Meaty Trail Snacks Roundup

Trail mix is good and all, but if I had my druthers (and it wasn’t freezing cold), I think I’d choose jerky or similar snacks as my go-to while camping or on the trail. Something about the taste and texture just remind  me of the outdoors. Over the last month or so, we’ve been collecting different versions to include in this roundup. All can be purchased online, while some are available at your local gas station or local convenience store.

Patagonia Provisions

Meaty Trail Snacks

Buffalo Jerky (MSRP $10/2oz – Sample Provided): made from 100% grass-fed, free-range, antibiotic- and hormone-free American bison; tasted while hiking at Matthiessen State Park; several of us felt there was a fishy odor to this meat, but all enjoyed the coarse texture. Happy to recommend for its mostly organic ingredients as well as its support of bison farming and small farmers.

Wild Zora Meat and Veggie Snacks

Meaty Trail Snacks

BBQ Beef with Kale, Tomato, Red Bell Pepper; Chili Beef with Kale, Apricot, Cayenne Pepper; Parmesan Beef with Kale, Tomato, Basil; Rosemary Lamb with Spinach and Turmeric; or Masala Turkey with Spinach, Dates, Cardamom(MSRP $3.49/1oz or $16.95/multipack of all 5 flavors – samples provided): so great to have veggies and other goodies included. A family business with products you’d be happy to give to your kids: products are grain-free, gluten-free, soy-free, nut-free, MSG-free, and milk-free (except the cheese recipe); meats are 100% grass-fed and free-range with no added hormones, antibiotics, or nitrites (except those naturally occurring). every ingredient is something you recognize and are happy to ingest. These all have unique and interesting flavors and I enjoyed all of them. One caveat – while all the bars are tasty, the spicy bars are SPICY! Great for me, but be careful if you’re not big on that in your snacks.

Bass Pro Shops

Meaty Trail Snacks


Uncle Buck’s Original Premium Beef Jerky (MSRP $6.99/3.25oz): Very salty. Super plasticky feeling when first placed in the mouth. Decent chewy texture with a lot of smoke flavor. Besides beef, 10 additional ingredients included though only one that I had to look up (sodium erythorbate, for faster curing and color retention).

Meaty Trail Snacks


Uncle Buck’s Buffalo Jerky (MSRP $6.99/3.25oz): Slightly plasticky feeling, though texture seems more natural while chewing. Very salty with a pleasing generic meat flavor, plenty of smoke. Besides buffalo, this package contains 11 additional ingredients, including, oddly enough, “ground and formed beef;” doesn’t make me very confident knowing they had to manipulate this product in such a way.

Jack Link’s 

Meaty Trail Snacks


Peppered Beef Jerky (MSRP $16.99/8oz): Purchased at a gas station along with some sweet coffee (a road trip indulgence), this is classic jerky available pretty much anywhere. Nice peppery flavor and great texture. If this was grass fed or organic beef it would be my favorite of the jerkies. Unfortunately, it has additional ingredients like hydrolyzed corn protein, but otherwise not too bad.

While the mainstream jerkies had a range from okay to really good, it’s a shame that they have additional, unneeded (in my opinion) ingredients. When I can, I always go with local first, organic and/or free-range next, and finally what’s available. I also prefer a drier, more textured mouthfeel over soft and/or plasticky. To me, more flavor is always good, but a heavy hand with the salt can be a turnoff as well.


These are only a few options – suggestions for other good ones?
More suggestions from me: DIY, CLIF food,  Protein Bars, Trailfoody, Pure Bar, Stryve Biltong.

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