Best Jerky Snacks For Carnivores Reviewed

Jerky has been a loved snack for years, however, they have garnered a bad reputation over the years. They were an expensive snack choice with many negative health benefits. One of the biggest concerns people had was the amount of sodium and preservatives were contained in each package. With the improvement of technology, brands who manufacture and make jerky are finding healthier alternatives and ways to make the jerky. Slowly but surely, the jerky industry is making a coming back.

 

Featured Recommendations

People's Choiceimg
  • People's Choice
  • 4.5 out of 5
    Our rating
  • Improves Endurance
  • Thick Cut
  • Price: See Here
img
Slim Jim Snack-Sized
  • Slim Jim Snack-Sized
  • 4.1 out of 5
    Our rating
  • Convenient
  • Curbs Cravings
  • Price: See Here
img
Oberto All-Natural Originalimg
  • Oberto All-Natural Original
  • 4.2 out of 5
    Our rating
  • Easy Absorption
  • Muscle Building
  • Price: See Here
img

 

One of the greatest things about jerky is the high protein content. This works especially well for people in high-intensity sports. Protein is the energy that fuels your body and gives it the energy to make those quick and short bursts in kickboxing, boxing, and other combat sports. Each burst demands a lot of power from your body and without the proper nutrients, you will find yourself easily fatigued and not able to perform at your best. Consuming a high protein snack will give your body a large dose of nutrients without the fat.

For athletes who are currently on a ketogenic diet, jerky is one of the best forms of protein. Our body uses carbohydrates and sugars for fuel and energy whereas a ketogenic diet uses fatty acids. These dieters need a significantly higher amount of meat protein as carbohydrates and sugars are eliminated from their diet. This kicks the body into a state in which the body will burn the natural fats within the system and greatly decrease the fat content in your muscles.

Many people who are not athletic also love indulging in jerky once in a while. With the healthier creation of jerky, it can now work as a light meal replacement. There are some days where you’re so busy at work you just can’t eat. Munching on a package of jerky will help curb your hunger but will buy you a few precious hours to get your work done. The proteins in the meat are slowly released and converted into usable energy and they take a significantly longer time to burn compared to carbohydrates. While it is not ideal to only eat jerky and skip a meal, it will help get you out of a pinch.

 

 

10 Best Jerky Snacks

 

 

1. People's Choice

One of the biggest selling factors of this particular snack is that it’s made old fashion style. The jerky is crafted completely by hand, from the meat selection process to down to before it hits the package. These jerkies retain more juices and are significantly richer in comparison to ones that come off a factory line. This jerky was also made from a family recipe passed down by generations.
Expand to see more
Improves Endurance
Getting enough food into your system is incredibly important, especially if you’re going to commence with some tough training. During these sessions, taking a break and consuming a meat jerky will work to help improve your endurance. It will give you the extra strength you need to continue your exercise routine and it will also lengthen the amount of time which you can train harder.

Thick Cut
When you are on a diet, your body naturally sends out signals to tell you that you’re hungry. This is simply because you are not used to eating restricted diets. This particular product comes in a thick cut. This will provide you with a feeling that you’re eating something of substance with every bite.

Cost and Value
While this product is on the more costly side, it comes in a large bag. They are big enough that you’ll be able to get a decent portion even if you are sharing it amongst friends. This is a great snack for the young and old, but it is especially good for athletes who are looking for an alternative to a protein bar. The meat jerky has very high nutritional value and is suitable for all diets alike.
Pros

Authentic taste

Thick cut

Savory and rich

Increases endurance

Good source of protein

Cons

A little tough

2. Slim Jim Snack-Sized

This is one of the most popular products from the Slim Jim company as these meat sticks are bold and intense in flavor. They are super savory and are able to reduce the number of cravings you have. They are ideal for athletes that are working out as they have a high protein content and can leave you feeling full without having to add too many extra calories. They are also suitable for people of all ages to enjoy as a snack.
Expand to see more
Convenient
People who are regularly fit will understand just how much stuff goes into a gym bag. Depending on the size of your bag, real estate inside may be very limited. This can make it difficult to bring a healthy or well-portioned snack that your body needs. This item was designed to be skinny and easy to carry around without taking too much space. Simply find a little slit in your bag to stick it into and off you go!

