Sunday, June 18, 2017

Chef Craig's Beef Jerky - Original

chef craigs jerky
Note: Chef Craig's is a sponsor of this website, but has no effect on our ratings and reviews.

One the newest jerky brands on the market is Chef Craig's Beef Jerky. A product of CJM Products, it's based out of West Kingston, RI.

It's the idea of Craig Mitchell, who a few years ago, had sent me samples of his own homemade jerky, with the intent of launching a business someday. Mitchell received his Culinary Arts degree from Johnson & Wales University, and has been cooking professionally since 1978.

As of this review, the only flavor Chef Craig's offers is this Original.

Monday, June 5, 2017

How Beef Jerky Can Fit Into Your Diet

By Dundalk Dan's Beef Jerky

dundalk dans beef jerky

Working hard on that summer beach bod? If yes then you shouldn't have to settle for chalky shakes or frozen tofu meals. Dundalk Dan's Awesome Beef Jerky breaks down diets that work with your jerky-loving cravings, not against it. (Of course, always consult your doctor before making any changes to your diet.)

PALEO DIET–aka the "Caveman Diet", our beef jerky was made for this lifestyle. Unlike the cavemen though, we use only high quality, USDA approved beef. Plus, we hear cavemen hated nitrites and MSG as much as we do!

GLUTEN-FREE DIET–Diagnosed with Celiac Disease? Told your gut can't handle gluten? Or maybe you just don't like the grogginess that comes with wheat? Whatever your reasoning, we can assure you that NONE of our beef jerky flavors will break your diet.

21 DAY FIX–If you've made the first step towards getting your body into shape with Team Beachbody, you'll want to fill those containers up with as much flavor as possible! Our beef jerky is packed with tasty strips of flavor-packed.

LOW-CARB–Dr. Atkins was definitely onto something when his diet craze hit the world years ago. However, people quickly realized that serotonin is what carbs and happiness are made of so what's the point of being skinny if you're not happy, right? All our flavors have JUST enough carbs to keep you on track while not making you sad.

HIGH-PROTEIN DIET–Bulking up this year? Are a chiseled 6-pack, cut-off tank tops, and sweatbands in your future? Well, you're going to need more than dry peanut butter protein shakes to keep you on track! Each of our flavors contains 26 grams of protein per pack! You'll be ripping t-shirts and getting gym dates in no time.

AWESOME DIET–No, we didn't make this diet up, we simply gave it a name. If your summer goal is to just be you then the Awesome Diet is perfect! You were awesome yesterday, you're awesome now, and you’ll be awesome tomorrow. You know what would make you even more awesome though? Dundalk Dan’s Awesome Beef Jerky in your pantry!

Sunday, June 4, 2017

Jewels of the Forest Mushroom Jerky - Sesame

jewels of the forest
Jewels of the Forest is a brand owned by Mycolab Solutions, LLC based out of Occidental, CA. They specialize in growing organic mushrooms and sell kits to grow your own shrooms.

Their mushroom jerky is made from oyster mushrooms grown on spent beer grains obtained local breweries. The mushrooms are grown on their own fungi farm, also named "Jewels of the Forest". The jerky is distributed to natural food stores throughout the United States, with most locations in the Northern California area. They can also be ordered online from their website.

The packaging claims this jerky is Non-GMO, certified vegan, gluten-free, and 100% natural.

Thursday, June 1, 2017

Joe's Wicked Good Jerky - Wicked Hot

joes wicked good jerky
Joe's Wicked Good Beef Jerky is a brand owned by Joe's Wicked Good Jerky Corporation, based out of Redding, CA. It was started by the husband and wife duo of Joe Nixt and Traci Nixt, who launched the brand in October 2014.

At the time, Joe had been making his own jerky for over 20 years. He's shared it with friends and co-workers from his contracting business. When Traci lost her secretarial position, the couple decided to make a go at running a jerky company.

This "Wicked Hot" is made with Ghost Peppers and Habaneros, and is the hottest flavor Joe's Wicked makes. The package says, "Warning: extremely hot".

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Ria's Roadkill Jerky - Habanero

rias roadkill jerky
Ria's RoadKill Jerky has stepped up a notch on the Scoville Scale with this new Habanero offering. See our reviews of other flavors from Ria's RoadKill Jerky.

