Slim Jim (History, Flavors, Pictures & Commercials)

Slim Jim is a beef jerky snack, with the original version of the brand coming in the form of a round stick of beef in plastic packaging. Recognizable by its yellow and orange coloration on its packaging, Slim Jim is a snack often grabbed on the go for a salty meat treat. Originally a bar snack, Slims Jim’s are made from ingredients such as beef and mechanically separated chicken and are salty and easy to put in your pocket due to their slim size.

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Slim Jim


The Slim Jim is a brand of meat-based products, most commonly known as a simple stick of meat of beef and mechanically separated chicken. The standard Slim Jim is either a small or long brown stick, packaged in plastic, with a brown color and a salty, savory flavor. Other spin-off versions of the Slim Jim brand include items such as beef jerky and tender steak strips. Slim Jim was invented in the 1940s in the United States, Philadelphia. The inventor of Slim Jim was Adolph Levis, an American businessman, and philanthropist. Adolph Levis was a school dropout, and in the 1920s Adolph Levis pickled meat like pig’s feet and vegetables alongside his brother and would sell the products to shops and taverns located in Philadelphia. In the 1940s, Adolph Levis noticed the popularity of snacks made from dried meat products like pepperoni that were sausage-shaped. Adolph Levis and his partner, Joseph Cherry, hired a meat-packer in the local area to create a beef stick snack that was smaller and easier for people to eat than normally sized sausages. To help market the product, a mascot was born, a man with a top hat and a cane, to try to create a high-class image of the product. Both the mascot and the beef stick snack were called Slim Jim. The original Slim Jim’s were put in jars of vinegar and sold primarily to local bars for consumption. Some reports say that Levis developed his own 3-month curing process after seeing the popularity of pepperoni snacks and first marketed the product under the name “Penn Rose” before changing the name to Slim Jim.

By the 1950s, the company that produced Slim Jim’s, called Cherry-Levis Food Products, was selling Slim Jim in a more familiar cellophane wrapping style for the product. Slim Jim was advertised and sold in Pennsylvania and the Northeast U.S as a 10 cent ready-to-eat spiced sausage snack. Slim Jim’s seemed to be doing well, and in 1967, Adolph Levis sold his company Cherry-Levis to General Mills, the same company that produces products like Fruit Roll-Ups and Dunkaroos. Cherry-Levis was sold to General Mills for around 20 million dollars, and Adolph Levis continued working with the company in regards to the Slim Jim for about a year, before exiting totally from his involvement with Slim Jim and the companies responsible for its production. Adolph Levis was described by a General Mills executive as “very entrepreneurial and cost-conscious, with an almost frugal lifestyle,” and this could be said to have been reflected in the Sim Jim, is that it is a rather cheap product.

After Adolph Levis sold his company, Cherry-Levis Food Company, to General Mills, Cherry-Levis Food Company was renamed Slim Jim, Inc. In the year 1970, Jesse Jones Sausage Co was bought by General Mills and merged with Slim Jim Inc. to form a new company to produce Slim Jim’s called GoodMark Foods. GoodMark Foods eventually became a separate company after an executive buyout from General Mills shifted company ownership and it continued to produce Slim Jim under its brand of snacks until GoodMark was acquired by the company ConAgra in the year 1998 for 225 million U.S dollars. At the time that ConAgra Inc. acquired the rights to Slim Jim along with GoodMark Foods, GoodMark’s annual sales were about $172 million, with most of its production being the Slim Jim and its Penrose sausages. As of 2019, Slim Jim is currently made under the ConAgra brand. One report by the New York Times says In the year 2000 about $150 million worth of Slim Jim’s were sold, up around 10 million dollars from when Adolph Levis sold his company.

Slim Jim has been active in its advertisement of the brand, with mascots, television commercials, and sponsorships. One mascot that advertised the brand was called the same name as the product, Slim Jim. Slim Jim, the mascot for Slim Jim’s, was originally designed to give a sense of class and elegance to Slim Jim’s, though later depictions are due to the opposite. “Macho Man” Randy Savage, the wrestler, appeared as a mascot for Slim Jim from the year 1993 to 2000. Besides typical TV commercials and mascots, Slim Jim has also advertised itself via NASCAR sponsorships and video games.

