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What do you look for in beef jerky?

In your opinion, what qualities in a piece of beef jerky makes it "good"? I've tried lots of different kinds, but I still don't know what really good beef jerky should be like

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  1. If you like it, it's good. If everyone had the same opinion about what's good jerky, it would all taste the same by now. Hell, people can't even agree on whether the beef should be cut with or against the grain or somewhere in between.

    1 Reply
    1. re: Zeldog

      I just made some that was made from ground beef heart, then extruded with a jerky gun. It's easier to bite off a piece and easier to chew.

    2. I like Taiwanese style beef jerky -- i.e., a bit wet and not bone dry like American beef jerky.

      Fruit flavored is a favorite.

      1. Personally? I prefer it when my jerky tastes like beef. A lot of people prefer Teriyaki seasoning or sweet jerky, or whatever else, but I much prefer a jerky that's 1) jerky (meaning you have to work a little to get a chaw) and chewy, and 2) not messed with too much. Just my $0.02.

        1. I prefer beef jerky to be thin and flat, not thick and chunky like a beef stick. It shouldn't be difficult to tear off a piece with your teeth. It shouldn't be too salty, and I prefer it not sweet. It should taste like beef.