1776 Food and Drink: What did the Soldiers and Colonists Eat and Drink

1776 Food and Drink: What did the Soldiers and Colonists Eat and Drink

The American Revolution was a time of great change. Not only were the colonists fighting for their independence, but they were also trying to create a new way of life. This meant that they had to come up with their food and drink options since they were not able to import what they needed from England. In this blog post, we will take a look at some of the 1776 food and drink that the soldiers and colonists enjoyed during the Revolution!

The most common food that the soldiers and colonists ate was salt pork. This was because it was cheap and easy to preserve. Salt pork could be stored for long periods without spoiling, which made it ideal for military campaigns. The downside to salt pork was that it was very fatty and often tough to chew. Another popular meat option was beef, which was usually smoked or salted to preserve it. Fresh fruits and vegetables were also available, although they were not as common as meats since they could not be preserved as easily.

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When it came to drinks, tea/coffee was a common choice but so was beer since it was readily available and had a lower alcohol content than other options like rum (hard liquors were also available).

Food and drink in the cities was a bit different from what was available in the rural areas. In the cities, there were more options since they had access to import/export goods. This meant that they could get items like sugar, spices, and tea which were not as easily available in the rural areas.

If you lived as a pioneer or on a farm during the American Revolution, your diet would have been very different from what we eat today. Most of the food would have been grown or raised on your property since there was no way to transport it long distances. This meant that your diet would consist mostly of meats, vegetables, and grains.

The average person during the American Revolution ate around 2000 calories per day, which is more than the average person eats today. This is because they were very active and had to work hard to get their food. Nowadays, we have a lot of processed and fast foods that are high in calories but low in nutrients.

Even though the food options during the American Revolution were not as varied as they are today, there were still some delicious and nutritious choices available. So, the next time you sit down for a meal, take a moment to think about what the soldiers and colonists would have eaten during the Revolution! Thank you for reading. I hope you

Frequently Asked Questions

When did coffee replace tea in America?

Coffee began to replace tea in America during the Revolutionary War. This was because the colonists were boycotting English tea and coffee was seen as a more patriotic drink. Coffee quickly became popular among the soldiers and colonists, and it has remained a staple in American culture ever since!

What was in a soldier’s rations?

A soldier’s rations typically consisted of salt pork, beef, fish, flour, peas, beans, and rice. These items were chosen because they were nonperishable and could be easily transported. soldiers were also given a small amount of money to buy other food items if they desired.

Did the soldiers have to cook their own food?

Yes, the soldiers were responsible for cooking their own food. This was often done over an open fire, and meals were typically simple since there were no refrigerators or ovens available. Soldiers usually had to eat whatever they could find, which was not always the most nutritious option.

Were the soldiers provided a ration of beer?

Yes, the soldiers were provided with a daily ration of beer. This was because it was seen as a necessary part of their diet and it helped them stay hydrated in the hot summer months. They may have also received cider and molasses for beer as a substitute.

Did the soldiers make their own beer?

Yes, many of the soldiers made their own beer. This was often done in small batches since it was easier to transport and store. The soldiers would also add extra spices and flavorings to their beer to make it more palatable.

What did George Washington think about beer?

George Washington was a big fan of beer, and he even had his own recipe for it! He believed that beer was an important part of a soldier’s diet and that it could help them stay healthy and hydrated. He also thought that beer was a good way to bond with other soldiers and build camaraderie.

Thomas Jefferson was also a big fan of beer and is quoted as saying, “Beer, if drunk in moderation, softens the temper, cheers the spirit, and promotes health.”

Was there a drinking age in the 1700s?

There was no legal drinking age in the 1700s, which means that people of all ages could drink alcohol, at least until the mid-1800s.

Recipes for beer during the revolution:

Beer Recipe One:


-One pound of light brown sugar

-One pound of molasses

-One ounce of hops



-Boil the sugar, molasses, and hops in two gallons of water for one hour.

-Cool the mixture and add the yeast.

-Let the beer ferment for two weeks and then bottle it.


This recipe is for a small batch of beer, so feel free to double or triple the ingredients if you want to make more!

Beer Recipe Two:



-Barley malt or wheat

-Hops or other bittering agents

-Yeast or fermentation starter


-Boil the water and barley malt or wheat in a large pot.

-Add the hops or other bittering agents.

-Cool the mixture and add yeast or fermentation starter.

-ferment for two weeks or longer.


This recipe is for a larger batch of beer, so it will yield more bottles. You can also adjust the amount of malt or wheat to change the flavor of the beer.

Alcohol Disclosure: This blog post is for educational purposes only and does not condone underage drinking. Please drink responsibly.

*** What did colonial women cook with?

Colonial women typically cooked with whatever they could find, which was often just whatever was in season. They would also preserve food for the winter by pickling, smoking, or drying it.

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