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Beef Jerky – Dad’s favorite, and the kids like it too

beef jerky - close-upMy husband loves beef jerky.  It is probalby one of his favorite snacks.  But, storebought beef jerky is expensive and has lots of unpleasant chemicals in it.  So, make your own. 

I bought a food dehydrator a year or so ago, a NESCO American Harvest one.  It is on the lower end of the dehydrator price spectrum and is available online from WalMart and other stores.  I have used it to make jerky and also to dry fruit.   You can apparently make it in the oven if your thermostat will allow you to barely heat your oven, but our old oven won’t.

The recipe I used is a cross between the one from Alton Brown on the Food Network site and the one in the recent issue of Clean Eating Magazine.

Dad’s Favorite Beef Jerkybeef jerky - marinade ingredients

  • 2  to 2.5 pounds beef roast or flank steak, trimmed of visible fat
  • 2/3 cup Worchestershire sauce (read the ingredients, Lea & Perrins original seems the most “real)
  • 2/3 cup soy sauce (use one that is actaully soy sauce, not brown colored salt water)
  • 1 Tbsp honey
  • 2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika 
  • 1 tsp cayenne pepper (adjust to suit your tastes)
  • Food Dehydrator
  1. Trim the beef of any excess fat, place in a zip-top bag, and place it in the freezer for 1 to 2 hours in order tobeef jerky - slicing meat firm up.
  2. Remove the beef from the freezer and thinly slice the meat with the grain, into long strips.
  3. Place the strips of meat along with all of the remaining ingredients into a large, 1-gallon plastic zip-top bag and move around to evenly distribute all of the ingredients. Place the bag into the refrigerator for 4 to 6 hours or even overnight.beef jerky - marinading
  4. Remove the meat from the marinade. Evenly distribute the strips of meat onto the trays of your food dehydrator.
  5. Close the dehydrator and set at 155 degrees F.   Allow the meat to dry for 6-8 hours.
  6. Once dry, store in a cool dry place, in an airtight container for up to 3 months. although it probably won’t last that long.

Mike and the kids all love it.  The girls even took a piece of it for snack yesterday at school along with a handful of fresh cherries.

 – Staceybeef jerky - happy kid beef jerky - finished drying

About feedingmytribe

Mom to four 10-year-olds. Trying to find my way through the confusing world of food and nutrition to provide my girls with a healthy start in life.

One response »

  1. Yum! Thank you for posting this. We like jerky, but have a hard time finding nitrate-free in stores. I didn’t realize it was that easy to make our own! Thanks again~


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