Backpackers, campers, and outdoor sports enthusiasts will appreciate the convenience of jerky, a light, dried meat product. It does not need to be refrigerated. Beef, hog, venison, or smoked turkey breast can all be used to make jerky. (Because of the texture and flavor of the completed product, raw fowl is generally not advised for creating jerky.)
Raw meats can be infected with disease-causing germs.
These hazardous bacteria thrive in moist, high-protein foods like meat and poultry, and if the products are not handled properly, they can cause disease.
Before slicing and marinating pig or wild game for jerky, the flesh should be treated to kill the trichinella parasite.
Trichinosis is caused by this parasite.
Freeze a part of the meat that is 6 inches or less thick at 0oF or below for at least 30 days to treat it.
The bacteria in the meat will not be killed by freezing.
Follow these guidelines for safe meat and poultry handling:
- Before and after handling raw meats, wash hands thoroughly with soap and running water for at least 20 seconds.
- Use sanitary utensils and equipment.
- Refrigerate meat and poultry at 40F or below.
- Ground beef and poultry should be consumed within two days, red meats should be consumed within three to five days, or frozen for later use.
- Frozen meat should be thawed in the refrigerator rather than on the kitchen counter.
- Refrigerate the meat to marinate.
- The marinade should not be saved and reused.
When making jerky from wild animal, keep in mind that the position of the wound and the hunter’s ability can have an impact on the meat’s safety. Fecal germs can contaminate meat if the animal is wounded in such a way that the contents of its gut come into contact with the meat or the hunters hands when dressing the meat. It’s advisable to avoid producing jerky with this meat and only use it in recipes that call for it to be fully cooked. To avoid bacterial growth, deer carcasses should be quickly cooled. Allowing the internal temperature of the meat to reach 160oF while avoiding case hardening can reduce the risk of foodborne disease from home-dried jerky. Heating beef strips in a marinade before drying or heating dried jerky strips in an oven after the drying process is complete are two options. The instructions for both techniques can be found below. Drying periods are lowered when the strips are cooked in a marinade before drying. Traditional jerky will have a different color and texture.
Preparing the Meat
To make slicing easier, partially freeze the meat. The thickness of the beef strips will impact the safety of the methods suggested in this book. Meat should be sliced no thicker than 1/4 inch thick. All fat from meat should be removed and discarded since it quickly goes rancid. If you want a chewy jerky, slice it against the grain. If you want a more sensitive, brittle jerky, slice across the grain. If desired, a tenderizer can be used according to package directions. For added taste and tenderness, the meat can be marinated. Oil, salt, spices, and acid substances like vinegar, lemon juice, teriyaki, soy sauce, or wine may be used in marinade recipes.
- 1 1/2 to 2 lbs. lean meat (beef, pork or venison)
- a quarter cup of soy sauce
- Worcestershire sauce, 1 tablespoon
- a quarter teaspoon of black pepper and a quarter teaspoon of garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon powdered onion
- 1 teaspoon salt with a hickory smoke flavor
Combine all ingredients in a mixing bowl. Place the beef strips in a shallow pan and pour the marinade over them. Refrigerate for 1-2 hours or overnight, covered. Some people dislike the saltiness of products that have been marinated for several hours. If you want to reduce the danger of foodborne illness, boil the meat before drying it. Do it at the end of the marination time. To heat the strips, bring them to a boil with the marinade and cook for 5 minutes before draining and drying them. If the strips are thicker than 1/4 inch, the time may need to be extended. If possible, use a metal stem-type thermometer to check the temperature of many strips to see if they’ve hit 160F.
Drying the Meat
Drain the beef strips on clean, absorbent towels after removing them from the marinade. Place strips on dehydrator trays or cake racks on baking sheets to dry in the oven. Closely space the slices, but not too close that they touch or overlap. Place the racks in a dehydrator or a preheated oven at 140 degrees Fahrenheit. When a test piece is bent, it cracks but does not break (10 to 24 hours for samples not heated in marinade). Samples that have been cooked in a marinade will dry more quickly. After 3 hours, start inspecting samples. Once the drying is complete, remove any oil beads with clean, absorbent towels and allow to cool. Strips should be removed from the racks. Cool. Glass jars or strong plastic food storage bags are ideal for this. Vacuum packaging is also an excellent choice.
If the strips were not warmed in the marinade before drying, they can be warmed in the oven after drying for enhanced safety.
Place strips near together on a baking sheet, but not touching or overlapping.
Heat for 10 minutes in a 275oF oven for strips that were originally cut 1/4 inch thick or less.
