I like the backpack meals but find them a bit to expensive and not as flexible as making our own. Lately prefer cold meals to save on weight and odors with cooking. Flat bread PBJ or PBJ a wrap works well. Nuts also pack the calories. Flat bread sandwich with meat isn't bad either. Just prefer the flat or wrap breads since the sandwich can be jammed into a pack with aggression and come out looking similar to how the sandwich looked when packed. I try to use the zipper lock freezer (thicker) bags to carry the sandwich.
Another good cold meal is cerial with or without powdered milk. Doesn't taste too bad, but definitely tastes better when you're hungry. Many cerials can be quite dense (EX raisin bran), but pack in the sugars which may or may not be desirable.
For hot meals I do like the cous cous as well, olive oil for a bit more flavor and calories. Angel hair pasta is ok, the fine angel hair pasta cooks a bit faster (some whole wheat are slower to cook). Also I find some of the cajun and other box meals are ok, but the scents can be strong, with these box meals (as mentioned previously) the salt content can be a bit high. Craft used to have a series of bagged type meals which are ok and much cheaper than the back packer meals. Though most of these options may require more fuel than the back packer meals.
I don't do much with hot meals anymore while hunting, but usually carry something with a light stove just in case when Elk hunting.
you dont needa use pre made "hunting food" or whatever its called.
we dont have that stuff here in NZ and most guys back pack hunt for 5days minimum. some guys go on month long trips with no supply.
The sad truth to it is RICE haha. lots a rice.
also good is instant mash potatoe with powdered cheese. try and get some dried meat/jerkey. Its light and has good energy and fat.
cheese is good but heavy.
for breakfast make up muslie(or cereal of your choice) with milk powder/protein shake mixed into it. that way you just add water and its ready to eat. takes like 2mins.
instant noodles are OK. they are cheap and light but dont fill you up much.
you dont need to buy expensive fancy pre packed foods.
just use a bit of common sense.
what I like to do is buy a whole heap of stuff you think might be ok and eat it at home before you go on a week long trip and find out you dont like chiken noodles you actually like beef.