I have a love hate relationship with Beef Jerky that dates back to the 80’s. I love the taste and texture of it but hate paying top dollar for it off the shelves of corner stores and gas stations. Beef Jerky is one of my go to snacks when traveling or when I have a case of the munchies.
Years ago when I got my fist vertical electric smoker I started to smoke my own Beef Jerky. To be honest, it’s actually the only thing I really smoked in that machine. I started with a curing kit that I purchased from the local Bass Pro Shop. Since that time, I have purchased a Traeger and have continued to smoke my own beef jerky but given up on the store-bought curing kits. Here is one of my go to beef jerky recipes.
2lbs. of beef bottom round
1 bottle of Small Town Brewery “Not Your Father’s Root Beer”
1 cup Less Sodium Soy Sauce or Tamari
1/3 cup Worcestershire Sauce
3 Tbs. Light Brown Sugar
1 Tbs. Pink Curing Salt (optional)
4 Tbs. Coarse Black Pepper
1 Tsp. Garlic Powder
1 Tsp. Onion Powder
½ Tsp. Smoked Paprika
Cut the bottom round into 1 in. wide pieces that are approximately ¼ inches thick. Mix all of the wet and dry ingredients in a bowl; this is now your marinade. Place beef strips in a plastic zip-lock bag and cover with marinade. Coat evenly, remove air from the plastic bag and seal. Refrigerate for 24 hours occasionally flipping the bag of mixture over to make sure all the meat is covered.
When you are ready to cook, place a wire rack inside a baking sheet. Place the beef strips on the rack allowing them to drip-dry while you prepare your grill. Sprinkle the beef strips with additional coarse pepper if desired.
I smoke my jerky in a Traeger Grill using the smoke setting. I use a blend of Mesquite and Hickory pellets. Smoke for 3-5 hours or until jerky is dry. If not using a Traeger prepare your grill for indirect cooking. Set your temperature between 180 degrees and 225 degrees. Smoke 3-5 hours or until the jerky is dry.
Allow Jerky to cool for a few hours and store in a zip-lock bag or seal with a food saver.
Don’t be afraid to play with the ingredients. Add red pepper flakes or your favorite hot sauce for added spice. Add ½ cup of molasses if you like your jerky a bit sweeter.
Small Town Brewery <-CLICK HERE
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