Comments Subscribe to Personal Liberty News Feed Subscribe to Personal Liberty

Making Simple Flat Breads From Food Storage Staples Can Sustain Life In An Emergency

February 11, 2013 by  

Making Simple Flat Breads From Food Storage Staples Can Sustain Life In An Emergency

Everyone loves fry bread, tortillas and pita bread. All these breads can be made from a few staple ingredients.

If you get caught in an emergency situation, these breads can be made and eaten to sustain your life. Add canned meat, beans, rice and rehydrated vegetables and you have a meal.

Wheat Grinder Or Grain Mill

A wheat grinder or grain mill is very important to have. If you have a wheat grinder, you can make whole grain flour that is much more nutritious than white flour. I suggest you have an electric grinder for everyday use and a hand-operated grain grinder for emergency use if the power goes out. I really like the Wonder Junior Hand Grain Grinder and the Wonder Mill Electric Grain Grinder.

Food Storage Staples For Making Bread

Everyone should store the following staples for making simple breads:

  • Wheat and other grains to grind into whole-grain flour.
  • White flour (has no nutritional value).
  • Shortening or olive oil.
  • Sweetener such as honey, sugar or agave.
  • Salt.
  • Baking powder.
  • Dry yeast. (Keep it in the freezer.)
  • Powdered milk.
  • Potable water.

Wonder Junior Hand Grain GrinderWith these basic ingredients you can make just about any flat bread, tortilla or pita bread. Try practicing making these simple breads so that if you ever need to make them in an emergency, you will feel confident that you can.

Pita Bread Recipe

2 packages dried yeast (4 ½ teaspoons)
1 tablespoon sugar
1½ cups lukewarm water
4 cups  flour (white, whole wheat, multigrain or a combination)
1 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon olive oil

  1. Preheat the oven to 500 degrees.
  2. Dissolve the yeast and sugar into 1½ cups of warm water, then set it aside for 10 minutes so it can proof. This means it starts to grow and form bubbles.
  3. Mix the flour, salt and oil together in a bowl and then add the yeast and water mixture.
  4. Knead the dough until it is smooth and elastic, adding more flour if necessary until it is no longer sticky.
  5. Place the dough in a warm, oiled bowl, turning the dough around to coat the surface with oil. Cover the bowl with a dry cloth and set it in a warm place. Allow the dough to rise until it is double in volume. This takes about two or three hours.
  6. Punch down the dough and knead it for about two minutes. Divide and roll the dough into 12 little balls.
  7. Place the dough balls on a dry cloth in a warm place, then cover with another cloth and let them rise for about 30 minutes.
  8. Roll out the balls into circles about 1/8-inch thick.
  9. Bake the pita bread on a preheated cookie sheet in the center of the oven for six to seven minutes, watching them so they don’t burn. When the bread cooks, it will puff up like a balloon. It will collapse when it cools.
  10. Once the pita bread is cooked, remove it from the baking sheet and cover it with a dish towel with plastic wrap on top of the towel. Repeat with each loaf until all the pita bread is cooked. If you do not cover with the towel and plastic wrap, the bread will harden and not be as good.
  11. Store the pita bread in a zippered baggie. You can eat it immediately or freeze it.

Pita bread can be eaten with any meal. A staple in many Middle Eastern countries, pita bread can be used as a spoon or scoop and is eaten with olive oil, hummus, dips, soups, sauces, meats and vegetables. When cut in half, pita bread can be opened up like a half-moon pocket that can be filled with meats and vegetables.

Old Indian Fry Bread Recipe

2 cups white or whole-wheat flour
1½ teaspoons salt
1 tablespoon baking powder
2 tablespoons shortening or lard
¾ cup milk or (½ cup powdered milk mixed with ¾ cup warm water)
Vegetable oil for frying

  1. Mix all the dry ingredients together. Rub the mixture with your fingers until it forms coarse crumbs. Push all the shortening and flour crumbs to the side of the bowl.
  2. Add the milk and mix this together in a circular motion with your fingers. Knead the dough until it forms a soft dough ball. It usually takes three to five minutes to knead the dough by hand. It takes practice, and you will get a feel for it. Continue to add a little extra flour to the countertop and continue kneading the dough until it is no longer sticky.
  3. Divide the dough into six portions and shape them into balls. Flatten each of the balls with your fingers from the center outward until it is round like a small pizza. Pull it back and forth and form it into a 6-inch tortilla. You can roll the dough with a rolling pin to flatten it as well.

