Well, it's summer in Alaska. And it's hot. Like, unseasonably hot. This is a good(ish) thing because the last three years have been awfully rainy. Summer in Alaska means two things to someone who was born and raised here. Number one is tourists. Oh, the tourists. That's for another post though. And number two is backpacking. Yes, almost as wonderful as skiing.
The problem with backpacking in Alaska is that come mid-June, in town there will be lush, greenery bursting from the trees, the grass will be waving in the wind and (hopefully) the hot sun will rest on your shoulders and back. However, up where the backpacking happens...erm...not so much. Todd, Gracie and I went up to the April Bowl in Hatcher Pass to hike this weekend and though it opened early due to our unseasonably warm temperatures, there was still snow! Check it out yourself!
Backpacking and hiking has been on our minds ever since we got back from Ohio. It's in our blood and we have the itch, people! I began thinking about how I needed go to the store and get some of our backpacking essentials. Our list includes lightweight, nutrient dense foods. We sometimes make our own dehydrated dishes or purchase some at REI. We also always bring some trail mix and beef jerky. Oh dear. Beef jerky is not going to fly with our vegan values. I pondered this for quite some time until I decided that it would be an awful thing to subject Todd to, no beef jerky on our backpacking trips. So, of course I began searching for a meatless beef jerky. I just knew someone had to make it. And that someone(s) are the good vegan people at Primal Spirit Foods. I first found this meatless jerky on Amazon.com (where my research knows no bounds) and I received an assortment of strips to test and review.
Oh yes, people. It exists. Meatless vegan jerky is a thing and it is downright tasty! Besides their tastylicious jerky, I love their mission statement too.
"We at Primal Spirit Foods are dedicated to offering the consumer healthy, high-quality, meat alternative foods and other products that all are natural and good tasting...We have purposely chosen the manufacturing and sale of meat alternative food and healthier products as an expression of our desire to act more harmoniously with the environment, and our fellow living beings."
Makes my heart sing! I'm also immensely happy that they are vegan and not just vegetarian. It's difficult to find "meatless" products that don't have egg or milk in them! Seriously. Why not just go all the way? Lots of people have dairy and/or egg allergies! Why not take them into consideration? I don't know...it just doesn't make sense to me. Okay, okay, I'll get off my soapbox. I'm so sassy today!
Primal Strips Meatless Vegan Jerky
What: Primal Strips Meatless Vegan Jerky come in six flavors. Thai Peanut, Mesquite Lime, Teriyaki, Hot & Spicy, Hickory Smoked, and Texas BBQ. I love how there is a flavor for nearly everyone! They range from 78-108 calories each. They are lightweight and are great for camping, backpacking or slipping into lunches. I think I'll keep a few in my car and purse for those times hunger strikes!
How: The Thai Peanut, Mesquite Lime and Teriyaki jerky stips are seitan based. The Hot & Spicy jerky is made from shiitake mushrooms and the Hickory Smoked and Texas BBQ jerkys are soy based.
Why: Because jerky doesn't have to be cruel, and it can be absolutely delicious being plant-based as opposed to meat-based. But to be honest, I think they made it for Todd and me and our Alaskan backpacking adventures. Sounds about right.
Cost: Depending on how it's purchased on Amazon, Primal Strips will cost anywhere from $1.05-$1.67 per strip. Not bad! This might vary in your local stores, however.
Taste: Todd and I both really enjoyed the bold flavors! My favorite was the Mesquite Lime, with the Thai Peanut a close second. Todd's favorite was the Texas BBQ. We loved how spot-on the flavors were. There wasn't one we didn't enjoy! They were a tad salty for my tastes, but when hiking, salty is just what you need.
Compare: The jerky sort of resembles a really fatty, marbled piece of meat which I found to be slightly disturbing at first. It isn't tough like meat jerky is, it's very tender. I appreciated that and Todd as well. This vegan jerky would be a great alternative to meat jerky for the elderly and children as it is much easier to consume. It also doesn't get stuck in your teeth! Yay!
Convert: Still an omnivore? If you're trying to be healthier or just want to try something new or impress your friends, give this meatless jerky a try. Just because I am a vegan doesn't mean I was a little unsure of such a thing as meatless vegan jerky. I don't just sit around in my hemp pajamas (I don't own any hemp clothes...for the record) and eat bowls of tofu and seitan. In fact, I had seitan for the first time just last week!
Recurrence: I will definitely be purchasing these. I think they will be great to take along for our adventures as they are lightweight, nutritious and tasty. I'll also keep a few around in my purse in case I need an emergency snack. I already ordered my first box from Amazon!
Someone really wanted to try one...but, it was too good to share. Are doggy treats from Primal Spirit Foods next?