Jerky enthusiasts owners Scott Hare and Justin Jahnke made jerky and meat sticks in their kitchen, trading recipes. They put their heads and hearts together, and turned El Norteño from a dream between friends into a reality in February 2016. The name El Norteño was chosen to pay tribute to the fun, vibrant, joyful Norteño music and music culture so well-loved throughout Northern Mexico, Texas and the Southwestern US. Scott and Justin created El Norteño so you could experience the same satisfaction and bold, unique, rich flavors that they first discovered in their own homes, and with their friends and families south of the border in Guadalajara, Mexico.
This new All-Natural beef jerky product is advertised as for jerky lovers looking for a more tender, low carb, zero sugar jerky, and in a smaller size jerky. They are really proud of this recipe, and they worked hard to make it delicious. Their number one goal is great flavor AND customer satisfaction.
This El Norteño jerky brand is distributed by El Norteño Foods, and they are located in Austin, Texas. The manufacturer of this jerky is Monet Foods, LLC, and they are based out of Belleville, Wisconsin.
The next review for El Norteño will focus on a 1 ounce/28 gram bag of their All-Natural original flavored beef jerky. This jerky was kindly submitted for review by Founder, and Director of Brand Development, Justin Jahnke.
Ingredients: Beef, Water, Soybeans, Spices (Including Cayenne Pepper, Cumin, and Chili Pepper), Celery Juice Powder, Garlic Powder, Sugar, Dehydrated Onion, Dehydrated Garlic, Jalapeno Pepper, Soybean Oil, Spice Extractive. Allergen Warnings: Soy
The beef used is not guaranteed to be free of growth hormones or additional antibiotics. However, the beef sourced from the Midwest is guaranteed to have at least partial free range access to graze on grass and roam about. As a result, the highest ingredient rating that can be awarded is a Very Good (9/10) rating.
Multiple healthy ingredients are added such as spices, cumin, garlic powder, dehydrated onion, dehydrated garlic, and spice extractive. The slight kick is achieved from Jalapeno pepper, cayenne pepper, and hot chili pepper.
The sugar level is perfect at 0 grams of sugar per 28 grams of jerky. The salt level is slightly on the high side at 470mg of salt per 28 grams of jerky. However, the salt level is ignored because minimally processed sea salt is used, as opposed to heavily processed table salt.
This jerky does qualify to have no sodium nitrite, or any other similar unhealthy preservatives. Instead, sea salt is the main preservative, and celery juice powder with its naturally occurring nitrates. Commendably, this jerky has no MSG added.
Written by guest jerky reviewer Paul Rekker
When I open the bag, I believe I smell soy, along with natural beef. The pieces are large in size, yet cut paper thin. The jerky is somewhat dry, yet easy to chew. There is no oily residue left on your fingers.
The first flavors I encounter are salt, pepper, garlic, onion, and copious amounts of natural beef. I’m detecting a favorable kick here, a spectacular addition of heat to the mix. While not intense, it is definitively noticeable, and an awesome addition.
This El Norteño jerky flavor is just original in flavor enough to be considered original, but it adds small quotients enough here and there to be considered “a smashing good flavor!!”
Gentlemen, be prepared to be “WOWED!!” A definitive 10/10. Two thumbs way up!!!👍👍”
Here is what Stéphane had to say: “My opinion is very much in line with Paul’s opinion. I really enjoy this El Norteño all-natural original beef jerky. A light sprinkle of cayenne favorably awakes my taste buds while all these flavors gracefully interact with each other. However, I feel as I am left hanging and looking for a little ‘Je ne sais quoi’ or not really knowing what’s missing. After some consideration, I feel it may likely be due to the small size of the portion where the flavors were not allowed to compound, build-up the flavor profile and reach its full potential. As such, I’ve rated this jerky 9/10.”
Here is what Mark had to say about this All-Natural original beef jerky flavor from El Norteño: “Thanks Stéphane and Paul. I tend to lean with Stéphane in this case. While this jerky tastes great and is addictive, the taste profile slightly lacks something. Perhaps vinegar, but it’s hard to argue against Paul’s and ostensibly Stéphane’s logic that the spicy kick fills in the void when one eats enough of this all-natural jerky. Certainly noticeable is the delicious flavor of cayenne pepper with a tiny kick, granted I have a high tolerance for heat.”
“This jerky was shared between seven people, where everybody was between an 8 and 10 taste rating. All had good things to say, but some were not particularly blown away.”
Three 1 ounce/28 gram bags currently sell on Amazon for $4.33, which rates as an expensive price. There is a 15% discount deal if a six or 12 bag pack of jerky is purchased, which lowers the price to $2.83 an ounce that ends the end of September 2019.
This white resealable plastic bag has everything printed directly on the bag itself, both on the front and back. The front has a picture of a man who is likely of Mexican descent playing an accordion.
A slogan printed on this bag is “All-Natural”. Some facts printed on this bag are “0g Sugar”, “14g Protein”, “100% American Beef”, “Gluten Free”, “No Added Nitrates Nitrites”, “No MSG”, “Minimally Processed, No Artificial Ingredients”, and “Carne Constyle”.
The only minor bag category missing is the jerky weight not stated in grams. Printed on the back is a good blurb about El Norteño and this All-Natural original flavor. To the credit of El Norteño Foods both an email address and a toll free phone number is provided for customer inquiries. The @nortenofoods Facebook and Instagram handles are provided.