Curbs Cravings
People that just start keto diets find it incredibly hard to stay on track. Your body is not used to using fat as energy and wants the carbohydrates and sugars it is so used to metabolizing. As a result, your body will send signals that imply you’re hungry all the time. This meat jerky is jam-packed with protein that can help you curb the hunger pangs while giving you something to chew on.

Cost and Value
This is a great product that is affordable and easy to tote around. Each bag comes with fourteen individually wrapped sticks, allowing you to easily keep a few in your locker, office, or gym bag. They are a convenient way to ensure that you do not stray from your diet and also does not require cooking or prep time. They can be consumed after opening the package, ensuring the shortest amount of time before you feel satiated again.
Pros

Delicious and filling

Reduces cravings

High protein content

Easy to carry

Cost efficient

Cons

A little salty

3. Oberto All-Natural Original

3. Oberto All-Natural Original
This brand is a forerunner in creating different jerky and meat snacks. They have a wide range of products that appeal to young and old alike. This particular product has an added benefit to being completely sugar-free. This allows people on even the strictest diets to partake and enjoy this treat. It is also an ideal snack for people who regularly exercise or are on ketogenic diets, it can be placed ahead of time into the gym bag and go.
Expand to see more
Easy Absorption
People that use supplements or other protein products may find the ingredients difficult to digest or break down. This is because your digestive tract needs more time to break apart and separate each ingredient on a molecular level. This beef jerky is a pure protein that is not wrapped around any sort of chemicals or additives. This makes it much easier for your gut to break down and absorb, allowing your body to intake the largest amount of nutrients possible.

Muscle Building
One of the most important factors that cause your muscles to grow is protein. When you are exercising or partaking in a tough training session, your body uses energy at a much higher rate. Your muscles are unable to grow bigger if there is no fuel being delivered. Consuming pure meat protein such as jerky will give your muscles the extra food boost it needs. The proteins in the jerky can be quickly broken down and used as fuel to continue helping your muscles grow.

Cost and Value
This is a delicious product that is both family-friendly and affordable. Each package comes with eight individual snack packs that are perfectly calculated as one single serving. The beef jerky is made with the highest quality steak available and is smoked to perfection. Smoking the meats guarantees it retains the moisture and tenderness rather than dehydrating and making the meat tough and dry.
Pros

Builds muscle

Tastes delicious

Convenient snack packs

Cost efficient

High protein

Cons

No added MSG

4. Buffalo Bob’s Gift Set

4. Buffalo Bob’s Gift Set
While this product is an ideal gift for others, it is also a great product for yourself. The multiple textures and flavors contained in the product will keep your snacking fresh and elevated. They are slightly more affordable than most jerky but is still well within an affordable range. Although it may seem like a novelty item, it has maintained a small packaging to make it very convenient and easy to bring to the gym. One of these tiny sticks has eight grams of protein in it, making it a high protein product.
Expand to see more
Exotic
This product is not like any other jerky on the market as they contain multiple exotic types of meat. These meat snacks are made with game meats such as pheasants, alligator, ostrich, and kangaroo. Unless you frequently hunt, these are meats and normally do not show up on your dinner table. This is a great product to try if you’re wanting something different while still getting the protein you need from it.

Energizes
These products have a high-fat content. While many people believe fat to be bad, these are fats that can be converted into usable energy for your body. This is especially important for people on a ketogenic diet as their bodies metabolize fat for energy. Once the meat is broken down, the protein particles are then released and sent to the appropriate organs as fuel to continue their processes.

Cost and Value
This product is on the slightly more expensive side, however seeing as they are all exotic meats that you are getting it is absolutely worth it. You will not be able to partake in trying all these different wild game without paying a much higher price tag. While this product gives you the energy to workout in the gym, it also gives you an opportunity to explore and discover different kinds of meat you may or may not enjoy. This allows you to become slightly adventurous with your food without breaking the bank.
Pros

Exotic meats

Elevating your snacks

Delicious and savory

Reasonably priced

Energy booster

Cons

Some strange meats

5. Bricktown Jerky

5. Bricktown Jerky
This is a great snack for just eating on the go and also during a training session. While you are exercising, it can deliver a dose of much-needed nutrients to your body so that you can train longer. If you are having a busy day and have no time to eat, these packs of jerky will keep you going. They are able to keep your hunger at bay and leave you feeling full for long enough to get all your work done.
Expand to see more
Amino Acids
This product delivers a high dose of protein which is necessary in order for your body to function properly. The jerky contains a lot of amino acids, which are proteins in its most basic form. When getting your proteins, you want them as fatty acids as they are much easier to digest and absorb. This will also directly translate to being able to take advantage of the energy and faster as it can be converted into something useful quicker.

