I’ll admit it – I’m a beef jerkyholic. I’m not 100% sure that I could survive on just beef jerky, but someday I fully intend to find out.
And honestly, I don’t feel the least bit guilty for my addiction. Beef jerky is low fat and packed full of protein. I’m a carnivore and beef jerky is what my body needs.
There are plenty of good jerky brands you can buy, but if you want to join me in my jerky addiction, you’ll want to learn how to make your own. It’s cheaper, better and makes you feel like a caveman.
Making your own jerky isn’t rocket size. It takes just a few simple steps and a little bit of time. Here are the basic steps in a nutshell (from WikiHow):
1. Select a cut of meat. Choosing a lean cut like sirloin, flank steak, top round, or eye round will save time later.
2. Remove all noticeable fat. Fat causes the jerky to spoil much faster. Slice your meat into very thin strips less than 1/20″ thick.
3. Marinate the meat (optional). Use a solution of olive oil and vinegar sea salt, or a recipe of your preference. If you choose to marinate the meat, place in the refrigerator for 10 – 24 hours so that the beef can absorb the flavor.
4.Coat the meat in the seasonings of your choice. Don’t be afraid to use salt. Salt will aid in dehydrating.
5. Dehydrate the meat. Now comes the rewarding part — removing all moisture from your jerky. Using a dehydrator is the standard way of cooking jerky, although you can use an oven.
6. Wait and watch. Beef jerky takes from eight to twelve hours in order for it to be truly jerky and dried up wonderfully. Alternately, use an oven if you don’t have a dehydrator. Set the temperature to 165° F.
7. Place the fresh jerky somewhere dry to store. Ideally, use mason jars for the safest seal. Place jerky in the refrigerator or freezer until ready to eat. Enjoy the homemade jerky within two weeks of its preparation.
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Photo by Chris Tan licensed under Creative Commons 2.0.
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