Ria's RoadKill Jerky is run by Eden Van, based out of Long Beach, CA, having launched in January 2011. Eden got started in making jerky after receiving compliments on his barbecue recipes. He uses USDA Choice top round from his local meat market. All jerky is dehydrated in a smoker. He currently sells through Facebook and eBay while waiting for his new website to finish.

The company doesn't describe this jerky in any further way other than the name, "Habanero", but then again it perhaps doesn't need anymore explanation than that.

Sunday, May 28, 2017

Joe's Wicked Good Jerky - Mary Joe

joes wicked good jerky
Joe's Wicked Good Beef Jerky is a brand owned by Joe's Wicked Good Jerky Corporation, based out of Redding, CA. It was started by the husband and wife duo of Joe Nixt and Traci Nixt, who launched the brand in October 2014.

At the time, Joe had been making his own jerky for over 20 years. He's shared it with friends and co-workers from his contracting business. When Traci lost her secretarial position, the couple decided to make a go at running a jerky company.

This "Mary Joe" is described as a Bloody Mary jerky, "...without the tomato and vodka. The company says that they sold out of their first batch in a week.

Friday, May 19, 2017

Dundalk Dan's Awesome Beef Jerky - Sriracha

dundalk dans beef jerky
Dundalk Dan's Awesome Beef Jerky is a brand of Hard Working Foods, LLC based out of Baltimore, MD. It was started by Dan Dawes in 2013, the CEO of an Internet marketing firm with a passion for meat snacks.

Dundalk Dan's claims their jerky is made in small batches and hand trimmed, and then marinated for 3 days.

This "Sriracha" variety is made with Sriracha Sauce. According to Dundalk Dan's, "This one rates 4 out of 5 on the hot meter."

Monday, May 8, 2017

Benefits for the Planet of Raising Grass-Fed Beef

by Lawless Jerky

There is a lively debate going on in the media and around the web about the environmental impact of raising cattle relative to a purely vegetal approach to agriculture.

Critics say that the methane expelled by livestock contributes to global warming, that what cattle eat and drink should be sustaining humans directly, or that the land cattle graze upon is better used raising produce.

These arguments are not completely off base but they are exaggerated, generalized and offset by important aspect of raising cattle that contribute to the betterment of our ecosystem. In particular, cattle raised on grass throughout their lives (rather than "grain-finished") represent a boon to our environment.

At present, just 2% of US greenhouse gas emissions are attributable to raising cattle, and that figure can be further diminished, by half, with measures now entering farmers’ repertoires, including bovine nutritional supplements and cultivated dung beetle populations.

More significant is the impact pasture-raised beef has on returning carbon from all sources to the soil. Land covered by vegetation (trees, bushes, grass, etc.), like that used for grazing cattle, is ideal for recapturing carbon via photosynthesis and holding it stably in the ground. Cows' "pruning mouths stimulate vegetative growth as their trampling hoofs and digestive tracts foster seed germination and nutrient recycling."

Research on other aspects of cattle farming reflects that a pound of beef consumers 441 gallons of water, a figure that only slightly exceeds the requirement for rice. And, of course, beef is much more nutritious than rice.

It is also the case that much of the land on which cattle graze (85% in the U.S.) is actually unfit for other uses. The grain used to fatten up factory-farmed cattle might otherwise appear on supermarket shelves but the grass fed to cows used by beef jerky purveyors like Lawless Jerky is outside the diet of even the most veggie-loving humans.

Even as vegetarianism becomes more trendy, and non-meat protein options increase, meat-based jerky is not going anywhere. Nor should it, given the offsetting benefits that raising grass-fed cattle has for the earth, and the unmatched nutrition and satisfaction it provides to us.

Sources: Niman, Nicolette Hahn. "Actually, Raising Beef is Good for the Planet." Wall Street Journal, 19 December 2014; Niman, Nicolette Hahn. "Defending Beef: The Case for Sustainable Meat Production." Chelsea Green, 2014



Friday, April 14, 2017

Joe's Wicked Good Jerky Firefighters' Favorite


During the summer of 2015 a serial arsonist attacked Contra Costa County in California, sending more than 10,000 firefighters on the line fighting fires. The men and women of the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (CAL FIRE) are dedicated to the fire protection and stewardship of over 31 million acres of California's privately-owned wildlands. Joe's Wicked Good Jerky answered the call to help support those firefighters.

