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German Rations in World War II

 

Rations for the German military were scientifically designed to provide high-calorie protein-rich rations that would carry a foot soldier through an arduous day. In addition there were several coffee and confection options to provide an energy boost when needed. The basic building block of the daily ration was the well-known "Halbieserne Portion" or "Iron Ration," which was carried by every German soldier. The ration contained one 300 gram tin of meat, and one 125 or 150 gram unit of hard bread.

The meat ration was one of a variety of different canned meats including Schmalzfleisch (a pork product), Rinderbraten (roast beef), Truthahnbraten (turkey), Hahnchenfleisch (chicken) or the all encompassing Fleischkonserve - a label that assured the Soldat only that the contents were "canned meat."

 The bread unit could contain any of the following bread types:

 Knackebrot - a hard, crisp whole wheat cracker-like product bundled into a packet weighing 150 grams, sealed in an air-tight cello wrapper and outer-wrapped in a paper bag, with a proper period label from one of the various German manufacturers.

Hartzweiback - a hard biscuit more like bread than crackers, sealed in an air-tight cello wrapper and outer-wrapped in a paper bag with the proper period label from one of the various German manufacturers.

Hartkeks - a hard biscuit/cracker sealed in a cello brick with an overwrap of  tan paper. Depending upon the vagaries of the supply chain, Hartkeks could be round, square, or rectangular in shape.

A bread unit and a meat unit were paired in a paper sack and labeled with the contents and the makers name. This was the "Iron Ration," the foundation of German field rations.

Our reproduction meat rations consist of beef, corned beef, turkey, or chicken. We offer your choice of bread type, combined with a meat ration that is sometimes accurately labeled and sometimes simply labeled "Fleischkonserve" just as experienced by the German military in WW II.  Never fear, no horse meat (or worse) and no pork products (canned pork is virtually unobtainable here due to the war).

All of our items are fresh from the grocer's shelf, with authentically reproduced period labels. You can carry them, display them, and certainly eat them.

 

 

Iron Ration with Knackebrot

 

This is a modern reproduction of the Wehrmacht's "Iron Ration," the basic meal unit carried by every German soldier in peacetime and war. The packet contains one 300 gram tin of meat and one 150 gram unit of Knackebrot.

Please note – the photograph with this offering shows two rations. You are buying the one on the left in the sealed brown bag, which contains the two items shown on the right. You will receive one tin of meat and one unit of Knackebrot. 

PRICE: $10.95

 

Iron Ration with Hartkeks

 

This is a modern reproduction of the Wehrmacht's "Iron Ration," the basic meal unit carried by every German soldier in peacetime and war. The packet contains one 300 gram tin of meat and one 150 gram unit of Hartkeks.

Please note – the photograph with this auction shows two rations. You are buying the one on the left in the sealed brown bag, which contains the two items shown on the right. You will receive one tin of meat and one unit of Hartkeks. 

PRICE: $10.95

 

Iron Ration with Hartzweiback

 

This is a modern reproduction of the Wehrmacht's "Iron Ration," the basic meal unit carried by every German soldier in peacetime and war. The packet contains one 300 gram tin of meat and one 125 gram unit of Hartzweiback.

Please note – the photograph with this auction shows two rations. You are buying the one on the left in the sealed brown bag, which contains the two items shown on the right. You will receive one tin of meat and one unit of Hartzweiback. 

PRICE: $10.95

 

Not Available

 

Erbswurst and Hartkeks with Coffee and Chocolate

Here you have the makings of a hearty lunch in the field. In this grouping you will get:

1 Compressed Soup Ration - “Erbswurst”. This has been the German Army’s portable food since the 19th century, and is a very portable and highly nourishing “Iron Ration” type food. We have these shipped over from Germany, factory fresh and made by the war time manufacturer. Each ration (1 roll) contains 6 individual pellets of compressed Split Pea Soup (quite tasty!!!), each of which, when prepared by crushing into ¼ Liter (½) pint of boiling water and letting sit for a minute, makes a full soup ration for one man. Thus, this rare commodity will make 6 individual rations for one man (Many Landser’s stored leftover pellets in their mess kit or butter dish). This alone will make your impression—Also an easy way to feed your Gruppe in the field by cooking up 3 pints of soup in a mess kit and supplementing with Hartkek.

