Monday, October 27, 2014

Lucky Brand Jerky - Jerky Sticks

lucky brand jerky sticks
Lucky Brand Jerky is a new brand of jerky, but has a long history. It's the product of Nebraska Star Beef, a family owned business that has been producing premium beef, along with beef jerky, for over 100 years.

Recently, the company changed the way it raises cattle, returning to its roots on herdsmanship, grass-fed, without antibiotics and growth hormones, and allowing their animals roam freely. Their jerky is made with no MSG, no sodium nitrite, and no artificial ingredients.

This "Stick Jerky" looks like traditional meat sticks, or snack sausage, except it's not in a casing. It's really more like chopped and formed jerky, formed into meat sticks. Flavors come in Original, Peppered, Teriyaki, and Red Pepper.

Original

Ingredients: Beef, salt, brown sugar, dehydrated vegetables (garlic, onion, bell pepper), spices, celery juice powder, sugar, dehydrated orange peel, citric acid, oleoresin of paprika.

The first flavors that hit the palate is a light saltiness and touches of seasonings, mostly as garlic and onion. There's also a faint sweet. As I continue to chew, the salt, garlic and onion becomes more prominent. I can pick up traces of celery seed, and hints of black pepper.

The chewing is rather easy. It's not mushy, but still more moist than the company's beef jerky. It's along the same lines as traditional chopped and formed jerky, maybe a little more tender. Otherwise, it chews like traditional chopped and formed jerky as well, mostly crumbly.

Verdict: Overall, it's largely a flavor combination of salt, garlic and onion, and then touches of celery seed. It doesn't really have a flavor that jumps out and grab me, and it seems a little more salty, and lightly greasy, than it's beef jerky counterpart. Otherwise, I can't find anything about this that stands above other stick-form meat snacks.

Rating: Average

Peppered

Ingredients: Beef, water, salt, brown sugar, black pepper, spices, celery powder, beet powder, paprika, deyhdrated garlic, sea salt.

Compared to the Original, this has a cleaner taste, with a light black pepper flavor. After having had the Original, I clearly like these Peppered sticks better. It seems to have a lighter saltiness, along with lighter garlic and onion. As a result, the natural meat flavors come out better.  The black pepper is not as spicy as in the company's Peppered Beef Jerky.

The chewing seems a little more dry, but still the same crumbly consistency as the Original, and still just as tender as the Original.

Verdict: The cleaner taste and feel of these Peppered sticks compared to the Original give it an overall more "natural" character that encourages me to eat more. I can get more of the natural meat flavor, and it gives me the sense I'm eating something more healthful.

Rating: Good

Teriyaki

Ingredients: Beef, sugar, salt, dehydrated soy sauce, hydrolyzed soy protein, spices, celery juice powder, garlic and onion powder, caramel color, citric acid.

The first flavor I pick up is soy sauce and a light bit of sweet. Further into the chewing, I can detect bits garlic and onion seasoning. The soy sauce is somewhat toned down, much like with the company's Teriyaki beef jerky, but is still the prominent flavor.

The meat consistency is much more tender and moist than the company's other Stick Jerky flavors. This actually feels mushy, not so much crumbly, and offers no sense of eating meat.

Verdict: I don't find these Teriyaki Jerky Sticks snackable. First, it doesn't taste like Teriyaki, just a lot of soy sauce. Second, it doesn't have a meaty feel or chew. It's soft and mushy.

Rating: Fair

Red Pepper

Ingredients: Beef, salt, brown sugar, black pepper, spices, celery juice powder, ground red pepper, beet powder, paprika, dehydrated garlic.

The first chews reveal a light natural meat flavor with some chile pepper seasoning. Like with the Peppered variety, this has a cleaner, lighter flavor than the company's Original. It tends to be a little more dry like the Peppered, but still chews easily, with a crumbly texture.

The level of heat in this seems a lot lower than company's Red Pepper Beef Jerky. I'd rate it as Mild-Medium (level 2 out of 5).

Rating: Good

Buy these online: http://www.luckybrandjerky.com/


lucky brand jerky

lucky brand jerky

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