Beef Jerky Without a Smoker

Introduction: Beef Jerky Without a Smoker

So this is super-simple, fool-proof recipe. The hardware you can get at your local home improvement store for a one-time investment of about $35. It requires no tools or special know-how. This method is perfect if you don't own a smoker, or are short on room in your house/apartment.

The end product is similar to biltong- being moist and chewy and salt cured. There is no danger of over or under cooking because all the "cooking" is done chemically during the marination. The meat is cured and will last for weeks in a cool, dry container.

Step 1: Step 1: Get the Ingredients Together.

Get a slab of fresh flank steak. For the amount of marinade below, I use 3lb packages. Half the recipe for half the weight in meat. Go organic if you're into that stuff. I really like the flavor of grass-fed beef so that is what I recommend.

You need to cut it with the grain into 3/16" strips (about 5mm) and it is important to make the meat cuts uniform. Alternatively, you can ask your butcher to slice it for you and they will likely oblige.

Take the meat strips and add them to a plastic or glass container (no metal) that they fit in tightly. The less room, the better. Alternatively, use a plastic zip-lock bag or equivalent but beware of leaks.

Now, mix up this recipe and add it to the container with the meat. Then, let sit for 14 to 16 hours.

3 lb flank steak

1/2 cup worchestershire sauce

1/2 cup soy sauce

1/4 cup brown sugar

1 tbs or more honey

1 tbs liquid smoke

1 tbs red pepper crushed

1 - 1 1/2 tbs black pepper

1 1/2 tbs onion powder

1 - 1 1/2 coarse ground garlic powder

2 orange habaneros - slice into rings (pull out before drying)

Step 2: Step 2: Assemble the Dehydrator.

While you're waiting, you can head to the home improvement store and get the following:

1 x 20inx20in box fan.

3-4 x 20inx20inx1in Cellulose air filters.

Don't use fiberglass or plastic - it will stick to the jerky and you don't want to eat that stuff.

Packing tape or Scotch tape.

When the meat is ready, layer it on the back side of the filter as shown. These can be reused many times so be careful when handling.

Step 3: Step 3: Seal It Up, Turn It On.

Place the last filter over the top to keep debris (and hungry things) out. Use the packing tape to seal it temporarily. Adjust the fan speed so that you can just feel the air flowing through the top layer. Allow to dehydrate for 14 - 16 hours, checking occasionally until desired moistness is achieved.

Step 4: Step 4: Guard Jealously.

Serisouly, there are a lot of jerky-thieves out there!

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    Never a bad thing to have another visual guide of this jerky making method. However, don't you think you should include some mention of credit to Alton Brown? I mean, it was from his show that you learned this technique. Even your recipe, while having one or two additions to the marinade, is pretty much the same recipe as Alton Brown's.

    I just believe a little credit should be given is all. It's only respectful.


    Reply 7 years ago

    I had absolutely no idea that was his recipe! I got this from my brother who has been doing it for years. But I am not one to take someone's idea as my own. So you're right, I'll thank Alton Brown for a great recipe jerky recipe and apologize if by posting this I somehow plagiarized his ideas. As for his show... I've honestly never seen it. I've never heard of him before your comment.


    7 years ago on Introduction

    Looks easy enough! Any shots of the finished jerky you made? I'm curious to see how it turned out.


    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    Photo has been updated! The finished product is on the first page.