*Disclaimer: Explore Tours has partnered with Adventure Appetites to provide take along meals for some of our offered itineraries.
One of the best parts of our jobs here at Explore Tours is the opportunity to be guinea pigs for the amazing products and services being offered by Alaskans throughout the state. After all, how can we curate awesome adventures if we don’t have first-hand experience? Here are some of our experiences with Adventure Appetites, our local resource of pre-packaged meals for all type of exploring.
Scenario: Just a guy camping in the woods
The meal: Chilaquiles – traditional Mexican breakfast dish. Scramble of eggs, chicken, mango peach salsa, and refried beans. Also included, for kick and crunch, jalapeno pepper cheese, tapatio hot sauce and crushed tortilla chips. Single Serving.
The best part: It looked and tasted homemade, as if I had spent an hour preparing it. I loved the hot sauce packet. I always want sauce when I am camping and I never have some with me.
Room for improvement: I had to use a few dishes to rehydrate different components of the meal. Typically, I only have a Jetboil packed, but this meal needed more. I also noticed that the sealable meal bag was not used in any parts of the preparation.
Would I do it again?: I would definitely have this meal again. Next time I will be prepared with extra pans!
Scenario: Rainy day cabin cooking
The meal: Chicken Chipotle Enchilada – Combination of salsa, chicken, veggie blend, Mexican rice pilaf. Toppings include jalapeno pepper cheese, crushed tortilla chips and tapatio hot sauce. Double serving.
The best part: They aren’t kidding when they say, “two healthy servings”. We easily had leftovers – if we had done some major calorie burning that day, we would have had plenty of food! We also thought the meal tasted like the sodium content was less than other freeze-dried meals on the market.
Room for improvement: The instructions are written for single servings; for our double serving meal, it was a little confusing at first. We also thought it would help (had we been camping) for required amounts of water to be in 8 oz. increments since that’s typically what our water bottles would be in and we don’t carry measuring cups on nature adventures.
Would I do it again?: Of the meals we tried, this one wasn’t our favorite, but for a hearty comfort food dish, it totally fit the bill!
Scenario: A family around a campfire
The meal: Panang Beef Curry – a blend of beef, diced potatoes, jasmine rice, mix of dried veggies folded in a coconut panang curry sauce.
The best part: Super filling and lots of food! We loved this meal and it was super easy to make (we thought it had the most straight forward preparation of the meals we tried.)
Room for improvement: This meal was awesome — I thought the beef pieces could have been larger, but that was completely a personal preference…all in all, YUM!
Would I do it again?: Definitely! After the meal cooled off, we put the fully cooked leftovers back in the sealable meal bag. I enjoyed the leftovers cold the next day — just cut the top off and used the bag as a bowl!
Scenario: A late night, a hungry husband, and low-stocked kitchen.
The meal: mAK and Cheese – Elbow macaroni rolled with a tangy blend of alfredo sauce taken up a notch with jalapeño pepper cheese. Plus, real bacon bombs and sundried tomatoes. Double serving.
The best part: My husband said it was better than any Mountain House meal he’s ever had (which is no small compliment from my outdoorsman). As with each meal we’ve tried, it was super hearty — perfect for late-night hungry husbands!
Room for improvement: This meal required two pans. It turned out to be worth the complex preparation, but gave us pause since it was, after all, mac and cheese. In this instance, we would have liked the option of making just one serving with single serving season packs and other dry ingredients.
Would I do it again?: No doubt about it. This was an absolute favorite!
In our experience, a good adventure is made a great adventure when consideration is given to the details that don’t seem like they should make the priority list. Yes, the meals are a bit more complex to make. For that little extra leg work, you’ll reap the rewards of an extremely hearty meal chock full of Alaska made ingredients that raises the bar on outdoor meal taste. Each serving on each meal is approximately 1000 calories – perfect for Alaska adventure calorie burning.
Adventure Appetites is that cherry on top of your Alaska exploits. Sure, some trail mix and Mountain House meals will fit the bill. But with your trip of a lifetime, don’t you want your meals to match the memories?