Out of curiosity, I bought this Meal Ready to Eat at the local military surplus store. It cost $7. How did it taste?


I opened the bag and it came with all of this. Going sort of clockwise from the top left, we have the MRE heater, a spoon, the hot beverage bag, matches (green), napkins (below matches), moist towelette, crackers, blackberry jam, spiced cider, shredded potatoes with bacon, two pieces of gum, Tabasco (with all of its content leaked/evaporated already), beverage base- raspberry, salt, egg omelet with vegetables and cheese, cinnamon scone, and toaster pastry. That’s a lot of packaging for just one meal. I imagine the deserts of Iraq and Afghanistan are choked with this packaging.


Here are the pastries. The crackers and jam were fine. The crackers were huge. The toaster pastry is essentially a Pop Tart, and that tasted normal too. The cinnamon scone was surprisingly decent. It was a bit chalky and you had to ignore the indentation left by the desiccation packet. I’ve certainly had worse pastries from Safeway.


Now on to the main course. The MRE heater generated a lot of heat, but not much of it was transferred onto the two packets (omelet and potatoes). I suspect it’s because all other MREs only contain one packet of food to heat instead of two. I had to reheat my food in the microwave to make it a little more palatable. I also added my own Tabasco and ketchup. This is what the entree looked like, pre-sauced. The omelet had the consistency of a snorkel mouthguard. The only taste was a hint of processed American cheese. I did not taste eggs or “veggies”. The potatoes were edible. They tasted wet.

Images source: Maxichamp