Is Beef Jerky Fattening? (Or Is It Healthy? And How Much?)

There aren’t many snacks more popular than beef jerky, especially while we’re talking about the USA. One of the reasons for that is that jerky is, unlike the vast majority of other snacks, usually considered to be at least somehow healthy. Is it true, though?

Is beef jerky fattening? If eaten in considerable amounts, beef jerky is not fattening. Quite the reverse, beef jerky can be a good choice for those wanting to lose some weight, including people that are trying the keto diet.

However, you obviously won’t lose weight by simply eating jerky. So how exactly is it with this delicious munch’s health effects then? That’s exactly what we’re going to explore in this article.

Is Beef Jerky FatteningPin

Can beef jerky make you gain weight?

Beef jerky contains a lot of proteins and a decent amount of fat, too, and therefore can make you gain weight if you eat too much of it.

Is beef jerky good for weight loss?

But the same goes with any other food; beef jerky can actually be good for weight loss when used smartly. That’s because it mainly consists of proteins, and proteins satisfy your hunger for a longer time. 

That makes it a perfect snack option for people seeking weight reduction, so don’t worry about eating some now and then.

Because jerky usually contains only a small amount of carbohydrates, it’s also a good choice for those on the keto diet.

Related: Is Beef Jerky Keto Friendly?

Is beef jerky high in calories?

Well, not really; an average snack portion should contain „only“ something about 80 calories (for comparison, the appropriate portion of chips would be something like 180).

That may seem like a lot to someone, but you still have to take into account that it is still a snack that should mainly satisfy your appetite. You obviously shouldn’t be eating a lot of it, especially if you’re trying to lose some weight.

Is it OK to eat beef jerky every day?

As we’ve said, when you’re trying to lose weight, beef jerky should be a reward after something and not an everyday meal. And it isn’t okay to eat beef jerky, even regardless of that, for many other reasons. 

For example, because of the health risks associated with eating processed meat too often, beef jerky contains a lot of sodium, and it isn’t really good to eat beef daily in general.

How much beef jerky can you eat a day?

Eating too much beef jerky is harmful mainly because of excessive sodium intake linked; a normal portion (25g) contains roughly one-fifth daily sodium allowance, but that can vary by how much of the sodium actually is in your jerky, so don’t eat more than 100g per day.

Related: Is Beef Jerky Processed?

Jerky with the least fat and calories

Stryve Foods Original Beef Biltong

This popular product by Stryve Foods obviously isn’t precisely jerky, but it is indeed interesting. The reason for that is that it contains literally no fat.

Lucky Beef Jerky Original

And even though that isn’t the case with Lucky Beef Jerky original (it actually contains 4 grams of fat), this jerky has another upside – you would find only 70 calories in 1oz of it.

Nick’s Sticks Traditional Turkey Jerky

And the same goes for Nick’s Sticks Traditional Turkey Jerky, but besides those awesome 70 calories in 1oz, there isn’t too much fat either. This turkey contains only 0,5g of fat, and it isn’t the saturated kind.


Beef jerky is one of the healthiest snacks out there, and it can be the best choice to go with when you’re craving something tasty while trying to lose some weight. That being said, you shouldn’t be eating too much of it and not only because it would make you fat.

Consuming beef jerky often and in high amounts can lead to various health problems because it is still processed meat and contains a lot of salt.

Also Read: Does Beef Jerky Make You Poop or Constipate You?


Image credits – Canva

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