It’s that time of the year when Americans celebrate one of the favorite snacks of preppers, survivalists, and rednecks – jerky. Yep, June 12 is National Jerky Day. This strange holiday was started in 2012 by Jack Link’s Beef Jerky and the Wisconsin Beef Council but it only became an annual event a few years ago.
Jerky has been around since the 1550s or likely even earlier. It started with the Quechan tribe from South America that used to dry thin slices of alpaca and llama meat under the sun or smoke them over a fire. They called the dried meat ch’arki. Spanish invaders saw this and brought the idea with them. They called it charqui, which eventually evolved into jerky. It’s quite unbelievable really that we only recently celebrated the existence of meat jerky considering it has been around for at least 470 years.
The best thing about meat jerky is its shelf life. The dehydration process prolongs the edibleness of meat making it the perfect survival food. In fact, cowboys in the early days brought jerky with them during their long travels. Modern-day survivalists and preppers also recommend having meat jerky in your stash of emergency food.
Jack Link’s Original Beef Jerky 1/2 Pounder Bag
One name that has become synonymous with jerky is Jack Link’s. In fact, it was them that started National Jerky Day, as we mentioned earlier. If you’re new to meat jerky, Jack Link’s products are definite must-tries.
Their Original Beef Jerky is made from 100% premium beef about 96% of which are fat-free lean cuts. They don’t use nitrates, nitrites, and MSG. Each serving of the Original Flavor Beef Jerky is packed with 80 calories and 11 grams of protein. It comes in a resealable bag so you can snack on a few and store them for later.
Jack Link’s Beef Jerk Teriyaki (2) 9 oz. Bags
If you like to try a different flavor, try Jack Link’s Beef Jerk Teriyaki. This one is also made from 100% premium beef with 96% fat-free. The lean cuts are seasoned with salt, soy sauce, and water. The teriyaki flavor is achieved by adding ginger, onion, and other seasonings. The MSG-free jerky is packed with 10 grams of protein and 80 calories per serving.
Tillamook Country Smoker Real Hardwood Smoked Teriyaki Sticks Resealable Jar
Tillamook Country Smoker is another popular name in the meat jerky industry as evidenced by the 4.3 out of 5 stars given by more than 1,200 customers. The company, based in Bay City, Oregon, has been making high-quality and tasty jerky for 45 years.
The Teriyaki Smoked Meat Stick is made from premium tender USA beef and pork carefully selected and sliced by their artisan meat cutters. The meat is seasoned with soy sauce, garlic, and other ingredients and then dried over real hardwood smoke. Each serving has 8 grams of protein and less than 1 gram of sugar. It comes in a 20ct reclosable jar.
People’s Choice Old Fashioned Original Beef Jerky
It take’s courage to say that their product is not for everyone but that’s exactly what People’s Choice Old Fashioned Original Beef Jerky is. The jerky is made the old-fashioned way, which means the meat is cut into thick whole slices and dried as is. The result is a tough and chewy jerky, which should let you enjoy the taste of “real meat flavor.”
People’s Choice does not use sugar, nitrites, nitrates, or MSG. The beef jerky is also 100% gluten, soy, and nut free. They only used water and natural spices to make the jerky. Each pack contains 16 grams of protein, 90 calories, and 2.5 grams of fat.
Buffalo Bob’s 15-Piece Game Jerky Gift Pack
Those with an adventurous palate will appreciate the 15 Piece Game Jerky Gift Pack from Buffalo Bob’s. Some of the exotic flavors include wild boar, kangaroo, alligator, buffalo, elk, ostrich, and venison. The meat sticks are individually wrapped and packed in a sealed bag.
Other Popular Survival Foods
Meat jerky is definitely the star of National Jerky Day but it’s not the only dried food that should be in your prepper pantry.
Related: 15 of the Best Survival Foods To Stockpile For The Apocalypse
Like meat, fruits and vegetables can be dried or dehydrated. Water is removed during the drying process leaving a shrunk but energy-dense version of the produce. Dried fruits are rich in fiber, antioxidants, and micronutrients since they retain all the good stuff they have during the dehydration process. Obviously, they’re a lot healthier than eating candies and other sweets for snacks.
