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We Review the Best Emergency Food Brands for Survival Situations

This is the most comprehensive guide to selecting your best emergency food source on the planet.

The best part?

We’re going to cover the topic from every angle:

  • which survival food brands are best for which situations?
  • which are the most nutritious, tastiest, convenient,
  • which are best for long term food storage.

If you want to rest assured that you’ve provided you and your family with a reliable backup food source for YEARS to come, then you’re in the right place.  

These products are a great addition to your other key survival gear.  Let’s get right to the reviews.

Emergency Foods Quick Comparison

Name of ProductWeightShelf Life(years)Product DimensionsPrice
Survival Tabs Emergency Food Supply1.75 lbs103 inch x 4.8 inch x 6.4 inch$$
Valley Food Storage Survival Food Kit11.8 lbs2515 inch x 12 inch x 11 inch$$$
Chef’s Banquet Emergency Food Supply28 lbs10/2013 inch x 13 inch x 18 inch$$$
Datrex Emergency Food Bar for Survival6.45 lbs53.4 inch x 4.7 inch x 8 inch$$
MRE Meal Kit Supply Survival Food5.7 lbs56.5 inch x 9.5 inch x 11.5 inch$$
Wise Company Entrée Grab & Go Food Kit20 lbs2015 inch x 12 inch x 10 inch$$$
Mountain House Classic Assortment Bucket3.4 lbs3012 inch x 10 inch x 13 inch$$

A reliable food and water source ranks right at the top of the list of most preppers.  Humans can only go a few days without food.  And when the s**t hits the fan, you can bet you won’t be the only ones looking for it.

So it only makes sense to have a backup food supply

There are dozens of companies out there touting their emergency food as the best, but when it comes to survival you need to know for sure.

Here are the best survival food brands on the market.  They are calorie dense, require little to no preparation, and can help you and your family survive the worst emergency situations.

Our Reviews of the Top Brands

Mountain House Emergency Food Kits

mountain house is our top survival food brand

Mountain House is our pick for the best emergency food rations on the market.  When it comes to emergency food storage solutions they’ve really nailed everything from shelf life and preparation to variety and taste.

They’re also one of the most well-known name brands out there.  This is because they’ve been making high quality survival food kits for decades.

It’s also considered some of the tastiest.

This particular package contains 14 days worth of freeze dried food in 42 pouches.  Like many other emergency food kits Mountain House pouches contain more than a single serving.  Unless you plan on eating it all at once you should measure out single servings for each of your meals.  This can be tedious, but I’ve found the best way to do this is to have some small containers (or ziplock bags if you’re trying to save weight) on-hand for quick storage.

This emergency bucket has enough food for one person for 14 days.

This particular Mountain House package is great for emergency preparations, but could also be used hiking and camping trips. The food preparation is about as simple as it gets.

Bring water to a boil and then pour it directly into the pouch.  Let it sit for a few minutes, allowing the food to rehydrate.  You can speed up this process by folding over the top of the pouch.

Each of the meals has a shelf life of 30 years.  This package from Mountain House comes in a lightweight, reusable bucket that is highly portable and needs to be efficiently stored in cool, dry and dark areas for long term storage.

Each of the recipes are pretty tasty and there are quite a few options. The 14 day package comes with 2 servings of beef stroganoff with noodles, 2 servings of granola with milk and blueberries, 2 servings of chicken teriyaki rice, 2 servings of lasagna with beef sauce, 2 servings of beef stew and finally 2 servings of noodles and cheese.

If you’re looking for a short term or long term survival food solution that is both delicious and will hold up to the test of time, you can’t go wrong with the Mountain House line of products.  For more information on the quality and taste of their meals you can check out their reviews.

Pros:

  • Easiest preparation
  • Best tasting emergency survival food solution
  • Good variety of foods
  • Great for short or long term food storage (30 year shelf life)

Cons:

  • some packages contain multiple servings
  • no gluten free kits available yet

Wise Company 120 Serving Food Kit

Wise Company Entrée Grab and Go emergency Food Kit

Wise Company’s emergency food storage kit is also one of the better tasting options on the market.  This 120 serving package consists only of entrees, but there is a great deal of variety in each pack.

Each package contains four servings.  While this is convenient for a family of four, it can be a bit of a hassle for those with fewer people to feed.

Unfortunately this is a common problem with emergency food supplies, but their intentions are good as they’re trying to cut back on the amount of waste created.

It has a 25 year shelf life and comes in a very convenient bucket that makes storage simple.

Preparation is also quite simple.  Portion out the amount you want to eat and add boiling water.  Once the food has been reconstituted (usually 5-8 minutes) you’re ready to eat.

As far as emergency survival foods go Wise Company offers a great product.  Depending on the product they either freeze dry or dehydrate the food to best preserve it’s flavor and nutritional value.    

Pros :

  • Simple preparation
  • 25 years shelf life
  • One of our favorite freeze dried foods

Cons:

  • multiple servings per bag
  • foods contain very little protein

Valley Food Storage Survival Food Kit

Valley Food Storage Survival Food Kit

As far as survival foods go this is a great kit for a variety of options.  It’s designed for emergency situations, but it’s also great for road trips or hike-in camping trips. It contains a total of 100 servings of assorted freeze dried food to accommodate yourself and your family when disaster strikes.

