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Mum has 426 meals ready to feed her family for the next eight months

Emma Guinness

Published 
| Last updated 

Mum has 426 meals ready to feed her family for the next eight months

Featured Image Credit: SWNS

With inflation at a 40-year high, many people are turning to meal prep in a bid to see themselves through the cost of living crisis.

But it's unlikely anyone will have prepared more than this mum, who has made a whopping 426 meals to feed her family for the next eight months.

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Kelsey Shaw, 30, spent three months preparing for the winter, and she now has a selection of preserved foods from her family farm to see them through the next eight months.

She explained that while her family eat fresh food during the summer, she meal preps for the winter so that they can live off their own produce then too.

However, she also says that her meal planning gives her piece of mind as it means her family are prepared for anything.

Kelsey, who is a stay-at-home mum, said: "When we moved to the farm we wanted to live a slower lifestyle and wanted to know what we were eating and where it was coming from.

"I taught myself how to preserve food and learnt lots of hacks like making corncob jelly which tastes like honey.

"It does take a long time. I spend at least two hours a day in the garden and then the process of preserving things can take days as I go back to things in stages."

Kelsey said she's proud every time she goes into her pantry. Credit: SWNS
Kelsey said she's proud every time she goes into her pantry. Credit: SWNS

The mum explained that while it took her a long time to learn how to effectively preserve food in this way, it was invaluable during the pandemic.

"I'm very proud every time I walk in the pantry," she says.

"I have it stocked up to feed us about two meals a day from October through to May.

"It helped during the pandemic because we didn’t have to panic about running out of food while we were locked down."

Kelsey learned how to store food online. Credit: SWNS
Kelsey learned how to store food online. Credit: SWNS

The mum, who also works as a photographer, has three children and is raising them on an Indiana farm with her husband.

Her family grow their own fruit and vegetables, but they also have livestock too.

She explained that she turned to online tutorials when she first decided to preserve food.

"I preserved whole meals, so I'll make jars of beef stew and then put them in a pressure canner, so they are then ready to keep and use whenever I need them," Kelsey said.

"It means I never have to worry about making dinner if it's been a busy day."

Kelsey prepares meals eight months in advance. Credit: SWNS
Kelsey prepares meals eight months in advance. Credit: SWNS

While Kelsey's family does largely live off their own produce, she said she does bi-weekly supermarket trips for the things they can't grow, like rice and pasta.

"Preserving food is time consuming, but I've found a real love for it, and it makes meals easier for us as a family," she asserted.

"We're prepared for anything."

Topics: Food and Drink

Emma Guinness
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