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MRE's or dehydrated?

Home Forums Tactical Fitness & Nutrition MRE's or dehydrated?

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    Profile photo of Jason Howe

    Getting ready for the combat leader course and I’m debating over these two options. I did high end dehydrated food for my combined CTT/CP in October 2015 and it worked out ok. A little extra fuss with the rocket stove. I ended up eating too much and some of the meals seemed to produce a bit too much gastrointestinal activity. I don’t have a military background and I’m not much of a camper so I have very little experience with MRE’s. I tried a couple that my battle buddy gave me and while they were quick and easy to use, the taste was marginal and the nutritional value seemed marginal as well. Does any vendor make a higher grade of MRE? For a full three day patrol how would some of you plan your meals. It seems that one full meal per day and various high energy snacks is all one could pack without needing a much larger pack.

    Land Nav 06/15
    Rifle Skills/CTT/CP
    CLC 04/17
    Alumni Live Fire 08/18

    Don’t let your past define your future.

    Profile photo of JohnnyMac

    I’ll be classing up with you and have been thinking this over too. I did a little research on MRE stuff, here are some links.

    ITS Tactical MRE Shootout

    Civilian MRE Comparison

    So 3 things, one I’m into backpacking, two I eat for fuel and three I have a shitty sense of smell. In other words, I’m pretty easy to please when it comes to chow. My tentative plan is to make my own MREs using those packets of “mostly cooked” rice (they’re edible straight out of the packet) with some kind of ready to go protein (chicken packet, jerky, salmon), something fatty (nuts, PB crackers) and a little bit of something sweet (Annie’s Organic Gummy Bunnies are the shit). I still have to do the math on the calories for something like that but I’ll be shooting for 1300 per. For breakfast I’m thinking oatmeal, bars and maybe some powdered eggs (yes, I love most powdered eggs). All this will be supplemented with protein powder (without creatine, it messes with me) and snacks (triscuits have been doing me solid lately).

    I would suggest doing the math on how many calories you’ll need and trying stuff out before you get there.

    If anyone sees a gap in my tentative plan or has other ideas, I’m all ears.

    Profile photo of JohnnyMac

    PS I’ve only had a few MREs doing ROTC, has anyone had the misfortune (or so I hear) of eating Captain Country Chicken?

    Profile photo of Joe (G.W.N.S.)
    Joe (G.W.N.S.)

    Here’s a couple of options.

    Thermos Cooking

    Building and Using Expedient Field Rations

    Whatever you do proof your tolerance to the food before you participate in a paid class!

    Do you really want to find out you have problems with something during the course?

    Practice camp food/cooking before hand. :yes:

    Profile photo of Brian from Georgia
    Brian from Georgia

    MREs are actually well balanced with carbs, fat and protein. Just make sure to drink a full quart of water with each. The little bottles of Tabasco fix the flavor issue.

    Mountain House is pretty decent. Get the smaller packs (pro packs I think they are still called) so you don’t overeat.

    Mix in some protein bars, Pro Bars (400 cal bar similar to Clif Bar), peanut butter, Lenny and Larry’s complete cookie and the like for some variety.

    3-4 Aug 2013 CRCD, 2-6 Aug 2014 CRCD/Patrol, 30 Sep 2016 Run n Gun, 1-2 Oct 2016 FoF, 3-4 March 2018 DCH alumni
    Team Coyote

    Profile photo of First Sergeant
    First Sergeant

    MRE’s are designed to eat 2 of them a day, not three. It is a high calorie combat ration and is not meant to be eaten for long periods of time.

    The one’s out now are leaps and bounds ahead of what used to be available.

    I also use the Mountain House one serving meals. You have to figure out what works for you.

    Signal out, can you identify.
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    Profile photo of SeanT

    Good trail mix with M&Ms
    Hard salami slices
    String cheese singles
    I like chili mac mountain house
    Mylar pouches of tuna or salmon and good crackers , don’t forget a spork
    Instant oatmeal or grits
    Cereal and powdered milk single serve in ziplock freezer bags

    Profile photo of

    We called ’em Meals Rejected by Ethiopians, lol. They’ll stop you up after a while too. I like the Mountain House.

