Caveman Chicken Primal Bar
The Chicken Primal Bar, which is a paleo-inspired line of bars, are made with hormone-free, cage-free chicken meat that is blended with fruits and spices.

Beyond jerky

Combining meat with other ingredients and forming the mixture into an on-the-go bar is an emerging snack segment. This is likely thanks to Epic Provisions LLC, an Austin, Texas-based company that was acquired by General Mills Inc., Minneapolis earlier this year.

Epic Provisions launched in 2013 as the first snack bar concept to combine meat with fruits and nuts. Varieties include chicken sesame BBQ, which combines savory whole muscle chicken with an Asian-inspired sesame barbecue spice blend. The bar is finished with accents of organic golden raisins. Other worldly varieties include bison bacon cranberry, lamb currant mint and venison sea salt pepper.

Early this year, Running’s Caveman brand rolled out the Chicken Primal Bar, which is a paleo-inspired line of bars made with white and dark meat from hormone-free, cage-free chickens. The meats are blended with fruits and spices and formed into bars that are then smoked to create a golden brown finish and complete the unique flavor profiles. The individually wrapped bars come in three varieties: blueberry pepper, smoked jalapeño and sweet cherry.

Wilde Snacks is another company blending lean cuts of meat or poultry with other plant-based ingredients. This Boulder, Colorado-based company uses a proprietary baking process to combine the meats with ancient grains, fruit and seasonings, forming bars that more resemble a chewy granola bar. The brand debuted last fall with such varieties as maple bacon blueberry turkey and strawberry black pepper bison. New additions include a sweet Thai basil variety featuring vegetarian-fed chicken breast, coconut, chia and flax seed, mango, lime, ginger and basil; and a turkey cranberry variety made with free-range turkey tenderloins, cranberries, chia and flax seeds, butternut squash, apples and sage.

Krave, a line of jerky that debuted in 2009 and was acquired by The Hershey Co., Hershey, Pennsylvania, in early 2015, will be rolling out namesake sweet and savory bars made with high-quality cuts of meat, spices, fruits and quinoa. Varieties will be chipotle cherry beef, cranberry thyme turkey, mango jalapeño pork and wild blueberry BBQ beef.

Country Archer Jerky is also expanding beyond jerky with The True Protein Bar brand. There’s a beef and pork bar flavored with cayenne, as well as a sweet BBQ pork bar and an herb citrus turkey bar.

La Farge, Wisconsin-based Organic Valley offers Organic Prairie Mighty Bar. Made with 100 percent grass-fed organic beef, the snack bars come in two varieties: cranberry and sunflower seed and uncured bacon and apple.

There are infinite combinations of meats with other ingredients to offer all types of meat snacks. The category is still in its infancy.