Food Finds · Trail Cooking

Commercial Meal Review: Thrive Life Beef Pot Roast

I will be upfront in this review. I didn’t particularly care for the new Thrive Life Beef Pot Roast freeze-dried meal. There was a couple reasons, and while I couldn’t get past them, for others this may not be an issue. I have my own set taste and textures I enjoy, which are unique to me.

It’s also the cost. I was shocked how expensive this particular meal was. $21.52 a bag retail. That might make it the most expensive commercial meal we have ever purchased for review. (We paid $18.29 for our meal since we belong to Thrive Life) We personally purchase most meals we review, so that we can give an open and honest review. Prices have gone up considerably for all brands of outdoor and pantry/prepper meals, but this was very shocking. I thought $14 was high.

Weighing in dry at 7.4 ounces it is claimed to serve 3 people. Does it? No. This is definitely a 2 person meal. As a 2 person meal it provides 535 calories. 360 calories as a 3 person meal is just too low.

The most prominent item was diced potatoes, which I do like, but maybe not so much? At least the items were mostly the same size in the meal. That made me happy texture wise.

After preparing it according to directions, using 2¼ cups water. I let it sit insulated for 15 minutes, then stirred it up again.

It was simply too pasty in texture. It needed at lest an extra quarter cup of water. The flavor of the sauce was OK. Not too seasoned, but not bland either. But it didn’t do much for me. The potatoes were too big in size and squishy as freeze-dried potato cubes can be, if you don’t actually cook them (for example, if you soak and drain freeze-dried potatoes, then pan fry, they are quite good).

But what I could not get past, was the carrots. I really don’t like crinkle cut carrot coins. Do not like. Because in my mind, they are frozen carrots that were then freeze-dried. Yes, you can buy crinkle cut ones fresh, but it’s not common. There was no expected crispness to the carrots. Soft and squishy. And I was done with the meal at that point. I couldn’t move past it. I did pick out some of the beef cubes to not waste the protein. They were fine.

All I could think was how mad I would be if I had had this meal when my calories mattered – and if I didn’t like it, I’d have to haul the uneaten meal back out, for miles, in my garbage bag.

But also, when I make pot roast or beef stew, I use different flavors. So that is on me.

I guess it could be worse: it could be Mountain House beef stew that to me tastes like a can of Dinty Moore beef stew. This did taste a lot fresher, and doesn’t have that highly processed flavor. That is a positive side to this review.

But in the end, this wasn’t a meal I enjoyed.

And that’s OK. Not every meal is made for everyone. It’s that simple.

You might like it. You might wonder what was wrong with my taste buds that I didn’t care for it. But at $21.52 I am not so sure it’ll be a best seller.


FTC Disclaimer: We bought the product reviewed, all thoughts are ours.

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