Legacy food storage is one of the best-known emergency food companies on the market, selling buckets of freeze-dried survival food to thousands of customers each year. The real question is, how does the food taste, and is it a good value?
I’ve been writing reviews of survival food for a few years now, and at this point, I’ve written reviews on all the well-known brands on the market. This legacy food storage review is the last on a long list of food trials, and honestly, I’ve held off just because of the company’s popularity.
Legacy is immensely popular with preppers, largely because of cost. They sell some of the most inexpensive survival food on the market, and at least according to their advertising, you get more pounds of food per dollar than with any other supplier.
The thing is, weight doesn’t always mean calories…and even if it does, heavier doesn’t mean tastier.
The package was incredibly heavy, and packed to the gills with pouches of food…but how did it taste?
At this point, I’ve tested just about every one of their meals, and critically examined their packaging, calories, and nutrient labels to give you this comprehensive review of legacy food storage.
Legacy Food Storage Review
So (spoiler alert), here’s the short version.
Yes, Legacy Food Storage does give you a lot of food/calories for not a lot of money. Their food bucket is the heaviest I’ve reviewed, and they’re not kidding about the pounds per dollar.
The thing is, they cheat a bit.
One of the reasons you get more “pounds per dollar” is that much of their food is not freeze-dried. Freeze-dried food is bulky, and expensive to make.
There are other options with good shelf life, and legacy mainly provides those. Since they’re selling “survival food,” most people just assume it’s freeze-dried. It’s not false advertising, but they don’t go out of their way to mention it, either.
Much of their food is powdered mixes, just packed in mylar, so it has a long shelf life. Pancake mix, oatmeal, and similar things. Those are heavy, and calorie dense, but they’re not exactly expensive to make…either for them as a company, or for you to just make at home yourself if you can package it right.
Even their savory lunch/dinner meals aren’t really freeze-dried.
Just about every one is a pasta dish, and it’s par-boiled dehydrated pasta. They then add a few tablespoons of seasoning powder, or cheese powder, or tomato powder…or whatever powder to differentiate between the flavors.
Most emergency food companies prepare the meals, then freeze-dry them already cooked so you can just rehydrate the meal with all the flavors together in a cohesive dish. It’s more expensive to do it that way, but it also tastes a lot better.
Some of their fruits are, in fact, freeze-dried, like their freeze-dried strawberries, but much is dehydrated instead. That means it doesn’t keep as well, at least in terms of quality. It won’t “spoil” in package, but its quality will degrade after a year or two.
Overall, flavor-wise, I found their meals to be some of the worst-tasting on the market. They were technically food, but I’d have to be pretty darn hungry to eat them.
I’m not expecting to eat like a king in an emergency, but I am planning ahead so I’m not eating rats…and some of these meals had me looking hard to see if I had any rat traps on hand.
To make their meals palatable, I had to really dig into my other shelf-stable pantry essentials. I pulled out cheese powder (because their mac and cheese tasted like pasta with paste, with no cheese flavor) and sour cream powder, freeze-dried mushrooms, and freeze-dried beef, because the stroganoff was pasta with a gel powder on it (and no other flavor).
Just because it’s calories, doesn’t mean it’s calories you’re going to want to eat.
If you are looking for a budget option, I’d strongly suggest looking at My Patriot Supply instead. They are, in my opinion, the very best budget emergency food on the market. My full Patriot Supply Review covers each of their meals and the best options in terms of value and flavor.
If you are handy in the kitchen and know how to make a meal from base ingredients, your best option is Emergency Essentials, which sells freeze-dried no. 10 cans of just about everything you need to cook all your favorite meals. Meat, vegetables, fruit, dairy, eggs, everything.
(But you’ll need to be able to cook from scratch, which is a big ask for a lot of people…and sometimes more than a chef can manage in a true emergency. Still, it’s nice to have on hand for everyday emergencies when you run out of something, or to improve your other emergency food stores.)
I have reviews of each of those, and you can read them here:
(Here’s where you can read a full review of the best emergency food suppliers, where I cover all the major companies on the market.)
Is Legacy Food Storage Legit?
Yes, Legacy Food Storage is a legitimate company, and they do provide what they say they will. I’ve found no false advertising claims anywhere on their site.
When you order, they ship quickly, and they do provide more “pounds of food per dollar” than any other company on the market.
That said, they’re still not the best option, in my opinion. Nonetheless, they’re not a scam, and they will ship you emergency food that’s calorie dense, well-packaged, and should store for many years.
What Does Legacy Food Storage Sell?
For the most part, Legacy Food Storage is a food company, and they largely focus on dried food packaged in mylar. They do also offer a number of related products to round out your preparedness stores:
- Emergency Food – Options, freeze-dried, lots of entrees, some single ingredients like milk, etc.