Slim Jim has had some setbacks in an otherwise fairly good run during its history. A natural gas leak caused an explosion and fire at a production plant that made Slim Jim in Garner, North Carolina. On June 9, 2009, the production of Slim Jim at the Plant in Garner was halted, and 4 people were killed, from the results of the explosion and fire, and 350 workers were laid off within 5 months. On May 20, 2011, the factory in Garner closed down, the same day that the company’s former mascot and spokesman “Macho Man” Randy Savage died. At its peak, the Garner plant employed approximately 700 employees, though at its demise only about 216 were left. At the time, ConAgra spokesman Dave Jackson said 216 people were currently employed there and that fewer than 20 would stay on to help close the site. Eleven employees requested transfers to other ConAgra plants, and all were granted the requests, Jackson had said.

Since its inception, Slim Jim has had a wide variety of types added into the Slim Jim brand in addition to its original version, over 21 varieties as of 2017. There have also been several spin-offs to the main Slim Jim brand, including a premium version, Tender Steak Strips, Turkey, Premium Beef Jerky, Bacon Jerky, bite-sized bits, and a Slim Jim brand meat-based gum. The Slim Jim formula has been changed several times over the years since Slim Jim’s inception. Organ meat was removed from Slim Jim’s recipe and so were some additives such as monosodium glutamate, and chicken meat as added as well as a change of the blend of spices used to make Slim Jim. In 2018, over 1 billion Slim Jim’s were produced in a year in a plant located in Troy, Ohio and Slim Jim produces about $200 million dollars in global sales annually. The plant in Troy took 45 days or less to convert its operations to produce Slim Jim’s after the damage to the North Carolina plant when that plant experienced limited capacity due to the explosion and fire after a gas leak.

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The Year Slim Jim Was Invented

Slim Jim was invented in the 1940s in Philadelphia. It was inspired by the desire to create a sausage-like snack due to its popularity at the time. Of course, even in modern times, meat-based snacks like Slim Jim are rather popular.

The Inventor of Slim Jim

The person who invented the Slim Jim is a man named Adolph Levis, an American businessman, and a philanthropist. He started making snacks like pickled pig feet before inventing the Slim Jim. He eventually hired a meat-packer in the local area to create a beef stick snack that became the slim Jim. Adolph Levis passed away at age 89 in a Hospice.

The Company That Makes Slim Jims

Slim Jims are made by ConAgra as of 2019 and were originally produced by Cherry-Levis Food Company before it was sold to General Mills for about 20 million dollars. Slim Jim moved to another company called GoodMark before being acquired by ConAgra in 1998 for 225 Million dollars. ConAgra is now the owner of Slim Jims and its brand.


Slim Jim has popularized the slogan “Snap into a Slim Jim!”. This line was used regularly in commercial advertisements for Slim Jim as a tagline for the product. Another slogan used by the mascot for Slim Jim is “Eat Me”, a play on how the man that plays the mascot looks somewhat like a Slim Jim.

Slim Jim Logo

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Flavor List

Here is a list of the different types of flavors for Slim Jims:

  • Original flavor (Snack Stick, Giant, and Monster Sizes)
  • Mild flavor (Snack Stick and Giant sizes)
  • Tabascoo spice (Giant and Monster sizes)
  • Philly Cheese Steak (Giant Size – Flavors Of America edition Slim Jims)
  • Sweet and Hot (Giant size)
  • Nacho flavored Sim Jims (giant size)
  • Cali Taco (giant size – Flavors Of America edition)
  • New York Buffalo (Giant sized – Flavors Of America edition)
  • Crackd Pepper (Giant size)
  • Tabasco seasoned Slim Jims (giant size)
  • Kinda hot chili pepper (Dare eddition)
  • Freaking hot jalapeno ( Dare edition)
  • Really Freaking Hot ( Slims Jim’s Dare edition)
  • Habanero flavored (Giant Sized)
  • Tangy BBQ Slim Jim (Giant Sized)
  • Smokehouse Original (Premium version)
  • Spicy Chili Garlic flavor (Premium Slim Jims)
  • Memphis BBQ (Premium version)
  • Savage Salsa (Monster size)
  • Redhouse Chili flavor (Monster size)
  • Zesty Garlic Slim Jim (Monster Size)
  • Jamicain Style Jerk (Giant Size)
  • Chili flavored (Giant Size)
  • Honey BBQ (Monster Size)

The Sizes Of Slim Jims

The Slim Jim lineup’s main product, the Slim Jim meat stick, comes in 3 different sizes. The smallest size is the small snack stick variation and generally comes in Original and Mild flavors. They are small and can be bought either in packs or individually. The next size is the giant version, these are long, though have around the same girth as the smaller snack stick variation. Then there is the monster-sized Slim Jim, and these are both long and are also much thicker than the giant and snack stick versions of Slim Jims. The larger sizes tend to have more flavor options than the smaller snack stick sizes.


