Backcountry Forum
Backpacking & Hiking Gear

Backcountry Forum
Our long-time Sponsor - the leading source for ultralite/lightweight outdoor gear
 
 
 

Amazon.com
Backpacking Forums
BackcountryGear.com
backcountry gear

---- Our Gear Store ----
The Lightweight Gear Store
 
 WINTER CAMPING 

Shelters
Bivy Bags
Sleeping Bags
Sleeping Pads
Snow Sports
Winter Kitchen

 SNOWSPORTS 

Snowshoes
Avalanche Gear
Skins
Hats, Gloves, & Gaiters
Accessories

 ULTRA-LIGHT 

Ultralight Backpacks
Ultralight Bivy Sacks
Ultralight Shelters
Ultralight Tarps
Ultralight Tents
Ultralight Raingear
Ultralight Stoves & Cookware
Ultralight Down Sleeping Bags
Ultralight Synthetic Sleep Bags
Ultralight Apparel


the Titanium Page
WM Extremelite Sleeping Bags

 CAMPING & HIKING 

Backpacks
Tents
Sleeping Bags
Hydration
Kitchen
Accessories

 CLIMBING 

Ropes & Cordage
Protection & Hardware
Carabiners & Quickdraws
Climbing Packs & Bags
Big Wall
Rescue & Industrial

 MEN'S APPAREL 

Jackets
Shirts
Baselayer
Headwear
Gloves
Accessories

 WOMEN'S APPAREL 

Jackets
Shirts
Baselayer
Headwear
Gloves
Accessories

 FOOTWEAR 

Men's Footwear
Women's Footwear

 CLEARANCE 

Backpacks
Mens Apparel
Womens Apparel
Climbing
Footwear
Accessories

 BRANDS 

Black Diamond
Granite Gear
La Sportiva
Osprey
Smartwool

 WAYS TO SHOP 

Sale
Clearance
Top Brands
All Brands

 Backpacking Equipment 

Shelters
BackPacks
Sleeping Bags
Water Treatment
Kitchen
Hydration
Climbing


 Backcountry Gear Clearance

Topic Options
Rate This Topic
#101761 - 08/26/08 08:32 PM Name your favorite pre-packaged meals
Heber Offline
member

Registered: 12/31/07
Posts: 245
Loc: St. Louis, Missouri
I read sarbar's blog everyday and I'm constant amazed at the great trail cuisine she demonstrates. I keep thinking that one of these days I'll take the plunge and get a dehydrator and start making my own freezerbag dinners. At the moment I just do the lazy thing and get pre-packaged meals at REI. But as we all know this is a mixed bag. Not all brands are equal and even within each brand some meals are better than others.

So I thought we'd do a little poll here to find what lazy people like me like.

My current favorite is Mary Jane's Farm Organic Black Beans and Rice. I find it takes a little more water than the package asks for (it calls for 1 cup but 1 1/2 cups works better I think) but if I make that and carry some tortilla chips then I'm in heaven. My 6 year-old son who is the pickiest eater on earth loves it so I always get it when he comes along.

I don't like all of Mary Jane's Farm stuff. I wasn't thrilled with the Curry in a Hurry and I genuinely disliked the Sweet Red Bell Pepper Pasta but that just illustrates why we need a list like this. Not all offerings from any brand will be equally yummy.

So what's your favorite?

Top
#101762 - 08/27/08 07:56 AM Re: Name your favorite pre-packaged meals [Re: Heber]
PapaRon Offline
newbie

Registered: 08/01/08
Posts: 5
Well though I havent actually tried them yet but are getting good reviews from sarbar the packit gourmet the kit comes with complete cooking instructions and even wipes. Plus they are priced about the same as mainstream freeze dried meals are.

http://www.packitgourmet.com/storefront-c0.html

just plain looks awesome. She is gonna get alot of my bizness when I get back next year.

Top
#101763 - 08/27/08 08:02 AM Re: Name your favorite pre-packaged meals [Re: Heber]
sarbar Offline
member

Registered: 07/15/05
Posts: 1453
Loc: WA
I'll say that when I am uber lazy I buy Mary Jane's (low sodium, vegetarian, organic, no MSG). Second would be Pack It Gourmet's line. Those meals are huge - a true 2 person meal! <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/laugh.gif" alt="" />
_________________________
Freezer Bag Cooking, Trail Cooking, Recipes, Gear and Beyond:
www.trailcooking.com

Top
#101764 - 08/27/08 11:11 AM Re: Name your favorite pre-packaged meals [Re: Heber]
BarryP Offline
member

Registered: 03/04/04
Posts: 1574
Loc: Eastern Idaho
-Mountain House Eggs & Bacon. I like it so much I bought the 10# can so I can cut the price 70%.