The meals are both healthy and tasty. It doesn’t contain any hydrogenated oils or unhealthy flavorings such as MSG, GMO or trans fat food. Instead, these emergency foods supplies are made from fresh and natural ingredients. You can either make your own family recipe with the ingredients or have an easy pre-made meal.

These emergency kits come with a reusable and airtight MYLAR bag. The bag is of high quality and re-sealable to protect your food from air, bugs and other contaminants.

The bag is designed for durability and also its ability to preserve your emergency food for up to 25 years. However, they need to be stored in a cool and dry environment for the best preservation.

The bag is designed with zippers for user’s convenience. Therefore, you can easily open and close your bag according to your preference. You just need to simply open the seal and reseal it back to get your healthy and nutritious snack.

The drying process used in making these foods locks in its nutrition, providing you with similar nutritional values to that of fresh food.

Weighing 11.8 pounds, this survival kit has dimensions of 15 inch x 12 inch x 11 inch. One serving contains around 900 to 1100 calories per day depending on the foods you consume.

Since the product consists 100 servings in many different packets, you should inspect all of them well incase either a few of them are damaged.

Suitable for :

  • Kits utilizes reusable and airtight MYLAR bags
  • 25 years shelf life
  • Fresh, natural and healthy foods
  • 100 servings of assorted food

Survival Tabs Emergency Food Ration Kits

survival tabs reviewed

This product does NOT qualify as a food source by itself.  Instead Survival Tabs can be a highly effective way to supplement when having to rely upon your emergency food supplies or MRE (meals ready to eat)

The Survival Tab’s brand comes with a bottle of vanilla flavor tablets to provide you with source of energy. It has a shelf life of 10 years provided you don’t remove its seal and store it in a proper cool area.

The chewable tablets are certified and approved 100% by US RDA as it contains 15 essential vitamins and minerals to provide you with sufficient nutrients. It is completely digestible in which 99% of its calorie content can be utilized to give you enough energy for survival.

The tablet servings overall offers a 15 day survival food supply. You need to consume a total of 12 tablets per day to give you sufficient energy. However, you can reduce the recommended consumption of 12 tablets if you take other available foodstuffs in an adequate amount. The consumption of each tablet provides you with 20 calories.

Weighing under 2 pounds, this emergency product has package dimensions of 3 inch x 4.8 inch x 6.4 inch. It is lightweight and suitable for consumption during severe SHTF as it is portable due to its light weight therefore you can store it in your backpack or even your pocket conveniently.

The Survival Tabs emergency food rations contain protein of high biological value as well as carbohydrates which are 100% utilized by your body as an excellent source of energy. 97% of the protein content on the other hand is important for the repair of your body tissue and the replacement of the essential body substances.

The protein content in this tablet contains 8 essential amino acids. It might invoke thirst however, it performs well in giving you energy so you should have plenty of access to water when consuming the tablets to prevent you from dehydration.

While Survival Tabs emergency food rations are definitely intended for use in more of an emergency situation the taste is actually fairly palatable.  They are available in either strawberry or chocolate flavor.

Notable Features:

  • 10 years shelf life
  • 15 day supply
  • High bioavailability
  • Great supplement to your emergency kits

Chef’s Banquet Emergency Preparedness Food Supply

Chef’s Banquet Emergency Food Supply

This emergency kit can be used to supply a month’s worth (30 days) of food. It provides at least 2100 calories per day for a person consuming one serving of food.  Calories are important, and Chef’s banquet’s emergency products provide more than most.

These kits come in a durable 6 gallons round plastic pail with a tight seal. All in all, it has excellent packaging to ensure long term shelf life.

In addition to that, it has a great variety of 8 different meals that are assorted to give you more food options to choose from according to your preference.

The net food weight in the pail is 82.7 pounds. Each of the meals are easy to prepare and should take less than 20 minutes by simply adding boiling water.

In terms of shelf life, this emergency bucket will last up to 20 years from the manufacturing dates when stored at a temperature of 60 F (16.6 °C).  If stored at 70 F (21 C) it will last up to 10 years. Overall, they must be stored in a cool temperature at a dark and dry area for a long term shelf life.

This emergency kit comes with the following meals: oatmeal, 60 servings of chicken vegetable stew, 30 servings of instant potatoes, 60 servings of potato soup, 30 servings of mixed vegetables 60 servings of pasta, 30 servings of beef flavored vegetable stew, 30 servings of cheddar broccoli rice and finally 30 servings of cheddar cheese sauce.

It is equipped with a variety of foods suitable to accommodate a large family.

Like the other foods we’ve covered, the packages contain multiple servings. Each food serving must be measured out from a larger container when preparing your meals.  Also, keep the pack properly sealed at all times.

Weighing 28 pounds, these emergency food supply kits come in package dimensions of 13 inch x 13 inch x 18 inch. One whole pack of this product consists of a total of 330 servings of delicious varieties of foodstuff.