This review is for the original flavor Slim Jim, snack-sized.

The Slim Jim’s size is the first thing noticeable when going to review it. The original Slim Jim is just that, slim and easy to bite. The Slim Jim looks like an easy thing to snack on, rather than some wider-looking and filling snacks that suggest more effort to eat, such as a Butterfinger. The Slim Jim does not have the colorful draw of some candy, but then again, it is more like candy meat, so it is not expected to draw the eye with flashy looks.

There is a slight meaty smell when taking the Slim Jim out of its package, musty, but hunger-inducing. The product is easily held in hand, being a snack-sized version. At first taste, the Slim Jim hits you instantly with a strong meaty flavor. The savory umami taste is immediately apparent before even biting down, and the flavor gets a bit stronger after you begin to chew. While the outer layer of the Slim Jim may lose whatever flavoring it covers its surface swiftly, the innards are filled with an oddly textured but oh-so-savory mixture of meaty stuff that will keep you gnawing at the meat stick until it is eaten totally. Something about that umami flavor, being true to the savory descriptor of its taste, just wants to make you keep eating the Slim Jim.

Slim Jims are somewhat soft and easy to chew, salty, and pretty flavorful. They taste good, and overall offer an enjoyable meat snack. The smell alone is enough to induce a craving for salt, savory taste, and meat. While not everyone may like the highly salty taste of this interesting stick of combined meats, the Slim Jim avoids needing to add spicy flavor or other distractions that many competing meat snacks use, and can focus on a powerful savory taste. Overall the slim Jim is a good snack to choose when you want something salty, savory, and quick and easy to eat. Bring a drink, because this meat stick may make you a bit thirsty.

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Slim Jim Pepperoni ‘n Cheese Review

This review is for Slim Jim Pepperoni ‘n Cheese sticks.

The meat stick included looks much like beef but tastes like pepperoni. The meat stick, which includes a mix of beef, and pork as well as pepperoni, has a spicy, savory umami taste. The cheese, an American white version, has a very mild kick to it, sharing a bit of the spiciness of the pepperoni-focused meat stick it is paired with. Eating both the cheese and the meat stick actually seems to mellow out the spicy taste that both of them each have.

The meat stick is the much more powerful of the 2 snack sticks included in Sim Jim’s Pepperoni Beef and Cheese. Overall, the snack is good, though a bit spicier than expected. The Pepperoni Beef and Cheese version of the Slim Jim is a spicy spin on the normal version, very different, but still has that “Slim Jim” taste somewhere deep down inside it. This more spicy meat and cheese version of the Slim Jim brand goes well with a fizzy drink, to help refresh yourself after the mildly but stronger than expected spicy flavor this snack gives.

Information About Buying

Slim Jims are widely available and can be found in many stores. Slims Jim’s popularity has meant that you can often find many different types of flavors in stores. You can often buy Slims Jim in stores like Family Dollar, Costco, and Walmart. If you have a hard time tracking down a specific flavor you want to buy or are looking to buy Slim Jims in bulk then you can look for good offers online. You can check below for a more complete list of stores that either sell or have sold Slim Jim. You can check below that for offers for buying Slim Jims online and for offers on some of the product’s spin-offs that can be harder to find.

Stores That Sell

Here is a list of stores that sell or have sold Slim Jims:

  1. Sam’s Food Stores
  2. Krauszer’s Food Stores
  3. Shell
  4. Citgo
  5. Walgreen’s
  6. Walmart
  7. S&S Mini Mart
  8. CVS
  9. Rite Aid
  10. Family Dollar
  11. Costco
  12. Sam’s Club
  13. Dollar General
  14. Stop And Shop
  15. Lowe’s



Here are some commercials about Slim Jims.


Nutrition and Ingredients

This information is for the snack-sized original flavored Slim Jims:


  • Beef
  • Pork
  • Mechanically Separated Chicken
  • Water
  • Textured Soy Flour
  • Corn Syrup
  • Salt
  • Contains less than 2% of:
  • Natural Flavors
  • Dextrose
  • Paprika and Extractives of Paprika
  • Hydrolyzed Soy Protein
  • Maltodextrin
  • Lactic Acid Starter Culture
  • Barley Malt Extract
  • Citric Acid
  • Soy Lecithin
  • Sodium Nitrate.

