Shelf Stable Prepared Meals: What to Look for
Shelf-stable prepared meals may seem like a godsend when you’re too busy to think about cooking or don’t have time to go shopping and make your meals, but be sure you look for the most important factors before you purchase them so that you get the healthiest meal possible. Here are the most important things to look at before making your shelf-stable meal purchase.
You need to consider whether or not the prepackaged food is healthy, if it tastes good, and if it is worth the price. You’ll also want to take into consideration any dietary restrictions you have or might have in the future. For instance, some people can’t eat gluten or dairy. Others have allergies to certain foods such as nuts. A lot of the time, prepackaged foods have fillers like maltodextrin and canola oil. But it’s important to make sure that the ingredients are real because these items might contain allergens or unhealthy fats. Choosing ingredients carefully can help you stay on track with your diet goals and avoid unhealthy ingredients.
Calories, fat, and protein must be high enough. When you’re looking at a shelf-stable, ready-to-eat meal, the label will tell you how many calories it has. Protein is listed in grams on the label and will also tell you if there are any amino acids in the food. Look for foods that have more than 10g of protein per serving as well as at least 8g of fiber per serving.
Too much sodium can lead to high blood pressure and other health issues, so it’s important to compare the sodium content. A good rule of thumb is that if you consume more than 2,300 milligrams of sodium a day then a low-sodium meal may be best. If you have heart disease or are over 50 years old, the limit should be 1,500 milligrams per day.
Variety is important when buying shelf-stable meals. The more diversity you have, the better chance you’ll have of finding something that suits your tastes. Sticking with a single flavor or cooking style can make it harder to find something you like and will also make it hard for you to stay on track with your diet.
If you’re looking for shelf-stable food that’s easy to store and prepare, then it’s important to find something with a long shelf life. You want a product that will stay fresh even if you don’t use it all at once. Ideally, the food should be able to be stored in your cupboard or pantry without being refrigerated.
Finally, the average shelf-stable meal costs about $2.00 per serving. This is a great value when you consider the convenience of not having to cook or go out at any point during the day. It’s also an excellent way to save money on food without going hungry, as you may end up eating more than just one serving. It’s worth noting that some companies offer discounts if you purchase in bulk, so be sure to take this into account before deciding on a brand.