The Path Less Traveled #051 – True Primal Soup Review

The Path Less Traveled #051 – True Primal Soup Review

I was contacted recently to see if I’d review a few products, one of them being True Primal’s soup variety pack. True Primal promotes their foods as wholesome, paleo friendly convenient soup pouches that can be eaten at home, the office or on the trail. With my family coming from Portugal, I feel like I’ve eaten more soups and stews than the average person.

Was I up to the challenge to try their grain free, gluten free foods? Are True Primal’s premium meat and veggies up to the task of my critical food preferences?

Read and see!

Welcome to our recurring series of “The Path Less Traveled.” In this series, we want to take you along for our exploits out in the wilderness while hiking, camping, exploring, and general adventuring. This will include our small daily victories, foibles, tips, tricks, and reviews of gear we authentically appreciate and frequently utilize. While a well-worn trail can often be the pathway to a leisurely day, the paths less traveled can often spur on some of the greatest memories, misadventures, and fun we could imagine. Join us in the Comments as we share our travels and hopefully, we can all come together for a greater appreciation of the outdoors.

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Company Info – True Primal

True Primal is a Paleo Friendly, all natural soup and stew company directed by John Wilkinson in Austin, Texas. The business has been in the Texas area since 2013, and seems to have picked up steam around 2016, as noted by their various social media posts.

no hormones or antibiotics paleofood canned chili Illinois Prairie Corn Chowder refrigeration flavor ingredients meat
Original Image Source: True Primal’s Twitter Account. – Look at this OG can!

The company’s main focus is to make primal diet foods that are convenient and nutrient dense.

Primal is used as a term to emphasize a way of living that is fundamental or ancestral. Focusing on exercise, stress-reduction and nutrition to reach optimal health is the key goal.


Soups and stews that True Primal makes are devoid of additives and highly processed ingredients. They link to the Whole30 food movement as a good example of how they believe nutrition should work.

When eating their foods, you can be assured their foods are devoid of the following:

  • Gluten
  • Wheat
  • Corn syrup
  • Added sugar
  • Preservatives
  • Grains
  • Corn
  • Oats
  • rice
  • Artificial flavors
  • Artificial colors
  • Added MSG
  • Yeast or yeast extract
  • Soy or soybean oil
  • Canola oil
  • Hydrolyzed vegetable protein
  • Cellulose gum/gel/powder
  • Maltodextrin
  • Hormones/antibiotics
  • Pulses (dry beans)
  • Milk (dairy-free)

With their emphasis on wholesome, natural, minimally processed foods, True Primal only uses pastured and free range meats, broths; organic when possible.

Cattle are free-range, grass-fed without antibiotics or growth stimulants.

pastured grass fed cattle no pulses paleodiet grass fed open range NOT YOUR GRANDPARENTS CAMP FOOD

Chickens are pastured by moving chicken tents daily to allow the birds to pick and peck at the bugs and grass they roam around on. While there is a tent around them, they still roam and graze in constantly fresh locations.

pastured chicken with tractor no beans free paleo grass no feedlots chunks of meat Florida Sunshine Red Pepper Corn Chowder

Lastly, True Primal adheres to a form of primal, paleo diet called AIP. Autoimmune Protocol paleo diets remove the foods that have a chance of causing problems, even with smaller groups of people who may still have reactions to things that an individual only allergic to gluten may experience. Think of it like them tending to Vegeta from Dragon Ball Z, but only gluten intolerant and his allergies get worse when going Super Saiyan.

Soups can be purchased at some local stores in Texas, but also at the following sites:

Product Info – True Primal Soup Reviews

There were seven soups sent to me by True Primal. Now, don’t get me wrong – I enjoy a good broth, but decided to let a few members of our Alloutdoor Discord (I’m telling y’all, this is where you get the scoop on the best deals and info before it hits the printing press blog.) try them out too.

no preservatives pastured poultry grass fed beef gluten free paleo Tuscan chicken with Wild Rice ever tasted cauliflower rice really good canned soup
Image Contributed by Discord Member Paulwuzhere

with grass-fed beef, mushroom, carrot, onion, & chicken bone broth. Gluten-Free, Paleo, Grass-Fed Beef, AIP

(Review by Discord Member Paulwuzhere)

