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43 Survival Food Items That Actually Taste Good

One of the most critical aspects of your survival plan is how you're going to feed yourself and your loved ones during a crisis. It's quite easy if you're only staying at home because you can stockpile a bunch of food. But if you're forced to evacuate to another location for whatever reason, things can get difficult. In this type of scenario, what would be your best choices for survival food?

Survival Food That Tastes Good? You Bet!

When the day that we've always been afraid of comes, those who have prepared will have a greater chance of surviving. Food becomes a luxury, a rarity even if available at all. The prepper, however, can count on his stored food. There are lots of companies that sell survival food kits but just looking at the packaging already makes you lose your appetite. For sure these meals provide nourishment, but after SHTF, food has to provide some comfort. We have put together a list of delicious survival foods that provide the body's required nutrients and make life just a bit more bearable at the same time. Before you continue to the list, check out my favorite survival food that isn't only tasty, it has NO EXPIRATION DATE. Certain Foods Canned Meat is perfect for any survivalist.

1. Beef Jerky

Ask The Meatman's Own Hot Teriyaki Deer/Beef Jerky Seasoning by Ask The Meatman

Easy to eat, easy to bring along, and lasts very long… there's no mistake in stocking up on beef jerky. You can even make some by yourself if you know how to hunt. Beef jerky is one of the most versatile meats available for any prepper. Aside from being convenient enough to eat on its own, it can also stand in as a protein for your carb-loaded meals. Frying it gives it a softer texture that goes well with soft carbs, like potatoes or rice. It's a great way to liven up a meal during an SHTF situation.

2. Breakfast Cereals

Breakfast Cereals | Survival Food Items That Actually Taste Good
Breakfast Cereal by Free Foto

After a disaster, having a proper breakfast can give you a positive outlook and start your day off right. Cereals are packed with nutrients and necessary calories that you'll need during a hard day when SHTF. To keep enjoying this treat, make sure you stock up on enough powdered milk.

3. Canned Fruits and Vegetables

Canned Fruits and Vegetables | Survival Food Items That Actually Taste Good
Canned Fruits & Other Products Agrofoods

Fruits and vegetables give you essential vitamins to keep you healthy, aside from tasting great. Fruits and vegetables are important for a balanced diet during trying times. Unless you have a subterranean greenhouse, you'd do well to keep canned fruits and vegetables in your survival pantry. Our friends at Valley Food Storage have short and long-term supplies of freeze-dried fruits and vegetables–stock up!

4. Canned Meat

Canned Meat | Survival Food Items That Actually Taste Good
How Long Does Canned Food Last Photo by Survival Mastery

This should be on the list because, in addition to being delicious, meat provides the protein to keep you strong. Short of animal husbandry in your bunker (which is, by the way, unsustainable) canned meat will be your only source of animal protein. Make sure to stock up on these a LOT.

5. Canned Salmon

Canned Salmon | Survival Food Items That Actually Taste Good
Canned Salmon by Meals4One

One of the best tasting fish out there, you can never go wrong with salmon. Diversifying your diet during a survival situation is essential. If you can't source fresh fish yourself, this is a very good substitute. It's plentiful, nutritious, lean, and healthy. Related post: Fish Like a Redneck: 26 Wacky Fishing Tips

6. Cheese

Cheese | Survival Food Items That Actually Taste Good
Bega Canned Cheese by ArmyAirborne (AR15)

Most cheeses can spoil in a short period but you can go for cheese spread, canned cheddar, or dehydrated cheese to enjoy your favorite food — even in a crisis situation. Cheese is a survival food that, while perishable, should hold for a pretty long time. It also adds a welcome flavor enhancement to otherwise bland meals.

7. Chocolate Bars

Chocolate Bars | Survival Food Items That Actually Taste Good
Mars (chocolate bar) Wikipedia

Who says you can't have chocolate when things go south? Chocolates are one of the best survival foods available to you. If you need to unwind, comfort food like chocolate is a great way to help find your peace of mind. Plus, the endorphins you get through this survival food will greatly increase your happiness in a bleaker world.

8. Chocolate Chia Survival Bars

Chocolate Chia Survival Bars | Survival Food Items That Actually Taste Good
Chocolate Chia Chai Energy Bar by Epicure

The fact that it's a superfood should be enough to convince you to try these chia bars. Chia seeds are a great source of essential nutrients. These include omega-3 acids, fiber, antioxidants, iron, and calcium. The chocolate flavor is a just bonus!

9. Coffee and Tea

Coffee and Tea | Survival Food Items That Actually Taste Good
Coffee and Tea Picgifs

There's nothing like the aroma and taste of coffee to perk you up in the morning, even in rough times. Tea, on the other hand, relaxes you, apart from its known health benefits. Both of these drinks are great during a survival situation, as the caffeine will certainly help out when it comes to standing and keeping watch. Also, they work great as barter items – everyone needs their caffeine fix, after all.

