Top Lifeboat Food Options That Don’t Go Bad and Are Not Awful Tasting

Lifeboats are meant to keep you alive when an emergency occurs while onboard a ship. As such, the lifeboat offers the required necessities by keeping you afloat and not starving, until you can access enough supply food and water rations. Lifeboats are legally supposed to have approximately 10,300 KJ per person.

The rations should be packed in an easily opened and readily divided manner, edible throughout their recommended life span, and palatable. There are no requirements when it comes to lifestyle or taste choices. In this case, you cannot get gluten-free or vegan, or vegetarian versions.

The rations are meant to provide your body with energy to sustain you until you are rescued. Below are some of the best lifeboat foods with good tasting and do not go bad quickly.

1. Mainstay bars

The mainstay bars are the best in terms of vitamin content. However, they have lower protein content, meaning they can be a priority for short-term survival. They have a lemon flavor.

lifeboat food
Mainstay Emergency Food 2400-cal Bars (Pack of 6) 12 Day Rations (36 Servings 3x400cal/per/day)

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The mainstay potion comes in large blocks that you can break into individual portions. They have a temperature range of between -40° F to 300 °F and a 5-year shelf-life.


  • Resilient packaging.
  • Low in sugar.
  • Good range of minerals and vitamins.


  • Low in protein content.
  • Portions are not individually wrapped.

2. Mayday’s emergency rations

The mayday rations come in various sized packs starting from a single serving 400-calorie up to a 3-day supply. In that way, it provides more flexibility than other lifeboat food options that usually comes in one or two sizes.

lifeboat food
9 Meals 3 Day 3600 Calorie Emergency Survival Food Bar Ration Car Kit Bug Out

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Mayday's rations are one of the best-tasting bars with a cinnamon and apple flavor. The mayday rations have more proteins but limited minerals and vitamins. The higher protein content would help you feel fuller, but you cannot use them for the long-term. The bars have a temperature range of between -22° F to 149 °F.


  • Low in sugar
  • Decent flavor
  • Resilient packaging
  • Flexibility in a pack size


  • Limited minerals and vitamins
  • The portions are not individually wrapped.

3. Food labs millennium bars

The millennium bars are individually packed, which makes them appear like sports bars. They come in various flavors, including orange, tropical fruit, cherry, blueberry, raspberry, and lemon that make them more appealing not only to children but also to adults.

lifeboat food
SOS Food Labs SOS-Orange-1 Millennium Bar 400-Calorie Orange

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The millennium bars have a variety of minerals and vitamins topped by sugar.


  • Fortified with vitamins
  • Different flavors


  • High in sugar
  • Costly
  • Take up more space

4. SOS ration bar

SOS provides their bars in both 3600 and 2400 calorie pack options. The bars have either cinnamon or coconut flavors. The coconut flavored food bar has a similar taste to that of an animal cookie, and the cinnamon-flavored resemble a real cookie in both texture and taste.

lifeboat food ration
S.O.S. Rations Emergency 3600 Calorie Food Bar – 3 Day / 72 Hour Package with 5 Year Shelf Life 2 PK

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The SOS food ration uses partially hydrogenated oils, and such a case explains why the bars are not prone to crumble. Although the SOS ration bars use a cheaper ingredient, they do not use artificial flavoring in their cinnamon or coconut bars. They have an average sodium content of 15 g and 31g of sugar per serving.


  • No artificial flavors
  • Less prone to crumbling
  • Extremely flavorful.
  • Individually wrapped servings.


  • Use of partially hydrogenated oils
  • High in sugar

5. Survival Frog 3600 Emergency food ration

The survival frog ratios are individually wrapped, with a block of bars vacuums bagged in rigid polymer foil. The food ration is meant to be chucked in the lifeboat for years. Therefore, the package is pretty resilient to salty water and heat.

lifeboat food
S.O.S. Rations Emergency 3600 Calorie Food Bar – 3 Day / 72 Hour Package with 5 Year Shelf Life- 8 Packs

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Every bar has 400 calories, and you can either mix it with water or eat it solid. The food ration ingredients include coconut flavor, water, sugar, vegetable shortening, and floor. The survival frog is less sweet but will not provide you with a sugar slump or rush.


No added vitamins


Difficult to unwrap the bars

6. Datrex 3600 emergency food bar

The lack of nuts, moderate pricing, and pleasant taste make the Date 3600 one of the lifeboat food options. The Datrex bar is subdivided into 18 bars that have 200 calories each. The sub-packaging of the bars makes it easier to store and ration. However, one of the best things about the food bar is that no nuts and GMOs are used, making it the best for most people.

datrex lifeboat food

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Unfortunately, if you are allergic to tree nuts, this food bar would not be the best for you. Also, the food bar does not have preservatives. Its main ingredients include coconut, salt, water, cane sugar, vegetable shortening, and wheat flour. Its five-year life span ensures that you can still keep it for a year after buying it.


  • Relatively lightweight
  • Economical pricing


  • Crumbly
  • Not meant for people who are allergic to tree nuts.

7. UST emergency food ration bars

The Ultimate Survival Technologies (UST) is a newcomer lifeboat food ration that has combined a pretty good tasting bar. The bars have a 2400 calorie pack and apple cinnamon flavor. Although the UST bars are dry in composition, they are thirst-provoking, implying that you can eat them without feeling like you want to drink water.

lifeboat food
UST Emergency Food Ration Bars (PDQ 4-ct)

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When it comes to consistency, the UST bars are dense and not crumbly like mainstay bars. The UST food bars contain approximately 5mg of sodium and 15g of sugar per serving. The food bar has a lower content of sodium and sugar compared to other lifeboat food options. The bars use palm oil that helps to limit crumbs by gluing everything together.


  • Non-thirsty provoking
  • Not too crumbly
  • Apple cinnamon flavor


  • Artificial flavoring added
  • You can only find a 2400 calorie pack option
  • Palm oil might be an issue for some people.

To conclude, the top lifeboat food options are widely recognized as high-calorie and compact solutions for people faced with uncertain situations, especially when traveling on deep seas. Lifeboat foods contain necessary macronutrients, including carbohydrates, proteins, fats, minerals, and vitamins, to ensure that you survive even when facing harsh conditions.

lifeboat foods
Emergency Food Rations – 3600 Calorie Bar – 3 Day Supply – Less Sugar and More Nutrients Than Other Leading Brands – (5 Year Shelf Life)-9 bars

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The top lifeboat food options which are not awful tasting and do not go bad include mainstay bars, mayday’s emergency rationsfood labs millennium barssurvival Frog 3600, Datrex 3600 emergency food barand UST emergency food ration bars. However, since these food options have varying flavors, you should consider the flavor you like so that you choose the one that suits you.