In planning our food storage, one area that’s caused some trouble is meats. Now I know meats aren’t on the “wheat, beans, powdered milk, and honey” plan, but I like meat. So does my sweet husband. So do my kids. I really want some in my food storage. The standard way to store meats is to have some in the freezer. This works fine if your electricity doesn’t go out or if it does and it’s real cold outside and you can just pile your frozen stuff in the snow to keep it frozen. But it’s not the best way to store meats, especially long term–frozen meats that are not packed just right develop a bad case of freezer burn. So if you have meat in your freezer, what’s your backup plan?
Your other options are to buy freeze dried meats or canned meat. Neither are cheap, and I’ve not had great experience with freeze dried meats (maybe because it wasn’t great meat before it was processed?) Now we come to canned meats. Canned meats are a good thing. Most people’s canned meat storage consists of tuna fish or spam. Yep, I have a case or two of tuna fish. I despise tuna fish. I don’t have any spam–I really despise spam. I also bottle meat from the hunts. I have some canned chicken in the squatty fat cans that I’m not real crazy about because it’s super processed, chunked and formed hunks of meat that was formerly chicken in a can with lots of water. Got all that? Sounds delicious, right? Well, here’s where our review comes in.
The first one we tried was the beef.
This is the large 28 oz. can. Each of the meat varieties are available in large cans or smaller 14.5 oz cans. Here’s the open can.
One of the great things about Internet Grocer’s canned meats is that they are not packed in a bunch of water. The ingredients say: “Beef, salt” That’s it. So the juice in the can is just juice from the meat being processed. The meat also comes from hormone-free animals. I’m already liking this stuff.
The pieces of meat are stiff enough you could put them in a stew or casserole if you didn’t smash them up, but they shred really easy, so I made chimichangas with it. Now we come to another great thing about canned meats in general: they are ready right now. You could open the can and eat them cold if you wanted to (which I did with some of this beef). I used a recipe that said to cook your meat 2 HOURS so you could shred it, but it only took about 30 seconds to open the can instead (perfect for dinner procrastinators). Ahhh, chimichanga filling in 10 minutes or less:
I tasted this beef cold, warm, and all mixed up in my sauce and it was good every time. I’m pretty sensitive to the taste of preservatives, maybe since most of the food we eat around here is “from scratch”, and I could not tell this beef wasn’t from a roast I cooked in my crockpot all day. I was also concerned about the salt–I want my meat to taste like meat, not salt (think spam), but the canners got the salt level just right–enough to enhance the flavor, not so much that you taste salt. Nice work. And I don’t recall seeing canned beef on the shelf at the grocery store, but maybe I just haven’t looked.
Ditto on the pork. It was really good. Packed in its own juices, not too salty.
This is one of the small cans. Nice size for one meal for an average family (actually went farther for us). Here’s a picture of the pork right out of the can:
See how you can see the grain of the meat? Yep, you know it’s real meat. I also ate this cold, and warm. We made barbeque pork sandwiches. Really, you don’t have to shred this canned meat to eat it, I’ve just been on a shredded meat kick lately. You know the pulled pork sandwiches that take all day in the crockpot to get the pork to shred? Here’s the same thing in 10 minutes–and it only took that long because I was making the sauce up as I went:
It was fabulous. Even sweet husband liked it. I liked the taste, the texture, and the ease of cooking with it. And who has canned pork? That’s another one I haven’t seen at the store.
The only issue I had with the meat was the price. I’ll admit it, I’m cheap. Really cheap. So a large can of meat for between $8.45 and $9.10 seemed kind of steep. But here’s the deal. It’s a very large can of meat. The can of beef easily made 2 meals for our family (actually more since sweet husband’s been sick and not had his whole appetite) as chimichanga meat. If it were in a stew or casserole it would have gone even farther. And the meat is really good. Not all processed and watery like the squatty cans of chicken that I pay $2.50 for. So if I stacked those chicken cans up to equal the size of one of Internet Grocer’s large cans it would be $7.50 (3 cans high), then if I squeezed all the water out of those cans I’d need another can to make the same amount of meat, so now we’re up to around $10.00 for a comparable amount of meat and who knows where that meat came from or how it was processed. So you see it’s not so expensive after all. :)
So if you’re looking to round out your food storage with some quality meats that will store 5 years or more, (or if you’ve procrastinated on getting the prepper on your list something special for the upcoming holiday) head on over to Internet Grocer and pick up some of their Signature Canned Meats. They have my approval.
As required by the FTC: I received a sample pack of Best Prices Signature Canned Meats in order to write my review. I received no monetary compensation. You know if I review something it will be thorough and honest, so the opinions expressed here are my own honest opinions.