Basic Dough

This dough can be used for making into tortillas or flat bread. The difference is that tortillas are cooked in a cast iron skillet without oil and flat bread is cooked in a frying pan with oil. How you cook it depends on what you are making.

Tortillas are usually filled with meat and ingredients such as tomatoes, onions and cheese and then rolled into a burrito or soft taco. Fry bread is used flat and topped with meat such as shredded beef, hamburger, chicken or pork, then topped with black beans, pinto beans, rice, shredded lettuce, tomatoes, minced onions, cheese, sour cream and guacamole. If fresh food is unavailable, use canned tomatoes, canned beans, canned meat and whatever else you have on hand.


To fry tortillas, the pan must be hot with no oil in it so that the bread dough does not raise and puff up like fry bread. It stays flat and soft.

Fry Bread

To fry the flat bread, you will need to prepare a frying pan with vegetable oil in it about 1/8-inch thick. Heat up the oil in the pan and place the fry bread in the oil. When it turns golden brown, turn it over and cook it on the other side. Take it out of the oil and place it on a paper towel to absorb the excess oil.

Bread Cooked Over Hot Coals Or On a Stick

Use this same recipe and method of preparation as for fry bread and tortillas. Shape the dough into a circular piece of flat bread and cook it on a wire rack that has been placed above the hot coals. Turn the bread over several times to make sure it is browned on both sides and has thoroughly cooked.

You can cook flat bread on a stick by wrapping the dough around a willow-type stick and securing it by pinching the dough together so it won’t fall off the stick. Hold it over the warm coals and turn it often so that all sides will brown evenly and cook all the way through.

Cookin' With Home StorageThis recipe came from the book Cookin’ With Home Storage.

This book has more than 550 food storage recipes as well as:

  • Emergency food storage instruction and tips on survival.
  • What to store and how much to store.
  • Reconstituting charts for dehydrated and freeze-dried foods.
  • Authentic pioneer and early settler recipes using basic food.
  • Fascinating historical pioneer information.
  • Natural beauty and personal care.
  • Natural household cleaners.
  • Grandma’s home remedies.
  • Emergency baby food.

–Peggy Layton

Peggy Layton

a home economist and licensed nutritionist, holds a B.S. in Home Economics Education with a minor in Food Science and Nutrition from Brigham Young University. Peggy lives in Manti, Utah with her husband Scott. Together they have raised seven children. Peggy owns and operates two businesses: One called "The Therapy Center", where she is a licensed massage therapist and hypnotherapist, and the other an online cookbook and preparedness products business. She is nationally known for publishing a series of seven books on the subject of food storage and also lectures and teaches seminars about preparedness and using food storage products. Peggy practices what she preaches, has no debt, grows a huge garden, lives off the land, raises chickens, bottles and dehydrates food and has time left over to operate her businesses. To check out Peggy's cookbooks and self sufficiency products go to her website To get a free sample of three different storable meals that have a 15-year shelf life go here.

Facebook Conversations

Join the Discussion:
View Comments to “Making Simple Flat Breads From Food Storage Staples Can Sustain Life In An Emergency”

Comment Policy: We encourage an open discussion with a wide range of viewpoints, even extreme ones, but we will not tolerate racism, profanity or slanderous comments toward the author(s) or comment participants. Make your case passionately, but civilly. Please don't stoop to name calling. We use filters for spam protection. If your comment does not appear, it is likely because it violates the above policy or contains links or language typical of spam. We reserve the right to remove comments at our discretion.

Is there news related to personal liberty happening in your area? Contact us at

  • Nadzieja Batki

    Good article on the simplest breads created on a quick fire. The flat breads taste good even with coarse ground flour. It is hard to resist them.

    • http://windstream Joe

      The article is good and the recipes are nice as well but if we are thinking about actual survival bread during the leanest of times it might be best to think with common sense. The idea of going to a specialty shop for a certain type of protein oil for shortening is not survival. It is shopping . In the chance that one needs to use fry bread to make a complete meal they can bake it in the same fire using two pans held together with pins of the nature metal . A simple hardware store carries numerous types that can be kept on hand for this emergency. Even a paper clip will work. Shortening can be the rendered fat from any kind of cooked meat ( if you have meat). Or unleavened bread works well to. The original fry bread was made like this with rendering.
      Now, try thinking outside the box and learning something about using wild grasses to make a flour paste for bread. Foraging is a handy little skill to have in any emergency.

