Exotic Jerkies: Here Are the Top 6 Types of Exotic Jerky Worth Trying

Jerky lovers have so many types of jerky to pick from. There is beef, pork, turkey, chicken, salmon, tuna, and more to choose from. But what if you have jerky every day and get tired of the regular varieties? What to do then? Try exotic jerkies, of course!

Eating exotic jerkies can be scary for those who never tasted them. Exotic jerkies can be tricky waters to tread for a conventional jerky lover. But, once you give it a try, it is like a whole new world! Here are the top six types of exotic jerky worth trying.

1. Elk Jerky

If you love beef jerky, then you are bound to love Elk. Elk tastes like something between regular game meat and beef. The main difference between elk and beef is how much cleaner it tastes. It is also sweeter and nutty, which gives it a pleasant edge.

One great thing about elk jerky is that there is a high chance that no hormones or antibiotics were used when rearing them. They are either caught from the wild or raised in ranches where they are grass-fed.

Elk meat is quite rare, and they are not being mass-produced. This might make them a bit more expensive than your regular jerkies. But, they are mostly prepared similarly.

If you choose the right brand, you can get one that makes their jerky with natural ingredients without using nitrates and other additives.

2. Alligator Jerky

If you have never tasted Alligator Jerky, you are missing out! Alligator meat is more common than you'd think. People have been eating it for generations in the Southern states.

Alligator meat has a mild flavor. It has a firm texture, kind of like game bird meat. The taste is similar to that of chicken but has a mild fish undertone. Although it might taste a little unconventional, it is a good source of protein.

If you love chewy jerky, alligator meat will be perfect for you. If you want a high-protein snack while going on a hike or simply want a chewy meat snack, get some alligator jerky.

Many people fear that alligator jerky will taste gamey. It will be flavored to perfection if you get it from a reputed brand. You will not only get the unique flavor of alligator meat, but the natural seasoning will make it taste even better.

3. Kangaroo Jerky

Australians love kangaroo meat, and for a good reason! It is similar to venison but less dry; it has a deep flavor and more of a kick than beef. Kangaroo is tough like some game meat. It is lean and healthy. The high amount of iron and zinc is much healthier than beef.

As it is lean, people love making jerky with it. Some producers also use kangaroo meat to make biltong, as the cooking process makes it softer. As a jerky, it can be tough and chewy. Whether it is deeply seasoned or simply smoked, you will love the taste.

It is much more palatable than a few other exotic varieties as an exotic jerky. If you are into gamey flavors and enjoy chewy jerky, you should try kangaroo jerky.

4. Ostrich Jerky

If you love beef, you will love ostrich meat. Even though the ostrich is a bird, it tastes shockingly similar to beef. However, ostrich is much healthier than beef when it comes to nutrition. Packed with vital nutrients like vitamin B12,  iron, and zinc, it is also low on fat.

Being lean, it resembles game meat; however, its flavor is not overwhelming or gamey. This is why it works great with any seasoning and absorbs the flavors well.

If you are looking for a low-fat alternative to beef jerky, opt for ostrich jerky. Being 97% fat-free, this exotic jerky is healthy and delicious.

Even though ostrich meat is quite rare, many national jerky brands sell this exotic jerky. Some brands use the highest quality meat to make their ostrich jerky and have USDA approval as well. So, make sure to check the packaging before buying any exotic jerky.

5. Rabbit Jerky

Do you think rabbits are too cute to eat? Try this exotic jerky. It is always rabbit season in “jerky land,” and you will find this jerky all year round.

Rabbit meat has the slightest gamey flavor. It has a robust and slightly sweet taste, which most meat lovers enjoy. The jerky’s texture is similar to chicken's, but it’s a lot healthier.

Like most game meat, it has many crucial minerals, including calcium and potassium. It is a good source of healthy protein and has omega-3 fatty acids and vitamin B12.

Opt for rabbit jerky if you are into game meat that doesn’t have an overwhelming flavor. It is mostly lean protein, making it easy to fit into any diet.

6. Yak Jerky

If you love red meat jerkies, you will love yak. Even though yak has a similar taste and consistency to elk or buffalo, it is not as gamey. It tastes similar to beef but nowhere near that greasy. This lean meat is a better alternative to traditional red meat, and it also tastes better.

Much like other high-altitude meat, it has a deeper red appearance. This is a telltale sign of it being rich in iron. If you are looking for healthier jerky, yak should be on your list. Even though it is dense with nutrients, this lean meat has a lot fewer calories than beef, mutton, or pork.

Yak's delicate flavor has the slightest sweetness, making it more appetizing than many other exotic jerkies. It is an excellent carrier of flavors if you like highly seasoned jerky. But, if you like lightly seasoned and intensely smoked jerky, yak jerky will tantalize your gourmet senses.

Final Thoughts

Exotic jerkies taste great from unusual flavors like alligator or kangaroo to milder jerky such as ostrich or yak.

By now you can already guess that these exotic jerkies are much healthier than regular meat like beef and pork. This is why they often cost more. However, their unique flavors make them worth the money spent.

If you want to explore the world of exotic jerkies, we hope you check out these top six types of exotic jerky worth trying. 

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