-Walmart cup of soup (I donít remember the brand). I repackage it in a 1pt freezer bag to save bulk in my pack.

-Instant oatmeal. Brown sugar maple or Apple Cinnamon. I donít care the brand. Theyíre all pretty good. Maybe throw some freeze dried fruit in with it.

-Mountain House Beef Stew.

-Whole Foods frosted blueberry pop tarts (oops. Thatís not a prepackaged meal). I like the brand because there is no transfat.

Top
#101765 - 08/27/08 01:05 PM Re: Name your favorite pre-packaged meals [Re: Heber]
sarbar Offline
member

Registered: 07/15/05
Posts: 1453
Loc: WA
Ialso really like Dr. McDougall's stuff ( www.rightfoods.com ). For me they are lower sodium and have nothing bad in them. Good easy lunch!
_________________________
Freezer Bag Cooking, Trail Cooking, Recipes, Gear and Beyond:
www.trailcooking.com

Top
#101766 - 08/27/08 07:59 PM Re: Name your favorite pre-packaged meals [Re: Heber]
phat Offline
Moderator

Registered: 06/24/07
Posts: 4107
Loc: Alberta, Canada

Mountain House Egg and Bacon + and idahoan baby reds, both divided in half and each half put in a ziploc. Ok, I still "made" it - but not really.

I'm partial to Natural High dinners for the "boil water and dump in" stuff, In winter
when I cook a bit more I like Soft Path Cuisine Curries, or Mary Jane's Farm stuff.

Quaker full fat harvest crunch. Bad Tacky white trash granola and I like it <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/smile.gif" alt="" />

Pop Tarts

Sinckers Bars
_________________________
Any fool can be uncomfortable...
My 3 season gear list
Winter list.
Browse my pictures


Top
#101767 - 08/28/08 08:00 AM Re: Name your favorite pre-packaged meals [Re: Heber]
dkramalc Offline
member

Registered: 09/19/03
Posts: 1070
Loc: California
Haven't had it in years, or even seen it in stores recently, but the Mayacamas brand mulligatawny soup was always one of my favorites. Also pasta with a blend of their Alfredo and Pesto sauce mixes (for a big group), preferably with added fresh garlic and olive oil, was a great dinner.
_________________________
dk

Top
#101768 - 08/30/08 05:47 AM Re: Name your favorite pre-packaged meals [Re: Heber]
chaz Offline
member

Registered: 10/22/07
Posts: 1149
Loc: Tennessee
Mt House Chicken and Rice and add a foil pack of salmon. Surf and turf and more than enough for 2 people. Beef jerky, just about any kind and peanut M&Ms.
_________________________
Enjoy your next trip...

Top
#101769 - 09/01/08 06:18 AM Re: Name your favorite pre-packaged meals [Re: dkramalc]
kevonionia Offline
member

Registered: 04/17/06
Posts: 1322
Loc: Dallas, TX
Unfortunately, doesn't look like Mayacamas is making their mulligatawny soup anymore, but they're still producing five soups and their sauces. I still think their Chardonnay is the best (shame it's not freeze-dried), especially after seeing that beautiful film "Bottle Shock," about Napa in the '70s last weekend. (Makes you want to set the tent up in a vineyard.)
_________________________
- kevon

(avatar: raptor, Lake Dillon)


Top
#101770 - 09/08/08 12:59 PM Re: Name your favorite pre-packaged meals [Re: kevonionia]
redroach Offline
member

Registered: 05/17/02
Posts: 366
Loc: Houston, Texas
Enertia Trail foods are still my favorite

TV

Top
#101771 - 09/08/08 03:08 PM Re: Name your favorite pre-packaged meals [Re: Heber]
sarbar Offline
member

Registered: 07/15/05
Posts: 1453
Loc: WA
Btw, I have been doing reviews of various Packit Gourmet meals. I have yet to have a bad one, which for me is saying a lot. <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/smile.gif" alt="" />

Market Pasta Puttensca:


Asian Curried Chicken Salad:




Their Bangers and Mashers:


Rustic Skillet Bread:


I have an issue with that bread - it is SO good and SO bad for you <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/laugh.gif" alt="" />
_________________________
Freezer Bag Cooking, Trail Cooking, Recipes, Gear and Beyond:
www.trailcooking.com

Top
#101772 - 09/14/08 12:45 AM Re: Name your favorite pre-packaged meals [Re: Heber]
billk Offline
member

Registered: 08/20/03
Posts: 1196
Loc: Portland, Oregon
Mountain House chicken stew's fairly good. Their Spaghetti, Lasagna, and Chili Mac are OK, too. I've been pretty disappointed (and sometimes downright repulsed) by other brands. Years ago Richmoor made good beef and chicken stews, but I guess they're not around anymore.