    Profile photo of Jamison

    I normally have a mix of MRE’s and Mountain House, you can survive off of either. Eat well off of both. The biggest thing with me is the availability of water in the area. If it’s water plentiful, then I’ll do mountain house every time, along with pogey bait (high energy foods easy to eat), some different breakfast stuff, etc.

    I’m going to go play OPFOR for the combat leaders course that’s coming up, so it’s a chance to ring out some newer gear, I’ll probably have mostly mountain house, but I might throw an MRE or two in there as well.

    I find MRE’s are better on the go, but that’s because you can eat them cold, but I hate marching and eating, so that’s what pogey bait is for. I like MH better because the food tastes better, and there’s the water factor that you’re using that water to hydrate and the food. The biggest thing with MRE’s is people don’t drink enough water and then they get blocked up big time.

    I’m working on packing lists etc. So I’ll probably be posting up a few as time goes by, even though they’re probably posted already.

    Admit nothing. Deny everything. Make counter-accusations.

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    Profile photo of Mike Q
    Mike Q

    I’m also taking the leadership class. I was under the impression that with the exception of one or two nights performing recce or patrol base, the rest of the evenings would be ours after 5:00 pm or so…

    Max, 1st Sergeant can you confirm?

    There never seems to be enough time to do it right, but there is always enough time to do it twice.

    CRM Sept. 2014, CTT 1505, CTT July 2015, RC-Rifleman 1502, CP Nov. 2015, FoF March 2016, CCW May 2016, FoF Oct. 2016, FoF Nov. 2016, CLC April 2017, FoF Nov. 2017, Alumni weekend Aug. 2018, CQB Dec. 2018

    Profile photo of Keeper aka "Sun Shine"

    PS I’ve only had a few MREs doing ROTC, has anyone had the misfortune (or so I hear) of eating Captain Country Chicken?

    never ate Capt. Chicken, I can say the beans and franks are pretty bad but not as bad as the ham slice and hamburger/meat patty

    Alumni living in N.E Fla. for now. Going to retire in Iowa on the farm some day soon.

    Profile photo of Virgil Kane
    Virgil Kane

    After the summer season check the Philmont website for surplus meals. The last time I checked they were $5/ea bag. Each bag has 1 meal for 2 scouts and snacks for in between. These are high calorie meals meant to support a teenage boy for all day hiking and other activities at altitude.

    As with most processed and packaged foods the snacks are loaded with carbs, so your Ketosis will be blown. The breakfast and lunch are granola bars, poptarts, all types of trail bars, gorp, beef jerky, tuna. The supper is Mountain house or other freeze-dried meal with snacks.

    I’ve been there twice as an adult and have not seen any gastro problems. you only need a bowl, spoon and a way to boil water. It also keeps well in a backpack in the desert.

    I’m working hard to drop some pounds through Ketosis by the GA class in October, but I will probably forgo the low carb for convenience and the possibility of spoilage for the week.

    Masters II
    June 2017 Intro CQB, FOF-Team Deplorables
    October 2017 MVT South - CTT/DA
    March 2018 DCH

    Profile photo of Free Chicken Dinner

    You youngins don’t know what stopped up is. Back in the day the C-rats came with canned peanut butter, you could literally light it on fire which was better than eating it. Long story short I ate the peanut butter on Sunday, I did not see any results till Thursday.

    Any specific maker of MREs that we should look for so I don’t buy Chinese knock offs at the gun show and die of poisoning?

    Tactical training for Liberty, Fraternity, Excellence

    Profile photo of tango

    Good trail mix with M&Ms
    Hard salami slices
    String cheese singles
    I like chili mac mountain house
    Mylar pouches of tuna or salmon and good crackers , don’t forget a spork

    This works great for mid-day snacking. Main meals morning and evening. I’ll be at CLC as well and plan on bringing the above and about equal amount of MREs and Mountain House for full meals. Mountain House def tastes better and goes easier on the stomach but who knows what types of situations we’ll be in.

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