The Best Ammo For Survival

best ammo for survival

Want to know the best ammo for survival? You’re in luck.

Most preppers want a few firearms in their arsenal when SHTF. However, when it comes to ammunition, choosing between all the types out there can be a real pain.

After all there’s lots of factors to consider – and choosing the wrong type can make your survival experience a whole lot more difficult.

We want to make the ammo-buying process easier for you. That’s why we’ve compiled this list of…

The Best Ammo For Survival

Each of these ammo types is evaluated around some of the most important factors:

  • Price
  • Availability
  • Purpose
  • Stopping Power

This comparison will help you select the best type of ammunition for an SHTF event. Enjoy!

.22 LR

This is a compact, versatile, and incredibly common round that’s excellent for emergencies. And, since it’s widely available, you’ll have a lot less trouble finding it and stocking up.

This small round is great for hunting small game; however, it’s not nearly as effective for taking down animals much larger than a squirrel or rabbit.

Due to its size, this round does not have much stopping power – which makes it unreliable in a defense situation.

Although this ammo is great for survival, it shouldn’t be your only option. Pair it with a type that works well for defense (and perhaps for shooting larger game).

Note: Need a new firearm? One option that uses this round is the Remington Model 597 HB.


This round also goes by the “9mm Luger” – and it’s an incredibly common (and popular) round for pistols.  Again, easy access to this will be in your favor when SHTF.

This round is larger and packs a harder punch than the .22LR – making it great for self-defense, and hunting both small and mid-size game.

If self-defense is your main use for this round, you’ll want to opt for the hollow-point version. (You’ll want to check your local & state laws to make sure these are legal where you live – or where you’ll be bugging out).

Note: Don’t opt for revolvers for this round – it’s too easy to get grit in the cylinder, and they’re too slow for emergency situations. Instead, go for a semi-automatic handgun. These are compact, lightweight, and quick to use in a crisis.

.308 Winchester

This is a round that’s popular for sporting, and great for defense. With significant stopping power and little recoil, this can be a great option for those who aren’t strong enough to use a rifle with a lot of kickback.

When used with a rifle with a longer barrel (at least 24 inches), these rounds can go for about 800 yards. Plus, when pairing it with a scope you’ll be able to maintain control of the area.

Note: The Winchester Model 70 Bolt Action is a great option for this round.


This round is also called the “5.56 NATO” – and it’s incredibly common among the U.S. Military. Plus, many civilians also favor this round for normal use. This is a great sign that this round will be available to stock up on before SHTF.

This round has exceptional stopping power, and a range of about 300 meters. It’s excellent for defense, as well as hunting large game.

Note: the Colt AR-15 is a great semi-automatic rifle that chambers these, and is excellent for survival situations.


Shotguns are some of the best firearms to have on you in a crisis. And when you fire off 12-gauge rounds you can hunt large game (not to mention flying game), and scare the hell out of your attacker in close-range combat.

Keep in mind 12-gauge shells come with significant kickback. If this is too much for you, opt for a 16-gauge or 20-gauge. These aren’t nearly as common as the 12-gauge, so you’ll want to stock up on plenty before SHTF.

Note: Shotguns typically work for only one gauge of shell, so make sure to test out a few of the options before buying a shotgun that matches it. Pump action shotguns are more recommended than auto loaders for survival. That’s because pump actions are simpler to use, and are less likely to have issues over time. For instance, the Remington Model 870 Pump Action 12-Gauge Shotgun is awesome for a survival situation.