Appearance: True Primal’s use of all natural ingredients shows immediately. There are no signs of any off-putting colors or preservatives. Large pieces of beef, mushrooms, carrots, and onions immediately give the feeling that this is a hearty meal. If it were in any other container, you would swear it was a homemade soup. 3.5/4

Taste: Initial flavor is a well-balanced herb and garlic broth. First bite or two nearly felt that it needed salt, but I attribute that to canned salt heavy preprepared soups. Later in the meal I was glad that I didn’t add any. True Primal did an excellent job with their seasoning. There are no odd, sharp, or overpowering flavors that would be unappealing for most people. The beef, mushrooms, onions, and carrots all have their own flavor and do not disappear in the broth as most soups tend to. 3/4

no artificial colors paleolifestyle true primal Rocky Mountain Trail Loaded Potato auto-immune friendly wedding soup healthy soups mushroom
Image Contributed by Discord Member Paulwuzhere

Mouthfeel: Each ingredient has its own texture and does not suffer from becoming mush as a lot of prepackaged soups do. The broth is again well balanced here as well. It does not leave any unpleasant feeling or flavor between bites. The beef and mushrooms have a good texture while the carrots and onions are not overcooked. 4/4

Occasion: This meal would be a welcome addition on any backpacking, hiking, or camping trip. Even if you were not leaving for an outdoor adventure, this would be a nice easy to pack lunch for work. The packing seems durable enough to survive being in a backpack within reason. The packaging being BPA Free also removes the worry of the plastic leeching anything unwelcome to the food when exposed to higher temperatures. The gusset on the bottom of the bag is a nice touch often overlooked by similar meals. This style of meal is a great addition during fall or winter outings. This is the exact kind of meal I enjoy at camp to warm up. 4/4

Smell: Strong herb and garlic. While simmering over a fire it has the exact smell of a homemade soup. 3/4

no soy paleo meals paleo grass fed pastures antibiotics easy to make lemon chicken garlic powder fed tomato bliss premium protein
Image Contributed by Discord Member Paulwuzhere

Summary: Very surprising meal. I am often not impressed with a prepacked soup but True Primal delivers exactly as their marketing states, packed with all-natural ingredients and a very nice flavor that won’t dissuade most people. Preparing it couldn’t be easier, tear pouch, pour into pot and heat. I am impressed and will be adding some of their offerings to future camping and off-roading trips.

Overall: 17.5/20 🐄🍄🍲🧅

travel friendly Food Box HQ free-range artificial growth stimulants Washington High Plains Potato Leek
Image Contributed by Eugene L

with grass-fed beef, tomato, green bean, carrot & onion. Gluten-Free, Paleo, Grass-Fed Beef

(Review by by Discord Member MrFish a.k.a. Eugene L)

Appearance: It’s soup nice pouch though.  3/4

Taste: Surprisingly bland and tart for how much salt it has. I don’t know, I feel like it’s oddly tart. 2/4

Mouthfeel: Very good texture for packaged soup beef and veg are all identifiable and have good bite. 4/4

Occasion:  Road-trips, light/car camping, work food. Its a good light summer veggie soup. 3/4

microwave friendly gluten free paleo grass-fed SUPPAS Southern Frontier Soups Creamy
Image Contributed by Eugene L

Smell: Good rich smell as soon as the pouch is opened. 4/4

Summary: Very good soup for being from a pouch, good quality ingredients, a bit heavy at 454g for the 300 calories. Also needed salt but also it contains 38% daily recommended salt already.

It’s good soup just I expected more flavor

Overall: 16/20 🐄🍅🍲🥕

with organic grass-fed beef and organic potatoes in grass-fed beef broth. Gluten-Free, Paleo, Grass-Fed Beef

(Review by Discord Member Mabs)

Appearance: Not very appealing straight out of bag but after heating in pan it looks like a standard soup with nice assortment of herbs and vegetables scattered about.

Taste: Pretty good, can believe it has natural ingredients over all the artificial stuff other soups use.

Mouthfeel: Feels like soup. Beef and vegetables both had decent, distinct texture.

Occasion: No idea. This is something I’d personally keep in a cabinet for days I don’t want to cook or order delivery.

Smell: Smelled pretty amazing to be honest.

