The first review for Pork Barrel BBQ will focus on a 2 ounce/56 gram bag of their Original BBQ uncured bacon jerky. This flavor is described as using their award winning Original Pork Barrel Barbecue Sauce to give it a tasty, tangy flavor with a perfect smokin’ kick! The bag was purchased at a 7-Eleven store in Dansville, New York.
Pork Barrel BBQ is located in Alexandria, Virginia, and it is distributed under the same name of Pork Barrel BBQ. The company was founded in December 2008, and started by selling a spice rub out in the basements of founders Heath Hall and Brett Thompson. In 2009, Heath’s and Brett’s fortunes changed after appearing on the hit reality show Shark Tank. Pork Barrel BBQ went from being a local brand to a national brand almost overnight. In 2015, using a Kickstarter fund raiser, three flavors of bacon jerky were introduced. You are encouraged to try this bacon jerky in a BLT, on a cheeseburger, or crumbled in a salad. Pork Barrel BBQ bacon jerky is uncured and has no nitrates or nitrites added.
Ingredients: Natural Uncured (No Nitrites or Nitrates Except Those Naturally Occurring In Celery Powder), Bacon (Pork, Water, Salt, Turbinado Sugar, Celery Powder, Lactic Acid Starter Culture [Not From Milk]), Original Pork Barrel Barbecue Sauce (Ketchup (Tomato Concentrate, Sugar, Vinegar, Salt, Onion Powder, Spice, Natural Flavors), Apple Cider Vinegar, Granulated Sugar, Spices, Water, Natural Smoke Flavor, Distilled Vinegar, Garlic Powder, Onion Powder).
The pork is not guaranteed to have at least partial free range access to roam about outside. As a result, the highest ingredient rating that can be awarded is a Very Good (9/10) rating.
This is a surprisingly good natural bacon ingredient list. Uncured bacon is used, meaning the bacon was not preserved with nitrates or nitrites.
This marinade consists of Pork Barrel BBQ award winning Original Pork Barrel Barbecue Sauce. The liquids used are primarily a good brand of ketchup, water, and the healthy vinegar trifecta of white vinegar, apple cider vinegar, and distilled white vinegar.
Some healthy ingredients added are spices, garlic powder, and onion powder.
The sugar level is high at 7 grams of sugar per 28 grams of jerky. For a sweet based flavor as we have here with barbecue, our preference is 5 grams of sugar or less per 28 grams of jerky. The salt level is also high at 590mg of salt per 28 grams of jerky. Our preference is 350mg of salt or less per 28 grams of jerky.
This jerky qualifies to have no sodium nitrite, or any other similar unhealthy preservative. Instead, salt is the main preservative used, and vinegar to a lesser degree. With more kudos to Pork Barrel BBQ, this jerky has no MSG added.
Decent (7/10) – Ingredient Rating
Written by guest jerky reviewer Stéphane Leclerc
This Pork Barrel BBQ – Original BBQ Bacon Jerky has an awesome aroma and fragrance. It has a wonderful smell of smoky bacon and barbecue sauce. A first quick whiff and I already knew, I was in for a real treat.
The flavor of smoked bacon and ketchup really dominates this jerky. We’ve all had ketchup based jerky flavor in the past and this is by far and away the most reminiscent of the real McCoy. This jerky definitely lives up to its flavor descriptor and delivers in spades a great punch of real barbecue flavor.
The sweetness level is certainly noticeable and within reason for a good barbecue flavor. The saltiness is between a mild and moderate level. The “vinegary” characteristic of ketchup is also a great asset to this flavor profile, as it adds a desirable brightness and gently cuts through the richness of the bacon. There is a persistent and enjoyable mild smokiness accentuated by a slight taste of onion and garlic in the background.
These strips are like most traditionally sized bacon strips. Although softer and easy to chew, the texture is between soft, tender and dry. This texture has a fun and interesting “candy like” slight crunchiness and likely a result of the sugar crystallization. As with most bacon, there is a copious amount of fat present and handling this jerky does leave some oily residue on the fingers.
At JerkyIngredients.com, we really enjoyed this Pork Barrel BBQ – Original BBQ Bacon Jerky. We all found this to be a pure bacon jerky treat and this flavor is way up there. This meat snack is incredibly tasty and it is inundated with a myriad of great tasting flavors. This jerky is incredibly addictive and I went through my portion faster than I could yell scissors.
After being so impressed with their bacon jerky, we are now intrigued and very curious about trying their Award Winning “Original Pork Barrel Barbecue Sauce”. I will be sure to pick up a few bottles on my next little trip to the US while visiting our close neighbors South of the border.
We highly recommend this bacon jerky goodness to any fan or wannabe fan of both bacon and barbecue sauce. We even recommend this great jerky to vegetarian and vegan alike as this is a sure way to convert and let them indulge in the pleasure of the flesh. This jerky is by all means an easy, slam dunk and we unanimously and very enthusiastically gave it a 10/10 taste rating.
This 2 ounce/56 gram bag of bacon jerky cost $4.99, which works out to $2.50 an ounce. That equates to a borderline cheap price.
Excellent (10/10) – Taste Rating
This resealable plastic bag has everything imprinted on the bag itself, both on the front and back. The Pork Barrel BBQ logo is a pig holding a cooking fork.
The Pork Barrel BBQ slogan is “It’s Bacon, But Better!”. Some facts printed on this bag are “A Good Source Of Protein”, “Gluten Free”, “As Seen on ABC’s Shark Tank”, “Made in USA”, and “No Nitrates or Nitrites Added”.
All bag categories are covered here. On the back is a great, and very detailed blurb about the story of Pork Barrel BBQ and uncured bacon jerky. The @porkbarrelbbq social media handle is displayed for Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, and Pinterest.
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