Contains: Soy

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Serving Size: 4 Sticks (32g) % Daily Value *
Calories per serving 150
Total Fat 11g 14%
Saturated Fat 4g 20%
Trans Fat 0g
Cholesterol 35mg 12%
Sodium 530mg 23%
Total Carbohydrates 6g 2%
Dietary Fiber 1g 4%
Total Sugars 1g
Added Sugars 1g 1%
Protein 6g 13%
Vitamin D 0mcg 0%
Iron 0.8mg 4%
Calcium 40mg 4%
Potassium 150mg 4%
  • Daily Value Percent is based on a 2,000 calorie diet.

Slim Jim Pepperoni ‘n Cheese Nutrition and Ingredients

This information is for the “Slim Jim Pepperoni ‘n Cheese” snack stick combination variety.

Ingredients: – Pepperoni Stick: Beef, Pork, Water, Salt Contains less than 2% of Corn Syrup, Spices, Natural Flavors, Hydrolyzed Soy Protein, Spice Extractives Including Paprika, Sodium Erythorbate, Lactic Acid Starter Culture, Sodium Nitrate.

Ingredients: – Pasteurized Process American Cheese Food Stick: Pasteurized Process American Cheese Food (Cultured Pasteurized Milk, Water, Sodium, Sodium Phosphate, Natural Flavorings, Salt, Sorbic Acid, {Preservative} Enzymes).

Contains: Milk, Soy

Nutrition Facts: Serving Size: 42 Grams, Calories per serving: 150, Fat Cal: 110, Total Fat: 12 Grams (18% DV), Saturated Fat: 6 grams (30% DV), Trans Fat: 0 G, Cholesterol: 50mg (17% DV), Sodium: 590mg (25% DV), Potassium: 95mg (3% DV), Total Carbohydrates: 2 Grams (1% DV), Dietary Fiber: <1 Gram (2% DV), Sugars 0 G, Protein: 10 Grams (10% DV), Vitamin A 6%, Vitamin C 0%, Calcium 15%, Iron 2%. Percent Daily Values (DV) are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.

(Information taken from the back of “Slim Jim Pepperoni ‘n Cheese” package in 2019)


Slim Jim’s advertising tends to take a high-energy approach and is willing to take a subjectively more risky approach in advertising the Slim Jim brand. Slim Jim’s commercial advertising portrays Slim Jims to be somewhat risky to consume, something that will tear your stomach up. A mascot for the brand, called Slim Jim, is a jerk, perhaps because he is a form of jerky, and he tends to behave in a mean manner. Slim Jim will beat up others, tear up people’s insides, and is generally a not very friendly person. Other Slim Jim commercials portray a small “spicy” side of people, that reacts violently after eating a Slim Jim, meant to advertise spicy Slim Jims. This “spicy” side of an individual has a tendency to burn carpets, trash homes, and torment others by tossing stuff at them. Some advertisements for Slim Jim pay little attention to the Slim Jim itself and instead focus on witty, funny, or sassy commercials that surprise people or attempt to make them laugh.

Another series of advertisements for Slim Jim featured American professional wrestler Macho Man Randy Savage. The commercials featuring Macho Man would often feature very high-energy advertisements using fast speech, loud noises, and explosions. Macho Man would frequently repeat the slogan “Snap into a Slim Jim!”, often screaming it. Slim Jim sometimes makes use of “snack displays” where their branding and products are displayed in racks at stores. The Slim Jim brand has also attempted to get more engagement with their outreach to consumers, such as creating a website that allows people to upload photos and create an avatar to show their “Spicy Side”; The website may no longer be in service at this time.

Slim Jim has also engaged in various sponsorships, especially extreme sports. The Slim Jim brand has been involved with the X-Games, Gravity Games, and Mirra tours. Slim Jim was also the presenting sponsor for “Vertical Up-Rising,” an action sports event at the Kansas Speedway in 2004. Slim Jim has been the sponsor of Dave Mirra, an acclaimed action sports individual who is known for being a BMX rider.

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The Popularity Of Slim Jim

Slim Jim is a rather popular snack, with the brand producing over 1 billion Slim Jims in 2018. Now that is a lot of Slim Jims, but what makes this stick of meat so popular? The product is not unique, as there are many meat stick snacks out there, and yet it is one of the most popular meat snacks. Perhaps it is the slim Jim’s unique taste? That salty savory flavor it seems to be so good at producing? It could also be the brand’s marketing, as Slim Jim is one of the meat stick snacks that seem to promote the most. The brand also has absolutely insane commercials to help keep Slim Jim in people’s minds and help popularize the product with its shocking commercials. The branding decisions for Slim Jim may also help keep the product popular; The packaging of Slim Jim stands out with its bright and now familiar colors.