Summary: Good soup, easy to make, and didn’t trigger my celiac disease. If the price is right and the labels are accurate about the ingredients I’d probably buy this on my own.

(I was going to take pics but my kitchen is sad and also I accidentally boiled it for like 3 minutes while my roommate talked to me so not sure if it’s supposed to look how it turned out. still tasted good.)

with carrot, onion, celery & chicken bone broth. Gluten-Free, Paleo, Pastured Chicken, AIP

Appearance: Looks good

Taste: Great

Mouthfeel: Great

Occasion: For lunch with brother!

Smell: Great

Summary: This soup is great!

So, the review of this flavor is kind of light as I sent it off with a friend’s kid who goes on weekend trips with his grandparents in their Airstream every weekend. My buddy said it was difficult to get any adjectives out of the kid other than great or good as he was too focused on playing with his brother.

soup true primal delicious made all the good things stew Healthy Broth Pacific Foods Hearty wolfgang puck chicken noodle soup

with potato, onion, carrot, spinach & chicken bone broth. Gluten-Free, Paleo, Pastured Chicken

Appearance: The broth had a hazy, fatty layer to it that did not disappear, even after reaching a boil. Carrots were vibrant orange, spinach was as bright as cooked spinach could be! 3.5/4

chaos formula true primal discount code true primal grassfed backpacking trip protein sodium

Taste: Despite having 1030mg of sodium per pouch, the fatty nature of the bone broth and beef gelatin seemed to have prevented me from tasting as much of the flavor as I was hoping. 2/4

where to buy true primal soup review true primal organic backpacking meals Ready to eat free range

Mouthfeel: Potatoes had a bit of bite, chicken was formed into miniature meatballs and were the right size for chewing. Carrots were soft, but held together. Well cooked, and each ingredient seemed well prepared. Once again, while only having 8g of fat, the way the gelatin and fat in the broth coat everything was something I’ve never had with a canned soup or roast/soup I’ve ever made at home; it even coated the spoon after each bite. 2.5/4

roasted chicken soup true primal shelf life true primal freeze dried mountain house picante

Occasion: I took this soup out with me for review on a short hike while I was still recovering from injuries and completing physical therapy. It was an ideal lunch after a 6km hike (4 miles) before turning back. Nothing in the soup was scorched in the pan, even with the fire turned all the way up. at 454g, I do not believe this would be in my multi-day backpacking bag, but for an overnight, hike, or left in the trunk for an unexpected food delay, this could temporarily satisfy a hungry stomach or two. 3/4

trueprimal true primal beel chili beef vegetable true primal paleo Stagg Silverado Chili

Smell: While the chicken and mirepoix aromas came through, I was unable to sense the garlic, basil or thyme enough to make note of them. 3/4

Summary: I feel this soup has potential. the solid ingredients were all enjoyable, but the gloppy mouthfeel of the broth did nothing for me. I think this soup would do well with a touch of an acid to cut through the fats and allow my mouth to experience more than a coating of broth. Taking a packet of tabasco or taco bell sauce (mild or hot – meant solely for the vinegar) is something I tried with another soup and it solved the problem.

Overall: 14/20 🐔🍲🥕

paleo meals true primal Climate Pledge Friendly glutenfreefood Wild Zora Instant Keto

with grass-fed beef, spinach, onion, cauliflower & chicken bone broth. Gluten-Free, Paleo, Grass-Fed Beef

Appearance: The copious amount of paprika tricked me into thinking this soup had tomato in it while heating it up. beef, spinach and cauliflower bits were all enjoyable to chew on. Soup appeared a little thin, but once heated, you can tell this is a hearty soup that could cost an arm and a leg if anything else was added. 4/4

Taste: with 1140mg of sodium, I still wanted to add salt to have what I perceived as a bland flavor. Once again, I think the fats and gelatin were coating my taste buds and preventing all true flavors from reaching as many of the taste buds as they should. I ended up sticking two packets of Texas Pete hot sauce in the entire bowl of soup to cut the fats. Immediately, flavors started appearing. Garlic moved from being the page turner to the drummer in the film Whiplash (NSFW language in link). I’m not sure if anyone is allergic to something to add some pizazz to this soup, but man…. acetic acid solved it for me. 2/4

