Is beef jerky good or bad for you?
February 01, 2022 | Blog: The Range

Is Beef Jerky Good or Bad for You?

Beef jerky often gets a bad reputation for being an unhealthy food. But like many snacks, it’s only as bad as its worst ingredient. Here at Country Archer, we only use grass-fed-and-finished beef to make our premium jerky. As a result, it’s much better for you than other brands.

So, here’s why beef jerky can be good for you (providing you choose the right type!).

Health Benefits of Beef Jerky

Is beef jerky healthy - good or bad for you?


More good fat, less bad fat

Using pasture-raised cattle means their meat is leaner and has less bad fat than grain-fed cattle. This is because cattle aren’t meant to eat grain – it causes them to put on fat instead of muscle.

Of course, not all fat is bad. We want some fat to make the jerky taste good. What’s more, the chloroplasts in grass (the green cells) contain Omega-3 fatty acids, which are vital for brain development.

No antibiotics or hormones

Grain-fed cattle are fed large amounts of hormones and antibiotics. As you could probably guess, these make them grow faster, process the grain, and not get ill in confined living spaces. Unfortunately, these nasty chemicals make their way into the meat and then into your diet.

Grass-fed cattle, however, don’t need all this because they get it from their natural diet. Not only is this better for the cows, it’s also better for you.

Excellent source of protein

Jerky is a source of protein that’s also low in carbs. This makes it a great snack choice for people on low-carb or paleo diets, or anyone for that matter! It’s also rich in a wide range of minerals, including zinc, vitamin B12, iron, folate, and much more.

Beef Jerky Good for You Protein

Can Beef Jerky Be Bad For You?

The answer to this is obviously yes, as anything can be bad for you. The biggest thing with beef jerky is to watch out for certain nasty ingredients, such as the following:


You might have heard of MSG, or monosodium glutamate. It’s a salt used to enhance flavor and, while generally seen as safe, some people can react to it. As with all salt, it’s best avoided in high quantities.

Brominated Vegetable Oil

BVO is an emulsifier (it stops ingredients from separating). The biggest issue here is the bromine, which alone can irritate the skin, nose and mouth. The FDA originally considered small amounts of BVO to be safe, but it has since reversed that decision. BVO being banned in Europe and Japan should tell you enough.

Mechanically Separated Chicken

This is as gross as it sounds. Mechanically separated meat is all the leftover bits blitzed into a paste. As you can imagine, it takes quite a lot of chemicals to create said paste, so it’s best avoided.

healthy grass fed beef jerky is good for you not bad for you


Grass-Fed Jerky is the Best Option For You

So, if you want to eat jerky (and who doesn’t?), make sure you only buy 100% pasture-raised grass-fed-and-finished jerky. At Country Archer, that’s exactly what we sell. Not only does it taste better, it’s more environmentally friendly than grain-fed cattle. Check out our full range now.

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