I packet of Hartkeks – a 125 gram package of crispy cracker-like hardbread that is perfect for crumbling into the Erbswurst.

1 packet of Bohnenkaffee – this is the real thing; a 20 gram packet of ground coffee ready to be brewed and consumed with your meal, or afterward while leaning back for a moment.

I packet of Schokolade, a paper-wrapped chunk of about 50 grams, broken off from a much larger piece of dark chocolate, just as in the war.

Please note – we have included two packets of Erbswurst in the accompanying photo, so that you can see the two different packages – green or yellow stripe. You will receive one roll of Erbswurst with this ration – yellow or green as they come from the box.

We will automatically combine multiple orders, minimizing your shipping costs.

More Historical Information about Erbswurst

 

 

 

TEMPORARILY UNAVAILABLE - SORRY

 

PRICE: $12.95

German WW II Supplemental Rations with Milchkaffee

 

Here are the supplemental rations that will transform your Halbeiserne Portion into an authentic frontline feast! Included are:

One can of Kondessuppe "Tomate." This was one of the standard items issued by the Wehrmacht when group feeding from the Goulashkanone (Field Kitchen) was not possible. Many Landsers learned that a can of this soup, mixed with a half-can of water and a half-can of tinned milk, made a tasty and filling addition to the Iron Ration.

One can of milk in the proper “Glucksklee” brand label. This condensed milk can be mixed with water to make 2/3 liter of whole milk, but it was more commonly used to mix with condensed tomato soup and water (above), to make a hearty and filling soup.

One packet of Milchkaffee. Every military force has its favorite hot drink: tea for the Brits and Russians, coffee for the Americans and the Germans. These drinks served as both a stimulant, and as a way to relax for a moment during an otherwise hectic and sometimes perilous existence. Milchkaffee was popular with all branches of the German military. The packet contains two cello-wrapped servings of soluble (instant) coffee and milk powder. The packet is accurately marked with manufacturer's markings and WVHA control information. Mix one serving with 12ounces of hot water, and sugar to taste.

These can all be heated on your Esbit field cooker (not included with this offering).

When combined with your Iron Ration, you will have a meal of bread, meat, soup, and Milchkaffee. Ahhh!

 

   

German WW II Supplemental Rations with Bohnenkaffee

 

Here is another combination of supplemental rations that will transform your Halbeiserne Portion into a veritable frontline feast! Included are:

One can of Kondessuppe "Tomate" as described above. 

One can of milk in the proper “Glucksklee” brand label. See above.

One packet of Bohnenkaffee (ground coffee). These were issued in Front Fighter packages and as part of marching rations when available. The packet brews about a half-liter of coffee, but soldiers would more often pool their supply and brew a mess tin of coffee.

If you crave black coffee untarnished by milk or sugar, this is the supplemental ration for you.

PRICE: $12.50

 

German WW II Bonus Rations

 

Zusatzverpflegung fur Frontkampfer - Supplemental rations for Frontline Soldiers. These were given out after an action or following the completion of an arduous duty such as a patrol. The pink bag contains individually-wrapped pieces of fruit candy. The intent was to restore the soldier's energy levels with a boost in calories.

A valid reward for any Landser, and priced so that a supply can be purchased for an entire squad. NOTE: While the accompanying photograph shows two bags, this sale is for one bag only. To get additional bags, order multiple units. Sorry, the firepower is not for sale - it is shown for perspective only.

PRICE: $3.95

 

German WW II Ration - Kandiezucter

 

Sweets played an important role in the German military's ration plan. They helped finish off an otherwise bland meal, provided a burst of energy, and offered a taste of home and better times.

Kandiezucter is a Rock Candy that was issued as a sugar ration. It is sealed in an airtight cello-type bag inside the Wehrmacht packet.

NOTE: Two packets are shown in the accompanying picture, to present the front and back of the packaging. You are buying one packet.

PRICE: $2.95

 

German WW 2 Zitronendrops for Heer or HWH

This lemon-flavored hard candy was packed in the Heer or Winter Hilfs Werk (WHW) tan, 20 gram packet. The candies inside are sealed in an airtight cello-like pouch.

There were provided as additional rations to units in front areas, to troops exposed to severe weather conditions, or as an incentive or reward to Landsers. They were also handed out at aid stations to wounded troops.

