Jack Link's continues to introduce some of the most innovative beef jerky flavors, and this Pepperoni variety is another curiosity that picques my interest.
While most of Jack Link's series of beef jerky has largely rated as "average" on this blog, I can't help wanting to try their new flavors. Perhaps it's part of their sales strategy.
The pepperoni variety was introduced about a year-and-a-half ago, and represented the first-ever beef jerky to come with a pepperoni flavoring.
Beef, water, sugar, less than 2% salt, dextrose, monosodium glutamate, flavorings, spices, paprika extract, citric acid, sodium erythorbate, sodium nitrite.
There definitely is a taste of pepperoni in these pieces that hits you strong on the first piece. The subsequent pieces tends to lose the aroma, but even in the last few pieces I ate, I could still get a good sense of pepperoni flavoring.
It also has a slight spiciness to it, similar to what you might expect in pepperoni. The spiciness builds up on your taste buds so that by the time you're half-way through the bag, you're feeling a little burn. I think most people not accustomed to eating spicy foods might consider this "hot". It's probably mild to medium hot for my taste buds.
While there is the goodness of pepperoni taste, the texture and consistency of beef jerky rises above, and reminds you that this is still dried beef you're eating. Although, you might try sprinkling some mozzarella cheese on this, and nuking it for 15 seconds to see if it tastes anything like pizza.
As a beef jerky, I don't taste much any natural meat flavors. That's always been the case with Jack Link's. It's mostly a brand of beef jerky that you enjoy for its marriage of interesting flavors.
These appear to be made from real cuts of beef muscle, sliced in medium thickness, and in medium to small pieces.
They are easy tear apart and chew, and they are mostly on the dry side, though some pieces are more moist than others.
I found one piece with a good chunk of fat, while others appear to be quite lean. I haven't found much in the form of tendon or gristle.
I paid $5.99 for a 3.65oz bag at an ARCO AM/PM store in Rancho San Diego. That works out to $1.64 per oz, within the average price range.
I'd say this jerky offers some pretty good value. As a beef jerky, Jack Link's is always soft and tender. While their jerky has been known for its rubbery-like consistency (gummy jerky), this particular bag wasn't like that. As a pepperoni-flavored jerky, it certainly offers a lot of pepperoni taste. If you like spicy-hot beef jerky, this does offer a slight tongue-burning.
I'm rating this as "good".
While much of Jack Link's jerky has been average on this blog, I found that this particular jerky to be quite enjoyable. I do like the strong pepperoni taste, and the spiciness that it gives off. I also like Jack Link's familiar soft and tender consistency.
I also found this jerky to be quite snackable. I found myself wanting more and more of this stuff.
If anything could make it better, I'd like to taste more of the natural meat flavors, and make it a tad more moist.
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