Introduction: Beef Jerky by DanPro

This was the first project using my new Excalibur food dehydrator. Jerky is a great snack. It can keep you going during a grueling hike or just satisfy the need to chew something while watching your favorite show. I'm making two different flavors today. I'm sure they'll both be tasty.



Vacuum sealer

Cutting board

Sharp knife

Plastic wrap

Zipper lock bag

Meat thermometer

Meat, in this case, a top round

Ingredients for the marinade:

Granulated garlic

Cayenne powder (I use my own mix of hot pepper powder)

Pink Himalayan salt

Worcestershire sauce

Garden cocktail

Ingredients for the dry rub:

Franks red hot powder

Cayenne powder (I use my own mix of hot pepper powder)

Pink Himalayan salt

Granulated garlic

Smoked paprika

Step 1: The Dehydrator

I bought my Excalibur after burning out a much cheaper machine. I used it quite a bit. I decided to go with a higher quality machine that would last. Now I can set temperatures and use a timer if required. I'm pleased with the purchase.

I ordered the machine through Amazon. You can do this with Amazon gift cards won on

I was a little worried when I opened the machine and found things had bounced around a bit. Once I pulled things apart and reset them properly, all was well.

Step 2: The Meat

The first step is to trim the fat. You now have to cut the roast into slabs. Cut with the grain no across it. The thickness depends on how wide you want your strips to be. I went with an inch. I tried to make even cuts. I would suggest an hour in the freezer to stiffen the meat before cutting. Now cut the slabs into strips lengthwise. I went with ¼". Again remember to go with the grain.

Step 3: Seasoning

Seasoning is a very personal step. I can't tell you what you'll like. I just kind of wing it. Salt is the one ingredient that you don't want to skimp on though. I know it isn't all that healthy to eat a lot of salt, but who ever said jerky was a healthy food choice? People throw pieces of jerky in their hiking gear and head out on the trail. No refrigeration means salt! I suggest 1tsp per pound of meat. The rest is up to you. Season to taste. You could fry up a piece to get a bit of an idea of how it will turn out and adjust if necessary.

Step 4: Marinate

Marinate in the fridge for 4 hours. Over night would be my choice. Bag the wet and wrap the dry, set them in a bowl in the fridge and wait it out. The waiting has just begun, but it will be worth it.

Step 5: Preheat

You need to preheat the dehydrator to 75°c / 145°f

Ignore the clock on my thermometer. Its actually morning.

Step 6: Day Two or 4hrs Later

Unwrap the dry and drain the wet.

Step 7: The Layout

Now distribute the strips onto the trays making sure they don't touch. This was the point when I realized, just how large a nine tray Excalibur dehydrator is. Next time I'll get five or six pounds of meat to fill all 9 trays.

Step 8: Begin Dehydration

Its 8:24 am and I'm starting the process. I'll check back in a few hours and see how things are progressing.

Step 9: Check the Progress

Its now 11:04 am and the meat is drying nicely.

Step 10: Check the Progress and Flip the Pieces

Its now 12:35 were looking and feeling great. This smells so good, I'm freaking out in anticipation.

Step 11: Ok Were Done Cooking / Dehydrating

Its 2:00 and were done the cooking / dehydrating process.

First thing you must do now is eat one. Duh.

Step 12: Vacuum Them Up

Now remove the trays from the dehydrator, vacuum seal your jerky, label marinated or dry rub and stash it in the freezer. It will last for years in there. Unless, as in my case, all 5 kids know I made it. Then you might get a month or so.

I hope you enjoyed my Instructable on making beef jerky. Please make some of your own and post a pic. ;-)

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