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Checking the carb content and other nutritional information of foods is important when you’re on the keto diet.
And if you’re here, you did the right thing because that’s probably what you’re doing with Slim Jims!
Slim Jims are a type of beef jerky known as a meat stick. People have been snapping into these treats way before Macho Man started advertising them in the 1990s.
So, are Slim Jims keto-friendly?
We explore the carb and sugar content of Slim Jims to find out if they are a suitable treat for the keto diet. And we recommend a keto beef jerky recipe you might want to try to make for yourself!
What is Slim Jim?
Slim Jim is a well-known brand of beef jerky that originated in America. Manufactured by Conagra Brands, Slim Jim was invented in 1929 by Adolph Levis.
He sold his company in 1967, and it merged with the meatpacking operations of Jesse Jones Sausage Co to create Goodmark Foods. Goodmark was eventually bought by Conagra Brands who are the current makers of Slim Jim products.
Slim Jim has launched several additions to its main brand.
These Slim Jim varieties include the sticks, meat n cheese, multipacks, jerky, pork rinds, and fire fries.
The sticks, which are the most popular across the globe, have a variety of flavors including:
- dill pickle
- hot AF
- sweet & hot
- crack’d pepper
- tangy bbq
- original turkey
- buffalo style
- spicy taco.
The meat sticks contain beef, machine-separated chicken, dextrose, lactic acid starter culture, hydrolyzed soy, and sodium nitrite.
Slim Jim Carbs and Sugar
Slim Jim is known to be high fat, but what about the carb content?
A serving of the Original-Flavored Slim Jim Giant Stick has 5g of total carbs and 4g of net carbs. With 130 calories, it also has 10g of fat and 6g of protein.
As for sugar, a whole stick has 1g.
Meanwhile, Slim Jim’s Beef and Cheese has only 1g of carbs. Surprisingly, this variant has 10g of protein, 12g fat, and less than 1g of sugar!
A package of this product contains a cheese stick and a pepperoni stick.
Here’s a list of other Slim Jim types and their net carb content per stick:
- Original Deli Style: 4g
- Snack Sticks: 1g
- Monster Original: 8g
- Monster Teriyaki: 7g
- Monster Habanero: 8g
- Monster Honey BBQ: 8g
- Monster Hot AF: 8g
- Monster Mild: 8g
- Monster Tabasco: 8g
- Steakhouse Strips: 4g
- Pork Rinds: <1g
All Slim Jim products have corn syrup as well.
Is Slim Jim Keto-Friendly?
Yes and no.
Slim Jims are mostly made from meat. Because of this, people automatically assume that they are keto-friendly.
However, it is not as simple as that. Let’s dive in deeper as to why Slim Jims can both be keto-friendly and not.
Slim Jim sticks are relatively low in carbs, so many may think this automatically makes them keto-friendly. The carbs vary by size, type, and flavor, although the average is around 4g net carbs.
The lowest carb Slim Jim variant is their Pork Rinds, with less than 1g of net carbs.
Slim Jims are also high in fat and protein, so that ticks some more boxes for the keto diet.
Restricting carbs on keto is your primary goal on the diet. Daily consumption of only 20 to 50 grams of carbs can lead to ketosis, where fat stored in the body breaks down for energy.
Another reason why it may not be keto-friendly is that the meat paste, which is your fat and protein source, is likely low quality processed meat.
Check out this breakdown from Wired on the questionable ingredients and why you might want to avoid them:
It is important to choose high-quality fat sources on keto to avoid heart disease and other potential health issues.
Use your daily carb limit on nutrient-dense sources like root vegetables.
Therefore, while Slim Jims are technically keto-friendly because of their low carb count, they should be consumed in moderation, if at all, due to the ingredients.
Like all processed foods, they should be an occasional treat only.
Or better yet, avoid them completely and find a better alternative to satisfy your cravings.
Keto Beef Jerky Recipe
If you want the best-quality beef jerky, try making your own instead of buying at the store. Making jerky at home is not as difficult as you might think it is.
You just have to dehydrate your meat and add flavor. It takes a while, but it is worth it.
The Keto Diet App’s Beef Jerky recipe only requires the following ingredients:
- 1.1kg lean beef
- ½ cup coconut aminos
- 2 tbsp fish sauce
- 2 tsp onion powder
- 2 tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp paprika
- 1 tbsp black pepper
- 1-2 tsp smoked sea salt
- 2 tbsp erythritol or brown sugar substitute.
This tasty recipe only has 2.4g of net carbs per serving, which is even lower than some store-bought jerky.
It’s also healthier because you are putting quality fuel into your body!
FAQ What to Eat on Keto
What Snacks Can I Have on Keto?
Being on a keto diet doesn’t mean you have to give up life’s pleasures like your favorite snacks.
You can still consume a wide variety of snacks. You just have to be picky when it comes to what snacks you eat.
Yes, people, it’s not all beef jerky.
If you do feel the urge to snack in between your meals, that’s completely okay. Just make sure that you are increasing the amount of fat you consume. And don’t go over your carb limit.
Here are some examples of high-fat snacks that you can binge on when in keto:
Seafood, low-carb veggies, avocados, cheese, eggs, etc.
You can also buy keto biscuits and cookies to pair with a healthy smoothie.
Here are our top keto snack recommendations!
What’s the Best Protein Source on the Keto Diet?
A lot of people often ask about good protein sources on the keto diet. Well, the answer is simple – good quality meat, preferably grass-fed or organic.
A lot of keto dieters often forget that they need protein on this diet, or they forget just how much protein they should eat.
A common mistake keto dieters make is going high-fat and low carb without paying attention to protein.
If you’re an active person who works out a lot, you need a lot of protein in your diet. It also helps with building muscles.
On keto, the calculation for your daily protein limit is 0.6 to 1g of protein per pound of lean body mass.
Protein shakes are another great option for adding protein into your diet.
Check out which protein sources you should consume on keto!
What About Keto Desserts?
Just because you’re on a keto diet doesn’t mean you have to give up on sweets and desserts.
Like with snacks, you can still eat desserts on keto.
If you feel the urge to snack on something, try keto-friendly desserts like keto ice cream (we highly recommend you create one at home).
One common ingredient in keto desserts is heavy whipping cream. You can use it to make keto pudding, truffles, ice cream, and more.
Remember that sugar may kick you out of ketosis, so go for low-carb sweeteners like stevia, erythritol, monk fruit, and xanthan gum.
Eat Slim Jims in Moderation Only!
If you’re looking for a keto-friendly snack that is readily available in almost any store, you may want to reach for a Slim Jim!
A little bit can’t hurt your keto diet. And besides, Slim Jims are relatively low in carbs and high in fat and protein.
But you might want to rethink this because of those unhealthy ingredients that come with eating processed meats.
If you’re craving snacks on keto make good choices and think twice about a cheat day. Your keto efforts you worked hard on for months may go to waste with just a few bites of the wrong foods.
Be smart about cheating on the keto diet. Try having a cheat meal instead of a cheat day!