Nomad Nutrition Hungarian Goulash
Current Retail: $10.99
A delicious and simple dehydrated meal with good caloric density (176 calories per ounce) for backpackers that prepares easily and satisfies. There is a naturalness to this dish (and this brand in general) that makes it seem as if this is some long-standing favorite food, even though I had never had it before. This brand is the best dehydrated food I’ve tried to date. It’s too pricey to be a staple for me, but worth it for that special trip or occasion.
- Tastes great—superbly spiced and not too much of anything
- Decent protein in the 100g /3.5oz package (20 grams)
- Primarily Non-GMO / organic (not 100%)
- Low in sugar (7 g in 100-gram 3.5oz package)
- Low in sodium: (100 mg in the 100-gram 3.5oz package)
- Expensive: the 100-gram package is $12, the 50-gram is $7
When I was messaging back and forth with Alicia (Trailspace Co-Founder and Editor) about testing some food items, I mentioned that I would only be interested in vegetarian options (I’m not actually vegetarian or vegan, I just rarely eat meat). For those excluding meat altogether, the pre-packaged choices are understandably limited in the backpacking/dehydrated food genre. I was quite intrigued when Alicia came back with this brand as I had never heard of them before.
As I read about the company and product my interest was piqued further; you can check out their story here but I’ll relate that all products are plant-based, primarily non-GMO /organic (they don’t claim to be fully non-GMO/ organic but state that they “do their best” to use those type of ingredients), produced in small batches and nutritionally optimized for athletes.
I also like it when companies are aware of sustainability and commit to using local farms.
Ingredients: Potatoes, Red Kidney Beans, Onions, Red Peppers*, Carrots, Lentils, Tomatoes, Olive Oil*, Mushrooms*, Garlic*, Smoked Paprika*, Spices*, Sea Salt*, *Certified Organic Ingredient.
Nutrition: (for the 100-gram package) Calories 600, Carbs 80g, Sugars (7 g), Protein 20g
Preparation and packaging
This meal is as easy to prepare as any just-add-boiling water type meal. Simply remove the desiccant, add the recommended (or desired) amount of boiling water, and wait 10 minutes.
The cook-in-bag worked fine, but I did have to let this particular meal cook about two minutes longer for the potatoes to fully rehydrate. I normally don’t like to eat out of bags (or pack the bulky aluminized type), but I did it with this product once just for reviewing purposes.
I would describe the spicing of this meal as minimal, but the overall flavor profile as delicious. I realize that some may find minimal seasoning bland, but I like to taste the actual ingredients in most foods and not a dominating spice. You can distinctly taste the potatoes, beans, and carrots as well as a hint of the smoked paprika. I’ve had few prepackaged backpacking meals that I can so easily discern the individual components of.
For me, the 100g package is enough to satisfy as a primary meal, but I typically add bread and/or cheese to such food types. And logically, the 50g package was not enough by itself.
This was interesting as I had enough servings sent for review to experiment with the water levels. When using the recommended amount of water, a very viscous stew is realized. When using less water, I was able to use this like a spread and made a sandwich out of it. In any case, the texture was good. As mentioned previously, I did have to let it reconstitute a little longer than listed when using the cook-in-bag method.
This product is well suited to anyone wanting a healthier dehydrated meal choice and especially for those who appreciate simple flavors.
This stuff is really good. There is a plainness to this food that appeals to me and makes me feel as if I’m eating something healthy. I’ve done so much backpacking in my lifetime that I’ve gone through various stages of burn-out with all the pre-packaged food choices and had mostly given up on using them in general. I’m really happy to find a brand that I like so much; they are doing it right at Nomad and producing a great product. Unfortunately, the price is too high for me to indulge in this very often. I’m willing to splurge for a special trip, but at $12 a meal, I can’t justify spending that much money routinely.
I have over 8000 miles of trekking experience in the last decade and I've tried many, many brands of pre-packaged meals out there over that time span. I was sent three packages of this flavor for review and have tried it twice so far. Yeah, I'm saving the last one for an upcoming trip.
Source: received for testing via the Trailspace Review Corps
(Sample for testing and review provided by Nomad Nutrition)