During the hot summer over 60,000 packages of Joe's Wicked Good Jerky was sent to the front lines. In the sack lunches firefighters found packages of Joe's Peppered, Regular and Sweet and Spicy jerky. Owned and operated by Joe and Traci Nixt, Joe's Wicked Good Jerky is distributed out of Redding, California and has been in business since March 2015.

"It feels so good to send a treat to these men and women who do so much for us and keep us safe. Joe and I are so grateful for their efforts," said Traci.

As it turns out, these firefighters love this jerky! Orders pour in all year long after the firefighters return home. In 2016 more of Joe's jerky was sent to the front lines and even more orders poured in afterwards.

"Had your Regular in a lunch sack at the fires in Trinity County last Summer. Best jerky ever! Reminds me of what my Mom made when I was a kid. Keep up the great work!" Andrea T., Fair Oaks, CA

"Had this jerky on the Valley Fire and it is amazing!! Every time I opened my lunch this is the first thing I went for!" Dan M., Nampa, ID

"This is by far the best jerky that I've ever tasted!" Ashley C., West Columbia, SC


Joe and Traci want to thank these firefighters for all they do and encourage everyone to be fire safe this summer.

Order the Firefighters' Favorite by visiting their website and use BBJ10 code for 10% off.

Sunday, April 2, 2017

Jerky's Gourmet Debuts New Branding, Website, and New Flavor!

by Tim Gerstman, Jerky's Gourmet

jerkys gourmet
Over the past year, Jerky's Gourmet has been working on some very special updates and we're excited to finally share our new bag design with you! Just so our loyal customers are aware, Orange Teriyaki is now called Sweet Citrus, BBQ Mesquite is now Smokehouse BBQ, Craft Beer is now India Pale Ale. Enjoy our new look with the same great taste you’re accustomed to, plus more!

Bacon Jerky Now Available


The Maple Bacon Jerky is the newest flavor to the Jerky’s Gourmet variety. This sweet and savory combination of maple syrup and bacon will make you want to pig out! Be sure to pick up your bag (or bags?) online on our new and improved website at www.jerkysgourmet.com.

Best Beef Jerky readers will get a special 10% discount with Coupon Code: BestBeefJerky

Visit onlinehttps://www.jerkysgourmet.com/

Friday, March 31, 2017

Red Truck Beef Jerky - Old Bay Seasoning

old bay beef jerky
Red Truck Beef Jerky is a brand of Red Truck Beef Jerky, LLC, based out of St. Petersburg, FL. According to the company, they've been doing business for over 15 years.

This Old Bay-branded variety is an officially licensed product made with the famous seafood seasoning.

Red Truck Beef Jerky currently ships their jerky to Cracker Barrel, MAPCO Express, Lowes Foods, Schnucks Markets, Western Convenience Stores, and Green Top Sporting Goods.

We previously reviewed their Original and Teriyaki flavors back in 2014.

Friday, March 17, 2017

Pick the NCAA Final Four and Get Free Jerky


Order now at: www.lawlessjerky.com

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Crazy Horse Beef Jerky - Steak House

crazy horse beef jerky
Note: Crazy Horse is a sponsor of this website, but has no effect on our ratings and reviews.

It's been nearly a year since I published my reviews of Crazy Horse Beef Jerky (Original, Sweet, and Cajun). And since that time, the owners of Crazy Horse have told me that sales have been great.

Along with that, customers have asked them to launch new flavors, and so towards that request, they've launched this new "Steak House" variety. Dave and Cara Wenrich, the owners of Crazy Horse, claim to love steak sauce and felt it would add a great flavor to their jerky.

Based in Hellam, PA, Dave started making this brand of jerky based on a old family recipe that he got from his father, who received the recipe from his father, who received it from his father...

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

10 Tips for the Home Jerky Maker

from Matt Tolnick

matt tolnick lawless jerky
Matt Tolnick



Matt is Lawless Jerky’s Founder and Jerky Chef.

He was a jerky hobbyist, experimenting with interesting recipes for himself and his friends, until he came to the realization that his job practicing LAW was making him LESS happy.
He was certain he could contribute more to the world with his jerky than his lawyering.

Matt launched Lawless Jerky with a Kickstarter on the day of his 30th birthday … and the rest is history. Almost 4 years later, Lawless Jerky is available in 4,000 stores in the US and Canada along with a bustling online business. Enjoy the following tips for making your own jerky at home, and sample his greatest hits at LawlessJerky.com.

