Space Food, Tofu in Hot Mustard Sauce

Display Status:

This object is on display in the Moving Beyond Earth exhibition at the National Air and Space Museum in Washington, DC.

Collection Item Summary:

This tofu entrée was typical of crews’ menu choices during the later Space Shuttle period. As Shuttle and Space Station crews became more diverse and international, NASA introduced vegetarian, vegan, and other food options. Before each mission, the astronauts selected their meals from a list of hundreds of food items. As there was no onboard refrigerator or freezer, most foods stocked on the Shuttle were processed for storage at room temperature. Single servings were packaged in disposable plastic containers, pop-top cans, or foil pouches, and foods were eaten directly from these containers. Opaque packages like this held pre-cooked food ready to eat after warming unopened in the galley oven. NASA transferred a variety of spare food items to the Museum during the Shuttle and International Space Station era.