Sunny Fruit Organic Dried Prunes
Raisins, prunes, and dates are perhaps the most popular dried fruits. You can find them in almost all grocery stores. Sunny Fruit Organic Dried Prunes are made from plums grown in Argentina. The fruits are sun-dried to achieve the right sweetness while retaining their nutrients such as fiber, potassium, magnesium, and antioxidants. The vegan and gluten-free prunes are free of sugar, syrups, sulfur, nuts, and preservatives. They’re also certified kosher and halal.
The Sunny Fruit Dried Prunes come in five 1.06-ounce, single-serve pouches that are kept in a large pack. This will let you enjoy one serving of dried prunes without exposing the other.
ReadyWise 120 Serving Freeze Dried Fruit Bucket
The ReadyWise 120 Serving Freeze Dried Fruit Bucket, meanwhile, is the ideal survival food for your pantry. Each bucket provides a combined 120 servings of dried apples, bananas, peaches, and strawberries packed in mylar pouches. These are then placed inside stackable food containers. That means you can buy as many as you want and store them in your pantry with ease.
The dehydrated fruits are rich in nutrients and freeze-dried giving them up to 20 years of shelf life if properly stored. You just need to add hot water and then wait a few minutes before you can partake of the fruits.
Gourmet Nut Power Up High Energy Trail Mix
Nuts and grains are survival pantry staples. Plus, they make great snacks. The Gourmet Nut Power Up High Energy Trail Mix mixes the crunchiness of nuts and the sweetness of dried fruits to make one of the healthiest snacks around.
Power Up Trail Mix consists of walnuts, cashews, pumpkin seeds, banana chips, coconut, cranberries, mango, papaya, and pineapple. The keto-friendly snack is high in protein and other nutrients. It doesn’t have gluten, sulfites, preservatives, and other artificial ingredients. The vegan survival food is also non-GMO and paleo-friendly.
ReadyWise120 Serving Freeze Dried Vegetable Bucket
ReadyWise also offers dehydrated vegetables. The 120 Serving Freeze Dried Vegetable Bucket contains corn, peas, broccoli, and green beans. These are packed in polyester film pouches and flushed with nitrogen. They can last up to 25 years, which is an important factor in choosing the right survival food for your emergency stash.
Dehydrated and ready-to-eat meals are also popular among preppers, survivalists, and military personnel. The main reasons are their long shelf life and storability.
Moisture, which inhibits bacteria growth, is removed during the process of dehydration so it can be stored for a long time. Plus, the meals shrink in size, which makes them easier to pack and store. Dehydrated meals are also nutritious as they retain vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients when dehydrated.
Related: 10 Canned Foods With The Longest Shelf-Life You Should Be Stockpiling
Legacy Food Storage 120 Serving Entree Bucket
The Legacy Food Storage 120 Serving Entree Bucket consists of 12 servings each of Enchilada, Beans and Rice, Cheese and Broccoli Bake, Macaroni and Cheese, Pasta Primavera, Classic Chili Mix, and White Bean Chili Mix. You also get 16 servings of Creamy Potato Soup Mix. Creamy A La King, Pasta Alfredo, and Italian Pasta with Marinara have eight servings each while there are four servings of Stroganoff and Vegetable Rotini Pasta. With these many choices, you don’t have to worry about eating the same thing over and over again.
Rations 2400 Calorie Food Bars
These dehydrated meals require hot water when it’s time to consume them. While they’re great survival foods, they aren’t really as on-the-go as food bars. Rations 2400 Calorie Food Bars and similar products should also be in your prepper pantry and bug out bags. These compact and vacuum-sealed food bars give you that sudden boost of energy thanks to the 400 calories in each of the six bars. These food bars taste like shortbread and last for 5 years.
Please feel free to leave a comment below and share what you think is the best meat jerky in the market. If you also have ideas on how to celebrate National Jerky Day, go ahead and tell us. Also, you can check out Gentleman Pirate Club to find out more about survival foods and the many tips on how to store them in your home. Finally, share this post with people you think are interested in meat jerky and other survival foods.