(Thicker strips may take a little longer to reach 160F.)
Making Jerky from Ground Meat
Ground meat can be used to make jerky, which is formed or shaped using special presses. In ground beef, disease-causing germs are more difficult to eradicate than in entire meat strips. (If ground meat is used, follow the standard guidelines for safe meat and poultry handling outlined above.) When heating the product at the end of the drying time, make sure to follow the dehydrator manufacturer’s instructions. If disease-causing bacteria such as E. coli O157:H7 are present, an internal temperature of 160oF is required.
Storing the Jerky
In a sealed container, properly dried jerky will last two weeks at room temperature. Refrigerate or freeze jerky for optimum results, increased shelf life, and greatest flavor and quality.
What happens if you don’t keep beef jerky refrigerated?
Beef jerky is also affected by temperature. High heat can produce condensation in both opened and closed jerky bags, which can lead to mold. But it’s not simply the heat. Temperature fluctuations, such as from hot to cold and cold to hot, can also harm the jerky. These quick changes might have a negative impact on the flavor, texture, and color of the food.
What is the best way to store homemade beef jerky?
Jerky that hasn’t been unwrapped should be kept in a cold, dry place like a cupboard or a drawer. Because sunlight and heat can degrade the freshness and flavor of beef jerky, storing it somewhere dark and cold can help it last longer. Unopened jerky that has been vacuum-sealed (rather than nitrogen back flushed, think puffy bags of jerky with the oxygen absorber) is less susceptible to bacteria and lasts longer.
Refrigerate Your Beef Jerky
It’s all about refrigeration when it comes to storing beef jerky once it’s been opened. To keep its texture, flavor, and freshness, beef jerky must be kept refrigerated once the seal is broken. Pro tip: Place your jerky in a zip lock bag and squeeze out all of the air before refrigerating it to keep it fresh for up to a week.
Freeze Your Beef Jerky
It’s preferable to freeze beef jerky if you’re not planning to consume it straight away. If frozen properly, the shelf life of beef jerky can be extended to 712 months. Packages that have been vacuum-sealed can be frozen right away. To avoid freezer burn, place opened bags or bags full with air in an airtight container. For future reference, date and label your jerky.
What is the shelf life of homemade beef jerky?
If you store homemade beef jerky in an airtight container after creating it, it should last one to two months. Beef jerky can keep about a week if stored in a Ziplock bag in your cupboard. You should anticipate your beef jerky to last one to two weeks if you keep it in the fridge.
What is the best way to keep beef jerky?
After first airtight packaging, your handmade jerky should survive 1-2 months if you follow the methods below. Jerky will last about a week in ziplock style bags in a dark cupboard; jerky will keep 1-2 weeks in the refrigerator.
Why is it okay to eat beef jerky that has been kept at room temperature?
Bacteria require moisture to grow, thus unless the jerky is stored in a humid environment where condensation and other moisture particles can collect on it, the life of the jerky is greatly extended, even after it has been removed from the packet!
Is it necessary to keep dried meat refrigerated?
Dehydrated meats should be stored in a dark, cold environment. Even a kitchen cabinet will suffice; however, keep the meat away from any radiating heat from your stove. Dehydrated beef should be kept out of the refrigerator for no more than two weeks, according to the National Center for Home Food Preservation.
Is it possible to detect whether beef jerky is bad?
- Make a note of the best-by date.
- Inspect the packaging for any signs of damage.
- Examine the jerky.
- Seek advice from an expert.
When analyzing a package of jerky, it’s crucial to use all of your sensessight, smell, and touch. Your best guides will be your eyes and nose. The name of the game is common sense.
If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to contact our customer service staff, who will be pleased to assist you. It makes no difference whether it’s our jerky or someone else’s!
Check for the best-by date.
A best-by date must be printed on every packet of beef jerky made in the United States. It’s usually found around the bag’s bottom seal. This is an excellent place to start when trying to figure out if your beef jerky is still fresh. It’s important to remember that just because jerky has beyond its best-by date doesn’t mean it’s harmful to consume.
Check for any rips or holes in the packaging.
An improper sealit can be an indicator that oxygen and moisture have entered the bag, potentially causing complications, if the package has been compromised in any wayrips, tears, pinholes. It’s not a certainty that the jerky has gone bad, but it’s something to keep in mind.
Inspect the jerky.
How does it appear? Take note of the hue. Pay close attention to any flaws. Are there any white specks on it? How about the odor? It should smell like clean, tasty meat. How does it make you feel? It should be strong and malleable without being mushy or soft.
Mold and rancidity are two strong symptoms that the jerky has ruined and is no longer safe to eat.