Notable Features:

  • 1 pack-330 servings
  • 30 day emergency food storage kit
  • Great variety of foods
  • Comes in 6 gallons plastic pail

Datrex Emergency Food Bar for Survival

Datrex Emergency Food Bar for Survival

This product comes in a value pack of 4, where each pack consists of 18 bar packs. Similar to the energy bar, it contains 200 calories per bar and a total of 3600 calories per pack. The bar is best suited for bug out kits or other emergency situations where you might not be able to boil water.

Besides that, the pack is tabletized as well as sub-packaged so it is a lot easier for you to ration and store the bars separately in your survival food kit. The pack overall is simple, compact and easy to store as the 18 bars per pack does not take up much storage space.

Weighing 6.45 pounds, the package has dimensions of 3.4 inch x 4.7 inch x 8 inch. In terms of shelf life on the other hand, it is able to last for a long term period of 5 years, provided you do not breach its outer wrapper.

This is due to the good packaging with a heavy duty outer layer of thick foil wrap and vacuum packed designed to sustain longer shelf life. In addition to that, the food is made from all natural ingredients with a tinge of superior coconut flavor and without any trace of preservatives.

It is really tasty and contains high energy value. Also, it is non thirst provoking so you don’t have to worry about plenty of water access which comes in handy if there are limited water sources during a disaster or SHTF.

This emergency kit will able to supply you with 3 days of food which contributes to around 1200 calories per day. For the usual 3 main meals of the day (breakfast, lunch, dinner), you are supposed to consume 2 bars per meal. Nevertheless, this product only provides low caloric consumption and is suitable if you are in an inactive state such as laying down or sitting most of the time.

Notable Features:

  • 5 years shelf life
  • 3 day worth of food supply
  • Easy storage and good packaging
  • Best option for bug out bag or car emergencies

MRE Meal Kit Supply Survival Food

MRE Meal Kit Supply Survival Food

This MRE kit (meals ready to eat) kit is designed and made by the US Department of Defense contractor with a flameless ration heather as its additional feature to ensure user’s convenience. The pack on the other hand is shelf stable, impact resistant, waterproof and tightly sealed to prevent pests from getting into it.

It can be utilized when engaged in any outdoor activities such as hunting, fishing, camping and backpacking other than only for emergency storage. It is deemed a prepper’s gold standard kit in terms of emergency food preparation for any natural disasters such as hurricanes, earthquakes and flash floods.

Besides that, this product includes a 2 course meal which consists of the main meal and desserts as well as a sports energy drink. Nevertheless, the portions are rather small so you should top it up with some other food to fill your stomach.

This supply kit on the other hand comes in 6 packs, in which consists of 6 main (lunch/dinner) meals and dessert, a flameless ration heater, a 6 inch spoon together with a napkin. The flameless ration heater self-heats your food so you don’t have to cook it anymore. Instead, you can just dig in the food conveniently.

Furthermore, each meal ready to eat provides 600 calories with a shelf life of 5 years provided you don’t open its packaging. The 2 course meal on the other hand are designed so you get enough calories therefore energy, without any extra weight exerted as it allows field stripping. The field stripping comes in handy especially for soldiers during their field work as it lightens their load and allows for easy transport.

Notable Features:

  • 2 course meal
  • Comes with flameless ration heater
  • 5 years shelf life

Considerations When Comparing Brands

It is better to start prepping for food storage now itself rather than waiting for disaster to strike. Because when it does, majority of the population will be rushing to get food supplies and you’ll be left with limited items or worse, none at all.

Having a reliable water source is also crucial.  For more information on options check out our reviews of water filtration systems.

Nutrition

One of the most important things to consider when choosing your survival foods is the nutritional content.  Macronutrients consist of protein, carbs, and fat.  You need a good balance to maintain your health.  The best products should offer meals that contain a balance of each macronutrient.  

Meal Serving Size

The size of the servings depends on the product itself. You can buy the larger emergency food kit that has variety of food servings in large amounts. This type of serving is beneficial for family use, if you have large number of people in your family because once opened, the food will last at most for 2 weeks.

Some food kits provide entire meals while others are a lot lighter such as food bars and tablets. The food bar and tablet types of “meals” are small and portable so you can easily bring it around with you which comes in handy during severe 

Calories Per Serving

The calorie per serving depends on the type of food you are consuming. Larger meals contain higher calories that will keep you full all day. However, smaller meals such as bars and chewing tablets need to be taken in larger quantities since they are less calorie dense.

Emergency kits should contain all essential nutrients for your well-being. Most importantly, meals should have carbohydrates and fats as your main source of energy to get through your day. It would be good if it had vitamins and minerals however the most important intakes needed are protein and carbohydrate to keep you active throughout the day.

Shelf Life

The shelf refers to how long the kits will remain edible while unopened.  Anything you consider should have a minimum 5-year shelf life.  Most of the products we’ve reviewed here offer a 25-30 year shelf life.

Conclusion

Emergency food are essential for your survival. It has versatile applications as it can be used not only for long term storage but also as quick food for outdoor activities such as camping. Therefore, you should choose the right size according to your preference and the number of people it is supposed to accommodate. I hope my review assists you in making the decision.