Top
#101773 - 09/14/08 12:34 PM Re: Name your favorite pre-packaged meals [Re: billk]
Myke Offline
member

Registered: 09/15/06
Posts: 18
billk,

Just stopped by their website richmoor.com and, although I couldn't find the "chicken stew" you mentioned, everything else seemed intact.

-Myke-

Top
#101774 - 09/14/08 04:07 PM Re: Name your favorite pre-packaged meals [Re: Heber]
Bearpaw Offline
Moderator

Registered: 07/25/04
Posts: 1732
Loc: Tennessee
I enjoy Mountain House ProPak meals, especially the Lasagna, Pasta Primavera, Spaghetti, Chili Mac, and Chicken Teriyaki. Small size, but decent meals with enough to leave you satisfied (unless you're a few months into a thru-hike and your body fat is mostly all gone).
_________________________
http://www.trailjournals.com/BearpawAT99/

Top
#101775 - 09/14/08 04:40 PM Re: Name your favorite pre-packaged meals [Re: Heber]
Hector Offline
member

Registered: 12/20/04
Posts: 325
Loc: LA/ARK/TX corner
Ramen, especially the hot varieties. I only use half the flavor packet and various add-ins (dehydrated vegetables, chicken packets, pepperoni, etc.). I really like the stuff, and don't tire of it despite eating it every day of a seven-day hike. I don't eat it at home because I'm afraid I'll develop a dislike for it on the trail.

Mountain House scrambled eggs breakfasts (ham and peppers, and bacon). I sometimes add bacon to these.

Mountain House Pro-Pak spaghetti with meat sauce.

Fantastic World Foods dehydrated refried beans and taco TVP. Mix 'em together and divide into three or four freezer bags. Eat on tortillas. Taco Bell sauce packets help.

Top
#101776 - 09/14/08 05:40 PM Re: Name your favorite pre-packaged meals [Re: Bearpaw]
phat Offline
Moderator

Registered: 06/24/07
Posts: 4107
Loc: Alberta, Canada

I also recently tried several pro-pak's - thanks to picking up a few for a hike in the states that never happened. nice small size and just enough food. Could be nicely alternated with
the bigger meals for those "less hungry" days. Or better for the smaller eaters - only needs
a cup and a half of boiling water. I had one for dinner last week in a slushstorm, and
it was enough food to keep be happy before hiding from the weather <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/wink.gif" alt="" />
_________________________
Any fool can be uncomfortable...
My 3 season gear list
Winter list.
Browse my pictures


Top
#101777 - 09/14/08 09:35 PM Re: Name your favorite pre-packaged meals [Re: Myke]
billk Offline
member

Registered: 08/20/03
Posts: 1196
Loc: Portland, Oregon
Thanks, Myke. I may have to try the Richmoor's again. I haven't seen them for sale locally. I've tried one or two of the Natural High dinners, and didn't care for them. The Richmoor beef stroganoff used to be pretty good, as I remember.

Top
#101778 - 09/17/08 02:51 PM Re: Name your favorite pre-packaged meals [Re: billk]
NiytOwl Offline
member

Registered: 11/06/04
Posts: 501
Loc: California
I was at Sports Chalet the other day and they carry the Richmoor line of freeze-dried meals. I see they don't have a location in Oregon, but they sell the stuff in their online store. I believe it's still cheaper to buy directly from Richmoor on their website, but shipping might negate the lower price.

Hey, did you know that Oregon is the home of Oregon Freeze Dry, the largest freeze-dried products company in North America? Mountain House should be cheap up there - that's were it's made! Unfortunately, Richmoor isn't - it's located in Van Nuys, California.

Top
#101779 - 09/26/08 12:53 PM Re: One More To Review [Re: Heber]
sarbar Offline
member

Registered: 07/15/05
Posts: 1453
Loc: WA
Kirk and I tried out Packit Gourmet's Skillet Buttermilk Biscuits with Texas Cream Gravy - ours came with the TVP sausage.

I really, really have a love affair with B&G but most times I pass over them due to restaurants using the oh-so-nasty gravy in a can (ugh) and or enough sausage grease to produce see through paper.

So it was promising that the gravy mix had an option for sausage TVP (less fat!) and no added fat to the gravy.

