Practical Prepper

100 Dollar Store Survival Preps To Stockpile Now



Dollar Store Prep Ideas To Stockpile Now

Prepping is awesome, but do you know what's more awesome? Shopping for items at a hugely affordable price. Here are some dollar store prep ideas and so you don't burn a hole in your pockets!

Dollar Store Prep: Prepping the Affordable Way

Prepping can easily become very expensive, very quickly. Even if you bargain shop and clip coupons, stockpiling supplies for consumption, shelter, filtration, food preservation, protection, and medical care add up.

But if you’re a savvy shopper, you can find a myriad of useful items right at your local dollar store. Canadian Prepper made an entire video on the subject, showing everything he bought for right around $100 USD, and many of the items have multiple uses.

While you may be sacrificing some quality vs more durable counterparts found at hardware stores, having something will always be better than having nothing.

We’ve categorized all of the items to cover the areas that Preppers focus on.


Shelter | Dollar Store Prep Ideas To Stockpile Now

Humans require shelter to shield us from the harsh elements. If you ever find yourself having to make due in the wilderness, you will need to be able to create a shelter that provides both protection and heat.

If you get creative, items from the dollar store can do just that.

  1. Insulation film – Helps to conserve heat
  2. Shower curtain liners – Effective shelter materials
  3. Nails
  4. Tarp
  5. Zip ties

Food Preservation

Food Preservation | Dollar Store Prep Ideas To Stockpile Now

Without electricity, you can kiss your refrigerator and freezer goodbye – leading you to rely on time-tested food preservation methods. Canning and salt preservation have both been used successfully for centuries.

  1. Glass jars- you can reuse condiment or jam jars if canning jars aren't available
  2. Iodized Salt


Consumption | Dollar Store Prep Ideas To Stockpile Now

Possibly the most-prepped item is food! You and your family need to eat every single day (preferably several meals each day), so you’ll need huge reserves of food. You’ll also need the right tools to be able to cook over open flames.

  1. Cast iron frying pan – Doubles as a weapon, will last forever if you take care of it
  2. Oven mitt – Look for durable silicone options
  3. Can Opener – nothing fancy, a good old fashioned one will do
  4. Canned Meats – chicken, salmon, tuna, sardines
  5. Disposable kitchen items – Paper plates, bowls, cups and plastic utensils
  6. Cooking Fuel
  7. Dried Food – Most dollar stores stock freeze-dried fruits, including pineapple, papaya, peaches, and apples, which will last for many years and provide you with soluble fiber in your diet; as well as dried beans for half the price as in other stores
  8. White Sugar
  9. Instant Coffee
  10. Cutting Board
  11. Knife – be sure to check the quality, if it looks cheap skip it
  12. Baking tin
  13. Aluminum foil

Cleaning Supplies

Cleaning Supplies | Dollar Store Prep Ideas To Stockpile Now

If our infrastructure were to crumble, there would be no more running to the store for soap, dish soap, laundry detergent, and other cleaning supplies. But hygiene would continue to be critical in maintaining your health. So, the time to stock up is now.

  1. Steel wool – Cleaning knives, metal tools, and cast iron pan
  2. Toilet paper tablettes
  3. Bleach or calcium hypochlorite, which has a longer shelf life than bleach
  4. Baking soda for hygiene – Toothpaste, soap, deodorant, cleaning, prevents odors, treats minor burns
  5. Soap
  6. Body Cleansing Wipes
  7. Sponge
  8. Rubber gloves

Fire Starters

Fire Starters | Dollar Store Prep Ideas To Stockpile Now

Being able to start a fire is debatably the most important skill you can develop. But to simplify the process, stock up on firestarters, matches, and lighters that allow you to save valuable time before cooking your meals.

  1. Petroleum Jelly
  2. Cotton balls – Soak in petroleum jelly for instant fire
  3. Sharpener – Use to make tinder to light fires
  4. Candles – Melt the wax with jute twine to create a fire starter
  5. Matches
  6. Long Match – Even easier to light fire
  7. Barbeque Lighter


Security | Dollar Store Prep Ideas To Stockpile Now

If you don’t protect what you have, you will become a target. Even the appearance of security or simple tripwires can deter criminals from attempting to enter your space.

  1. Dummy Cameras
  2. Wire – Make snares and a perimeter alarm system
  3. Prybar
  4. Reflective safety tape
  5. Reflective safety vest

Water Filtration & Storage

Water is right up there with food for most-prepped items because you’ll need a lot of it. Ideally, you will have effective water filters that you can use to fill and refill containers. Some of these supplies can be picked up at the dollar store.

  1. Hot water bottle bag/water bladder – Durable and flexible water container
  2. Coffee filters – Use as a water filter


Attire | Dollar Store Prepping

Your SHTF wardrobe will likely be very different from your current wardrobe: it will need to be durable and protective. You’ll need to stock items that will shield you from every type of weather, and physical labor.