10. Cookies

Cookies | Survival Food Items That Actually Taste Good
Italian Spumoni Cookies (“Spumookies”) by Food Network

There is no doubt about it: everyone loves cookies! Bonus: they're great survival foods because of their long shelf life… if you can leave them alone. If you can, stock up on chocolate chips, butter, flour and milk – you'll need 'em if you need to bake during the apocalypse.

11. Crackers

Crackers | Survival Food Items That Actually Taste Good
Saltine Crackers Healthy Snack Photo by Syri Catalogue

Crackers may not be your favorite food, but when they're all that's left in the aftermath, they definitely get the job done. They are a quick way to get some carbs into you, with the added bonus of their shelf life. Of course, man cannot live on crackers alone. Make sure you have plenty of water nearby to avoid dehydration.

12. Dried Fruits

Dried Fruits | Survival Food Items That Actually Taste Good
Is dried fruit healthier Photo by The Hearty Soul

Fresh fruit could be hard to find after a disaster, so it's best to stock up on the dried variety. We cannot stress enough the importance of keeping your diet diversified during a survival situation. Dried fruits add a much-needed flavor boost to your diet. They are also nutritious and delicious! Learn how to make your own dried fruit here.

13. Energy Bars

Energy Bars | Survival Food Items That Actually Taste Good
5 Maca Energy Bar Recipes Photo by Mommypotamus

Considering the physical exertion needed in survival situations, energy bars should be in your food storage list. True to their name, these give a natural boost of energy to you, thanks to their high calorific content. They're a great food to have with you when you're out there in the wild. This survival food is a necessity.

14. Freeze Dried and Dehydrated Herbs, Spices and Flavoring

Freeze Dried and Dehydrated Herbs, Spices and Flavoring | Survival Food Items That Actually Taste Good
How to Dry Celery and Homemade Celery Salt Recipe Photo by Health Starts in the Kitchen

Even if they cannot be enjoyed by themselves, these ingredients help you cook up delicious meals. As we've stated before, enhancing the taste of your food can keep you happy during an SHTF situation. There's a reason why spices were so valued back in the day. Therefore, keeping a huge stock of spices ensures good food, as well as possible barter items.

15. Grill Bread

Grill Bread | Survival Food Items That Actually Taste Good
Fresh-Baked Bread Straight From the BBQ Photo by Popsugar

Don't worry, you can make your own bread when the bakeries have shut down. Grilled bread is also a tasty carb that can help the beef jerky go down nicely. Making these shouldn't be hard, as long as you have enough flour and eggs to make it happen.

16. Hard Candy

Hard Candy | Survival Food Items That Actually Taste Good
Hard (to understand) Candy Photo by Dubbatrubba

Hard candies may not be the top of mind when you think about survival food, but it's got its purposes. For one, it keeps your sugar levels stable when you are out for a long time. It's also a great dessert to have after a full meal of canned stuff. This is a great supplement to your meal, and they can last a long time.

17. Hardtack

Hardtack | Survival Food Items That Actually Taste Good
Hardtack Photo by 3rdusreenactors

Despite having the same culinary appeal as crackers, hardtack can last a lot longer. Sailors during the Age of Discovery frequently stocked hardtack in their ships due to its longevity and calorific content. While not exactly the tastiest carbs, this survival food will keep you alive in an SHTF situation.

18. Honey

Honey | Survival Food Items That Actually Taste Good
What you should know about honey before you buy it Photo by Treehugger

In addition to honey's great taste and the many health benefits it offers, it lasts a lifetime, too. No joke–honey does not expire. It's a great addition to your coffee, tea, or cooking. The sugar content of honey is essential to keeping your sugar levels stable in a world where a trip to the supermarket isn't exactly possible. If all else fails, use these for barter.

19. Homemade Survival Bars

Homemade Survival Bars | Survival Food Items That Actually Taste Good
Survival Bar Recipe & Instructions: Chocolate Chia Photo by DIY Projects

These DIY survival bars are not only nutritious, they are also a cinch to make. You can start making them right now and stock them in your pantry so you'll be prepared for any situation. They are also healthier than, say, store-bought energy bars. You may also personalize the recipes to your own taste. Learn how to make your own here!

20. Instant Mashed Potatoes

Instant Mashed Potatoes | Survival Food Items That Actually Taste Good
Instant Mashed Potatoes: Awesome Survival Food Photo by Survival Life

No more boiling and mashing. Just add water and enjoy the dish. These are a great addition to your meals. They go great with the protein you hunt, and its neutral taste is sure to supplement the savory sensations of your meats. Click to learn more about why these are a fantastic survival food option.