1) Choice of Meat: One of the great things about home dehydrating is that you can use any meat that you want. So if you're looking to try an exotic meat (e.g. duck, goat, elk, venison, etc.) or just a different cut of a more common protein (e.g. beef brisket, chicken thighs), the world is your oyster!

2) Slicing the Meat: If (like most people) you don't have a meat slicer, you can get a thinner slice on your meat (and thus more surface area to marinade, and a quicker cook) by slicing the meat while it is still partially frozen.

3) Making a Marinade: In my early days, I'd start with a base marinade or sauce and then supplement it with salts, sugars, spices, and other sauces/vinegars. Once you're comfortable with building a nice jerky marinade from a base sauce/marinade, you can move towards building your marinade completely from scratch.

4) Calibrating your Marinade: Make your marinade stronger (more intense) than you would for grilled meats. The marinade's intensity will dissipate some during the drying process.

5) Marination: Marinate the jerky at least overnight, ensuring that the marinade is evenly distributed over each piece. If marinating in plasticware, shake the mixture rigorously during the marination process to simulate the tumblers that we use at our facility.

6) Rotating Trays During the Cook: No matter the style of your home dehydrator, there are probably multiple trays. When full, the top trays (if you're using a Nesco dehydrator for example) or the back of EACH tray (if you're using an Excalibur or Weston) should be rotated during the cook process to ensure an even cook. With a Nesco, swap your bottom two trays with your top two trays halfway into your cook and as needed throughout to control the consistent drying of your jerky. For "heat-element-in-the-back" units, simply rotate each tray in its slot 180 degrees, or two turns.

7) When to Pull the Jerky” Just like other cooked meats, deciding when the jerky is "done" is a matter of taste. To experiment with different levels of doneness, you can either cook meat sliced into different thicknesses for the same amount of time or cook meat of a uniform thickness for different amounts of time. Remember that the jerky will continue to cook and harden once it's pulled from the dehydrator, so account for that extra hardening when deciding when to pull it!

8) Bagging the Jerky: Make sure to let the jerky fully cool before bagging so that evaporated moisture (an enemy of jerky preservation) doesn't accumulate inside of your bag/container.

9) Cleaning Up: Whether dehydrating in a dehydrator or a home oven, if you're using a wet marinade, make sure to line the bottom of your unit with towels/paper towels to catch the drip of the marinade and to make for easy cleaning. Cleaning a Nesco is pretty easy but a stainless steel Weston definitely benefits from a bottom catch layer, or drip tray.

10) Jerky Shelf Life: One of the nice things about home jerky is that you can get a level of freshness that is impossible for commercial jerky to achieve. Like eating fresh cookies out of the oven! Also, as a home jerky maker, you aren't constrained (by law) by the moisture content of the final product, so you can have a moister jerky product than you could ever find in stores.

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

How to Get Four Free Bags of Jerky at LawlessJerky.com

Step 1: Go to LawlessJerky.com.

Step 2: Fill up your shopping cart with at least $35.00 of jerky.

Step 3: Check out with promo code, "PATS" or "FALCONS", whichever team you think will win Superbowl 51.

Step 4: If your team wins, Lawless Jerky will send you four free bags of jerky of their most popular flavors.

Note: these promo codes are good between now and SuperBowl 51 game time.


Thursday, January 19, 2017

Tony's Killer Elk Jerky - Peppered

tony's killer elk jerky
Tony's Killer Elk Jerky is a brand of Beaver Mountain Distributors, based out of Beaver, UT. We actually reviewed this brand back in 2010, under the name "Tony's Killer Beef Jerky".

The "Tony's Killer" brand is not sold online, but in small, independent shops and roadside stands throughout the back country of the United States. The jerky itself is actually manufactured by a co-packer named, Springville Meat Company in Springville, UT.

We found this particular package of Peppered Elk Jerky, as well as another package of their Teriyaki Venison, at a local market in Soldotna, Alaska, during a recent trip.

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Humboldt's Best Beef Jerky - Original

humboldt's best beef jerky
Humboldt's Best Beef Jerky is a brand owned by Robert's Distributing, based out of Fortuna, CA. It's one of those brands you typically find inside a convenience store/gas station located in the middle of nowhere along the Interstate.

This brand doesn't have a website where you can buy online. We found this at a Shell gas station in Garberville, CA, and I'm sure you can probably find it in other venues throughout Humboldt County, CA.

The packaging doesn't make any claims or promises on what this jerky tastes like, nor anything on what it offers.

