No battle was ever won on an empty stomach. According to historians, one Roman legion had to consume 120 sheep a day for their meat ration, crusaders would recharge on dry meat and grain, while Napoleon’s soldiers spent most of their time desperately hungry.

But fast forward to the modern day and we see a whole different story. Neatly packaged and super-compact, military food rations are an easy way to provide that much-needed nutrition. But it turns out, every country has its own take on front-line dining. Thanks to one Youtuber named David Hong, who tried a variety of MREs from different countries, we now know what exactly army troops’ taste buds can expect when they open one. And surprisingly, some look better than my dinner ever has.

More info: Youtube | Twitter | Facebook

#1

Russia

Russia

Apple sauce; Pea stew; Meatball; Bacon in fat; Crackers; Rice with peas and meat; Cheese spread; Carrot and potato substance

Alduin Hearth Report

mph seti
Community Member
2 months ago

"Potato Substance"

View More Replies...
View more comments
#2

United Kingdom

United Kingdom

Muesli oats with milk; Sports drink, coffee and tea; Candy; Cranberry cereal bar; Fruit cake; Vegetarian pasta; Oatmeal cookie and hazelnut spread; Tomato pasta salad; Salted nuts

Alduin Hearth Report

JuJu
Community Member
2 months ago

Is that a teeny tiny Tabasco?

View More Replies...
View more comments
#3

Italy

Italy

Breakfast: Biscuits; Chocolate; Jelly; Spoon; Coffee; Sugar; Salt. Lunch: Tortellini; Beef; Fruit salad; Biscuits; Coffee. Supper: Crackers; An entry bar; Tuna; Soup

Alduin Hearth Report

Astrid Nineor
Community Member
2 months ago

Look better than many of the others

View More Replies...
View more comments

Bored Panda reached out to David Hong, a Youtuber behind the series of videos that revealed what’s inside these military food rations. It turns out, David is also an artist in the furry fandom and Warhammer Horus Heresy project, which recently became his main focus.

The thirty-year-old Youtuber started out back in 2011 and his channel was mainly about blogging and gaming. ”I never have thought it would be an MRE Review Channel since I first opened a US MRE ration that I bought from an expat living in my country,” he recounted.

#4

France

France

Terrine forestiere; Crackers; Chocolate, nougat and candy; Muesli, oats and fruits; Instant tomato soup; Braised ham; Crozets et diots

Alduin Hearth Report

Bardhi's Dad
Community Member
2 months ago

I would gladly serve in french army. Especially if you compare it with than Yugoslavian army where I served more than 30 years ago

View More Replies...
View more comments
#5

Germany

Germany

Hazelnut pudding; Rindfleischlyoner grob; Pea stew with mettwurstchen; Hackfleischrollchen with rice; Muesli, oats milk and fruits; Roggenschrotbrot; Cranberry cereal bar; Roggenschrotbrot; Dark chocolate; Crackers


Alduin Hearth Report

Marc
Community Member
2 months ago

If you eat too many of the crackers, then you can't go to the toilet for a few days. That's what they're mainly there for. The good thing is, if you smear Bundeswehr shoe polish on the crackers, you can easily light a fire with it, even wet wood. The stuff burns like tinder and glows like coal.

View More Replies...
View more comments
#6

Canada

Canada

Hot chocolate; Orange drink; Coffee; Coffee creamer; Banana flavoured oatmeal cereal; Bread; Sliced apples; Baked beans; Ketchup; Peanut butter; Strawberry jam

Alduin Hearth Report

Mike Crow
Community Member
2 months ago

I’ve had many of these when is was an aside Cadet and in basic training when I joined the Canadian Forces. Some of the entries were better than others but I never got the baked beans.

View More Replies...
View more comments

But it turns out, David isn’t connected to any military himself. “This question comes up due to the fact that MREs can only be had if provided by the army, or bought from a commissary in a base.” He explained that this isn’t the case anymore because military rations are now available publicly. 

It’s hard to say which food ration was David’s fave since “every ration is unique to the taste and culture of their corresponding nation.” Having said that, he loved “the Russian IRP because it offers the most protein of all the MREs I had. The pork fat or sowbelly is probably the oddest choice in it; it tastes like bacon when you mix it with the rice included.”

Other nice treats included meatballs that “feel and taste realer than manufactured ones that are soggy and bland” and crackers that “are great to snack on, dunking it in the sauces of the entrees is heavenly.”

#7

Croatia

Croatia

Biscuits with pepper; Salt crackers; Chocolate; Pineapple; Papaya; Turkey pate; Liver spread; Sardines Beans; Coffee taffy's; Orange drink; Tea; Beef soup

Alduin Hearth Report

ruthenium the ruther
Community Member
2 months ago

best one yet!

View More Replies...
View more comments
#8

U.S.

U.S.

Marble pound cake; Skittles; Grape flavor energy drink; Crackers; Chili; Macaroni

Alduin Hearth Report

Pandasrule
Community Member
2 months ago

oh my gosh they have skittles

View More Replies...
View more comments
#9

Poland

Poland

Tea; Coffee; Chicken casserole; Hardtack; Hard candies; Stick of gum; Honey; Condensed milk ; Pepper; Salt; Raisins

Alduin Hearth Report

mph seti
Community Member
2 months ago

Is the condensed milk in that toothpaste tube?