21. Jams and Jellies

Jams and Jellies | Survival Food Items That Actually Taste Good
Jams and Jellies Photo by Gourmet Food Clubs

Spread it on toast, fruit, cake, even ribs, and the food simply comes to life. Preserves such as jams are a great way to keep yourself stocked with fruit food products during a survival situation. You could slather this on some hardtack to make it a lot more bearable, for example.

22. Jell-O

Jell-O | Survival Food Items That Actually Taste Good
The New Jell-O Mold: Jiggle-Chic for the Holidays Photo by Organic Authority

Food so simple and easy to prepare, yet so delicious. Little treats such as Jell-O may not seem much, but in a dire situation, any comfort is excellent comfort. Who knew Jell-O could stave off depression?

23. Maple Syrup

Maple Syrup | Survival Food Items That Actually Taste Good
Maple Syrup Photo by Thistledog

Maple syrup can do more than make pancakes tastier. It can also be used for a variety of delectable recipes. Just like honey, pure maple syrup lasts for a long, long time. Having some on hand can not only make your meals better, it also doubles as a good survival food.

24. Molasses

Molasses | Survival Food Items That Actually Taste Good
Benefits of Molasses for your Flock Photo by Fresh Eggs Daily

Many nutritional benefits can be taken from molasses, and they can also be used as sugar substitute. And of course, they last a long time. Molasses, water, and Jell-O for example, make a tasty drink that you can put in your canteen to take during extended hunting trips.

25. Nuts

Nuts | Survival Food Items That Actually Taste Good
Nuts And Hazelnuts Enlarge Your Life Photo by Gazeta Shekulli

Lightweight and packed with vitamins and minerals, nuts like almonds, peanuts, and sunflower seeds are excellent survival items. The protein content of nuts makes them a great meat substitute. When game becomes hard to find, you'll be glad to have these in your pantry.

26. Oatmeal

Oatmeal | Survival Food Items That Actually Taste Good
Oatmeal Photo by Harrys Fresh

It's not only delicious, it's one of the healthiest foods in the world. Long shelf life makes it an excellent survival food. Adding your dried or canned fruits to the recipe enhances the otherwise plain flavor of oatmeal.

27. Ovaltine

Ovaltine | Survival Food Items That Actually Taste Good
Healthy Hot Ovaltine The Super Drink Photo by Love From Cara

Don't forget to drink your Ovaltine! It's non-fat, great for your bones and blood, and it tastes great. Like we said before, having chocolatey treats on hand during an apocalyptic situation is a comfort. A steaming hot mug of Ovaltine at night is a comforting thought for the weary survivalist. The long shelf life is a great bonus.

28. Pasta

Pasta | Survival Food Items That Actually Taste Good
What Kind Of Pasta Are You Photo by Playbuzz

Pasta has a long shelf life. It's not the most nutritious food on this list, but the carbs will fill you up and give you energy. With enough creativity, you can combine tomato sauce and your canned meats to make a tasty pasta dish any time of the year.

29. Peanut Butter

Peanut Butter | Survival Food Items That Actually Taste Good
The Scoop on Peanut Butter Photo by Parade

Peanut butter is known for lasting years and it would not have become such a popular snack if it weren't delicious. In fact, I'm a little obsessed. You can also make your own peanut butter with your nut stash, and that's a lot more natural and nutritious than store-bought Jif.

30. Pemmican

Pemmican | Survival Food Items That Actually Taste Good
How To Make Pemmican: A Survival Superfood That Can Last 50 Years Photo by Off The Grid News

The fact that pemmican helped Native Americans survive for long periods without eating anything else should be enough to convince you that this is a solid survival food. Pemmican is super easy to make. You can make it with pretty much any type of meat, such as bison, elk, deer, beef, or pork. Click to learn more about how this is the ultimate survival food.

31. Pickled Eggs

Pickled Eggs | Survival Food Items That Actually Taste Good
Pickled Eggs Photo by Our Small Valley Farm

DIY pickled eggs, when done right, are nutritious and can last for several months. They're a good side dish and snack to have on hand.

32. Popcorn

Popcorn | Survival Food Items That Actually Taste Good
Popcorn Photo by International Business Times

Popcorn is an ideal survival food because it's nutritious, easy to prepare, has long shelf life, and it's tasty. It's a very healthy survival food, as long as you don't pour margarine all over it.

33. Polenta

Polenta | Survival Food Items That Actually Taste Good
Baked Parmesan Polenta Photo by Taste

Since it's made from corn, you can be sure polenta will sustain you for a long time. Polenta is also wickedly easy to make. So, if you have a stock of corn, might as well turn them into these bad boys.