Low Sugar
People that are very health conscious are also very aware of the foods they put into their bodies. One of the major fitness setbacks is the amount of sugar an athlete intakes. The sugars can drastically affect diets and also add a lot of extra calories if you are counting them. This product has next to no sugar, allowing you to consume it with a peace of mind.

Cost and Value
While this is a more expensive jerky, it is worth every single penny. Many people love it as it tastes delicious and it is soft and tender. The meat is thicker cut and does not appear brittle. Each bite does not require a lot of pulling and a lot of chewing. It is a favorite amongst people who do not enjoy the generic branded jerky and prefer to eat something that is moist and flavorful.
Pros

Soft and tender

Incredibly popular

Sampler pack

Low sugar

Extra dose of proteins

Cons

Short shelf life

6. Perky Jerky Turkey

6. Perky Jerky Turkey
This product is extremely popular as an alternative for those who do not want to eat beef. For decades, Turkey has been the go-to product when you are looking for some lean protein. This company has managed to create a turkey jerky that resembles fresh turkey meat. It is soft and tender while juicy and flavorful. It is considered to be one of the best turkey jerkies on the market.
Expand to see more
Improves Stamina
One of the biggest challenges of an athlete is their stamina. This is their physical ability to do exercises or training for a prolonged period of time. When you are working out and you find yourself unable to do something or you are easily fatigued, it is because you have no stamina. Consuming this product during those times will give you an extra burst of energy which can help elongate the time before you become tired. After a period of time of getting the extra boost, your body will build enough stamina where you can naturally exercise longer without becoming tired.

Muscle Repair
During your workout, your body is doing certain motions repetitively. This can cause wear and tear damage to your muscle where if left untreated, can become worst. The protein within this jerky contains essential vitamins and minerals for your body. One of those nutrients works to heal the tiny tears within your muscle by penetrating deep into the tissue and looking for the tears to reinforce and strengthen.

Cost and Value
This is a very reasonably priced product that can be enjoyed by everyone. It made of turkey meat, which is a very precious commodity for serious athletes. This is because turkey contains high servings of protein without the fat which beef and other meats contain. This allows you to eliminate the need to burn off the extra fat from your diet while enjoying the boost that protein provides.
Pros

Extra lean protein

Alternative to beef

Repairs muscles

Increase stamina

Two flavors

Cons

Lacks quality control

7. Buffalo Bills Sampler

7. Buffalo Bills Sampler
This is a company that cares about the quality of their products. Previously, there had been many complaints about the quality control of their jerky. Since then, they have reevaluated their products and upgraded both the recipe and also the packing on the product. The company really values the feedback of patrons and is a reputable brand to go with when looking for a good tasting snack.
Expand to see more
Steady Energy
It is inevitable to hit a plateau when you exercise, this is the time where you physically cannot get any stronger or more muscular without the use of a supplemental product. People often shy away from supplements because they can overwhelm your body with energy, which can cause jitters and shakes. Eating beef jerky as a supplement will provide you with steady energy that is released throughout your entire work out, ensuring you do not have a sugar crash or a jittery experience.

Muscle Breakdown
Your muscles build while you are exercising but start to break down after you finish your training session. This happens because your body is no longer in training mode but your metabolism has not slowed down. Because there is no longer food to burn, your metabolism turns to break down your muscle mass for protein. Consuming some jerky right after your exercise can help reduce the amount of muscle mass that gets destroyed.