Mouthfeel: The fatty nature of this broth was not as apparent as the Tuscan Style Chicken, but the gelatin still was visible on the spoon. All the ingredients were good and while i had the highest hopes for this soup, I was not let down. 3.5/4

USDA Organic only the good stuff paleo friendly glutenfree Low Carb bone broth

Occasion: This is a work-lunch, glamping, or at home meal. I do not believe this would be in my multi-day backpacking bag, but for an overnight, hike, or left in the trunk for an unexpected food delay, this could temporarily satisfy a hungry stomach or two. 3/4

Smell: Nothing noteworthy, I think 5% more spices could really touch this soup up. 3.5/4

Summary: As stated in mouthfeel, I really wanted this soup to be great. Despite the premium ingredients, packaging, and price, it was a lackluster meal when heated up and eaten. When tweaked with a few things, this soup has the potential to beat the soups at that place that does unlimited soup and salad where all the white girls love to brag about going… and taking a handful of Andes mints on the way out the door.

Overall: 16/20 🐄🧅🐔🥬

premium protein justeatrealfood whole30food soup pouch MINIMALLY PROCESSED NATURAL FOOD

with grass-fed beef, tomato, onion, and a little chili pepper. Gluten-Free, Paleo, Grass-Fed Beef

Appearance: I think James Reeves would talk shit on this chili for not having beans. Do Texas Chilis not have beans, or is it the Whole30 philosophy? I was able to recognize all the ingredients when opening this package and heating it up.  4/4

gluten free realfood whole30 primal pastureraised grass fed LOW CALORIE SNACK

Taste: Something went wrong here. There’s an overwhelming tanginess to this that I’ve never experienced before. Do you know how a dented can is able to impart a metallic taste to canned meat? That tangy astringent feeling of undercooked tomato sauce permeated the beef and was unable to get away from. I ended up adding nearly a teaspoon of sugar to cut the acidity, but the beef was already soaked in it and had an odd tangy metallic taste to each morsel’s core. But holy shit, 36 grams of protein! That’s something to call home about, no? There’s a ton of beef in this meal! 0/4

Mouthfeel: The beef has been ground a little too fine for my tastes and began having a grainy texture. If you think of this as a soup, rather than what you think of as a chili, I think you’d be okay. Makes me think of the Pace Picante commercials! 2.5/4

Occasion: With the amount of protein in this, I could see someone using it as a post-workout meal if still trying to avoid carbs. The pound of food relegates this to glamping, RV’ing, home eating or bring with you on a day-trip where you’ll have access to a stove (or microwave). 3/4

Smell: Aromas of beef, tomato, alliums, and cumin were present. Enjoyable, especially when taking it off the stove while still stirring. Made me hungry! 4/4

convenient heat eat whole30meals primaldiet organic soup INSTANT GLUTEN FREE

Summary: This soup has so much potential. But we know what they say about potential, it is just wasted energy. Everything about this soup was great other than flavor and the ground beef being too ground. Good enough, even with those faults, it ranked just 0.4 lower than the Tuscan Style Chicken. While a paleo diet doesn’t permit added sugars, this chili needed it to mellow out the tangy taste. I bet a dollop of sour cream would have made this enjoyable, and I don’t even like sour cream. Despite the score, I cannot recommend the Beef Chili at this time.

If I try another in the future that changes my mind, I will amend these scores and make an update post. 

Overall: 13.5/20 🐄🍅🧅🌶


Beef & Mushroom Organic Soup

Organic Chicken Bone Broth, Organic Onion, Organic Mushroom, Organic Chopped Beef (Organic Beef, Water, Salt), Organic Carrot, Organic Cauliflower, Beef Gelatin, Organic Onion Powder, Sea Salt, Organic Garlic, Organic Celery, Organic Thyme, Organic Dill Weed, Organic Parsley.

Calories Total Fat (g) Sat. Fat (g) Trans Fat (g) Cholesterol (mg) Sodium (mg) Total Carbs (g) Fiber (g) Sugars (g) Protein (g)
310 14 6 0 50 900 17 5 8 31

Beef & Potato Soup

Grass-Fed Beef Bone Broth, Organic Potato, Organic Carrot, Organic Chopped Grass-Fed Beef, Organic Onion, Organic Dried Potato, Organic Tomato Paste (Organic Tomato, Citric Acid), Organic Onion Powder, Organic Garlic, Salt, Organic Black Pepper, Celery, Organic Parsley, Organic Chile Pepper.

