San Diego’s Baja Jerky brings Baja-inspired flavors to beef jerky

Baja Jerky’s new Street Taco flavor.
Baja Jerky’s new Street Taco flavor.
(Courtesy of Katalyst Public Relations))

Ready for a healthier, tastier beef jerky option made in San Diego? If the drugstore checkout varieties aren’t cutting it, Baja Jerky is a good option for foodies who are sick of the standard “teriyaki” jerky flavor.

Baja Jerky, headquartered out of Solana Beach, is helmed by Michelin-starred chef Brandon Rodgers (Benu, San Francisco).. Not satisfied with traditional jerky flavors, Rodgers set out to create unique flavors that capture the spirit of Baja, including Salsa Fresca, Sweet Orange, Lime & Serrano Pepper, Street Taco, Crackin’ Pepper and even Churro.

“Baja Jerky, both the brand and its name, comes from our absolute love for everything Baja. I used to live in Cabo, where everyone pretty much lives outside, always fishing, riding motorcycles, surfing and soaking up the sun, sand and ocean — it’s a lifestyle,” said Will Dryden, manager of operations. “At the end of the long, adventurous days outdoors, we’d enjoy the most delicious, yet simple street tacos and enjoy all the flavors of Baja. Being outdoors and adventuring all the time led to a need for a snack that embraced the flavor and lifestyle of Baja, but that could travel to all the places life’s adventures take you, enter Baja Jerky.”

Bringing in an esteemed chef to craft unique jerky flavors is also part of what makes Baja Jerky stand out. Baja Jerky just debuted two new unique flavors: Street Taco and Crackin’ Pepper.

Dryden says that Street Taco is made with flavors of chipotle, cilantro, cumin and lime and that “it’s like eating the best taco from Baja, but in jerky form.” Crackin’ Pepper is the company’s first zero sugar flavor and uses ingredients like garlic and lemon juice, onion, smoked hickory and, of course, black pepper.

And we can’t discuss Baja Jerky without discussing the Churro flavor.

“With this flavor, it was really a, ‘how can we not?’ type of thing. Pushing the boundaries is what Baja Jerky strives to do, and what better way to do that than to imagine a flavor of jerky that has never been done before. Give it one try and you will never look at beef jerky (or churros) the same. Kids especially love it!” said Dryden.

Baja Jerky can be found at Amazon, Cost Plus World Market and at

Jennifer Ianni is the managing editor for Pacific San Diego lifestyle magazine, which is part of The San Diego Union-Tribune company portfolio.