Cost and Value
This product comes at a great value at a great price. Because it is a sampler pack, it comes in a variety of flavors. This allows you to try different things to see what you like and don’t like, while also allowing your family to try and find flavors that suit their taste buds. To add to its value and worth, purchasing this sampler pack will include a cooler that can fit six can of beers!
Pros

Trustworthy brand

Protects muscles

High protein

Sustainable energy

Includes a gift

Cons

A little salty

8. Jack Link’s Variety Bag

8. Jack Link’s Variety Bag
This is a great snack that people of all ages can enjoy. They come in small bags that are measured to be exactly one serving. This company has been making beef jerky for many years. They’ve become known as a good and reliable brand for jerky snacks and have recently reached number one best selling of all times. These small bags are easy to carry around in your gym bag or left in the office. Eating one of these in a pinch can give you the energy and satiation to last for hours.
Expand to see more
Multiple Options
Despite people being creatures of habit, it can get a little boring after eating the same thing over and over. When it comes to snacks, it is no different as people enjoy variety. Change keeps things interesting and if the food you eat is not different, you will start to no longer enjoy the food. This product comes in both the original and teriyaki flavor, allowing you to alternate and have different flavors depending on your mood. This will elongate the time before you become bored of this jerky and need to find a new snack.

Protein
Protein is one of the most important parts of an athlete's diet simply because you need it to function. This is the ingredient that fuels your body and gives it the energy it needs to complete tasks every day. A lack of protein will leave you tired and weak. This jerky pack contains a high dosage of protein which is then broken down in the body and converted into usable energy.

Cost and Value
This is a great product to eat if you are looking to save some money on your protein supplements. Some of those beverages can carry a hefty price tag. Consuming this jerky will give you that little bit of energy to push past your barriers to hit that fitness goal. It is a nutritionally dense snack, allowing you to gain massive nutrients despite a small serving. Coupled by the savory taste, this is a snack you cannot miss.
Pros

Nutritionally dense

Reasonably affordable

Two flavors

Suitable for all ages

Reduces hunger

Cons

A little on the dry side

9. Sweetwood Smokehouse

9. Sweetwood Smokehouse
This product contains an extremely high dose of protein. This can be incredibly beneficial for those who are looking to build and make their muscles look bigger. The high protein content also means that you are able to stay fuller for a longer period of time. This can be achieved because protein takes a longer time to break down and fully absorb into your body, giving you clean and sustained energy for the entire day.
Expand to see more
Hormone Free
As technology improves, we have learned that steroids and hormone inject that were given to animals cause reactions in people who consume said animals. Most of these reactions are negative and cause problems such as hormonal imbalance or other health issues. This is simply because humans are consuming meat faster than it can be raised naturally. This beef jerky is made from hormone and steroid free beef, ensuring no adverse effects on your health if consumed.

Gluten Free
More and more people are realizing they have food sensitivities to gluten, which can manifest itself in the form of bloating or sluggish feelings. This product is completely gluten-free and made with no additional additives. This allows people with strict dietary restrictions to partake in consumption. It also allows people who are counting their calories to eat a delicious snack that has significantly lower glucose numbers.

Cost and Value
This product comes in a sampler pack with four flavors. This will keep things fresh for the people who are consuming them. Some of the flavors are sweet and some are savory. This ensures you will not grow bored of eating the same treatment each day. This jerky is wrapped in a skinny shape, allowing them to be easily carried around.
Pros

Rich in proteins

Four flavors

Easy to carry

Gluten free

Sugar free

Cons

Mixture of beef and pork

10. Fishpeople Salmon

10. Fishpeople Salmon
This jerky is not only delicious but gives you value which you can see. The jerky is dried in whole fillets and not just chunks of meat. These packages make for a great light meal when you don’t have time to eat or a great snack when you are working out or hiking. This jerky is very nutritionally dense with antioxidants, proteins, and many more.
Expand to see more
Omega 3
One of the most important nutrients that people need is Omega 3. Unfortunately, it is not something that can be generated by the body and needs to be consumed in foods. Salmon is very high in Omega 3, which is in charge of regulating eyesight. Getting a healthy dose of this nutrient will greatly improve your heart health and brain health. There is enough Omega 3 in the pouch to almost reach your daily needs.

Replenishing
When you exercise and train, it is inevitable that you burn a lot of energy. During these sessions, a lot of essential vitamins and minerals are also used. Unfortunately, your body is unable to reproduce the nutrients fast enough to restore them to their needed levels. By consuming a pack of this jerky, it can give your body a boost and refill your depleted numbers and also help alleviate the stress off your body to regenerate as quickly.