34. Quinoa

Quinoa | Survival Food Items That Actually Taste Good
Basic Quinoa Photo by Food

It's high in nutrients and easy to prepare. Mix quinoa with rice, chia, and chicken stock and you've got yourself a really good risotto. Who knew high-end cuisine could be possible in the apocalypse?

35. Rice

Rice | Survival Food Items That Actually Taste Good
Rice Photo by Mehfil Best Cuisine

The nutritional benefits of rice are too long to list. Its grains can last for months, and it's easy to cook. Rice is a staple in many countries around the world, mostly because of its versatility and high calorific content. As long as you have rice, you'll never grow hungry.

36. Rice and Bean-based Noodles

Rice and Bean-based Noodles | Survival Food Items That Actually Taste Good
Recipe For Quick And Easy Miso Soup With Soba Noodles {OR Mung Bean Noodles} Photo by Jeanettes Healthy Living

If you are gluten-intolerant or -sensitive, then you need to store some of these noodles. They make tasty substitutes for the wheat-based variety. Also, they're really easy to make into stir-fry. Just add vegetables, some oyster sauce, and perhaps some canned meat, and you've got yourself a filling meal.

37. Spirits

Spirits | Survival Food Items That Actually Taste Good
Nova Scotia Liquor Corporation Photo by Audience Outreach

When taken in moderation, spirits actually offer health benefits. In a survival situation, having alcohol can keep depression at bay, as long as it's enjoyed in moderation. Obviously, they are enjoyable but they can also be used for trade in the aftermath.

38. Summer Sausage

Summer Sausage | Survival Food Items That Actually Taste Good
2-12oz Fathers Beef Summer Sausage Photo by All Biz

Sausages that need no refrigeration are definitely great survival food items! Sausages are a great way to enjoy meat that's not in salt pork or beef jerky form. They also enhance any humdrum bread meal, and can be used as a substitute for meat in any meat recipe.

39. Tang

Tang | Survival Food Items That Actually Taste Good
Tang Photo by Monchi Time

This powdered juice mix helps with your Vitamin C needs. It's high in calories and tastes good, so it's a comfort food that you definitely should always have in your survival pantry.

40. Trail Mix

Trail Mix | Survival Food Items That Actually Taste Good
Healthy Trail Mix Photo by Advanced Wellness Centre

Lots of pre-made trail mixes are available, but you can also create your own mix of ingredients to fulfill your nutritional requirements. Trail mix is the go-to trail food for hikers, because of the nutrients and calories present in the mix. They're a great way to stave off hunger during long hunting trips.

41. Turkey Jerky

Turkey Jerky | Survival Food Items That Actually Taste Good
Turkey Jerky Photo by Calgary Meats

Using turkey is a great alternative when beef is not available, or you simply want some variety. Keep it handy as it can be good to mix them into a few recipes.

42. Venison Jerky

Venison Jerky | Survival Food Items That Actually Taste Good
Peppered Venison Jerky Photo by Climax Jerky

This is delicious survival food! It's long-lasting and easy to carry around. Just like with any jerky, with a little creativity, you can turn this dried meat into a feast fit for kings. Learn how to make your own venison jerky right here!

43. Wine

Wine | Survival Food Items That Actually Taste Good

These drinks get better with age, and surely make you feel a little better despite the circumstances. Wine keeps cholesterol under control and of course, they make great trade items as well.

Watch this video of Pemmican – The Ultimate Survival Food by Townsends.

What do you think of this list? Maybe you're surprised that survival food isn't really that bad after all. When you're bugging out and getting from point A to point B, you're packing food that's convenient for you to prepare or something that you can eat on the run. Some of the food in this list may not be too easy to prepare, but there's a lot of options for emergency situations.

What is your go-to survival food? Tell us in the comments section.

Up Next: How To Defend Your Home And Your Family From Drone Attacks

Editor's Note: This article was originally published on Feb 23, 2016. It has been updated for accuracy and relevancy.

Go to our Survival Life Store to shop some of our favorite self-defense tools and gear. Shop here.

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Homemade Weapons You Can DIY To Awaken Your Inner Caveman

Learn to make your own homemade weapons so you’ll have a fighting chance in a survival situation where all you have is nature.

 [You Get One FREE] Weird Little Knife Drives TSA Crazy!

How to Make Homemade Weapons

Why Should You Learn to Make Homemade Weapons?

Let’s say you got lost in the wild, and you somehow forgot or lost your Cold Steel Leatherneck Tanto 39LSFT (or whichever is the best survival knife for you). What do you do?

