There is a growing trend towards buying MRE meals. These are meals that are ready to eat right from the package. You can enjoy hot, delicious food outdoors without the need for any cooking equipment. These are the types of meals used by the military and people stock up on them for outdoor adventures as well as for emergencies.

What MRES Are

These ready-to-eat meals are fully prepared and come in packaging that can keep the food inside fresh for up to five years. They were designed for the military to use and originally, the only place these meals could be purchased was from military outposts or surplus stores. Today, these self-heating meals are available at military posts, at online stores, and at stores that specialize in outdoor and camping equipment.

These meals were often distributed to people following a natural disaster. This is one other reason they are useful to stock up on. You can stash as many meals as your family might need for days following a hurricane or earthquake and have them ready to eat with no heating required. 

Meals contain full entrees like meatloaf, stews and chicken dishes. They are offered in many different varieties including vegetarian. They come in breakfasts, lunches, dinners, and desserts. Some come with the utensils. 

All you do is open the package to get the meal to heat itself. The meal is ready in about two or three minutes. Some meals require that you add water to them. Others are ready right after you open them.

Where to Buy Them

If you plan to buy MREs online you need to do some research. Make sure you are buying the item as it is pictured in an online listing. If you decide to buy them online, be sure to buy listings that include photographs along with a photo of the label. 

As with most any item available online, you can find quality MRES on eBay. Always review the seller’s feedback first. Make sure that they display details, photos and the expiration dates for the meals where applicable. Reputable eBay sellers often show photos of the box the meals arrive in along with a packed-on date. This is as important as an expiration date as you can estimate that they will last approximately five years when stored properly.

Make sure you always buy from sellers that display photographs of the actual meal that you are buying. Read the description carefully. You should get a good idea of the quality of the meals the seller ships by the feedback others have left. 

An even safer option is to buy them from MRE dealers directly online. There are brand name MRE manufacturers that offer a variety of meals for sale online. You can also buy them at US military stores if someone has the authorization to get them for you. If you live near a military base this is a great place to get the real thing.

If you prefer, your local camping or outdoor supply store should sell commercially prepared MREs. These are made more for camping, RVing and fishing trips. They might last a while but are not made to the same standards as genuine meals ready to eat. They are quality foods but they may not be made exactly like MREs and may require that you heat the food inside. 

These meals can be convenient to pack for any long camping or RV trip, however. They are also great fun for kids to enjoy. They can save time and space. You do not need to spend time preparing meals over a fire and you can pack many of these meals in a small space.

Eating the meals only requires that you tear the package open. Most come with the utensils needed to enjoy them. Read the label carefully. Some meals may need heating. Others have a heating element built in. Have water on hand in case the meal requires that you fill it with water to a certain level. You need to wait two or three minutes before you can enjoy the meal.

Stock up on MREs. Camping will be more fun, and you will have food on hand in an emergency.