Slim Jim Beef Jerky is an offering of higher quality beef products to the company’s normal lineup. This beef jerky is juicy and sweet. Slim Jim beef jerky is a product manufactured by a company called “Slim Jim”. Slim Jim beef jerky comes in five flavors original, chili pepper, Jalapeño, habanero and teriyaki. It refers to chili pepper flavors making up the product’s distinct taste and texture as “kinda hot”, Jalapeno as “freakin hot” and habanero as “really freaking hot”. Slim Jim’s beef jerky original flavor has no vitamin A, vitamin C, or calcium but has 15% iron and 140 calories in a serving. Slim Jim also has a variety of meat products and flavors and spiciness. The other flavors Slim Jim manufactures are “cracking pepper”, “hickory smoked”, “honey BBQ”, “Jamaican jerk”, “kicking carne asada”, “maple-flavored”, “mild”, “nacho”, “pepperoni”, “smoking mesquite”, “sweet and hot”, “tangy BBQ flavor”, “Tabasco spiced”, “twisted teriyaki” and “zesty garlic”. Slim Jim also uses a variety of promotions such as battlefield four battle packs with codes found in their products and users who create a message causing the company to send a packet of Slim Jim to the troops. They also use an adventurous marketing technique in which they say their products are a cure for male spice loss and comment that it fights male spice loss. Slim Jim products are available for consumers at their official website where you can choose the flavor and size of the pack where you would like to purchase from.


Slim Jim can be bought in a variety of different packaging, but the style tends to stay the same. You can buy Slim Jims individually in small snack-sized versions from stores, buy them in square hardboard packs, or buy them as large monster-sized sticks. The packaging of the individual sticks of Slim Jims are made from plastic, but the packs of multiple sticks are made from a type of cardboard with multiple individual sticks of Slim Jims inside of.

Slim Jim typically has a yellow and red colored art style on its packaging that tends to stay the same. The yellow and red coloring has helped make Slim Jim stand out thanks to its promotion and longstanding place in snack aisles. Over time the colors of the Slim Jim brand have become recognizable to many. The sticks of Slim Jims tend to have a red area at the top of the stick and to be yellow throughout the middle part to the bottom of the plastic packaging. The cardboard boxes that hold multiple Slim Jims tend to vary in favoring red or yellow but generally will use both colors on its packaging art. Depending on the flavor, a different color strip may be used as a label to identify the flavor of Slim Jim the product is. The name of the product, “Slim Jim”, is usually in small white lettering at the top of the meat individual stick’s packaging.

One exception to the normal yellow and red colors of the Slim Jim brand is the Premium Slim Jim. Unlike the bright yellow and red coloration of the normal Slim Jim, the “Premium” version of Slim Jim has a more serious brown-colored packaging and is generally not individually wrapped. The Slim Jim Logo is printed in red on the Premium versions packaging. Unlike other brands that show their mascot on many of their products, such as Planters Peanuts, you do not tend to see the Slim Jim mascot on the packaging of the brand’s snacks.

Product Recall

Slim Jim has had at least one product recall for its brand. On February 17 2008 there was a massive recall of 143 million pounds of meat produced by Hallmark/Westland Meat Packing Company. The Slim Jim brand used some meat that was included in the recall in their product. Slim Jim products that may have been produced using meat from Hallmark/Westland were recalled, though it was reported that the risk to human health was low.


Conagra, the company that produces Slim Jims, was sued over an explosion at one of their plants that produce Slim Jims, located in North Carolina. The explosion was said in court documents to have killed 3 people and injured at least 60 others. A company called Jacobs Engineering was first sued over the explosion at the Slim Jim plant, they then settled that case and in turn sued Conagra. Conagra was ordered to pay just under 109 million dollars in a settlement suit as a result of the jury verdict. Conagra appealed, but the Nebraska Supreme Court upheld the jury verdict. The explosion was reported to be due to the result of the pumproom filling up with gas and then being ignited. North Carolina OSHA found the company Jacobs didn’t contribute to the explosion. (Jacobs Engr. Group v. Conagra Foods, Nebraska Supreme Court, No. S-16-896, 9/14/18)

A lawsuit was filed against ConAgra Foods for allegedly engaging in false advertising. The lawsuit claimed that Slim Jim products were deceptively packaged using more slack than needed to make it appear that the consumer was purchasing products than they actually were. This action was voluntarily dismissed with prejudice via a stipulated voluntary dismissal. The reasons for the dismissal are currently unknown. (Case 1:15-cv-02334-MKB-RML)

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