A nutrition-conscious snack brand, The New Primal is based in Charleston, South Carolina, and draws inspiration from founder Jason Burke’s health awakening. When Burke turned his eating habits around in 2009, he sought an on-the-go treat that fit his primal diet and active lifestyle. He loved jerky and trail mix but felt a little defeated whenever he looked at the nutrition information, so he started making his own. In time, he developed a recipe and launched The New Primal to share his favored snack with the world. More convenient but no less beneficial than homemade jerky, The New Primal is an obvious choice for taking on gym trips, car outings, air travel, and outdoor adventures.
The New Primal’s jerky is a product that gyms and health-food stores can feel confident putting on their shelves. The meat comes from grass-fed cattle and fowl, respectively, delivering a leaner meat from better-treated animals. To this end, the turkeys are raised free-range as well.
The USDA-approved jerky is 100% free of hormones, antibiotics, artificial preservatives, and gluten. Naturally dehydrated, the snack contains less sugar and salt than conventional gas station offerings.
There are two servings in each resealable package, so the snack can be nibbled and saved for later or shared with a friend. Colorful and translucent, the packaging also has a clear “window” on the back so that you can see what the snack looks like before digging in.
The list of ingredients spells out all of the flavors, so there are no mystery spices. When you eat the Spicy Beef, you know you are getting tamari, honey, pineapple juice, lemon juice, garlic, black pepper, ginger, cayenne pepper, and jalapeños. When you try the turkey, you can expect honey, pineapple juice, apple cider vinegar (apples and water), sea salt, lemon juice, beef stock powder (beef meat and bones, water), granulated garlic, ginger, natural liquid smoke (water, hickory smoke concentrate), and granulated onion. Though the choice of tamari may be controversial because it is not paleo, the fermented soy is reportedly easier for the body to digest than regular soy.
The New Primal sent Gessato samples of their Spicy Beef and Turkey Jerky. Both were tender, and you could taste the tamari and the pineapple juice. The peppery beef was the most popular of the pair, though the cayenne and jalapeño seasoning may be too hot for some palates. This is the one that our team would go for again. While not unpleasant, the turkey seemed chalkier, perhaps because that is the nature of dried turkey, or maybe because of the liquid smoke flavoring. The turkey struck us as more of an acquired taste, though we see it appealing to people who prefer a milder meat or are eating for the protein.
The snacks may be stocked at your local health-food store, outdoor recreation shop, or CrossFit gym. Without a doubt, the jerky can be purchased online from The New Primal (4 for $26.95) or from Amazon, where the products are available in various quantities and flavors.