Emergency Food Supply

Canned Food Types You Need to Know Get Ready for Anything


Canned food is essential for many households. It's convenient and allows for easy delicious meals. But, which type should you buy? There are so many! It's important to understand the different types of canned food available. This guide provides an overview of popular canned food options and their advantages.

From fruits to veggies, soups to meats, learn about the canned food varieties. Knowing what kind of canned food is available will make meal prep easier. Stock up on the essentials for a pantry emergency or pre-planned shopping list. You'll be ready for anything with a stocked pantry!

Canned Fruits

Canned fruits are a superb source of healthy snacks! Plus, they are a must-have in emergency kits. You can find peaches, pineapple and many other types of canned fruits. Why not include them in your diet?

Let's review some of the canned fruits you need to be aware of:


Peaches – a summer favorite! But what if it's not in season? Canned peaches are your go-to! No peeling or wasting food here! You can find them in various forms – whole or cut, yellow or white. Plus, they're harvested when perfectly ripe for great flavor. Plus, canning is the best way to store them for long-term.

Canned peaches are packed with minerals like calcium, iron, zinc, dietary fiber and vitamins A & C. Eat them straight from the jar or in dishes like cobbler, ice cream toppings or smoothies. Enjoy an explosion of flavor and nutrition!


Canned apples come in two forms: slices and dices. Slices are great for baking, while dices are perfect for salads and other dishes.

Choose cans with air-tight seals, and no bulges, rust or corrosion. Check the product is without spoilage when you open the can. If it is, use it within 3 days for optimal taste. Unopened cans will last at least 1 year past their printed date.


Canned pineapples are a yummy treat, enjoyed globally. From punches to sweet and sour recipes, or straight out of the can – these goodies will add flavour to your meals!

The advantages of buying canned fruit are many. They preserve the freshness and nutrients, saving energy costs. Plus, no slicing or dicing needed, so prep time is cut down.

When it comes to canned pineapples, there's a vast selection available. Chunks in syrup or juice are the most popular – perfect for snacking or cooking. Other varieties include:

  • Crushed pineapple for desserts
  • Tidbits for stir-fry dishes and smoothies
  • Slices to decorate cakes and tarts
  • Tidbits in lightly sweetened syrup for salads and drinks
  • Pre-cut spears

Before buying, do some research. Check the nutrition labels, ingredient lists, quality scores, reviews and certifications like organic or Non-GMO. Get exactly what you're after!


When you think of canned citrus, oranges usually come to mind. But did you know there are different types? It depends on the recipe and the desired flavor.

  • Mandarin oranges for example, are mildy sweet and tender-skinned. They're often canned in light syrup and used in salads.
  • Clementines are small, tangerine-like fruits. They're juicy and tart, and often added to salads or used in marmalade and desserts.
  • Orange juice concentrate is great for when chunks of orange aren't needed. It can be used in cakes, muffins, breads, sauces and even beverages.

To get the perfect flavor, select the perfect canned orange!

Canned Vegetables

Canned veggies? Yes! They are a great choice for nutrition and non-perishability. Plus, they are often high in vitamins and minerals, low in fat and calories. Plus, the variety of flavors means you'll never be bored.

Let's check out the types of canned veggies available. Be ready for anything!


Corn is one of the most popular canned veggies out there. It's cooked, packed in a safe form, and thermally processed to increase its shelf life.

Whole kernel canned corn comes with or without salt. The labels are green for no salt added, and yellow for regular. Cream-style is ground and processed more than whole kernel. It has a thick and creamy texture, with some whole kernels. Baby shoe-peg is small cobettes, usually white but sometimes yellow or mixed.

Canned corn gives you options for side dishes and meals. It's a pantry staple!

Green Beans

Green beans are a classic canned veggie. They are convenient and full of nutrients! Already cooked and preserved in water or brine, they can be stored for a long time. Look at the labels before buying, as they may contain added salt or sugar.

Canned green beans come in all forms! Whole beans are great for salads and soups. Cut pieces provide more flavor than fresh and cook faster in casseroles.

Nutrition-wise, canned vegetables are close (or same) to their fresh counterparts. Although fresh veggies have slightly more vitamin C, the difference is small. Check the Nutrition Facts label for details.

Canned green beans can last up to a year when stored correctly. This makes them a great choice for stocking up on non-perishables and reducing food waste.


Stocking your pantry for emergencies? Keep this in mind: some veg are better preserved in canned form than fresh. Carrots are packed with beta-carotene and other vitamins and minerals.

Benefits of canned carrots:

  • Ready to use.
  • Easy storage, long shelf life.
  • Nutrient retention.

Don't confuse “canned carrots” with “carrot juice” in an aluminum can. Carrot juice has beta carotene, but not as much dietary fiber and other nutrients as traditional canned carrots.