Calories Total Fat (g) Sat. Fat (g) Trans Fat (g) Cholesterol (mg) Sodium (mg) Total Carbs (g) Fiber (g) Sugars (g) Protein (g)
330 12 4.5 0 45 950 38 6 6 18

Beef & Vegetable Organic Soup

Water, Organic Diced Tomato (Organic Tomato, Organic Tomato Juice, Sea Salt, Calcium Chloride, Citric Acid), Organic Chopped Grass-Fed Beef, Organic Green Bean, Organic Carrot, Organic Onion, Organic Tomato Paste (Organic Tomato, Citric Acid), Beef Gelatin, Organic Paprika, Salt, Organic Garlic, Organic Rosemary, Organic Black Pepper, Organic Cayenne Pepper.

Calories Total Fat (g) Sat. Fat (g) Trans Fat (g) Cholesterol (mg) Sodium (mg) Total Carbs (g) Fiber (g) Sugars (g) Protein (g)
300 14 6 0 50 870 16 5 9 24

Beef Chili

Grass-Fed Beef, Organic Diced Tomato (Organic Tomato, Organic Tomato Juice, Calcium Chloride, Citric Acid), Organic Onion, Organic Tomato Paste (Organic Tomato, Citric Acid), Salt, Organic Paprika, Organic Onion Powder, Organic Cacao, Organic Garlic, Organic Celery, Organic Cumin, Organic Chile Pepper, Organic Oregano, Organic Coriander, Organic Allspice.

Calories Total Fat (g) Sat. Fat (g) Trans Fat (g) Cholesterol (mg) Sodium (mg) Total Carbs (g) Fiber (g) Sugars (g) Protein (g)
540 27 15 1.5 120 950 23 6 10 36

Roasted Chicken Soup

Organic Chicken Bone Broth, Organic Onion, Organic Carrot, Roasted Pastured Chicken (Natural Proportion Chicken With Skin, Water, Salt), Beef Gelatin, Organic Garlic, Sea Salt, Organic Onion Powder, Organic Celery, Organic Summer Savory, Organic Dill Weed, Organic Parsley, Organic Sage, Organic Oregano, Organic Rosemary, Organic Thyme.

Calories Total Fat (g) Sat. Fat (g) Trans Fat (g) Cholesterol (mg) Sodium (mg) Total Carbs (g) Fiber (g) Sugars (g) Protein (g)
240 8 2 0 65 1150 17 5 9 26

Savory Wedding Organic Soup

Organic Chicken Bone Broth, Organic Chopped Beef (Organic Beef, Water, Salt), Organic Onions, Organic Cauliflower, Organic Spinach, Beef Gelatin, Organic Garlic, Organic Onion Powder, Sea Salt, Organic Paprika, Organic Crushed Red Pepper, Organic Black Pepper.

Calories Total Fat (g) Sat. Fat (g) Trans Fat (g) Cholesterol (mg) Sodium (mg) Total Carbs (g) Fiber (g) Sugars (g) Protein (g)
290 14 6 0 50 1140 12 4 4 30

Tuscan-Style Chicken Soup

Organic Chicken Bone Broth, Organic Potato, Organic Onion, Roasted Pastured Chicken (Natural Proportion Chicken With Skin, Water, Salt), Organic Carrot, Organic Spinach, Beef Gelatin, Organic Garlic, Salt, Organic Celery, Organic Basil, Organic Thyme, Organic Parsley, Organic Onion Powder.

Calories Total Fat (g) Sat. Fat (g) Trans Fat (g) Cholesterol (mg) Sodium (mg) Total Carbs (g) Fiber (g) Sugars (g) Protein (g)
280 8 2 0 70 1030 23 4 5 28

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Andrew D

Still debating how small-town life compares to metropolitan living. Big cities do not have close green open land and roads that I have come to love for various activities. They do have more opportunities, events, modern culture, dining, and individuals who seem more interesting. Even after a decade of acclimation, I still feel displaced.

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