  • ibcamn

    Yep,think outside the breadbox!!and remember some shells and shell breads(flat) stay good with no refridgeration for quit some time!

  • Walt


    Although your comment about NOT using oil on a cast iron skillet when making tortillas may be accurate, you should try using oil to allow the tortillas to “puff up”. This feature makes them easy to slice, opening a pocket which can be filled much like pita bread.

    We use “masa” and place on an oiled cast iron skillet. Then we gently press the tortilla with a metal spatula until there is separation or the “puffing”. After slicing open, we then fill with feta cheese or sliced American cheese and meat (shaved steak, marinated brisket, etc.)…yummie!

    We also make them without the “puffing” procedure, and then place the cheese and meat on top, adding fresh diced tomatoes, lettuce, black olives and sourcream. Also very good!

    Easy to make indoors or outdoors….the ultimate survival food feast.

  • AWKingsley

    Love these recipes! Another really good emergency supply is TVP, Dehydrated vegetable protein. TVP is very inexpensive and can be obtained from a Vitamin Cottage or Natural Grocers in many cities or in an organic grocery store. It makes wonderful chili with dehydrated tomatoes or tomato juice and dry chili spice packets. TVP can also be added to soups, Ramen noodles, or other pasta dishes, along with dried vegetables to get a really nutritious meal. It can also be flavored with chicken or beef base and used in sandwiches or pasta dishes. Use anywhere in emergency preparedness as a meat substitute that requires no cooking, only re-hydrating, and warming. Excellent for dry storage in bins or plastic buckets.

  • Benjamin Fox

    It will come to that and sooner then later. With gas prices sky rocketing it will raise the price of everyday things and if obozo’s EO about taking the farms, food supplies and transportation in what he deems the national interest he becomes your king and you’ll need him to eat, take heed to what was said in this article and prepare for the worse times Ameria has ever seen or will see. Turn to God for the answers, the nazi’s in charge sure don’t have them.

    • Old Henry

      And Benjamin, along with fuel prices we add the almost nation-wide draught. No rain, no crops. Look at what has happened to the beef, hog, poultry production in the last couple of years. No grass / grain no food for livestock.

      • http://midcontent ridge runner

        There was not such a drought as media feed BS has everyone to beleive, there was some areas that were a little short. Inost states declared disaster had one crop maybe a dugg but other crops were better than average. Hay may have been short in some areas, but there is over 34 milllion former crop raising ground that has been laying idle for over 30 years producing nothing but wildlife, weeds, and rodents and vermin. This Conservation Reserve Program farmground is a $7 billion a year waste for landowners to do nothing for over30 years. For every 10 acres being used to produce any type of food, grain or animals, gives 3 peoople employment. But this is another welfare program to get a free check from the government(taxpayers) and do nothing. Anoyher free money hand out for landowners is to charge hunters feed to hunt the land taxpayers paid for, but as for double dipping it has been going on every year, even thought the government and taxpayers supposedly own the wildlife. So don’t beleive the communist created agency, created by FDR and his first Sec of Ag, a registered communist of the Denorat Dung Party.. Facts will prove my statements.

  • phillip

    i agree with your statements about fdr and the communist but your ideal about hunting on privite land for free is communist ideal itself. there are taxpayer bought land called state and federal land that you can hunt on for free.until you pay for some of my taxes and land payments which seem to go on for ever i sugest you ask permission to hunt on my some land yourself and see if someone pays your taxes or property payments!onece you do i don’t really think you would allow just anybody to wonder over your land leaving gates open ,throwing out trash, tearing up your pasture ,maybe stealing your livestock or property,etc.this land is my land ,this land is your land idea comes from communism.if you want the use of my land do the work and sacrifices and buy it!it has cost me dearly to make the payments and pay taxes on land i already paided for year after year.try it yourself and then speak


Sign Up For Personal Liberty Digest™!

PL Badge

Welcome to,
America's #1 Source for Libertarian News!

To join our group of freedom-loving individuals and to get alerts as well as late-breaking conservative news from Personal Liberty Digest™...

Privacy PolicyYou can opt out at any time. We protect your information like a mother hen. We will not sell or rent your email address to anyone for any reason.