  1. Clothespins – Hang-dry clothes
  2. Space-saving storage bags – Use when packing your Bug Out Bag
  3. Rain ponchos
  4. Insulated soles – Are essential for cold climates and can be paired with socks to keep your feet warm
  5. Backpacks – cheap kids backpacks are great for disguising your emergency supplies
  6. Work gloves
  7. Bandanas – Work as a prefilter and a mask
  8. Sewing equipment


Must-Haves | Dollar Store Prepping

There are some items that every household should have, and you may as well save a few bucks by buying them at the dollar store.

  1. Bucket
  2. Bungee cord & carabiners
  3. Wd-40
  4. Duct tape
  5. Superglue
  6. Utility light
  7. Safety pins
  8. Razorblades
  9. Boxcutter
  10. Clamps
  11. Scissors
  12. Flashlights
  13. Rubbing alcohol – Sterilize, make hand sanitizer, and light fires

Multi-Use Items

Multi-Use Items | Dollar Store Prepping

Certain Prepping supplies have so many uses that you’ll want to stock up on as much as you can afford. These also make for great barter items.

  1. Cheesecloth – Can be used for: water filtration, food preservation, fire/char cloth, medical gauze, straining fruit, pine resin glue, making a tea bag, cloth/toilet paper, bug net, making a pandemic mask
  2. Metal Strainer – Can be used for: water filtration system, cooking, dehydrating food, catching small fish for bait
  3. Contractor Bags/Garbage Bags – Can be used for: poncho, sleeping mat when filled with leaves, hauling water, pillow, disposing of contaminated materials
  4. Inspection mirror – Can be used for: tactical applications, medical applications, signalling for help
  5. Vinegar – Lasts forever and has 1000 uses
  6. Mesh netting bag – Can be used for: washing laundry, carrying food, creating a fishing net
  7. Magnifying Glass – Can be used to start a fire and has medical applications

Medical Supplies

Medical supplies will become like gold when society crumbles. Left on your own, you’ll want to have a very comprehensive first-aid kit to treat any ailments you might experience.

  1. OTC Medications – You can purchase small dosage packs that can be used for bartering or stored in your Bug Out Bag
  2. Band-Aids – Choose a variety of sizes
  3. ACE bandages
  4. Epsom Salts
  5. Nail cutters
  6. Hydrogen peroxide
  7. Lip balms
  8. Aloe vera gel

Gardening Supplies

Gardening Supplies | Dollar Store Prepping

Being self-sufficient is critical when SHTF, and it all starts with a bountiful garden that you can harvest each season. The dollar store can provide you with the tools you need to get started.

  1. Seeds
  2. Seed Starter Trays
  3. Planters
  4. Gardening Gloves
  5. Gardening Hand Tools
  6. Watering Cans

Odds & Ends

Odds & Ends | Dollar Store Prepping

It’s mind-blowing to think of all the products we use on a daily basis for hygiene and comfort. While you can’t stock up on all of them, there are a few you won’t want to live without.

  1. Sun reflector – Can be used as a mattress
  2. Pregnancy test
  3. Feminine products
  4. Condoms
  5. Toothbrushes
  6. Sunscreen
  7. Marker/signboard – Make a sign
  8. Hair elastics
  9. Jute twine – Use as cordage
  10. Glow sticks – For signaling
  11. Games – Playing cards and dice
  12. Heat Packs – To keep hands warm when chopping wood
  13. Shammy Towel – Always works as a beach towel
  14. Shoelaces
  15. School supplies
  16. Diapers & Wipes – Even if you don’t need them, they make for great barter items

You will likely find plenty of other essentials at your dollar store, but these 100 should get you started without breaking the bank.

Did that fire you up for a shopping spree at the dollar store soon? Let us know what you think of these 100 dollar store prep ideas in the comments section!

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  1. Maureen Ludlow

    October 27, 2020 at 12:16 PM

    Thanks so much. I just went through the list & am amazed at what I do have! I will stop by & get the few things I still need. It is a great list.

  2. John

    October 27, 2020 at 5:03 PM

    Good observation and imagination. Thanks and God Bless.

  3. Eva Huschka

    October 28, 2020 at 5:39 PM

    A great list, thank you. If you ever have to carry all that stuff, you need more than one donkey.
    PS. you might have time to read a book. Add it to your list.

  4. Janet Graham

    October 29, 2020 at 12:46 PM

    The salt used for canning or meat preservation must be non-iodized. Look in every canning book to verify. Now,you might use iodized salt for your own meat prep but that is not the best preservation method when you must rely on it for your protein. Non-iodized salt sits right next to iodized in the grocery store.

  5. Lynne Clark

    October 29, 2020 at 1:00 PM

    Nice List! I just glanced thru but I have a few questions: where did you get insulation film at a Dollar store? And the cast iron pan?

  6. Misty

    January 31, 2021 at 3:22 AM

    Add chewing tobacco
    1 bartering
    2 juice can be used as bug repellent
    3 nicotine withdrawal
    Add cigarettes
    1 again, barters well
    2 can use in your tent to keep mosquitoes away
    3 transfer a fire to a new site

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