Even though there are a ton of fantastic beef jerky recipes out there, peppered beef jerky always seems to hold a special place in the hearts of both seasoned jerky lovers and newcomers. By following these steps, you’re gonna whip up a batch of jerky so tasty it’ll make you question why you ever spent money on the store-bought stuff.
Note that this recipe uses both your home oven and a food dehydrator.
You’ll need roughly 25 minutes to prep everything, plus a solid ten hours for the actual cooking part. Don’t forget, this jerky needs a whole day to soak up the marinade and chill out afterward. So, all in all, this recipe requires a day plus 10 hours and 25 minutes.
Step 1: Ready the Ingredients
Like most good jerky recipes, this one needs lean beef, all the fat cut off, and sliced into 1/4-inch-thick pieces. For this recipe to really sing, you’re going to want about four pounds of meat.
Step 2: Prepare the Marinade
Before you prepare your marinade, you should lay your pre-cut beef strips on a solid surface and pound them with the tenderizing side of a meat mallet. You want to break the meat’s fibers a little whilst retaining the shape of your strips.
Then, you must prepare your marinade. In a large container, mix in:
- ¾ cup of soy and Worcestershire sauce
- 1 teaspoon of liquid smoke
- 1 tablespoon of onion
- 1 tablespoon of garlic powder
- 1 tablespoon of black
- 1,5 tablespoons of brown sugar
- ¼ teaspoon of cayenne pepper
- ¼ teaspoon of coriander seeds
- ¾ cup of water
You can adjust the levels of ground black pepper and coriander seeds to your liking and add more water if necessary.
Step 3: Mix the Meat and Marinade and Let Sit for a Day
Then, place your beef strips inside the bowl so that they are fully covered in the flavors. Stir it a few times to allow your meat to soak up the marinade. Then, cover the bowl and place it in the fridge for a full day.
Step 4: Warm the Meat Using an Oven
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Once the beef has been marinated, remove the container from the fridge and preheat your oven to 300° F. Shake off the extra marinade from the strips and pat them dry with a paper towel.
After, you must lay the beef strips onto your oven’s racks, with a small separation between each piece.
You’ll bake the beef until its internal temperature reaches 150° F. For this, you should place a thermometer into the thickest piece and keep an eye on it. It should take around 30 minutes.
Step 5: Dry the Meat Using a Dehydrator
When the beef is ready, remove the strips from the oven and place them onto the dehydrator’s racks. At this point, you can add more black pepper and coriander seeds to the jerky strips. This is a peppered recipe, after all, so indulge!
Set the dehydrator to 150° F and place the racks inside. Dry the jerky for about nine hours until you notice a leather-like texture from the meat. In order to evenly dry the strips, rotate the racks every hour and a half.
Your jerky is ready when you see cracks after folding the strip. If the strip breaks, you’ve cooked it for too long.
Making peppered beef jerky at home might take some time and patience, but trust me, it’s worth it.
From tenderizing the meat, marinating it in your homemade mix, to baking and dehydrating – every step adds to the flavorful goodness that is uniquely yours.
Once you’ve tasted your own creation, store-bought jerky might just become a thing of the past.
So, go ahead, roll up your sleeves, and create some jerky magic.
Whether you devour it immediately or save some for later in the fridge, one thing’s for sure – you’re in for a treat!
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1. What’s the best type of beef to use for making beef jerky?
Lean cuts are best for making beef jerky. Something like a round steak or flank steak would work well. The important thing is to remove as much fat as possible because fat doesn’t dry out and can cause the jerky to spoil.
2. Can you make beef jerky without a dehydrator?
Absolutely! While a dehydrator can make the process easier, it’s not a must-have. You can also dry out your beef jerky in an oven on the lowest setting. Just make sure to leave the door slightly ajar to let moisture out.
3. How long will homemade beef jerky keep?
If properly stored, homemade beef jerky can last for 1 to 2 months. It’s best to store it in an airtight container in a cool, dry place. If you’re not sure you’ll eat it all within this time, you can also freeze it to extend its shelf life.
4. Can you use other meats to make jerky?
Yes, while beef is the most common, you can also use other lean meats such as turkey, venison, or even fish to make jerky. The process will remain largely the same, but cooking times may vary.
5. Can you experiment with different flavors for your jerky?
Absolutely! Part of the fun of making homemade jerky is the ability to experiment with flavors. Try different marinades, spices, or sauces to find what suits your taste best. From teriyaki to spicy chili, the possibilities are endless.
"You might be a redneck if you think that beef jerky and moon pies are two of the major food groups."
-- Jeff Foxworthy