Canned peas are a must-have among veggies. They're full of nutrition, like vitamins, minerals and protein. One cup of cooked canned peas has 30g of carbs and 8g of protein. Plus, they have 5-6g of fiber – much more than fresh peas.

These yummy morsels are great for dishes like mac ‘n cheese casserole or soup mix-ins. There's a wide range of types to choose from, too. Such as:

  • Extra Fine Green Peas
  • Creamers
  • Mixed Vegetables with Peas & Carrots
  • Whole Green Peas

When prepping meals with canned peas, remember to drain the liquid first. This reduces the sodium content. Then rinse them to bring out their nutty flavour. Enjoy!

Canned Meats

Canned meats offer protein and nutrition – plus, they can be stored for a long time! If you're in a rush for some protein, or simply want something easy, canned meats are a great option. Here's a look at the different kinds of canned meats, and how to use them:

  • Tuna – can be used in salads, sandwiches, pastas, and more.
  • Salmon – can be used in salads, sandwiches, pastas, and more.
  • Chicken – can be used in salads, sandwiches, pastas, and more.
  • Ham – can be used in salads, sandwiches, pastas, and more.
  • Turkey – can be used in salads, sandwiches, pastas, and more.
  • Beef – can be used in salads, sandwiches, pastas, and more.


Tuna is popular 'cause it's affordable and easy to get. It's a good source of lean protein, plus it has omega-3 fatty acids, which can help with heart health and other conditions. Tuna comes in many forms – canned in water or oil, fresh/fresh frozen, and smoked.

Canned tuna makes a great addition to salads, sandwiches, and casseroles. Buy canned tuna with low sodium for maximum benefits. Check the label for extra fillers or spices that add sodium.


Canned chicken is a popular choice for large food stockpiles. It is inexpensive and easy to find, typically sold uncooked with bones and skin still in tact. Some cans may contain vegetables, spices, or sauces. Heating up the chicken is all that is needed before consuming, and if stored correctly, it can last up to 18 months.

Canned chicken adds protein and flavor to many dishes. It is also a nutritious way to get Omega-3 fatty acids into your diet, since most are wild caught instead of farm-raised. With its convenience and versatility, canned chicken is one of the top canned food staples globally!


Canned salmon is a great source of healthy protein. Unlike other canned meats, like tuna or chicken, it comes in delicious brine rather than oil or water. It's a way to add seafood to any diet. Here are three types:

  • Pink Salmon: An economical choice, mild and dark due to cooked brine.
  • Sockeye Salmon: Red salmon; taste great and high in omega-3. Bones included as they've been cooked at high temps to release vitamins.
  • King Salmon: Larger size, lighter flesh and higher fat content for richer taste. Expensive, so often found in value packs or specialty stores.


Ham is a handy canned meat. There are lots of different versions, from the traditional slices to air-dried and smoked hams. They can be used in sandwiches, pastas, salads, and casseroles.

Traditional canned ham is cooked and preserved in salty brine. Some brands offer pre-cooked versions that are ready-to-eat.

Air-dried and smoked hams have a more intense flavor. They are cured with herbs and spices, or over smoldering wood chips. This gives them a bacon-like aroma. Smoked canned hams need to be baked or roasted before they are eaten.

Spreadable pâté is another type of canned ham. It has a special taste, thanks to ingredients like port wine and cognac. Serve it on toast points or with crackers for an appetizing platter. Perfect for any party!

Canned Soups

Canned soups in the pantry? What a great idea! Fast and easy meals. There's a large selection of flavors and textures. For example, creamy tomato bisque or vegetable minestrone. So many choices!

Let's check out the most popular canned soups:

Chicken Noodle

Chicken noodle soup: a popular, comforting canned food staple. Usually made with egg noodles, chicken meat, carrots, celery and seasonings. Sometimes a thickener, such as corn or potato starch, is included. It's easy to spot a can of chicken noodle soup.

Beneficial for many reasons:

  • Full serving of protein from the chicken meat, calcium from the egg noodles.
  • Processed and sealed before being overcooked to preserve the nutrition and flavor.
  • Light options available with reduced fat or lower sodium.

Versatile and filling. Great for an impromptu dinner or straight out of the can. Enjoy chicken noodle soup however it comes!


Tomato soup: A classic comfort food! All age groups love it. Thanks to canned and instant soup versions, it's easy to make a bowl in no time.

Light, medium, and dense tomato-based soups are available – like Italian-style tomato basil, Italian-style meatless meatball tomato sauce, and chicken noodle with zesty tomato. Each type has its own flavor and texture.

Add extra veg or protein for a bigger taste!


