How to Make Venison Jerky
Follow My Secrets Below to Make the Best Venison Jerky at Home
Nothing is better than a knowing how to make venison jerky that you can snack on with your friends and family. Whether it is made of venison, beef or other meat, jerky remains a favorite treat that many people enjoy all over the world that can be enjoyed in many ways and with different spices, ranging from mild to tear jerking hotness. Making jerky does not have to be an arduous task; in fact, it is quite simple! Follow these tips and techniques to ensure the best flavor and taste in making your very own deer, elk, bison or beef jerky to enjoy and visit our Venison Recipes section for special jerky recipes!
Equipment You will Need to Make Venison Jerky
- Good knife set or electric cutter/slicer – see our knife selection guide
- Food dehydrator (optional)
- Smoker (optional) – See our smoker selection guide
- Venison meat
- Venison Seasonings
- Deer meat spices
- Wild game marinades
Cutting Your Venison Meat for Jerky
Depending on personal preference, deer meat can be cut against or with the texture of the meat when you make venison jerky. We prefer going against the texture of the meat because it can sometimes be easier to eat, however, other people may have a different preference. Try both methods by slicing the meat in one-quarter inch thick cuts. Also, try to keep each piece uniform in size and shape so that it is easier to dry the meat. If you have difficulty in cutting the meat, you may partially freeze it prior to cutting which will make the work much easier (especially if you do not have an electric slicer!)
Seasoning and Flavoring the Deer Jerky
This is perhaps the most crucial part of the entire jerky-making process. Depending on the spices, seasonings, and flavors you add as you make venison jerky will determine how it tastes once it dries. You can use a combination of liquid marinades or dry mixes to obtain the flavor you like. When using liquid marinades, it is best to refrigerate the meat in the marinade for several days (1-3 days is sufficient) which will help add to the flavor and texture of the meat. For dry mixes, letting the meat baste in the dry mix overnight is usually sufficient.
Drying the Venison Jerky
There are several methods that you can use to dry the deer jerky once it is properly cut and seasoned. Some popular methods include using a smoker, oven or even in a food dehydrator. Several factors determine how long it will take the venison jerky to dry, so be sure to keep an eye on your creations throughout the entire process to ensure it is prepared properly.
For dehydrators, make sure that you look at your owner’s manual to determine what and how to dry the meat – you want to make sure that it dries evenly! Another method is using a dry oven in which you can arrange your jerky sliced on a cookie sheet and bake at 170-200 degrees Fahrenheit, leaving the oven door ajar for the moisture to escape for 4-6 hours or until dry. Lastly, when using a smoker be sure to use a temperature at or near 150 degrees Fahrenheit and follow the manufacturer’s directions to slightly smoke your jerky. If left in too long with too much smoke, your jerky may take on a bitter taste – so just keep an eye on it and use caution when smoking.
When you believe the jerky is finished drying, let it first cool down to room temperature. Then with your hands, slightly bend a piece of cool jerky – you should notice that it will start to separate or break, but will not snap apart. One easy rule of thumb to know when is perfectly dehydrated would be to see if the meat on the edges of the jerky break off while the center remains pliable.
How to Make Venison Jerky – A Word of Caution
The United States Department of Agriculture Food Safety and Inspection Service advises all types of red meat be cooked to a minimum of 160 degrees Fahrenheit prior to dehydrated to ensure that all bacteria and parasites are killed. Be sure to follow these tips and tricks on how to make venison jerky to ensure a safe and delicious venison jerky treat.
Other Venison Information and FAQ’s
Gain INSTANT access to Venison HQ’s 150 TOP SECRET Venison Recipes today by submitting your information here. NOTE: The recipes featured in this 100% FREE guide are NOT AVAILABLE on our website. If you love venison and are looking for information on deer hunting, tips on cooking venison and venison health information, please feel free to explore the rest of our website. This concludes our How to Make Venison Jerky tutorial – please visit us again soon!