Long-time listeners to our podcast know that my family dabbles in outdoor adventures. We kayak, hike, mountain bike, and trail run for vacation and as weekend “warriors.” Despite our best intentions, we are not avid campers. We’d rather base camp with daily excursions or go on assisted adventures. We’re not the bad boys we think we are. I want to eat well when I’m playing, and I got lucky with Paleo Meals to Go this summer.
One of my pet peeves about camping is the selection of MREs (meals ready to eat — military kid). Almost all of them have soy, like TVP, which I am allergic to, or they are gluten-laden carb-fests that leave me feeling gross. I was stoked when I heard about the Paleo Meals to Go; even though I’m not strictly Paleo, I’m pretty close. (Goals, y’all.) We just returned from a hot and steamy South Carolina kayaking and mountain biking coastal adventure, with temps around 100. I’ll be honest: I wasn’t going to heat up anything to eat. This could have been rough!
Learning from past camping food disasters, I tested the first meal at home on the stove. I wanted to have the prep and timing figured out while it didn’t matter. I followed the directions on the package exactly, and all was well! I actually liked the Summit Savory Chicken enough that I’d eat this by choice on a night when I didn’t have time to fix a proper homemade meal.
While not beautiful to look at, this cold-prep Cliffside Coconut Berry breakfast was delicious! I opened up the package and licked the inside clean, since my short camping spoon could not reach all the way in (The company is switching to a horizontal package soon, which will solve that problem, but I’ll still tear it open to lick clean. Leave no trace and all…) I also liked that this was an energy-dense start to my day, without feeling like a rock in my stomach. I have a hard time getting enough healthy calories in the morning before adventure days. Both of these breakfast options were yummy!
I don’t think my phone-photo captures just how filthy I was after a fun day riding, since my legs and sand are about the same shade. We hydrated carefully due to the heat and humidity, and I was thrilled to have planned a meal that did not involve heating anything up, but I was “living dangerously” by fixing cold Caldera Chicken Curry.
Yep, cold curry. It was great! I’m a little obsessed with curry, and carry it with me most of the time; pretty much any savory food can be rescued or improved with enough curry, you know? My family, however, does not like spicy foods at all. (How are these people related to me?) I graciously shared a taste of the curry as-is with them, and the boys both liked it and thought it was not too hot at all. Since I prefer food just below Vindaloo level of spice, I added some curry powder to mine.
I’m not sure if my car-ride selfie shows it very well, but on the drive home, I ate the pack of freeze dried fruit. I’m not usually a fan of freeze-dried fruit because the texture freaks me out, but this was good enough that I leaned back to get the dust — leaving the fabulous fruit ring around my mouth in the photo!
Hot or cold, the Paleo Meals to Go were a hit for our adventures. I am actually going to stock some in my hurricane kit, because why should we suffer with terrible food in an emergency, when we can have yummy meals like these instead? I was especially happy that none of these meals caused intestinal distress. I’m sure there are worse things to happen on an adventure, but seriously, gluten or soy-induced stomach issues are the pits! Paleo Meals to Go avoid both of those aggravating categories, while being lightweight and tasty, too. I’m a fan.