- Survival Gear – Water filtration, pre-packed bug-out bags, car emergency kits, and first aid kits
- Water Storage and Filtration – Food won’t help you all that much without clean water!
- Fuel, Batteries & Energy – Generators, portable stoves, cooking fuel, lamps, etc.
Though most people assume that all survival food companies sell freeze-dried food, much of what Legacy Food Storage provides is not freeze-dried. Notable exceptions were some of their fruits, like their freeze-dried strawberries, which were absolutely delicious. (Much better than any of their prepared meals.)
How to Prepare Legacy Food Storage Meals
Most of the meals from Legacy Food Storage are par-boiled pasta with seasoning, or powdered mixes for oatmeal, hot cereal, or pancakes.
There are a few notable exceptions, like chili, which is a bean-based dish, but for the most part, you’re looking at boiling pasta (or chili) in water. You’ll need about 3 cups to 8 cups of water per pouch, and the ability to simmer it on the stove for 15 to 20 minutes (and then let it sit 3 to 5 minutes covered, to rehydrate fully).
Don’t forget to take out the oxygen absorber.
The pancakes are prepared like any just add water pancake mix, and they are totally fine.
I even simulated emergency cooking by making them on a cast iron pan over a campfire, and I served them with our homemade maple syrup (we can maple syrup for long-term storage, and it doesn’t spoil) and canned butter (which comes from New Zealand, and it’s surprisingly delicious).
The pancakes were like any just add water pancake mix pancakes, and they cooked up fine without any problems.
Legacy Food Storage Taste Test
I’ve already mentioned that I didn’t really enjoy most of the meals from Legacy Food Storage. The pancake mix and oatmeal were fine, as was the fruit/veg…but the meals were pretty horrible.
I ordered their “183 Serving Mega Sample Bucket” to try every single meal they have, and it was jam-packed with food. I could barely lift it, and it’s easily 40 lbs.
Most of their “servings” provided 330 to 370 calories, at least for the prepared meals. Many of the “servings” were snacks and sides, like powdered milk or dried fruit, which were more like 50 calories per serving.
Here are my tasting notes for a few of their meals:
- Mac and Cheese ~ Incredibly plain, and I actually had to add cheese powder so I could eat it. My kids wouldn’t touch it, which is rough. It didn’t taste like cheddar, more like pasta with a paste on it.
- Stroganoff ~ They’re very careful not to say “Beef Stroganoff” because it doesn’t have meat in it. It does have beef broth powder, so it’s not vegetarian, either. It tasted like pasta with a flavorless gel sauce. I added sour cream powder, freeze-dried mushrooms, and freeze-dried beef to make it palatable…but it’s basically just pasta and thickener gel.
- Italian Pasta with Marinara ~ My daughter walked over while I was making this and said, “Let me guess…that one’s tomato soup?” It was a lot of tomato powder, very little seasoning, and some parboiled pasta. This one was actually palatable, though, as pasta with tomato sauce (even mild plain sauce) is decent.
- Chilli ~ It’s a stretch to call this “chili,” and it’s more like “tortilla soup.” It’s very liquidy, mostly liquified bean paste with a bit of tomato and a tiny pinch of seasoning. No spice at all, but it does contain plenty of sugar and cornstarch. More of a chili gel without actual chilies, and with some beans in it for the pretense of texture.
Legacy Food Storage Review
Overall, they do offer a lot of calories per dollar, but they taste pretty horrible. Legacy Food Storage is by far the worst-tasting emergency food I’ve tried, and that’s saying something because, at this point, I’ve tried them all.
I know everyone’s tastes are different, and hey, you may love their food…but this is my honest review.
They do have some things I really like, namely, their packaging. They do an excellent job with thick, durable, high-quality mylar pouches (which 4Patriots could learn from, their packaging is horrible).
And they really do deliver when it comes to calories.
Their food isn’t too salty, largely because it’s almost not seasoned at all…they’re the only company that you might need to add salt to. (With the exception of their chili…which for some reason was very salty, but that’s the only one).
Overall, here are the pros and cons:
- Discreet Packaging via mail
- High-quality packaging in individual servings & buckets
- Good Variety
- Fast Shipping
- Great Value for Your Money
- Lots of additives
- Very Little (or no) Meat
- Pasty, unseasoned food that’s barely palatable
- Most of their food is not freeze dried
They’re not the best option, obviously, but they are cheap. Still, I don’t think they’re the best budget emergency food. The best low-cost emergency food comes from My Patriot Supply, and they’re a better bet if you’re trying to prep on a budget.
Looking for more preparedness resources?
- Best (and Worst) Survival Food Kits
- Survival Gardening: Our Real Life Dry Run
- Best Survival Seed Banks
- Canning Water for Emergencies