If you don’t know how to make beef jerky, you’ll be glad to learn that it’s not a very difficult way to get a nice, healthy snack. It does take some time to make beef jerky, and you’ll need to purchase some supplies, but when you’re done you’ll have a delicious treat.
Start by buying some lean beef. The biggest trick when you’re learning how to make beef jerky is to know that any fat on the meat can result in the jerky going bad later, as well as preventing complete drying. Cut the meat into strips, going against the grain. Jerky cut against the grain is going to be a lot easier to chew because the lines of meat intersect the cuts so you can pull it with your teeth. If the lines of the meat are parallel to your cuts, you won’t be able to pull pieces of meat off with your teeth.
Make the cuts as big or small as you like, but be aware that large chunks are going to take longer to dry. Add your seasonings of choice. If you’re using dry seasonings, rub them over the mean generously. If you’re using wet seasonings like vinegar or Worcestershire sauce, allow them to marinade for up to 24 hours.
You’ll be drying the meat either in the oven or a food dehydrator. If you’re using the oven, preheat it to 165 or 170 degrees (Fahrenheit). This is enough to slowly dry the meat and kill bacteria. Be sure to use an oven thermometer, because any heat less than 165 will not be enough to kill all of the bacteria. The entire process in the oven will take several hours. The exact time depends on how you cut your meat, so start checking it after an hour and don’t take it out until it’s fully dry. The finished product will be visibly dry and will snap when you bend it. Homemade jerky is not chewy like store-bought jerky can be. This jerky is high in protein and perfect for someone on the healthy Caveman diet.
If you’re using a food dehydrator, follow the manufacturer instructions for heat settings and times.
If learning how to make beef jerky seems like a lot of work, there are other great options. For example, you can have ready to eat natural beef jerky delivered right to your door from a company like Jerky Direct. This jerky is just as healthy as homemade, with no preservatives or additives.