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Discussion Starter #1
Finally have 10 months ++ of manufacturer canned goods, my canning, dehydrated foods, etc.
Now I'm slowly purchasing freeze dried foods for just in case. I've been buying honeyville only because of the customer feed back & Chef Tess' recipes. Then I discover Thrive but it's a bit more expensive. Now I'm looking at Provident Pantry (Mountain house).
Has anyone tried any of these & willing to rate in terms of taste, $s, etc.
BTW my $s are hard earned so spending $20 - $30 on a #10 can is squeezing the piggy bank.
Any advice is well received.
 

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Backyard, are you feeding a large family or just a couple of people? We've got a large family, so the big 10# cans are perfect for us. Once you've opened a can of freeze dried food it needs to be eaten within a couple of weeks. Even sealing the contents in Ziplocks, they will absorb moisture from the air and be gummy and yuck. If you're feeding just yourself or a small family, you might consider the 1 or 2 serving packs.

We have Mountain House, Provident Pantry, Thrive, Honeyville, MREDepot, and probably a couple of others. They're all about the same, except sometimes the price.

What I did find is that we prefer individual ingredients that I mix to make a meal, over the pre-made meals. The mixed meals like Mountain House are ok for emergencies, but they're full of salt and often have MSG. Some of them also have TVP (textured vegetable protein) instead of meat. We much prefer freeze dried beef/chicken/pork chunks, freeze dried peas, etc. I just mix some from whatever cans and add my own pasta and sauce or seasoning.

Have you checked out Harmony House? I love their dehydrated or freeze dried fruits and veggies. They also have pre-cooked and dehydrated beans of various kinds. I use their veggie soup mix quite often, and I love the dehydrated diced tomatoes, spinach and onions.
 

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I have recently purchased from Augason farms, both from their website and walmart. I watch the sales and compare and find a huge difference in the prices for the exact same thing. I also recently purchased from LDS as well as Emergency Essentials and again watch for sales and specials. I have not tried any of them for taste but am just going on price. I order the individual ingredients as Momof4 does so I can make a from scratch meal, even if part of it is from a can. What I really want is that $4000 freeze drier someone posted here the other day. :D
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks for the info.

We have a small family but if we experience a SHTF scenario, the group is 30 + folks.

Initially, I'm preparing 52 weeks of meal-in-a-jar with the freeze dried items (no premade mixes due to various health issues).

I'm a big fan of Chef Tess' meal plans so I started buying Honeyville freeze dried items.

Mom of Four, thanks for the harmony foods suggestion. Just ordered a lg sampler pack & lg dehydrated navy beans, used coupon code, no shipping costs :) & total was less than $85.00. Compared to recent honeyville purchases, that was a bargain.

Hickerbillywife, yes I'd like one of those but Santa just bought me an excalibur dehydrator & very lg freezer :)
 

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I prefer to buy the individual ingredients as my family is picky and doesn't like a lot of the packaged meals. If you get a #10 can you can vacuum seal the left overs with a silica pack(or 3) and they last for quite a while. I have celery and carrots done this way that were opened a year ago and they were fine in my stew last night. I never leave them in the can after opening them. Our mice laugh at plastic lids!!
 

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I can't say anything about the others but I've used a number of items from Thrive and very much like it. My daughter took some things to Cuba with her which was a blessing since she seemed to not be able to tolerate the rice and beans. We've tried the ground beef, chicken slices, mango, corn, peas, strawberries, blueberries, onion and carrots and they've all been very good.
 

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We have a lot of Provident Pantry which is in our long term storage. Prefer buckets and cans of ingredients myself. Most of the pre-mades are too bland so store a lot of spices/herbs/bouillon. One thing that is very tasty and quick is My Patriot's Supply"s soup mix...five different mixes in a mylar bag. Make enough for all five of us with biscuits on the side. Easy to add stuff to them like more broccoli in the broccoli/cheese soup.

We shop the sales for the things we find handy like pre-cooked black beans or cheese power. Recently tried Arguson's Farms dehydrated sweet corn and it was a great find. We cook the diced dehydrated potatoes and the next day fry for breakfast. Yummy. Luckily we have a Mennonite store near by where we can most anything we want bulk at very reasonable prices
 

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Emergency Essentials has a smaller, what they call everyday size can. I don't know if others have it as well. It would make sense for some items and for times when its just a small meal. I buy the big #10 cans but our family is large.

Terri I showed that thing to hubby and thought he'd say not no but heck no. He actually is considering it. He worries about a power outage ruining all that delicious beef and pork in the freezer. It is going on the top of my Christmas list.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Understand about the freezer. I've been asking for years. This year I was asked what I wanted for BD/Christmas. Two things: two beehives or freezer. Was surprised when Lowes truck pulled up & then saw them unloading a lg freezer (it's larger than my 22 cu side by side fridge.)
DH got it scratch/dent discount & his va discount. Worked out well. Btw it has a green light (power on light) so I look at it every time I walk by.
Re: the #10 cans. Yes, it's a lg for our present consumption needs but I've got several 1/2 gallon canning jars, oxygen absorbers & desiccants just in case I have to open a can when there is no electricity. At least I hope that will work.
 

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Understand about the freezer. I've been asking for years. This year I was asked what I wanted for BD/Christmas. Two things: two beehives or freezer. Was surprised when Lowes truck pulled up & then saw them unloading a lg freezer (it's larger than my 22 cu side by side fridge.)
DH got it scratch/dent discount & his va discount. Worked out well. Btw it has a green light (power on light) so I look at it every time I walk by.
Re: the #10 cans. Yes, it's a lg for our present consumption needs but I've got several 1/2 gallon canning jars, oxygen absorbers & desiccants just in case I have to open a can when there is no electricity. At least I hope that will work.
I use the 1/2 gallon jars with desiccants and vacuum seal them with the jar sealers. There's a battery vacuum pump by the food savers at our walmart that I use so I don't have to worry about power outages. Ziploc had a hand pump that works on the jar sealers too.
 

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One thing to consider that all those freeze dried items require water to use. some quite a bit so can be a problem if you aren't able to store lg. amts of water or don't have a source to if you have no power. Per serving they can be quite expensive,too considering how easy most of the varieties are to make from scratch. Plus homemade may be more suitable to your families' tastes. All things to consider. I would say home canned fruits are a better deal as you have the juice to use. The freeze dried are a tasty(expensive) treat that I wouldn't buy again. Just my opinion but I don't have unlimited funds. Through the miracles of canning/freezing/dehydrating and watching the deals you can save a lot and have products suited to you.
 

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I was going to go back and post these but I'll add them here. This is why we don't leave anything in a chewable container. One is the lid from a jar of Nutella and the other is a can of hot chocolate.
 

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