Introduction: Organic Black Cherry and Jalapeño Beef Jerky

About: Hello! My name is Jennifer and I love to cook. Baking, grilling, smoking, and frying interest me. Creating my own recipe is even better!
My husband loves beef jerky. Every time we go on a road trip, he buys a bag for the ride. It is his absolute favorite snack for traveling.
However, store bought beef jerky can have a variety of unwanted ingredients that can be questionable. I decided to make a recipe for beef jerky that would give us a little more control over the contents.
I used all organic ingredients and grassfed beef that was produced without antibiotics, hormones or GMOs. I also used organic locally sourced honey to slightly sweeten the jerky. The final outcome was a delicious homemade jerky flavored with black cherries and jalapeño that was completely organic.

Ingredients* needed:
2 pounds organic grassfed beef skirt steak
1/2 cup organic Worcestershire sauce
1/2 cup organic soy sauce
1 tablespoon organic honey
2 teaspoons organic onion powder
2 tablespoons roasted minced organic garlic
1/2 cup chopped organic cherries with pits and stems removed
1/4 cup chopped organic jalapeño with seeds and ribs removed

*Organic ingredients can be found at specialty stores such as Sprouts or on Amazon.

Step 1: Cutting the Beef

Using a sharp knife and a cutting board, slice beef against the grain. If you slice it very thin, you will shorten the dehydrating time. I left mine a little thicker because my husband prefers thicker jerky.
Note: to make thin slicing easier, place meat in the freezer for 20 minutes before slicing.

Step 2: Preparing to Marinate

Place beef strips into a gallon sized plastic bag (ziplock).

Step 3: Creating the Marinade

In a medium sized bowl, add:
1/2 cup organic Worcestershire sauce
1/2 cup organic soy sauce
1 tablespoon organic honey
2 teaspoons organic onion powder
2 tablespoons roasted minced organic garlic
Whisk until combined.

Step 4: Creating the Marinade

Add 1/4 cup chopped organic jalapeño with seeds and ribs removed. Whisk.
Note: if you want spicer jerky, leave the seeds in and just remove the pepper ribs.

Step 5: Creating the Marinade

Add 1/2 cup chopped organic cherries with pits and stems removed to the marinade. Whisk.

Step 6: Marinate

Pour marinade into plastic bag with beef. Squeeze out air and seal. Turn bag over in your hands to coat beef with marinade. Refrigerate overnight.

Step 7: Preparing for Dehydration

Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil. Place a metal rack on top of the lined sheet. Lay out marinated beef on the rack making sure that the pieces aren’t touching each other. The beef will be dark in color after marinating.

Step 8: Dehydrate

Preheat oven to 170 degrees Fahrenheit. This is the lowest setting on my oven. Place baking sheet on the middle rack in the oven. Dehydrate for 6 to 8 hours or until beef has dried out.

Step 9: Enjoy!

Remove beef jerky from the oven and allow to cool. After cooling, it can be eaten immediately.
After I made my beef jerky, I gave some to my resident taste tester, my husband. He loved it! He was impressed with the flavor pairing of black cherries and jalapeño and wanted to make sure I had made plenty of jerky. Of course, I thought 2 pounds was plenty but we will see how long it lasts at my house. Ha ha!
Thanks for reading.
-Jennifer
“Butter My Biscuits”
Organic Cooking Challenge

Runner Up in the
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