Normal D&D groups mostly ignore your food needs. You write down rations in your inventory and then forget to ever eat them.
For an exploration campaign it might be fun to up the ‘Oregon Trail’ vibe and actually track your provisions a little more carefully. So I have come up with some additional food items you can purchase. I also have some secret tables by terrain that will tell me how well the party’s foraging efforts do.
We will probably only track this for the first few levels at most, when your characters are still mastering exploration.
|Normal Food||4 sp /day||2 lbs||Normal food items like bread, roasted chicken, and such. Will spoil after 5 days|
|Preserved Food||1 gp /day||4 lbs||Preserved food (canned, tinned, salted, smoked, etc) that is ready to eat without cooking. Like jam, pickles, sardines, etc. Bulkier but tastier than rations.|
|Rations||5 sp /day||2 lbs||Dry foods suitable for extended travel with minimal packaging. Jerky, dried fruits, hardtack, and nuts. Very difficult to spoil. From PHB|
|Preserved Ingredients||2 sp /day||2 lbs||Ingredients that will last that can be made into meals with Cooks’ utensils. Flour, butter, spices, salt, sugar, pasta, potatoes, and such.|
|Normal Ingredients||3 sp /day||2 lbs||Ingredients that will spoil after 5 days. Can be made into meals with Cooks’ utensils. Meat, tomatoes, fruit, and such.
Foraging will most often yield this.
|Preservatives||1 cp /day||1/10 lb||Salt and spices that can be used to preserve foraged meat and other normal ingredients with Cooking utensils and 8 hours of work.|
Example. The group of seven characters is travelling thru forest. They are foraging as they go, and roll a d12 to determine what they find. The party rolls a 1, and the DM informs them that they found “slugs and edible insects”. The party decides to make pancakes when they camp that evening instead, subtracting seven days worth of normal ingredients for the seven of them to eat that day.
Note the prices here are a bit cheaper than the PHB gives for eating in inns or towns. Fancy inns have markups compared to just buying stuff at the market yourself.