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Jun 20 2012
Sweet Emotion: Sweet Baby Ray’s Honey Chipotle Beef Jerky

Jerky. It’s what’s for Dinner. And Breakfast. And Lunch.  I’ll be honest, I’ve even consumed Jerky in the lavatory before.  What are you going to do about it? Nothing, that’s what.  Now go down the street and get me my money.

The thing about a website called Beer & Pig?  That thing is called Sweet Baby Ray’s.  Whenever you find yourself in a pickle in the world of barbecue, Sweet Baby Ray’s can be your lifeline. From their official website:

It all began back in 1985 when a local Chicago boy named Chef Larry perfected his  family’s recipe for a sweet and tangy BBQ sauce and entered it into the country’s largest  rib cook-off, the Mike Royko Rib-off. Chef Larry called his sauce Sweet Baby Ray’s after his little brother David, who got the nickname shootin’ hoops on the west side of Chicago. On the day of the rib-off, Sweet Baby Ray’s beat nearly 700 entrants to come in second – an amazing feat for an unknown. The rest, as they say, is history. 

I was aware that Ray had thrown his hat into jerky game.  It sounded like a match made in heaven, but perception is hardly reality when it comes to beef jerky.  It’s one of the greatest, most versatile foods on the planet.  It’s also one of the most easy things in the world to screw up.  We’ve all cracked a molar on a dry, tough, cretaceous jerky before.  If you’re like me, you power through it because a cow died for that jerky.  I’ll be damned if I’m not going to honor Bessie’s legacy by masticating her meatier portions. More chewing synonyms after the jump…

The bottom line? Tenderness.  It can make or break your bag of Jerky.  No mater how delicious the sauce that is added may be, if the meat is tough? It might as well be the opinion of a single, male cat owner.  It just won’t matter. Teaming with Bridgeford was a smart idea. I have been enjoying their pepperoni for years.

Combining a great sauce with an experienced Jerky provider ended up being the right call because this stuff is good.  Very good.  Tender jerky with a hint of sweetness.

The size of the pieces are perfect for snacking making it very easy to take down the whole sack in one sitting.  If I had one criticism it would be a desire for a little more on the “chipotle” end of the “honey chipotle jerky.”  There is no heat.  A missed opportunity to add a little back burn.  It could just be Ray playing to his strengths.  Sweet, after all, is in his name.

At 4.99 a bag, this snack won’t force you to sell the ranch to purchase.  It’s a solid contender in the crowded jerky market and it’s wide spread availability should give you a better option than the dreaded gas station brand jerky. I’ll give it the conservative score of 3.5 Beer and Pig Coozies  out of 5.  If I ever meet Sweet Baby Ray, I’m kissing him on the mouth. Follow Ray on twitter here and follow Beer & Pig on twitter here.

3 Responses to “Sweet Emotion: Sweet Baby Ray’s Honey Chipotle Beef Jerky”

  1. Matthew says:

    sweet baby rays has by far the best BBQ sauce, and now you can get store bought shredded pork from sweet baby rays, when in a pinch.I will def be trying this jerky. Thanks Chad!

  2. Pittsburgh Matt says:

    I bought these just because Lord Dukes told us to, and man was he RIGHT ON THE MONEY!! Great jerky indeed!! Thank you Dukes for the great review and the heads up on this outstanding Jerky product! HAIL LORD DUKES!!

  3. Alex says:

    I agree. Sweet Baby Rays is the best BBQ sauce I’ve ever tried. I know some people who say their go to is KC Masterpiece, but honestly that stuff is crap in comparison.