Crown Prince Sardines in Spring Water
Great used as a mix-in protein source in meals or for snacking right out of the bag. Single serving portion in an easy to open bag. Worth their weight for day hikers, climbers, or those on longer trails and especially so for those looking to add fat and protein to their diet.
- Tasty with good real food texture
- Protein and fat calories
- Potential to be very messy
- Excess liquid if not used as a mix in
Crown Prince is pretty well known for their canned sardines, but they recently came out with several varieties sold in easy to open pouches. They can be somewhat hard to find as not all grocery stores carry them, but they are definitely worth making an effort to locate.
The Spring Water variety, like the others in the line, comes with three or four sardines of the shorter/fatter variety. It also comes with several fluid ounces of fish flavored water. This variety reminded me of tuna in water more than the texture of traditional canned sardines packed in oil. This variety was less pleasing to eat directly out of the pouch due to seeming watery, but it was great as a mix-in for dinner.
I'm not sure if they used the large amount of liquid to protect the sardines or just to give the package more heft. Whatever the reason for it, if you don't use the sauce as part of a mix-in recipe it is waste that has to be dealt with and I'd have preferred they use less of it even it meant the fish were more abused.
Bottom line is these things are dang delicious, especially after a few days on trail without fresh meat. I've eaten this variety alone right out of the pouch, but find it better used as a mix in for a meal. I have used it with both noodles and mashed potato with great result.
The pouches protect the fish surprisingly well in my pack. They are easy to open with a quick tear but must be dealt with carefully to avoid spilling the sauce. The package is not designed to be zipped closed when done so I bring a small zip bag for each package of sardines to help control the mess and smell. I try to be careful eating any sort of fish in bear country, but really prefer eating these out on the trail for lunch rather than in my camp site.
I definitely can recommend any of these Crown Prince Sardine varieties to folks looking to add some fat and protein calories to their on trail diet. Beyond their nutrition they are a nice break from rehydrated meats in terms of taste bud pleasing texture. If you are a fan of the taste of traditional sardines packed in oil this variety will likely leave you a bit sad, but if you are a fan of water packed tuna and enjoy the lighter oil free style this one is for you.
Sardines, Spring Water
Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $0.79