By 03/31/2015 Read More →

Make Your Own Delicious & Healthy Beef Jerky

Cabelas

If you’re looking for a protein-packed snack that’s both healthy and portable, we have three delicious words for you: homemade beef jerky. Whereas store-bought varieties are laden with all sorts of chemicals, processing agents and other not-good-for-you things—sugar, corn syrup, caramel color, monosodium glutamate, maltodextrin, sodium erythorbate, anyone?—you control what goes into your wholesome homemade jerky.

You can prepare it in your oven or get your own food dehydrator. Here’s a simple recipe for first-timers:

  1. Start with a lean piece of beef such as sirloin, top round, flank or brisket.
  2. Freeze the meat for 60-90 minutes, just long enough for ice crystals to form.
  3. Cut the meat into long, thin strips and trim any visible fat.
  4. Put all your strips into a resealable plastic bag and cover with your favorite marinade (don’t have a favorite? Try this one from AllRecipes.com). Let the meat marinade overnight.
  5. Add the meat to your food dehydrator as per the manufacturer’s instructions. If using your oven, add directly to the racks in a 170-degree oven. Leave the oven door open an inch or two to allow for proper air flow.
  6. For quarter-inch-thick slices, dry the meat for three hours, flip, and then dry for three more hours.
  7. Leave the jerky out to cool for 2-3 hours and then store in an airtight container.

Added bonus: Homemade jerky is a whole lot cheaper than what you get from the store.

While your delicious homemade jerky is drying, check out this fun “Bacon vs. Jerky” infographic. You just may be surprised at which one comes out on top.

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