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Why Jerky is Not Always Keto-Friendly

Beef Jerky has Carbs?!

If you ask most Keto’ers what some of their favorite low carb snacks are, chances are you’ll hear “jerky” as one of the most popular answers. But be careful, because most jerky out there isn’t necessarily Keto-friendly and low in carbs. In fact, if you look at some of the top national jerky brands, many have 10g carbs or more per 1 oz. serving. For most people following a Ketogenic diet, that’s half of your daily carbs!

So why do these manufacturers add sugar and carbs to beef jerky? Let’s look at how most jerky is made to find the answer.

Less Beef, More Sugar

It takes 3-4lbs of beef to produce just 1lb of jerky, as the cooking process pulls moisture out of the beef, resulting in a much lighter finished product. By adding sugar, high fructose corn syrup, honey, or other liquid sweeteners, it not only increases the jerky’s carb count, but also weighs down the final product. So, by adding sugar, manufacturers can use less beef (the most expensive ingredient), and make up for the lost weight with sugar. Profit!

Keto Carne- More Beef For Your Buck!

Keto Carne is beef jerky in its purest form- made with no sugar, no preservatives, and nothing artificial. We started Keto Carne because it was difficult to find zero-carb, sugar-free beef jerky, and now we’re providing jerky that gives you more beef for your buck!


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Jul 19, 2018 • Posted by James O

Although I agree sugar is used in way too many foods now where it might not belong, there are actual good reasons to use a brown-sugar / salt rub when prepping beef jerky (or other animal jerkys). Sugar and salt are both hydroscopic and will help draw out moisture from the beef. Balancing the sugar with salt means you are not swallowing beef and salt only, and helps preserve meats without crazy chemicals. Corn syrup however has no place here. I understand you are trying to achieve a keto diet, so you definitely want to avoid it – but it isn’t purely a filler. You can read more about it here:

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