Part of a good emergency plan includes building an emergency kit. There are some essential items you should include in your kit along with some other optional things to include depending on your family situation. One of the essentials is a food supply. Freeze-dried foods make excellent, long-lasting options for your emergency kits.

Freeze-Dried Foods

Freeze-dried foods may not be super familiar to you and might seem a little like something from a Sci-Fi movie. They can be found in local stores and online and make a great option for survival food. Freeze drying removes almost all of the moisture from the food by using low temperatures and vacuum sealing. Freeze-dried foods retain much of their nutritional content making them a healthy option.

Here are advantages to choosing to keep freeze-dried foods in your stock:

  • Nutritional benefits are preserved
  • Long shelf life (up to a year or more)
  • Generally higher quality foods
  • Variety of foods that include things like eggs, ice cream, and pasta meals
  • Takes up less space than canned and traditionally processed foods.

Make sure to stock at least three days of food in your kit. Depending on the emergency you are preparing for you may want to stock more. Also, since your kit will be stocked with freeze-dried foods, make sure to have extra water with your emergency kit. Most of your freeze-dried foods will take water to prepare and you don’t want to run short if an emergency arises.

Now that you are ready to start building your supply of emergency foods, let’s take a look at the best freeze-dried foods available.

Wise Company

Wise company produces several different types of freeze-dried and dehydrated food packs for any food needs. They produce freeze-dried organic, gluten-free, meats, vegetables, and fruits along with the standard meals. Their foods are made in emergency kit sizes with a long shelf life of 25 years so they won’t go bad right away. 

Legacy Food Storage

Legacy Food Storage has a variety of bucket combinations including gluten-free options. You can start by trying a few sample packs to find what you like or get an emergency supply to keep with your emergency kit. Although there are no dessert options, Legacy offers some great breakfast and meal options like pancakes. With a shelf life of 25 years, the supply you get will be there when you need it.

Mountain House

Mountain House is one of the most popular freeze-dried foods on the market. If you are wanting great meals from eggs and bacon to lasagna and even ice cream sandwiches, Mountain House has it. With the longest shelf life of any freeze-dried foods on the market, these will last up to 30 years. You can buy a few meals to try or get pre-assembled emergency supplies depending on what you need.

Backpacker’s Pantry

Backpacker’s Pantry offers several meal options to meet your needs. You can find packages for one, two or four people making it easy to get the right amount for your entire family. Don’t worry if you want to find some gluten-free or vegetarian options because they offer both. And don’t forget about dessert. In an emergency, desserts and comfort foods can help you get through the mental stress and Backpacker’s Pantry offers a variety of desserts to pick from.

Ready Hour

Ready Hour emergency food kits come with a variety of meals packed into waterproof containers. If you are looking for a gluten-free option, they have a 14-day gluten-free kit. Other options include a protein pack supply and fruit and vegetable pack so whether you are looking for simple meal options or more specialized choices, Ready Hour has emergency food kits to meet your needs.

Valley Food Storage

Valley Food Storage provides a unique emergency food package with complete meals like fettuccine alfredo and macaroni and cheese as well as individual meats, fruits and vegetables included. If you have food allergies, you will want to check before buying but they do have allergen-free options and all their stuff is preservative-free. With a 25-year shelf life you will be able to keep the food in your emergency kit for a long time.

Augason Farms

Augason Farms has smaller sized emergency kits that are pre-packaged already making it quick and easy to have a three day supply on hand. Whether you are planning for one or a family of four, they have you covered. Meals include soups and even dehydrated milk so you will have a balanced diet in an emergency. The kits come in waterproof buckets making storage easy anywhere for up to 25 years.

Thrive Life

Thrive Life provides a slightly different option for stocking your emergency kit. You won’t find traditional premeasured emergency kit packs but can build your own. With anything from meats to vegetables to snacks you can stock up on the things you enjoy and with a shelf life of 25 years, they will be there when needed.

Northwest Fork

Northwest Fork, an Oregon based company, provides emergency food supplies if you want or need vegan, kosher, nut or soy-free options. Although not as long a shelf life with only 10 years, they still provide great options depending on your dietary needs without having to rotate it out every year.


NuManna provides meal solutions that taste good and are good for you. If you like eating foods that are more natural and preservative-free you may not want to change that in an emergency situation. NuManna foods provide those healthy options and can be stored for 25 years so you can use them when you need them.

Start Stocking Your Emergency Kit with Food

There is no time better than the present to start stocking your emergency kit if you haven’t already. Think about the foods your family likes and find items to fit those things. Make sure you get enough to last at least three days. And don’t forget a few treats your family might enjoy. There’s nothing wrong with including some good old comfort foods like a package of cookies.