Different types of beef jerky on countertop

Beef Jerky Is Shockingly Healthy—Here Are the Best Brands to Buy

The fabled roadtrip nosh isn't a bad midday snack, either.

Beef jerky. The salty, chewy, and sweet road trip snack of your dreams. The small morsels of beef are cut to the absolute perfect size for quick eating. Truthfully, there may not be a better snack than jerky, but an influx of less-than-great versions have hit store and internet shelves in the last decade than are worth counting. Which ones are good? Which ones have so much black pepper, teriyaki flavoring, and highly processed nonsense covering them that they are unrecognizable from the legendary gas station snack? We have the answers. These are the best beef jerk options you can buy.

Is Beef Jerky Healthy?

Yes, beef jerky is generally healthy. It’s a relatively low-calorie protein snack that carries minerals we don’t get enough of—namely iron and zinc. One ounce is the typical jerky serving size, and in that one ounce, you get roughly 12g of protein, 7g of carbs, a gram or so of fat, and 100 calories. Sugar and sodium levels vary based on brand and flavor, but for a single ounce of a snack—an ounce is a couple of pieces at most—these are excellent numbers, especially in the nutritionally bogus world of snacks.  

Mind sodium and sugar levels, though; some servings of jerky are so overloaded with salt and sugar you can nearly run through your typical daily allotment of either just eating half a bag. Here are the best options to buy.

The Best Beef Jerky You Can Buy