Gone are the days when beef was the default jerky choice. Now there are a multitude of snackable jerky varieties, made with everything from trout to mushrooms. Here are six of our favorites—for mindless snacking or a protein packed pick-me-up.
It might sound ridiculous, but jerky is having a moment. Everyone from hippies, to chefs, to CrossFit-obsessed paleo types, are making and snacking on jerky. Gone are the days when beef was the default choice for jerky meat. Now there are a multitude of snackable jerky varieties, made with everything from trout to mushrooms. Here are six of our favorites—for mindless snacking or a protein packed pick-me-up.
1. Righteous Felon Beef Jerky
Prior to jerkification (that’s a word, right?), Righteous Felon’s beef jerky is dry aged for 21 days so the meat can better absorb the flavors of the marinade. Seasoned with fresh, wholesome ingredients, flavors range from the “Che-Potle Guevara” with chile powder and cumin, to my personal favorite, the “Victorious B.I.G.,” which is infused with a rich, espresso-like beer from Victory Brewing Company. $23.99/three 2oz. packages, righteousfelon.com
2. Texas 44 Farms Jerky
Made from farm-raised Texas cattle, this small-batch jerky is thick, chewy, and lightly smoked with a spicy kick at the end. $25.95/four 2oz. bags, 44steaks.com
3. Sunburst Farms Smoked Trout Jerky
Sunburst farms starts with the freshest rainbow trout, raised in North Carolina mountain water, which is then ground together with organic miso, garlic powder, black pepper and lime juice before smoking. The result is a clean-tasting, smoky jerky that’s totally snackable. $6.99/2oz., sunbursttrout.com
4. Uncle Andy’s Jerky
Chewy and perfectly seasoned, our favorite flavor of this fun, Colorado-made jerky is the tangy barbecue. Don’t forget to order some jerky swag while you’re at it. $6.99/2oz. uncle-andys-jerky.com
5. The New Primal Turkey Jerky
Finally, a flavorful turkey jerky we can actually get behind. This version from The New Primal is made with free-range and hormone-free turkey breast and marinated in apple cider vinegar, pineapple juice, honey and ginger. $29/four 2oz. packages, thenewprimal.com
6. Jonty Jacobs Biltong
This South African-style jerky is naturally air-dried and still has small pieces of fat on the meat, which gives the thinly sliced beef a tender flavor and texture. Try swapping this in for the charcuterie on your next cheese board. $10.99/4oz., jontyjacobs.com
Jerky Destination: Third Rail Bar
Third Rail in San Francisco is the ultimate watering hole for the urban cowboy. Stop by to try out their signature jerkies, like the shiitake mushroom jerky with soy sauce, sake and balsamic vinegar or the pastrami-style beef jerky with peppercorns, mustard, celery seeds and brown sugar. The bar also offers “rail shots”, which include “a little beer, a little shot and a little jerky” for $10. 628 20th St., San Francisco, CA 94107 thirdrailbarsf.com