The candies are fresh from the grocer and ready to eat, and the reproduction square packet is marked with manufacturer's markings reflecting an assortment of German candy makers.

PRICE: $2.95

 

German WW II Wehrmacht Bohnenkaffee

Each packet contains a sealed cello-like bag of ground coffee in the tan Wehrmacht packaging, and will brew about a half-liter of coffee. While they can be used individually, soldiers would more often pool their supply and brew up a mess tin of coffee. 

NOTE: While the accompanying photo shows two packets (to show front and back), this pricing is for one packet.

PRICE: $3.50

 

 

  German WW II Vivil Mint Tablets

This is the original German Vivil mint, as issued in Army ration packs, and both Luftwaffe in-flight and survival rations. They were also sold to Landsers in rear-echelon canteen shops, such as the 'Mannschafts/Offiziers Kasino' and 'Truppenheim'. Each roll is the original mint, directly from Germany, with a WWII period wrapper. These were available alongside 'Hiller's Pfefferminze', 'King-Hollandischer Pfefferminz' und 'Pfeil Pfefferminzpastillen'. Due to their milder nature than the 'Hillers' and 'Pfeil', these were generally preferred to cover up a 'Fahne' ('Flag'-Landser slang for Liquor breath).
Don't make your Kameraden choke on your morning breath in the Bunker-Keep some Vivil on hand to really make your impression complete!!!

 These mints were imported directly from Germany and then we added the reproduction WW2 label.

Sorry, neither the P-38 nor the dummy grenade is available for sale – window dressing only.

 

PRICE: $3.95

 

 

 

German WW II Linde Ersatz Kaffee

Each box contains a packet of the unique Chicory coffee, popular on all fronts. This is the stuff that gives real Wehrmacht breadbags that burnt coffee smell.  

NOTE: While the accompanying photo shows two packets (to show front and back), this pricing is for one packet.

PRICE: $3.95

 

German WW II Wehrmacht Milchkaffee

 

Milchkaffee was popular with all branches of the German military. Each packet contains two cello-wrapped servings of soluble (instant) coffee and milk powder. Packets are accurately marked with manufacturer's markings and WVHA control information. Mix one serving with 12 ounces of hot water, and sugar to taste.

NOTE: Although two packets are shown in the accompanying photo, this pricing is for one packet. 

PRICE: 4.95

 

German WW II Whermacht Rinderbraten

Popular in all branches, these tins were one of the components of the Iron Ration, as well as distributed by themselves. The tin contains a high quality beef-with-gravy product much like the original Rinderbraten, and carries the appropriate manufacturer's markings. Heat this up with your Field Cooker, add some bread and coffee, and you have a satisfying, nourishing meal.

NOTE: Two tins are pictured here, however the pricing is for one tin.

PRICE: $6.95

 

German WW II Chicken Fleischkonserve (Hahnchenfleisch)

There was some variety in the German Iron Ration, and this proves it. This is a can of chicken meat (Hahnchenfleisch) in broth that was one of the various types of meat provided in the ration. This 300 gram can is ready to add to your kit, giving you a tasty option during a weekend of maneuvers.

 

PRICE: $6.95

 

German WW II Eintopf (Canned Beef Stew)

 

Tired of the same old Iron Ration day after day? Here is the making of a hearty and different meal, not often available but totally authentic.  Not only will you be the envy of the other Landsers in your mess, but you will dine on a energy-rich meal that will prepare you for another busy day in the trenches. The foundation of your meal is this large tin of beef stew. Weighing in at 425 grams it has an  accurately reproduced “Nur Fur den Wehrmachtsgenbrauch” label.

Add some hard bread and milchkaffee (both available here in our store) and you have the makings of a great meal!

PRICE: $6.95

 
 

German WW II Kondenssuppe Tomate Ration

Veteran Landsers mixed a can of this soup with a half-can of water and a half-can of tinned milk, making a tasty and filling addition to the Iron Ration. This is one of the tastiest no-fail rations in the German inventory. Tomato soup can be easily heated on your Esbit field cooker for a fast, nutritious supplement to the iron ration.

 

PRICE: $4.95

 
 

German WW II Glucksklee Evaporated Milk Ration

Condensed milk has been around since the 1860's, and has always been a popular field ration with soldiers around the world.

