This post is aimed specifically at Lieutenants at The Basic School as the food options below are perfect for the field or simply for consumption in the student officer quarters.
Unlike Officer Candidates School, The Basic School is snack-friendly. Enjoy your new freedom.
Hungry all the time and want to eat something other than MREs? This post is for you.
1) Beef Jerky. This is the holy grail of non-perishable protein. This is one of humanity's greatest food innovations ever. It tastes good, has tons of protein, is extremely packable, and weighs nothing.
However, Beef Jerky is typically made of low quality meat and filled with preservatives, which turn a potentially healthy and nutritious food into a disaster for your body.
Fortunately, it's 2019 and we live in the greatest country on earth, and therefore have plenty of options other than gas station variety jerky.
Which brings us to Country Archer. It's 100% grass-fed with no harmful preservatives. Be better than Jack Links.
2) Sardines. This one isn't for everyone, but if you don't mind the concept of eating fish out of a tin, then you're in luck, because sardines are an absolute nutritional powerhouse. Loaded with protein, omega-3s, vitamins, minerals, and low in mercury, sardines are one of the healthiest fish options you can eat.
We like Wild Planet Sardines because they tend to be higher quality and taste better (from our experience) than other brands.
Other good options, although higher in mercury are Salmon, and Tuna.
3) Protein bars. This one needs no explanation, however there are so many brands out there it can be overwhelming. Here a few we like.
4) Trail mix. We like this one from Power Up. Not too much to say about this, even your parents are on the trail mix wave.
5) Dried fruit. We like dried mango and yes, you should bring fruit because the cherry-blueberry cobbler in the MRE doesn't count.
6) Ground coffee. More specifically, Apline Start Instant Coffee . In the event that you don't have time to heat it up, mixing it cold works just as well.
7)Strike Force. A good alternative to coffee when you need a shot of energy in the field.
8) Squeeze pouch. Like baby food, but for adults. We like Fuel for Fire Banana Cocoa Smoothie. They taste good, take about ten seconds to eat, and are perfect to throw in your pack or cargo pocket. Oh, and they also have 10 grams of protein.
9) Single serving protein powder packs. Ascent Native Fuel makes the best protein powder on the market (full review here) and their single serving packs allow you to bring protein powder out to the field in a convenient way. Their chocolate flavor is good enough to drink with only water, no complex smoothie necessary.
10) JetBoil. After FEX 1, when all you ate were MREs, you will immediately wish you had a JetBoil, and everyone in your Platoon will buy one. Sure you can share one with your fire team, but trust me, you want your own.
11) Mountain House Meals. Now that you have a JetBoil you can start to eat something resembling real food in the field. Congrats. This is a momentous event. Mountain House meals are the way to go.