While your situation is most likely not quite as bad as Tom Hanks had it in Castaway, let’s face it. The only way you’re gonna get out of this situation in good shape is to let out your inner caveman.

Let me explain. Our very primitive ancestors lived in a time when every day was a survival situation. Any tools or weapons they needed had to be made from scratch.

So, should you be unlucky enough to have only the shirt on your back while you’re lost in the wilderness, you’ll have to follow suit. Let the training of your inner caveman begin.

Today’s lesson: how to make DIY weapons in the wild with only the resources nature provided you.

How to Make a Knife | Homemade Weapons

Having a knife, any kind of knife is probably one of the best things to happen should you suddenly find yourself in a survival situation. You can use it to help you find food, build a shelter, and defend yourself against wild animals.

So it’s highly fortunate nature is waiting like a momma at a craft table with lots of materials you can use to create one.

1. Stone Knives

Bone, shell, bamboo, wood, or even an old aluminum beer can may work to perform the puncturing function of a blade. You know you’ve seen these a million times when you’re out hiking.

They’re easy to crack or break or shape into a fairly sharp point which will do in a pinch. Unfortunately, you’re not going to be able to use a chicken bone or an expertly-shaped aluminum can point to skin, chop, baton, or any of the other necessary functions of a survival knife.

This is where the stone comes into play. I’ll start by saying making a knife out of stone isn’t easy, but it can be done.

You’ll need three things: a core rock, a hammerstone, and a pressure flaker. Remember, you’re going to be smashing these together in true caveman fashion.

So, having stones you can reasonably grip in each hand is going to make your life a lot easier. Although, it’s definitely an option to stand poised over one rock smashing down on it.

You, with a two-hand grip, pounding until you’ve chipped away at it a bit. But I’m getting ahead of myself.

2. The Core Rock

rock formation background | Homemade Weapons You Can DIY To Awaken Your Inner Caveman | homemade weapons | deadliest ancient weapons

The core rock is what you’ll be making into a blade. Find any large stone, preferably made from obsidian, slate, chert, or flint with a relatively flat side.

In case you weren’t a rock collector in any of your previous lives, here’s another way to decide if a rock meets the requirements for good knife-making material. Tap or click a rock together with another rock and listen for a ringing sound (like glass).

The more rock sounds like glass, the better it is as a material for your core rock. If you can, choose a rock which is already a bit sharp to reduce the amount of time you’ll need to shape it.

3. The Hammerstone

The hammerstone is a medium-sized, spherical rock, preferably made of granite. It will be used to smash, chisel, chip and shape the core rock.

You’ll be using it to chip off pieces of the core stone and to narrow the edges to a blade shape.

RELATED: How To Keep Your Edge | Knife Sharpener

4. The Pressure Flaker

The pressure flaker, or flaking tool, is a rock with a sharp point to help you refine the blade’s edges. You’ll use your flaking tool after you’ve thinned the edges of the stone with the hammer stone to make the “blade” sharper.

When you start making your knife, you’ll want to be sure to wet the core stone to shorten the time it takes to shape it into a blade. Begin by striking glancing blows near the edge of the core rock with the hammerstone.

Chip away at the core rock until you get the general shape of a blade. Then, use the flaking tool to refine the edges you need to sharpen.

You can also use a stone with a rough surface such as a sandstone to sharpen the edge. Use some rope, cloth, or leather to lash the base and create a handle.

If you are having troubling shaping the rock into a knife, you can opt to create stone blades instead. Check out the videos below to learn how:

Part One:

Part Two:

How to Make a Spear | Homemade Weapons

south african zulu spear | Homemade Weapons You Can DIY To Awaken Your Inner Caveman | homemade weapons | deadliest ancient weapons

We’ve talked about how to make a spear using your best survival knife in a previous article. The same principle applies here.

Even without your Cold Steel Leatherneck Tanto 39LSFT or whichever survival knife you normally bring with you, you can still make a spear using your newly made stone knife. To make a spear, you’ll need to find a five-foot-long stick tough enough to endure repeated short or long-distance throws.

  1. First, pick the end of the stick which has a more rounded tip and use your stone knife to start shaving to create a spear. Once you’re done, be sure to heat the spear over some hot coals to make your spear sharper.
  2. As an alternative, you can also make a spear by tying your knife onto a stick. Find a stick which is about an inch wide.
  3. Measure about 2 inches from one end of the stick. Mark the point, then split the stick into two until you reach the 2-inch mark, creating a sort of Y shape.
  4. This will create a space where you can stick your stone knife before you lash it on with some twine, cord, or rope. To lock the blade in place, put some moss or lichen in the remaining space.
  5. If you haven’t had time to fashion your knife out of stone yet, you can also use broken pieces of shell or glass or splintered bamboo or bone and secure it to the end of your stick.
  6. If you find a way to split your stick without a knife, you can insert the splintered bone or bamboo into the wedge and tie it off like you would when turning a knife into a spear.