Is there any mold on the jerky? Furry, powdery, or fuzzy foreign things that are white, green, or grey in hue are evident symptoms of mold. A spider-web pattern is common in mold. It’s mold if it looks like cobwebs. It’s possible that the white substance is fat or salt surfacing. Are you unsure what the white substance on your jerky is? Check out our tips on spotting mold on beef jerky.
Does the jerky have a distinct odor? When there is somewhat more fat in beef jerky, the fat can go rancid on rare occasions. The stench is a telltale sign that beef jerky has gone sour. It will often have a rotten, unpleasant odor.
If you come across beef jerky that has mold or is showing signs of rancidity, throw it out and don’t consume it.
Consult a professional.
The beef jerky should be safe to consume if it passes these three tests and shows no symptoms of mold or rancidity. If you have any issues or reservations, visit a specialist as usual.
Is beef jerky perishable?
It’s been said that all good things must come to an end, and jerkyit is no exception. The shelf life of commercially prepared jerky purchased in stores or online is typically one year. These packets will normally carry a “best by date” that will give you an idea of when the jerky is at its freshest. If the package is not opened, the jerky may be good for another month or two after the expiration date on the bag.
The shelf life of jerky decreases once it is opened. Commercial jerky will keep for one to two weeks in the pantry or three to four weeks in the refrigerator once opened. Naturally, jerky from well-known brands will stay longer if they’re packed with preservatives. Because there are more preservatives, the jerky will be less impacted by air and moisture.
Homemade jerky, on the other hand, has a far shorter shelf life than commercially produced jerky. It all depends on how the jerky is packaged. The jerky will stay one to two months in the pantry or longer in the refrigerator if vacuum-sealed. If you don’t vacuum-seal it, the jerky will last one to two weeks in the pantry or one month in the refrigerator if you don’t vacuum-seal it.
What went wrong with my homemade beef jerky?
There’s nothing quite like cooking your own jerky. Jerky of all kinds is a favorite of ours.
Our products are used by a large majority of our consumers here, and
their meat is jerky Finding mold on your jerky, on the other hand, is a bummer. We frequently
I get a lot of queries about mold in jerky and how to avoid it.
To begin with, mold in jerky can be generated by a variety of circumstances, but the most common culprits include
Moisture and oxygen are always present. They will, in the end, contribute to bacterial growth.
Your jerky will rot as a result of this growth.
If there isn’t enough moisture removed from the jerky, it will mold.
During the drying process, the meat should retain about 90% to 95% of its moisture; as a result, it should have roughly 90% to 95% of its original moisture.
During the drying process, the moisture in the meat is eliminated. If
If it doesn’t, mold spores will proliferate due to the moisture remaining in the meat. If
Because the jerky is almost totally dried, mold is unlikely to grow.
When it comes to jerky, we’re frequently questioned whether to use a desiccant or an oxygen absorber.
Because the amount of wetness you have depends on the response, it’s always a little hard.
wish to keep in your jerky, as well as how long you intend to keep it.
Short-term storage of jerky, ranging from one to three months, necessitates the use of an airtight container.
a stand-up pouch, a Mylar bag, or a mason jar that is airtight Depending
Depending on the consistency you want to keep, a food-grade desiccant can help.
keep a stable moisture level in your jerky Desiccants act as a moisture barrier.
moisture in the packing, which could assist preserve the product by decreasing the amount of time it is exposed to the elements.
a water concentration A desiccant can also function without being wet.
to package in a hermetically sealed manner This sort of packaging is frequently seen with
Jerky from the store.
If you’re going to keep your jerky for a long time, vacuum seal it.
You’ll be able to keep the moisture in while keeping the air out by using bags. Include an oxygen source.
absorber to keep your jerky fresh and consistent, as well as to prevent it from drying out.
preventing your jerky from rotting You can keep your jerky for more than a year!
Mold also appears to grow or develop.
In a high-moisture atmosphere, things move faster. As a result, the refrigerator is not a good option.
Unless the jerky is vacuum sealed, this is the best location to keep it. Jerky, on the other hand, is dried.
It’s not necessary to keep meat refrigerated in the first place.
It’s important to keep in mind that, according to
E.Coli can survive drying, according to a study published in the American Medical Association.
temperatures of up to 145 degrees F and times of up to 10 hours It’s true.
It is suggested that venison being dried for jerky be precooked to an internal temperature of 160F.
A minimum internal temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit is required. Consumers such as hunters and others
must understand that wild game must be handled and cooked in the same manner as domestic game.
Other meats should be handled with caution.