Cost and Value
This product has more value than anything you could be paying. One of the greatest benefits is that the jerky is made with wild salmon. This means the salmon is raised in the wild with no hormones or steroid injections. Wild salmon also tends to be less fatty, allowing you to remove some of the unnecessary fat in your diet. Each pack comes with twenty-four grams of protein, giving you more than enough to last the day.
Pros

Nutritionally dense

Decreases hunger

Omega 3

Rejuvenates the body

Hormone free

Cons

Fishy smell a little strong

 

While jerky is delicious and a favorite snack of many people, it is important to be aware that overindulging can lead to problems. Despite the healthier ways to make jerky, it can still contain a lot of MSG and other unwanted additives. Depending on the cut of meat, it can also contain a lot of unhealthy fats and oils. Consuming these on a daily basis can lead to high cholesterol and clogged arteries. This means your heart would need to exert more effort to pump blood through the veins. As a result, it could also lead to high blood pressure. While it is alright to consume jerky on a more regular basis if you are physically fit, it is best to regulate the amount you are eating if you live a more sedentary lifestyle.

 

 

Criteria For Evaluating The Best Jerky Snacks

Grass Fed

One of the most important things to look for in selecting a jerky is whether it is made from a grass fed animal. Animals that are raised without cornmeal offer a heavier mineral taste. This directly translates to almost a saltier taste when eating your jerky. However, this does not mean the sodium levels have increased. It is simply that the mineral flavor has not been covered up the sweet taste of corn and carbohydrates. While eating beef jerky, it is a preference to select something that tastes a little meatier.

Another benefit of selecting grass-fed animals is that they have an overall less amount of fat. A lot of meat proteins come with extra unhealthy fats compared to vegan protein. It can be especially prominent in animals that have been fed using grains and other types of wheat. This is because when the wheat enters the body, it is transformed into glucose and without adequate exercise will end up as stored fats. Having a grass-based diet reduces the amount of glucose that turns into fat and produces jerky that is more on the lean side.

Protein Amount

When looking at the packaging, one of the most important things is to see how much protein each serving can provide. It is not recommended to select a jerky that is not high in protein as it was most likely made with more additives and chemicals. Ideally, each serving of jerky should have at least ten grams of protein. As mentioned previously, protein is an essential way to build muscle. However, the most basic form of a protein is amino acids. These fatty acids are used to power every single process within your body. There are a total of twenty-one essential amino acids that you need to function properly. While some amino acids can be produced by the body, others can only be gained from eating certain meats and vegetables.

Sodium levels

While the jerky industry has tried to make these snacks much more healthy, there are still some relatively unhealthy ones wandering around stores. One of the easiest ways to determine how healthy your jerky will be is to look at the sodium levels. On average, each serving should have less than two grams of sodium. However, this number can be slightly higher for athletes that are going through rigorous training for their upcoming meet or competition. This is because exercise brings out the sweat in your body. The first mineral your body loses when you sweat is sodium. If you lose too much sodium during a short amount of time it causes you to feel sick. Low sodium can be an easy sign to miss as the symptoms are similar to dehydration. To prevent your sodium levels from going too low when you exercise, a slightly higher level of sodium in jerky is acceptable.

 

 

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What exactly is jerky good for?
A: Properly made jerky has many health benefits. It is an extremely good source of protein and fiber. It is also a good way to get your healthy fats and essential minerals for the day.

Q: Why does jerky seem so expensive?
A: Compared to many snacks, unfortunately, jerky is quite expensive. This is because of the way jerky is made and manufactured. While many products can be mass produced at a wholesale rate, jerky is one of the snacks where the wholesale costs are very high. At a comparison, meat to make jerky is much more expensive than wheat or sugar that is used to make chips and candy. To make it properly and with high-grade meats, it brings the overall cost higher.

Q: Is there healthy jerky?
A: Absolutely! There are many kinds of jerky that are rich in vitamins and minerals. One of the most important ways to find a healthy jerky is understood how the meat was sourced. It is important to select a jerky that was made from meats that were not injected by hormones or steroids.

Sources

  1. Natalie Stein, The Side Effects of..., Informational
  2. Jerky Staff, Benefits of Jerky, Informational
Quest Nutrition Pack
Next Giveaway draw
New Giveaway!
Quest Nutrition Pack
Your email is safe with us. Pinky swear
Share:
Enter the giveaway