How to Make a Weighted Club | Homemade Weapons

While sharp pointy tools are all well and good, you can never go wrong with a blunt homemade weapon. You can use it for hammering or bludgeoning something such as a weighted club.

The weighted club could be one of the deadliest ancient weapons. To make one, you’ll need the following: a piece of wood around 14-16 inches, a medium-sized rock, and some rope.

  1. Once you have all the materials, you’ll need to wrap some lashing 6-8 inches from the end of the stick.
  2. Split the same end until you reach the lashing in order to create a V-shaped notch. The rock you picked out should be shorter than the length of the split.
  3. Insert the stone then lash it securely (above, below, and across the stone). The lashing on the stick above the stone clamps both sides of the split together providing the first point of security, so it’s especially important to create a good, tight lashing above the stone.
  4. You’ll want to make sure you bind the split ends securely so the stone won’t fall off whenever you use it to hammer or pound on something.

This video from Wannabe Bushcrafter will show you how to make a bamboo knife:

Now, hopefully, you never find yourself in a situation where making homemade weapons is going to be a necessity for survival. But, if you do find yourself in such a quagmire, this little bit of information and inner caveman training may be what saves your life.

Which of these homemade weapons do you want to make? Tell us your progress in the comments section below!

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***Disclaimer: The contents of this article are for informational purposes only. Please read our full disclaimer.***

Editor’s Note: This post was originally published on April 11, 2014, and has been updated for quality and relevancy.

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5 Home Remedies For Chigger Bites

Know these home remedies for chigger bites, or better yet, avoid the bug's bites in the first place with helpful tips included here!

RELATED: Top Ways to Deal with Insects [Especially Mosquitos]

In this article:

  1. What Is a Chigger, Exactly?
  2. Where Do Chiggers Live?
  3. Identifying Chiggers Bites
  4. Home Remedies for Chigger Bites
  5. Tips to Avoid Chigger Bites and Chigger Bites Infection

Home Remedies For Chigger Bites

What Is a Chigger, Exactly?

Chiggers are members of the arachnid family. They are extremely tiny, and my guess is you won’t even see them as they jump from the tall grass onto your skin and/or clothing.

Adult chiggers are about 1/60 of an inch and have eight legs. The larvae are red, wingless, six-legged creatures which measure less than 1/150 of an inch.

Because of their red color, you might be able to spot the larvae when they cluster together, especially on white clothing.

What Is the Arachnid Family? It is a large group or class of invertebrate animals where the spiders and scorpions belong.

Where Do Chiggers Live?

Chiggers reside in tall weeds and grass, berry patches, and wooded areas. They could be in your backyard, by the lake, or your favorite hiking trail.

They are most active in summer and fall afternoons – the warmest part of the day.

Identifying Chiggers Bites

Only the larvae bite humans and they tend to choose warm, moist areas of the body.

Chiggers also have claws which help them grab onto your skin. The chigger then attaches its mouth to the skin and injects saliva.

The saliva contains an enzyme which breaks skin cells down to liquid form. Your body responds by hardening skin cells around the saliva, creating a tube (cyclostome) through which the chigger sucks the dissolved skin cells.

Chiggers can stay attached and feeding for several days before falling off.

When the chigger falls off, you are left with reddish bumps. You may notice a bright red dot in the center—this is a remnant of the tube your skin formed in response to the chigger's saliva.

The bumps may look like welts, blisters, pimples, or hives. Bites generally appear in groups and get larger for several days to a week.

While many insects bite exposed skin which is easy to get to, chiggers like to bite in folds of skin as well as places where clothing fits tightly on the skin. Most chigger bites occur around the ankles, waist, armpits, crotch, or behind the knees.

Home Remedies for Chigger Bites

Just remember, no matter what, DO NOT SCRATCH THE BITES! I know, easier said than done. But, breaking the skin on a chigger bite can lead to infection.

Here are 5 home remedies to help with the itching and swelling.

RELATED: Spider Bite? Here’s How To Treat It

1. Vicks Vapor Rub

Vicks Vapor Rub can put an end to itchy chigger bites immediately and will even reduce the risk of blisters. It’s the cooling menthol in it which relieves itching by affecting itch receptors in the skin.


  • Take a hot shower (use antibacterial soap.) Pat dry your skin with a soft towel.
  • Take a small amount of the vapor rub and add some table salt to it.
  • Mix well and apply to the affected area.
  • Repeat if the swelling continues (otherwise, there is no need to repeat the process)

2. Cold Compress

A cold compress can help reduce the itching associated with chigger bites. Its numbing effect helps reduce the sensation of itchiness.