Getting ready to start the biscuits:


It does require the use of two vessels - one to 'bake' the biscuits, another to whip up the gravy. In theory, if you have a plate or bowl you could park the baked biscuits in it, as the gravy only takes a couple minutes to be ready. I baked the biscuits in the fry pan of my GSI n'Form Backpackers set using a mini spatula. The gravy I cooked up in the bottom half of my GSI Extreme Mess Kit and a GSI Rehydrate spoon.


Plated up and ready to eat :-) I used a Light My Fire XM Spork to split the biscuits and eat.


It made plenty for two good sized appetites. Ok, maybe not for a logger sized appetite.....but normal sized ones ;-)

I added in a 1/4 of the red pepper flakes packet for the extra kick. It was tasty and very filling!


I won't lie though - while it is fantastic tasting the only way I would do all the work involved would be for dinner or if for breakfast on a short trip where weight isn't an issue. On the other hand....for car camping this would be awesome. And I'd eat them at home - they are perfect for a two person breakfast - the gravy is really good - it isn't greasy nor overly salty. I can't think of how many times I would have loved to be able to make a small batch of B&G and not have tons of left overs.

One I will buy again, I give this meal my approval!

~Sarah
_________________________
Freezer Bag Cooking, Trail Cooking, Recipes, Gear and Beyond:
www.trailcooking.com

Top
#108350 - 12/27/08 01:07 AM Re: Name your favorite pre-packaged meals [Re: Heber]
judach Offline
member

Registered: 04/01/07
Posts: 63
Loc: California, USA
I like the mountain house freeze dried food myself. My favorites are the chicken and rice, the chicken patties with mashed potatoes, and beef patties with mashed potatoes. I'm also a fan of their neopolitan freeze dried ice cream.

Top
#109435 - 01/15/09 10:48 PM Re: Name your favorite pre-packaged meals [Re: judach]
gregpphoto Offline
member

Registered: 01/15/09
Posts: 23
Loc: New Jersey
Ramen (chicken).


Edited by gregpphoto (01/15/09 10:48 PM)
_________________________
www.gregpphoto.com

Top
#109516 - 01/17/09 03:34 PM Re: Name your favorite pre-packaged meals [Re: gregpphoto]
sabre11004 Offline
member

Registered: 05/05/07
Posts: 513
Loc: Tennessee
I usually use the stuff that I make at home. I have a food dehydrator and I make things like spaghetti, broccoli and rice with dehydrated chicken thrown in and just different varieties that I have managed over the last few years. However with that being said, I think that if I was to resort to pre-packaged meals I would definitely go with Mountain House. I have tried a lot of the other brand and they just don't seem to be as tasty as Mountain House. Also I have found that if you follow the water instruction (as far as amount) that they recommend you usually come out with a soupy mess. It is much more efficient and much less expensive to do your own once you have incurred the expense of the dehydrator...sabre11004

The first step that you take will be of those that get you there !!!!!
_________________________
The first step that you take will be one of those that get you there 1!!!!!

Top

Shout Box

Highest Quality Lightweight Down Sleeping Bags
 
Western Mountaineering Sleeping Bags
 
Lite Gear Talk - Featured Topics
DWR and Trail Runners
by Bill Kennedy
07/01/18 03:19 AM
Montrail hiking shoe replacement???
by Keith
06/30/18 11:11 PM
ZIPLOCK TOILET PAPER DISPENSER
by PerryMK
06/14/18 10:12 AM
Backcountry Discussion - Featured Topics
Leaving a Mark
by balzaccom
07/10/18 09:32 PM
Maximizers vs Sufficers in backpacking
by Pika
06/29/18 12:34 PM
Alice Pak
by Capt hook
06/21/18 01:13 PM
Make Your Own Gear - Featured Topics
drying socks while hiking
by AtlantaBill
06/28/18 03:28 PM
Quilt question
by PaHiker
06/28/18 12:14 PM
New Pack Finished
by Bill Kennedy
06/27/18 05:39 AM
Featured Photos
Breakneck Ridge, New York
May 2012 Eclipse, Lassen Park
New Years Eve 2011
Trip Report with Photos
Seven Devils, Idaho
Oat Hill Mine Trail 2012
Dark Canyon - Utah
Who's Online
0 registered (), 110 Guests and 0 Spiders online.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
Newest Members
Nadini, itsBella, AHeff, Sharbear, Slate
12599 Registered Users
Forum Links
Disclaimer
Policies
Site Links
Backpacking.net
Lightweight Gear Store
Backpacking Book Store
Lightweight Zone
Hiking Essentials

Our long-time Sponsor, BackcountryGear.com - The leading source for ultralite/lightweight outdoor gear:

Backcountry Forum
 
 

Since 1996 - the Original Backcountry Forum
Copyright © The Lightweight Backpacker & BackcountryForum