This condensed milk can be mixed with water to make 2/3 liter of whole milk, however it was most commonly used to mix with condensed tomato soup, or to make "Milchkaffee." The colorful label is authentic to the period and the contents will work well with soup, coffee, or when mixed with water, to make milk. Many times it was simply drunk straight from the can.

 

PRICE: $4.95

 
 

WW II German Wehrmacht Knackebrot

 

German hard breads were part of a scientifically-designed high-calorie, high-protein ration intended to carry a foot soldier through an arduous day. You can supplement your Iron Ration with one or more of these reproduction packets of Knackebrot - a hard, crisp bread weighing 150 grams, sealed in an air-tight cello wrapper and outer-wrapped in a bag, with a proper period label from one of the various German manufacturers.

PRICE: $4.95

 
 

WW II German Wehrmacht Hartkeks

 

You can supplement your Iron Ration with one or more of these reproduction packets of Hartkeks - hard, crisp biscuit/crackers, sealed in an air-tight cello wrapper and outer-wrapped in heavy paper, with a proper period label.

Depending upon availability, Hartkeks came in three shapes - round, square, and rectangular. We currently stock the round (top at left) and the rectangular (bottom), and what you get depends upon what we grab - just like WW II.

While we don't know about the relative popularity of hard breads among the German military during the war, Hartkeks tend to be the most popular with our customers (if only the Wehrmacht had provided peanut butter!).

PRICE: $4.95

 
 

WW II German Wehrmacht Hartzweiback

 

 The third option in the Iron Ration, Hartzweiback is a hard, thick biscuit more like toasted bread than crackers, sealed in an air-tight cello wrapper and outer-wrapped in a bag with the proper period label from one of the various German manufacturers.

 

PRICE: $4.95

     
     

German WW II Mess Kit

 

PLEASE NOTE: We've sold out of these and so far have not been able to locate a new supply. We're looking, and looking hard.

 

Here is a mess kit that is a close replica of the Wehrmacht Mess Kit, at an affordable price, and we have a good supply of them. These kits were manufactured to the pattern of the  mess kits issued to the Wehrmacht during the war, however their dimensions are slightly different and they don't have a couple of the external gizmos of the originals. In addition, a cup was inserted just below the lid (see below, left and center). Keep the cup for carrying more food, or throw it away for greater authenticity.

 

Now there is no reason to gunk up your relic WW-2 mess kit (which costs a lot more than this one) when you can cook and eat from a near replica substitute. Save your historic kit for inspections and display.

 

The kit will sit comfortably atop the folding field stove. It's shiny new inside, and the handle which secures the top to the base has the cleats for holding the strap in place (strap not included). It just doesn't get any better!

 

The three components of the mess kit, from left to right, the Lid, the Body, and the Cup. The Cup is a new innovation since the war and could be discarded for complete authenticity, but it could prove useful.

Here the Cup is in place, creating two storage places in the mess kit - until meal time. Cigars, matches, even letters from home can be carried here, safe from the weather.

A view from the back. These kits varied slightly from maker to maker, and the size of the strap holding it all together varied as well (the Germans seemed to love creating production problems).  We're hunting for a strap supply now, and will make them available if and when we find one.

SOLD OUT

SORRY LADS. WE'RE LOOKING FOR MORE!

 

     
     
     

Folding Field Stove with fuel

AVAILABLE AGAIN!

This is the same model folding stove carried by soldaten throughout the war. There were at least two different brands, using the identical molds.  Of course the  "Esbit" is the best known brand and we have these again.  These are of post-war (West Germany) manufacture but otherwise identical. They have German markings, have had some field use, and come with no box or fuel tablets.

This is an amazingly versatile stove - probably the best design of WW2. When folded up it easily fits in a shirt pocket. When unfolded it can be used with fuel tablets, with captured American trioxane tabs, or with paper and wood scraps. It's solid and stable, and belongs in every kit. (Yanks and Brits liked them too.)

Sorry, the bayonet, grenade and mess kit pot are for scale only and don't come with the stove.

 

   

PRICE: $10.95

 

About the size of a four pack of cigars, the stove will pack in any pocket or small place in your kit. This batch has had light use of the burner but is still solid and ready to use. Don't embarrass yourself by pulling out a shiny new stove.

 
     

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