The next review for BJO Smoky Mountain will focus on a 4 ounce/113 gram bag of their Fire flavored beef jerky. This flavor is described as a being a hot flavor, but you’re still able to taste the other flavors, including the natural beef flavor. The bag was purchased in Tannersville, Pennsylvania, at the Crossings Premium Outlets, where there is a Pocono Mountain Beef Jerky Outlet store.
This BJO Smoky Mountain brand is distributed under the name of The Beef Jerky Outlet Franchise, Inc., who are located in Seymour, Tennessee, near the Smoky Mountains. The owner, Todd Logan, established this Pocono Mountain BJO store in October 2015. In 2017, there will be over 100 Beef Jerky Outlet stores located across the USA. The Beef Jerky Outlet opened up their first store in 2010. A wide variety of jerky is available for sale, and a 100% grass-fed beef jerky line was launched recently.
Ingredients: Beef, Soy Sauce (Water, Salt, Hydrolyzed Soy Protein, Corn Syrup, Caramel Color, Potassium Sorbate), Water, Brown Sugar, Worcestershire Sauce (Distilled White Vinegar, Molasses, Corn Syrup, Water, Salt, Caramel Color, Garlic Powder, Sugar, Spices, Tamarind, Natural Flavor, Sulfiting Agent), Vinegar, Hot Sauce (Red Habaneros, Hot Pepper Extract, Red Chilies, Tomato Paste, Salt, Onions, Cane Vinegar, Garlic, Vegetable Oil, Xanthan Gum, Citric Acid), Red Pepper, Garlic, Hot Sauce (Ghost Pepper/Naga Jolokia, Hot Pepper Extract, Vegetable Oil, Roasted Garlic Pulp, Acetic Acid), Spices. Allergen Warnings: Soy
The beef used is not guaranteed to be free of growth hormones or additional antibiotics. Also, the beef is not guaranteed to have at least partial free range access to graze on grass. As a result, the highest ingredient rating that can be awarded is a Good (8/10) rating.
The liquid marinade consists of a poor soy sauce, two good hot sauces, water, a fair Worcestershire sauce, and healthy vinegar. It is disappointing that the soy sauce uses the highly processed flavor enhancer hydrolyzed soy protein. Also not good is that cheap, processed corn syrup is used in the soy sauce.
Some healthy ingredients used include roasted garlic pulp, garlic, and onion. The heat is achieved from two hot sauces that use ghost peppers otherwise known as Naga Jolokia, red habaneros, and red chilies. Hot peppers are healthy if eaten in moderation, which flushes toxins out of the body.
The sugar level is great at less than 1 gram of sugar per 28 grams of jerky. The salt level is very high at 600mg of salt per 28 grams of jerky. Our preference is 350mg of salt or less per 28 grams of jerky. Keep in mind that this nutrition facts table is not trustworthy, as the nutrition facts table does not appear to change for each flavor.
This jerky does qualify to have no sodium nitrite, or any other similar unhealthy preservatives. Instead, the main preservative used is salt. Vinegar to a lesser degree also acts as a preservative.
This jerky does not qualify to be MSG free because the unhealthy flavor enhancer hydrolyzed soy protein is used.
Alright (6/10) – Ingredient Rating
These strips of jerky are mostly large in shape, and sliced borderline thin. There is a relatively dry texture, and chewing these jerky strips are within reason. There are very little signs of fat, and handling this jerky leaves no oily residue on your fingers.
The first flavor that jumps out is the vinegar, which is later followed by soy sauce, and Worcestershire sauce. The hot sauces are noticeable also, and a great addition to this flavor. There is a mild level of saltiness, and a faint hint of garlic.
A mild sweetness does an effective job to counteract the heat. On a heat scale, this flavor would rate about 3 out of 5. Not quite hot enough to be labeled ‘fire’, but there is still a reasonable amount of heat. Overall, an enjoyable, well balanced, great tasting flavor that packs some heat.
A 4 ounce/113 gram bag sells online for $9.99. That works out to $2.50 an ounce, which rates as a slightly expensive price. If you purchase three bags in their store, the price is reduced to $25. This jerky is surely recommended if you enjoy a hot based flavor.
Very Good (9/10) – Taste Rating
This resealable, clear plastic bag has a label affixed to the front, and nothing on the back. The Beef Jerky Outlet logo has bull horns above their name.
Their slogan is “Made in the foothills of the Smoky Mountains of Tennessee”. Facts printed on this bag are “Made in USA”, “Warning Extra Hot”, “Now With Ghost Peppers”, and “Smoke Flavor Added”.
The only bag categories missing are a soy allergen alert, and no blurb is printed about the jerky or flavor.
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