The last couple of decades have seen jerky varieties evolve, exploding all over the animal world. Most of us are familiar with beef jerky and traditional beef jerky storage methods. However, there are tons of alternatives to conventional jerky that are equally satisfying, palatable to the taste, and nutritious in value.

A popular jerky choice nowadays is chicken jerky given its uniquely rich flavor profile, ease of consumption, and health benefits. If you are experimental with your snack pallet, then read our interesting guide below and taste the difference between chicken jerky and beef jerky.

The Making Of Chicken Jerky

The first step in making chicken jerky for humans is getting your chicken choice right. Preferably, use chicken breasts as they are leaner and easier to cut.

  • Slice the chicken breasts into evenly-cut, relatively thin strips
  • Soak the slices in your preferred marinade solution for about 6 hours or even overnight
  • Dehydrate the chicken in an oven or dehydrator until it gets to the texture and consistency you’d like
  • Use curing salt to get rid of any harmful bacteria in the meat

The Making Of Beef Jerky

  • The first step in crafting a delectable beef jerky delicacy is sourcing for lean and premium cuts such as flank steak or sirloin. Lean pieces have less fat content. 
  • If your beef is evidently fatty, be sure to trim out the excess fat.
  • Slice your lean meat into relatively thin pieces. Strike a certain sort of balance; don’t make the pieces too thin or too thick, as this affects the drying process.
  • Prepare a flavor-packed marinade. Blend together, soy sauce, Worcestershire sauce, onion powder, garlic powder, and black pepper for a consistent solution. Feel free to use any additional spices that augur well with your personal taste preference.
  • Immerse the slices in the marinade solution and leave them refrigerated for at least 4 hours or even overnight. The longer the marinating time, the more enhanced the beef’s flavor will be.
  • Dry the marinated beef in an oven (pre-heated at the lowest temperature possible) or a meat dehydrator.
  • Refrigeration is the conventional beef jerky storage method.

Nutritional Comparison

There are a couple of distinct differences between beef and chicken jerky’s nutritional profiles. 

Beef jerky features a richer fat, iron, and protein content. If you are looking for an instant energy boost, then this is the ideal option for you. However, if the beef is excessively fatty, it could have excess calories or unwanted fats. This could pose a potential health risk to anyone with dietary restrictions.

Chicken is naturally leaner than beef, making it a healthier option. As a matter of fact, chicken jerky has a lower concentration of sodium, fat, calories, and cholesterol content than beef jerky. Chicken is known for its high protein content, and it brings in added nutrients such as phosphorus and niacin. 

Taste & TextureTaste & Texture

Beef jerky is renowned for its smokiness and chewiness, offering a distinctly delicious taste. The intense flavor in beef jerky is usually from the marinades used during the jerky making process. 

Chicken jerky tastes distinctly different from beef jerky. The first thing you will notice is that chicken jerky’s flavor is milder and less smoky. During chicken jerky making, honey is part of the ingredients used in the marinade solution. This adds some sweetness to the flavor and contributes to the chicken’s tanginess.

When it comes to texture, beef jerky tends to be drier and more leathery than chicken jerky. Chicken is tender by nature, making it so much easier to consume.

Cost & Availability

Beef is more expensive than chicken, which makes beef jerky more costly. Beef jerky also uses more resources and takes more time to dehydrate.  Chicken jerky is more budget-friendly and it does not compromise on taste and health benefits. Beef jerky is more diverse in terms of variety and availability. Leading stores such as Jerky Brand have tons of options to choose from.

Environmental Impact

Beef production entails the use of more space and resources. As compared to chickens, cows emit more greenhouse gases; the methane they release is detrimental to the environment. 

Chicken farming, on the other hand, is a little bit more resource-efficient, leaving a lesser environmental menace. Chicken jerky is an ideal choice as it flaunts a less-burdening ecological process. If you are big on eco-friendly products, then chicken jerky is the right choice for you.

In conclusion

If you are conflicted between savory beef jerky and healthy chicken jerky, then it would be comforting to know that no option supersedes the other. Where healthy chicken jerky falls short in terms of flavor, it makes up for it with its numerous health benefits.

Have you ever tried chicken jerky? If so, how did you like it in contrast to beef jerky?

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