Canned veggie soups provide easy convenience, with a variety of flavors, textures, and nutrients. These soups often contain organic or non-organic carrots, celery, onions, green beans, peas, corn kernels, bell peppers, tomatoes, and more. Flavor enhancers such as salt and pepper, or preservatives like citric acid and lactic acid, may also be added. Look for reduced-sodium versions with fewer added salts. There's a range of varieties – from simple recipes to hearty ones with extra veggies like broccoli and cauliflower.

When shopping for canned vegetable soup, read labels and choose those with lower sodium and preservatives.

Cream of Mushroom

Cream of Mushroom Soup is a classic! You can easily find it in any grocery store. It's made with mushroom stalks and caps, heavy cream, butter, flour, chicken stock, onion powder, and garlic powder. This blend creates a rich and creamy base with yummy chunks of mushrooms. To make it, no simmering or extra ingredients are needed. But, if you want more flavor, stir in cooked vegetables like chopped onions or celery.

When heated, Cream of Mushroom Soup can be enjoyed by itself or used in recipes like casseroles, appetizers, and pastas. Plus, it's a great source of protein and low in fat. So, make sure to always have some on hand for those comforting moments!

Canned Beans

Canned beans – what a great pantry essential! Perfect for emergency prep, camping, or just having around for a speedy meal. Long-lasting and protein-rich, they come loaded with fiber and minerals too.

Let's learn about the types of canned beans – their pros and cons, and how to use them. Get cooking!

Black Beans

Black beans are a type of canned beans, full of protein and fiber. They are popular in Mexican dishes like burritos, soup, and tacos. But, you can also use them in salads, soups, chili, and stews.

Canned black beans are ready to use within minutes. No need to soak or treat them before. Nutritionally, they are similar to cooked beans. They have protein, fiber, magnesium, and iron. Iron is important for women as it helps energy metabolism. Plus, they are convenient and inexpensive.

When buying canned black beans, look for BPA-free lining and organic certification. BPA is an endocrine disruptor that can cause cancer. Organic certification means the soil has not been over-farmed, and chemicals were not used on the produce. This makes sure the beans are of good quality.

Kidney Beans

Kidney beans are an ideal canned food option! They have lots of protein and fiber, can be used in many recipes, and last for ages stored away. The dark red kind is the most popular, and you can get them canned or dried. Nutritional value makes them great for those with special diets, like vegans and vegetarians.

When buying canned kidney beans, look for cans with no added salt or MSG, and check the “best buy” date on the can. Don't keep them near moisture or heat sources, like an oven, to stop spoilage. Rinse off any liquids in the can before cooking. This will remove sodium, but not the natural nutrients. Use low-sodium stock or bouillon cubes when cooking with canned kidney beans. This adds flavor without extra salt or sugar.

Pinto Beans

Pinto beans, also known as Phaseolus vulgaris, are a hit in Latin American and Southwestern food. Often served as a side dish in Mexican and Tex-Mex meals, they're perfect for chili. Their mild flavor has earthy tones which become more intense when cooked.

Canned pinto beans offer the same benefits as the dry kind. No need to presoak or cook for hours – they can be eaten straight from the can. Soft texture makes them great for stews, soups, hot dishes, burritos, and tacos. Plus, they're nutritious, low in fat, and high in dietary fiber.

When buying canned pinto beans, check the label for nutrition info, like calorie count and seasonings. Also, look for expiration date or best-by info on the can or website to make sure you're getting quality stuff.


Chickpeas, aka garbanzo beans, are a popular food in Mediterranean and Indian cuisines. They have a slightly nutty taste when canned and can be used for salads, soups, or curries. They have a greenish-white hue on the outside and light yellow on the inside. Boiling them first is necessary to reduce their toughness. Their mild flavor makes them very versatile in cooking.

When buying canned chickpeas, choose no salt added and low sodium options. Rinse them well to remove liquid preservatives. For a nutritious meal, pair chickpeas with

  • fresh veggies
  • lean proteins such as chicken or fish



Canned food is a great way to be prepared for emergencies or just for quick meals and snacks. There are many flavors, textures, and nutrition profiles to choose from. Soups, fruits, beans, and more!

Read ingredients labels to avoid allergens, and check expiration dates. Get versatile options to save time and money. Have the right assortment of cans and you can be ready for whatever life throws your way.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q1: What is a canned food?

A1: Canned food is food that has been preserved in sealed containers, such as cans, jars, or vacuum-sealed bags. The preservation process involves sterilizing the food and sealing it in an airtight container to prevent spoilage.

Q2: What are the different types of canned food?

A2: The most common types of canned food include fruits and vegetables, soups, sauces, meats, fish, beans, and other prepared meals. There are also many specialty canned foods such as pickles, olives, and jellies.

Q3: What are the benefits of canned food?

A3: Canned food has many benefits, including being convenient and easy to store, being relatively inexpensive, having a long shelf life, and being a great source of essential nutrients. Canned food is also often ready to eat, which makes it a great option for busy people on the go.

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