  • Wrap some ice cubes in a thin cloth.
  • Apply the compress to the bites for 10 minutes. Repeat if needed to relieve itching.

3. Baking Soda

Baking soda is another effective remedy to reduce rashes as well as itchiness. It acts as a natural acid neutralizer which helps relieve itching and reduces the risk of infection.


  • Add 1 cup of baking soda to a bathtub filled with cool water.
  • Stir well and soak in this water for 15 minutes and pat your skin with a soft towel. (Do this once daily)

Another remedy using baking soda:

  • Prepare a thin paste of 2 teaspoons of baking soda and a little water.
  • Apply the paste on the affected areas and leave it on for about 10 minutes.
  • Rinse it off with cool water.

Note: Do not use this remedy more than once or twice a day. Never use baking soda on broken skin or open wounds.

4. Oatmeal

Oatmeal contains anti-irritating, anti-inflammatory and soothing properties providing instant relief from itching–one of the common symptoms of chigger bites. It is recommended to use colloidal oatmeal, meaning oats which are ground into an extremely fine powder.

(You can accomplish this yourself by grinding regular oats in a sealed Ziploc bag, using the backside of a spoon to crush the oatmeal.)


  • Add 1 cup of colloidal oatmeal to a bathtub filled with warm water
  • Stir thoroughly
  • Soak in this mixture for at least 15-20 minutes
  • Repeat 2-3 times a day

5. Olive Oil

Olive oil can also be used to get relief from the irritation and inflammation. It is rich in vitamin E and antioxidants which reduce itching and facilitate healing.


  • After rinsing the affected area with water, apply olive oil to the chigger bite.
  • Reapply several times a day.

Another option using olive oil:

  • Mix a few drops of tea tree oil in 1 tablespoon of olive oil and apply on the affected area.
  • Repeat a few times a day.

Tips to Avoid Chigger Bites and Chigger Bites Infection

As summer and fall are prime time for chigger bites, it is best to take the following precautions:

  1. When hiking, stay in the center of the trail and avoid brushing up against vegetation.
  2. Wear long sleeves and long pants when going into the woods.
  3. Apply mosquito repellent on your hands, feet, and exposed skin on your arms before going outside.
  4. Shower immediately after being outdoors and use antibacterial soap.
  5. Wash your clothes in hot water.
  6. Resist the urge to scratch because breaking the skin on chigger bites can lead to a possible infection.

This video from Online Pest Control will show you tips to avoid chiggers and ways to get rid of chiggers:

Chigger bites much like other insect bites aren't only discomforting, they can be dangerous too. Many of these insects including chiggers carry diseases in some cases.

The best way to deal with these bugs is to avoid them or control them with our tips here. But, if you're so unlucky, you also now know the best home remedies to chigger bites!

Have you had to deal with chigger bites before? Tell us how, including more useful tips which worked for you in the comments section below!

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***Disclaimer: The contents of this article are for informational purposes only. Please read our full disclaimer.***

Home Remedies For Chigger Bites |

Editor’s Note: This post was originally published on June 28, 2016, and has been updated for quality and relevancy.

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9 Good Reasons To Carry A “Survival Stick”

Arm yourself with a survival stick, get savvy with it, but first, find out why as you read on!

RELATED: Deadly Parasols | Umbrella As A Self-Defense Weapon

In this article:

  1. Survival Hiking Stick
  2. Survival Stick for Support
  3. Fetching/Reaching Things
  4. Walking Staff Weapon for Self-Defense
  5. Balance
  6. Gauging Depth
  7. Carrying Gear and Supplies
  8. Club
  9. Fishing Rod

Survival Stick: An Underrated Multipurpose Tool?

The Survival Stick in History

A walking stick or a survival cane were popular in the 17th and 18th centuries as a decorative show of power and a defensive replacement for a sword. Yet, the truth is our ancestors have been using them for thousands of years, and for good reason…

…They work! Even the animal kingdom is smart enough to know just how useful these are:

(It may be hard to see, but this gorilla is holding a walking stick to gauge the depth of the water as she sloshes along)

A walking stick is not a new or revolutionary idea. In fact, the use of a walking stick predates history and its use continued on for generations including this present time.

Yet, it is one which is more often than not overlooked. When most people think of a walking stick, it is usually paired with a top hat or seen as a crutch for someone with a walking disability.

Far too few people even realize how important a walking stick can be, especially to someone in the outdoors. We will dig a little deeper into the many uses of a survival stick and maybe safely say, it could be the first multi-purpose survival tool.

