Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Food Review - Heater Meals Revisited

You've had a long day setting up camp in your front country campsite, then an all day hike up and down a mountain with about 1600ft elevation gain over rough terrain. When you return to camp you are tired and hungry and the last thing you want to think about is fixing food. That would entail either getting a fire going real well, or breaking out your Coleman Stove then prepping the food for cooking. Why do that when you can easily pull out a Heater Meal? That's exactly what we did during our camping/hiking trip a few weeks back. We spent the morning setting up camp and then went for a 6+ mile hike. When we returned, the last thing we wanted to do was cook.

Enter Heater Meals self heating meals. These things are a breeze to cook. They come with a patented self heating package that activates with water, and no you don't have to heat the water. If you remember a while back we reviewed Heater Meals: Zesty BBQ Sauce and Potatoes with Beef. This time around Robin had the Green Peppers & Steak while I had the Pasta Italiana. As I said before, these things are a breeze. The meals come complete with seasoning packets, salt and pepper packets, the right amount of water to activate the heating package, utensils for eating, and napkins.

Within 5 - 10 minutes we were ready to eat. We had already experienced the seasoning packet before and weren't very impressed with it, so we opted for just the salt and pepper packets for seasoning. The meals were decent. A little bland but we didn't want to chance the seasoning packets. I think that if we had brought our own seasonings these things would have really hit the spot, but after a full day hike, we weren't very picky and enjoyed filling our bellies.

The heater meals are available for purchase through the Heater Meals website, Amazon, Bass Pro Shops, and other retailers. They sell for around $7.00 per meal at retail stores, $16 - $17 for a three pack at Amazon, or in bulk from the Heater Meals website (12 per pack) for a little over $55. These would be an excellent addition to your backpacks for an overnight or possibly a couple nights backpacking trip. You could also eliminate the box if necessary to save on space in the pack. We definitely recommend Heater Meals for the outdoor enthusiasts who are looking for a quick meal after a long day on the trail and minimal cook time or just to have around during an emergency since they keep for 2 years. Check the specs below.

Happy Trails,
Tim and Robin

Disclaimer: Tim and Robin received the Heater Meals from the Heater Meals marketing department for review purposes only. Appalachia & Beyond are in no way affiliated with Heater Meals and are not being compensated by Heater Meals for this review.. The opinions expressed above are Tim's and Robin's independent thoughts and experiences.

Chicken Pasta Italiana:
Ingredients: Diced Tomatoes in Juice (Tomatoes, Tomatoes Juice, Citric Acid, Calcium Chloride), Cooked Chicken (Chicken, Water, Salt), Water, Kidney Beans, Crushed Tomatoes, Pasta (Durum Semolina, Egg Whites, Niacin, Ferrous Sulfate, Thiamine Mononitrate, Riboflavin, Folic Acid), Zucchini, Carrots, Celery, Olive Oil, Modified Corn Starch, Garlic Puree, Vegetable Flavor (Yeast Extract, Sugar, Salt, Corn Syrup Solids, Natural Flavor, Onions, Wheat Maltodextrin, Carrots, Soy Sauce {Soybeans, Wheat, Salt}, Dextrose, Garlic, Spice), Romano Cheese from Cow’s Milk (Milk, Cheese Culture, Salt, Enzymes), Spices, Sugar.

Nutritional Info: Amt Per Serving: 12.5 oz/354g, Calories: 360 (from fat: 90), Total Fat: 10g (Saturate Fat: 2.5g, Trans Fat: 0g), Cholesterol: 60mg, Sodium:  620mg, Total Carbs: 40g (Dietary Fiber: 5g, Sugars: 11g), Protein: 29g, Vitamin A: 40%,Vitamin C: 30%, Calcium: 15%, Iron: 25%.

Green Peppers Steak with Rice:
Ingredients: Water, Cooked Beef (Beef, water, salt), Enriched Rice (rice, niacin, thiamine, iron, folic acid), Green Bell Pepper, Water Chestnuts, Crushed Tomatoes, Modified Food Starch, Brown Sugar, Canola Oil, Tamari Sauce (Water, Soybeans, Salt, Alcohol, Wheat), Dehydrated Onions, Natural Flavor, Beef Flavor (Yeast Extract, Soy Sauce [soybeans, wheat, salt], Partially Hydrogenated Soybean and Cottonseed Oil and Lactic Acid), Spice.

Nutritional Info: Amt Per Serving: 12 oz/340g, Calories: 350 (from fat: 70), Total Fat: 7g (Saturate Fat: 1.5g, Trans Fat: 0g), Cholesterol: 30mg, Sodium:  520mg, Total Carbs: 48g (Dietary Fiber: 2g, Sugars: 10g), Protein: 20g, Vitamin A: 15%,Vitamin C: 90%, Calcium: 4%, Iron: 20%.