Civilians try to make and eat an MRE

We got three civilian volunteers to try to prepare and eat an MRE.

What is an MRE?

MRE stands for Meals, Ready-To-Eat and provide quick nutrition for soldiers on the go. MREs are the main operational food ration for the United States Armed Forces. It originated from the c-rations and k-rations from World War II, and later developed into MCI (Meal, Combat, Individual) rations used in Korea and Vietnam. In 1980 the MRE was developed and is still the U.S. Army’s primary ration.

What’s inside an MRE?


Generally, a MRE contains the following items:

  • Entrée – the main course, such as spaghetti or beef stew
  • Side dish – rice, corn, fruit, or mashed potatoes, etc.
  • Cracker or bread
  • Spread – peanut butter, jelly, or cheese spread
  • Dessert – cookies or pound cakes
  • Candy – M&Ms, Skittles, or Tootsie Rolls
  • Beverages – Gatorade-like mixes, cocoa, dairy shakes, coffee, tea
  • Hot sauce or seasoning – in some MREs
  • Flameless Ration Heater – to heat the entrée
  • Accessories – spoon, matches, creamer, sugar, salt, chewing gum, toilet paper, etc.

Each MRE provides an average of 1,250 calories (13% protein, 36% fat, and 51% carbohydrates) and one-third of the Military Recommended Daily Allowance of vitamins and minerals. A full day’s worth of meals would consist of three MREs.

How do you eat an MRE?

According to

A MRE is truly a “Meal Ready to Eat”, although it tastes much better when heated with the supplied ration heater and powdered drinks are mixed with water. The contents—heated and cold—can be eaten out of the wrappers with the plastic utensils provided.

Instructions that come with each meal tell the soldier how to pour water into each heater, and insert the packet of food. When the food has finished cooking, each meal should be carefully opened, and then eaten with a fork or spoon – one of which is usually provided in the MRE. The meals are designed to be cooked and eaten anywhere, at any time. There is no need to find a table or a kitchen in which to set up.

How you can donate to Veterans

There are several charities that specialize in helping our Veterans. Check one some of the great organizations below:

The Gary Sinese Foundation

Homes for our Troops

Wounded Warrior Project

Operation Second Chance

You might also like:

2020 Veterans Day Freebies and Discounts in Birmingham

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