) Knorr Rice Mixes.

OK – don’t call the health police on me. Knorr is a name brand (coupons!) and it is easy to add that can of chicken or tuna to it to stretch it out to a full meal. When you are comparing this to “disaster prep food” you have about the same portions and are getting it for a lot less than $8-10 a package.

Yes, there is sodium. This is EMERGENCY food – not your average weekly meal.

knorr pasta coupons

5) Shelf-stable boxed milk.

Places like Walmart price gouged in 2020 and we saw gallons of milk top $5 – IF you could actually find it. Boxed milk is shelf-stable, comes in quarts, and will do with cereal or cooking. You have choices of whole milk, 1%, 2%, and even Almond milk quarts!

6) Pasta Sauce

Canned is better than glass for longer storage – again, there are name brands like Prego and Hunts. Red sauce or white sauce, make sure you have enough for each box of dried pasta you stock up on.

pasta sauce coupons

7) Coconut Oil

If you have never used coconut oil before – this is the time to start. Coconut oil can be used for cooking, baking, as a substitute in lotions and hair products, or even as fuel for your emergency stove!

You can use it for cooking – just use it in place of butter or olive oil.

You can add coconut oil to your coffee, cereal, oatmeal, and other foods for a healthy boost!

It’s an effective moisturizer that you can either buy pre-made or make at home with special recipes:

– Coconut Oil + Honey (or sugar) mixed together

– Coconut Oil + Lemon Juice mixture rubbed on the face before bedtime

Don’t forget about using coconut oil as a hair product while SHTF too! It will help keep your scalp from itching when there are no more products left on shelves…

Coconut oil is also great as fuel for emergency stoves because it has such a high smoke point.

OK, I could go on and on but this isn’t an article about coconut oil. Normally it is pretty darned pricey so I was beyond tickled to find coconut oil at the Dollar Tree!

8) Ramen 5-packs.

Ignore all the rumors about the plastic in the noodles, etc. Yes, there is a lot of sodium. You can stretch this into a soup that feeds an entire family by cooking up 2 packs and adding a few cans of veggies along with a can of cooked chicken breast.

Dollar Tree Ramen

9) Canned veggies.

Name brands y’all! With the metal shortage currently driving up prices – canned goods are rapidly jumping in price at the grocery stores. You can get all of your favorites for a buck!

Canned veggie coupons

10) Canned fruit

It is important to have a little balance and fruit adds that nice sweetness we tend to crave after a few days. It can be used as a dessert or topping to dress up oatmeal.

canned fruit coupons

11) Canned soup

Name brands again y’all! Campbell’s and Healthy Choice – perfect for those who like to just heat and eat. I’m a fan of the beef barley! Even cream of mushroom or cream of chicken for those pasta or rice casserole dishes – the Dollar Tree has you covered.

Canned soup coupons

12) Spices.

Talk about expensive – your grocery store can charge up to $15 for the SAME-sized container. Get a nice-sized container for your most common spices for just a buck. Try adding a little ginger to that Ramen soup for an Asian flair or even Cinnamon for that rice pudding.

how to save money on spices

13) Juice boxes.

Name brand, single serving, a variety of flavors. This is good for the kids and also the diabetics – a four-pack for a buck makes a great bargain.

14) 32 oz bottle of Lemon Juice.

You can get a quart of lemon juice for a buck. Add a one-dollar sugar package and you are all set for that refreshing lemonade! All you need is 6 1/2 cups of water, 1 cup lemon juice, and 1 cup sugar in your 2-quart pitcher, and a little ice in your glass to pour it over. It helps that tough time seem a little more normal.

15) Canned pie filling.

Whether it’s apple, cherry, or blueberry pie filling – just one buck. It is good to have on hand for wrapping pancakes around for a fancier breakfast – or even to turn into pudgy pies over your open fire. Musselman’s is a GREAT brand of pie filling and roughly $4 at the grocery store

16) Pancake mix

A box of pancake mix for a dollar? You can’t beat that! And it’s the perfect breakfast on those mornings when you need to hurry back out the door and don’t have time to make them from scratch. I have found the “just add water” version 16.5 oz boxes that literally ANYONE can make without screwing it up.

17) Hungry Jack Hashbrowns.

This dehydrated 3.2-ounce box only needs a little water to come to life. You can play “Waffle House” and add onions, cheese, diced ham, and more to make a meal or use them as a base for a family frittata with some scrambled eggs and a few veggies.

18) Condiments

Ketchup, Mustard, even Salsa, and Hot Sauce! You might not think of these things when you are prepping, but they really come in handy. Your food will need FLAVOR.

19) Pancake syrup

Who cares if Aunt Jemima is on your bottle of pancake syrup or not? For a buck you can save two to three bucks that the grocery store charges! Why not pick up a bottle for the camper AND the house at that price?

This is also a great way to sweeten everything from oatmeal to rice custard.

20) Baking mixes.

Muffins, Cookies, Cake, and even brownies. Baking mixes are a must-have for anyone in your family. Did you know you can even make pancakes from muffin mixes? (more about that later…)

21) Chocolate bars

It is important to have mood elevators too. When things look bleak – you need a pick-me-up. They have name-brand chocolatey goodness like Godiva. Make sure you pamper yourself a bit – even in an emergency. It really can help you with your sanity.

I know there are a lot more great things you can find when just walking around your store or when you are combing over their website. These are just the top 21 items that I found that are a total bargain and PERFECT for anyone who is prepping on a budget.

That makes this is a MUST-HAVE list for any prepper, whether they’re new to the game or have been at it for years. When you start shopping from your local Dollar Tree store, you’ll be amazed by all of the deals!

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