Zintoki
Community Member
2 months ago (edited)

Yes, it's pretty common even in my country and we have also cocoa variant.

Load More Replies...
Befitting Soup
Community Member
2 months ago

Looks decent

Linda Roy
Community Member
2 months ago

Compared to some of others on this list, this doesn't look too bad

Load More Replies...
Andrew Gibb
Community Member
2 months ago

I'm guessing that Mleko is milk (it has a cat on the tube)

Night Owl
Community Member
2 months ago

correct

Load More Replies...
Oskar vanZandt
Community Member
2 months ago

Pack looks messy... the stew looks tasty.

mntncrone
Community Member
2 months ago

So, really, just chicken casserole....

Elisabeth Byrne
Community Member
2 months ago

This one actually doesn't look too bad and potentially edible

Jane W.
Community Member
2 months ago

So far in this list, the chicken casserole looks the most like food.

Anna McHugh
Community Member
2 months ago

That's not a lot of calories compared to some of the others

fancy yet idiotic alien
Community Member
2 months ago

What is hardtack?

Lucille Varner
Community Member
2 months ago

Flour, water, salt. Flavourless crackers that burn nicely and damn near make you CHOKE TO DEATH

Load More Replies...
Trisha Lynn
Community Member
2 months ago

The chicken casserole looks pretty good.

Vicky Zar
Community Member
2 months ago

This is the best looking one

𝓴𝓪𝔀𝓪𝓲𝓲_𝓐𝓾𝓭𝓻𝓮𝔂 💖
1 week ago

no chocolate?!

Hannah Marshall
Community Member
2 months ago

Chicken casserole is amazing. Good job!

Rainy
Community Member
2 months ago

Its milk-mleko is milk in polish/english

John-Paul Bitler
Community Member
2 months ago

At first I read, instead of "chicken casserole", chicken arsehole. I need help

Maureen Peters
Community Member
2 months ago

The raisins look good!

Roy Phillips
Community Member
2 months ago

Wasn't hardtack outlawed by the Geneva Convention?

Edwin Quantrall
Community Member
2 months ago

It's a similar situation to tear-gas. It's only illegal if you inflict it on the enemy... 😏

Load More Replies...
Blackheart
Community Member
2 months ago

Not a fan of the raisins

stripper dream
Community Member
2 months ago

What is hard tack?

Marianne Saiso
Community Member
2 months ago

A very dry high-carb biscuit. Keeps forever.

Load More Replies...
Sill Marien
Community Member
2 months ago

I'm quite surprised ours look almost edible and not worse than the rest ;)

View More Replies...
View more comments

Moreover, David believes that “the entrees in the Russia IRP are the best seasoned,” which means you don’t need to add salt or pepper. “The mini stove is also very cute when warming the entrees within their containers, as a civilian, I feel like camping when using it,” he added.

The Youtuber, who is originally from the Philippines, also told us about the time he tried living on “twenty-four colon-blocking [army ration] flavors to choose from.” It may sound fun, but in reality, “It is quite a fattening and a constipating endeavor as a civilian with moderate exercise, the amount of calories in each pack is designed for soldiers.”

#10

Lithuania

Lithuania

Drink; Chicken soup; Hazelnuts; Crackers; Chocolate; Chicken and rice


Alduin Hearth Report

ebony1k124 touch
Community Member
2 months ago

This looks decent but i would pour some of the soup over the chicken and rice to rescue it a bit.

View More Replies...
View more comments
#11

Kazakhstan

Kazakhstan

Biscuits; Tea bag; Jam; Pate; Squash; Rice; Corned beef with soup

Alduin Hearth Report

Oskar vanZandt
Community Member
2 months ago

Tins can double as close-range weapons... not enough fluids?

View More Replies...
View more comments
#12

Ukraine

Ukraine

Breakfast: Iced tea; Biscuits; Rice with beef; Wipes.

Lunch: Spoon and tissue paper; Pate; Pork; Drink; Sugar.

Supper:Biscuits;Tuna;Pate;Iced tea;Sugar


Alduin Hearth Report

Andrew Gibb
Community Member
2 months ago

wouldn't want to put the camouflaged pack on the ground ;-)

View more comments

Not only can the MREs truly be fattening since they’re packed with calories, they can also get dull easily. “Once you already cycled through the menus as they can have the same desserts or spreads in consecutive packs.”

All in all, David wouldn’t recommend relying on MREs as a quick meal even for an athlete because “they can really throw off your diet and bowels.”

#13

Spain

Spain

Tuna; Mix fruits; Beef and peas; Instant vege soup; Pate

Alduin Hearth Report

Gina Babe
Community Member
2 months ago

This one is gross looking

View More Replies...
View more comments
See Also on Bored Panda
#14

China

China

Cake; Fruit; Rice; Sausage; Hot Sauce


Alduin Hearth Report

ebony1k124 touch
Community Member
2 months ago

Rice and sausage looks like it may be a lil hard to swollow. It fell victim to the "evaporation fairy" that is known to suck all moisture and flavor out of MRE's or Equivalents.

View More Replies...
View more comments