We can agree that even the mightiest army in the world would not achieve much on empty stomachs. The life of a survivor is similar to that of a soldier. Both need to make split second decisions that require them to always have their cognitive abilities at best.
So, if you are a survivor who is planning on bugging out, packing food items should be your priority. But what kind of food is best for bugging out? The choice depends on two factors. The first factor is your fuel requirements. You need a food type that will help you operate at your peak performance.
The second factor is food quantity. You should pack enough food to last you and your family through the entire period that you are on the run. If you keep these two factors in mind, nothing will stop you from finding the best bug out bag food for you.
Before we discuss a few of the best BOB foods for you, we need to answer a question:
What Food Can You Pack in a 72-Hour Survival Kit?
The most confusing thing in picking the right kind of food for a BOB is balancing between your nutritional needs and the maximum weight you can carry on your back.
In considering the kind of food, you also need to consider the amount. How much food is enough to provide you and your loved ones when the shit hits the fan? The answer here is extremely varied. A 200- pound adult will require more food than a 100-pound adult.
We all agree that there is no feasting when bugging out. So, you will only need to pack enough food to provide you with the minimum quantity to support your survival. Your major concern should be on the nutritional value of each food type. This will provide you with enough nutrients for your optimal functioning.
When it comes to the type of food, expert survivors agree that dehydrated and freeze-dried food items are the best. They are considered the best foods for packing in your BOB because they are lightweight, calorie-dense, and satiating. The majority of them are also pleasant to taste. However, it is highly recommended that you choose from the best brands.
A good tip is to buy these food types and try them at home before packing them for bugging out. It would be terrible if you were to buy pouches only to realize you cannot eat them on the run. Some may be tasty but they can cause food allergies especially in people with sensitive stomachs.
Here are what your bugout food should achieve:
- Compact and lightweight to fit into pockets
- Calorie-dense to last you (and your loved ones) for at least 72 hours
- Comply and support your nutritional needs even if such needs are special (gluten intolerance, diabetic or food allergy).
- Must be able to withstand impact and friction in the BOB
- Composed of foods that do not require cooking or too cumbersome to cook
- Should have good shelf-life and effortless to prepare
- Include some instant energy components as well as caffeine
- Should provide some kind of familiar comfort during crisis
Best Food Types for Your BOB
These are perhaps the most common foods for survivors planning on bugging out. The best thing about them is that you simply add water and you have a meal. Such foods are filling and dense with calories.
However, there is a drawback. Since you prepare them with water, you must have enough water available both for drinking and preparing the dehydrated foods. Consider this; if you use one cup of water to rehydrate a food portion, you will have lessened your drinking water reserves by one cup.
You cannot carry extra water for making food as this will increase the weight of your BOB. A good way to beat this drawback is to carry a portable water filter along. A high quality water filter will allow you to purify enough water in the wilderness to make as much food as you need.
This is a broad group of foods that are good for bugging out. Energy bars are supplemental foods consisting mainly of cereals. However, many manufacturers also add other high-energy ingredients. These food types are great if you want a quick energy supply but you don’t have time to prepare actual meals.
Energy bars are great because they are lightweight, small and calorie dense. A typical bar weighs between 45 and 80 grams and will provide between 200 and 300 calories. The moment you eat a bar, your sugar levels will spike and you will have instantaneous energy to complete any immediate tasks.
There are many types of energy bars that are great for bugging out. Good brands include Cliff bars, Fig bars, Power bars, Tiger Milk bars, as well as peanut flavored Nature Valley Sweet & Salty Nut Granola Bars. You can research beforehand in order to find suitable bars for you.
Meals Ready to Eat (MREs)
As the name indicates, Meals, Ready to Eat (MREs) are just that. MREs were developed soldiers in the form of self-contained, personal rations available in lightweight packaging.
These foods are great for survival because they do not need refrigeration. However, you still should try to store them in cooler places. When buying MREs, you need to pay close attention to the expiration date. Food stores and even online shops stock numerous MREs, and if you are not careful might accidentally buy an expired MRE.
Dry pastas are not just foods that you should store for a long time at home, but they are also wonderful choices when it comes to the best bug out bag food for you. These foods are very common with college students, but they are good for bugging out too. Dry pastas are so light; they weigh almost nothing. To be ready, only add a little boiled water and you are good to go. You can add a little salt in case the taste of your dry pasta is bland.
Beef Jerky (Dried Meat)
Unless you are a vegetarian, packing some dried meat in your BOB is a good idea. Jerky, or even better – biltong, is lean meat that has its fat content trimmed out. It is then cut into lightweight strips and dried to prevent spoilage. Keep in mind that dried meats are seasoned with salt to act as preservation.
There are many brands to choose from. But the most common brands loved by preppers are Teriyaki Beef Jerky, Pacific Gold Original Beef Jerky, Krave Beef Jerky, Sweet Chipotle, and Epic Bison Bacon Cranberry Bars. You can check these out, try them and see if they can be great for your BOB.
Survivors new to bugging out always overlook the need to pack food. What they do not understand is that you cannot function optimally if you are nutritionally deficient. You need yourself at best when the SHTF. The discussion above gives an outline about what makes up the best Bug out Bag food for you. Besides packing some food items, you can also arm yourself with a fishing kit, traps or snares, and some vitamin supplements.