Sunday, June 25, 2017

Lawless Jerky - Pho

lawless jerky

Among the newest flavors from Lawless Jerky is this Pho beef jerky. See our other reviews of Lawless Jerky.

Lawless Jerky is a brand owned and operated by Lawless Jerky, LLC based out of Santa Monica, CA. It was started by Matthew Tolnick, a former attorney who held a not-so-secret passion for making chewy chunks of dehydrated beef. After a stint as a legal counselor, he decided to throw his hat into the jerky industry and start his own business.

This Pho variety is described by the company as being made with, "...herbs like cilantro, mint and basil; spices like star anise, cinnamon and cloves, and the heat of jalapeno."


100% Grass-fed beef, rice vinegar, brown sugar, Sriracha sauce, plum sauce, fish sauce, lime juice, pho spice blend, salt.


The first flavors that hit the palate is a lightly sweet, pungent sauce flavor. It's kinda like a mixture of plum sauce and fish sauce. There's a touch of heat that comes on. The chewing brings in more of that saucy flavor with a light natural meat flavor. It also brings in a bit more of that pungent spice, along with a touch of tanginess.

As for being marketed as a "Pho" flavored beef jerky, it seems to hold up well. I do get the unmistakable flavor of Pho paste that is used to flavor the famous Thai soup base. I can also pick up traces of vegetables used in Pho, such as cilantro and mint. If you've never had Pho, imagine beef with hoisin sauce, or more like an Asian-inspired worcestershire.

The level of heat in this is light. It registers as "mild-medium" on my personal heat scale (level 2 out of 5).

Otherwise, the flavors that define this jerky largely starts with this combination of plum sauce and fish sauce. There's no fishy flavor to this, but if you've had the table-side fish sauces found in Thai & Vietnamese restaurants, it's very much like that, a fermented, pungent flavor. The plum sauce gives it a light sweet and fruity character. There's some spiciness in the background and touches of savory spices and seasonings.

The meat consistency looks great, mostly all meat with little signs of fat. Stringiness is at a minimum. It has the appearance of being tenderized through some kind of pounding, with slice marks along the surface. It also chews like pound steak. It chews easily, with a light chewiness, and varies between semi-moist to dry.

Verdict: This Pho beef jerky from Lawless Jerky manages to do a great job of representing the flavor of a Pho soup, mostly as the soup base. It's a good balance between the sweet, fruity plum sauce and the fermented, pungent fish sauce. But there's a light blend of Pho seasonings in the background, along with traces of cilantro and mint. The natural meat flavors are noticeable in this. Overall, this jerky gives off a fresh, clean taste unlike many other major jerky brands.

Rating: Best (5/5)

pho beef jerky

pho jerky


  1. The honey chipotle "beef jerky " had a nice flavor and I love the fact that it was made with grass fed beef, unfortunately shoe lever leather is more tender, I could hardly chew it. Worst jerky I have ever eaten! I had to throw the other half of the bag away, it wasn't even worth trying to eat.

  2. Head's up Steve, Pho is Vietnamese, not Thai. Otherwise a good read. I stumbled on your site and I'll be trying some of the stuff you've reviewed!