Practical and Survival Uses for a Survival Stick

Walking sticks are also known as trekking poles, pilgrim's staffs, hiking poles and hiking staff have quite a few different uses:

1. Survival Hiking Stick

Hold the survival stick in front of you and you can use it to clear your way by parting brushes and branches or leaves and thick tall grasses. You can also use it to clear spiderwebs, especially if you're not too fond of spiders.

Other insects, animals, poisonous plants, and even animal dung can get in the way. Use a survival stick to inspect or poke at those things if you are unsure, and never ever your hands or your feet.

2. Survival Stick for Support

Hiker in Caucasus mountains is crossing mountain river | Good Reasons To Carry A "Survival Stick" | hiking staff
Making your way through an uneven terrain will be more manageable with a walking stick for support. Whether you're going up or down, use the walking stick to either slow you down or hold you up.

You can use your walking stick like breaks to keep you from speeding down or use it to latch on to a rock or crevice when you're climbing up. Besides for yourself, you can also use your multipurpose stick as a support for your tarp emergency shelter.

3. Fetching/Reaching Things

It happens–a supply or gear falling on water, mud, puddle or in an area you dare not walk into. You can fetch or reach for those items with a stick.

It also happens where you need an item over a physical barrier and only a stick can fetch the item for you. You can also reach for fruits, nest, or other food sources up a tree or high structure with a stick.

RELATED: Unusual Weapons From Around The World And How To Use Them

4. Walking Staff Weapon for Self-Defense

To use a survival stick as a weapon, make sure it's a sturdy stick with a finished look and not just any stick you found along the way. You can use it to defend yourself from an attacker whether it's human or animals.

I would suggest to train yourself in some form of martial arts using a stick like a baton as a weapon to have a better handle at it.

You can also fashion a spear with your stick by tying a survival knife on one end. Don't throw this spear though or you risk damaging or losing your knife and stick.

Hold on to your homemade spear and only use it to thrust at your target.

5. Balance

Hiker is crossing the river in Sweden | Hiker in Caucasus mountain | Good Reasons To Carry A "Survival Stick" | survival hiking stickWhen you're crossing a log bridge over a stream or you're going through the stream itself or other bodies of water, a walking stick can help you balance so you don't fall over. If you're walking through a muddy or rocky waterbed, a walking stick will help you up.

If you're up for it and if the body of water isn't too wide across, you can also use a long stick like a pole vault to cross over so you don't get yourself wet.

6. Gauging Depth

Relative to crossing bodies of water, a survival stick is handy in identifying dips beneath the waters which could cause you to stumble. You can also use the stick to identify where it's safe to take the next step.

You can also use this simple trick with the stick when you're traveling in deep snow, marshland, and even the dessert.

7. Carrying Gear and Supplies

Use your survival stick to help you carry gear and supplies. Pack your supplies with a shemagh, tie it tight to one end of your stick then place the stick over your shoulders in hobo fashion.

You can also carry more supplies with your survival stick. Even today, a carrying pole is used by indigenous people all over the world to carry heavy supplies you never thought possible.

Hang bags of supplies or jars of water on either side of the pole or stick, putting a stopper like a notch or tie on both ends so they don't fall off. Place the center of the stick over your shoulders and balance your load to your destination.

8. Club

Man carrying blue backpack | Good Reasons To Carry A "Survival Stick" | walking staff weapon
Use your survival stick like a club to knock obstacle down. A pillar of rocks or other objects may be on your way and a sturdy stick can help you safely knock those.

If you are in a building with glass doors or windows or inside a car, you can break the glass with a stick. Make to knock over pieces around your entrance or exit with the stick, too.

9. Fishing Rod

You only need to bring a fishing kit and your survival stick will make a good fishing rod. Tie a line on one end of your walking stick and fish away.

A DIY fishing pole is actually effective and many a fish has been caught this way.

As you guys and gals already know, I am a stickler for carrying things only if they have multiple uses. This guy managed to fit almost an entire survival kit into a walking stick he built from scratch, for under $20.00.

Check out this video from SOS 2054 I found, and find out for yourself, too:

A humble walking stick will indeed surprise you with what it can do for your defense, convenience, safety, and survival. Since you know now the practical and survival uses of this primitive multi-purpose tool, it won't surprise me if it lands a top spot on your list of survival tools for camping, hiking, or SHTF.

What other uses can you think of for carrying a “survival stick”? Let us know in the comments section below!

Up Next:

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Check out How To Purify Water | 5 Water Decontamination Techniques at

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**Disclaimer: The contents of this article are for informational purposes only. Please read our full disclaimer.

Editor’s Note: This post was originally published on October 11, 2013, and has been updated for quality and relevancy.

This Article Was First Found at Read The Original Article Here

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