Sunday, January 15, 2017

Jerky By Art - Hot & Spicy Teriyaki

jerky by art
Jerky by Art was established by Arthur Sandoval in 2004, based out of Albuquerque, NM.

As an iron worker, Art started making carne seca (Mexican-style jerky) at home for his own pleasure. He would take some to work and sell it to co-workers. He was selling so much of it, that he bought more dehydrators. Before he knew it, he was producing jerky all day and night. And thus became, Jerky by Art.

This Hot & Spicy Teriyaki variety is marketed as "a sweet taste that just might bite ya back!".

Friday, January 13, 2017

Joe's Wicked Good Jerky - Peppered

joes wicked good jerky
Joe's Wicked Good Beef Jerky is a brand owned by Joe's Wicked Good Jerky Corporation, based out of Redding, CA. It was started by the husband and wife duo of Joe Nixt and Traci Nixt, who launched the brand in October 2014.

At the time, Joe had been making his own jerky for over 20 years. He's shared it with friends and co-workers from his contracting business. When Traci lost her secretarial position, the couple decided to make a go at running a jerky company.

This "Peppered" is described by the company as simply, "...sweet with a peppery taste..."

Grandpa's Beef Jerky - Blueberry Habanero

grandpas beef jerky
Grandpa's Beef Jerky is a brand started by Jacob Piercy, based out of Fishers, Indiana. Piercy remembers being a kid and watching his grandfather hanging deer meat for jerky. Eventually, his grandfather handed down the recipe and process.

Today, Piercy sells packages of Grandpa's Beef Jerky at farmers markets across Indiana and online too, allowing jerky fans across the USA to enjoy a family legacy.

This "Blueberry Habanero" is described as "Seasonal blueberries are picked then added to Grandpa's spiciest jerky. Enough said."

Thursday, January 12, 2017

Amarok Beef Sticks

amarok beef sticks
Amarok Beef Sticks is a brand of Superpowered Nutrition, LLC based out of Sparta, NJ. Launched in 2015, the company was founded by Jeff Baitinger and Rich Fitter, two comic book nerds with a passion for fitness.

The name "Amarok" comes from Inuit mythology as a supernatural gigantic grey wolf who is said to have made a deal with the "Great Spirit" to atone for his past sins by becoming an agent of justice, a la, the lonely, introspective, no-one-understands-him-but-his-woman kind.

These beef sticks are the first products of the Amarok brand, which now includes beef bites. Made from grass-fed beef, using gluten-free ingredients, these sticks are marketed heavily to comic fans and fantasy fanatics.

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

4 Seasons Jerky - Sweet Mesquite Habanero

4 seasons jerky
4 Seasons Jerky is a new brand that hit the market late in 2016. Launched by a guy named, "Thom", short for Thomas, the company is based out of Highland, CA. Thom is an avid outdoorsman, and is outside all year-round, hiking, boating, snowboarding, to name a few.

4 Seasons Jerky uses lean round or flank cuts of meat, marinated for 24 hours.

This Sweet Mesquite Habanero Beef Jerky is described by the company simply as, "The fiery spice of Habanero Peppers mingled with sweet mesquite flavorings combines with lean cuts of beef to form a taste of backyard BBQ right inside a bag!"

Sunday, January 8, 2017

Jerky Jerks - Sweet Garlic Beef Jerky

jerky jerks
Jerky Jerks is a business owned by Tracy Hood, based out of Bakersfield, CA. It started up selling Jerky Hut brand snacks at trade shows and farmers markets across the USA. These days, Tracy has extended the Jerky Jerks brand to its very own line of jerky.

Jerky Jerks is made in a USDA inspected facility and uses no added MSG.

This Sweet Garlic Beef Jerky is described by them as a favorite at garlic festivals, "...starts out sweet, then the perfect of Garlic, not overpowering."

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

4 Seasons Jerky - Honey Basil Turkey

4 seasons jerky
4 Seasons Jerky is a new brand that hit the market late in 2016. Launched by a guy named, "Thom", short for Thomas, the company is based out of Highland, CA. Thom is an avid outdoorsman, and is outside all year-round, hiking, boating, snowboarding, to name a few.

4 Seasons Jerky uses lean round or flank cuts of meat, marinated for 24 hours.

This Honey Basil Turkey Jerky is described by the company simply as, "...aromatic blend of basil and sweetness of honey spices up this healthy, red meat alternative."