The Official Livin' La Vida Low-Carb Forum

Well jerky is not that special a deal, but it's long been our favorite snack food. And so low-carb! I've been making it for many years, first in an oven, then a small, cheap plastic dehydrator, but I got a new commercial dehydrator this week and just had to test her out today. My first batch today came out quite good:

Hubby wants me to put more black pepper, but man, he always want it to burn your mouth out with pepper and I just can't eat it that hot! I like black pepper, but I have my tolerance limits. If you try this recipe, you will have to play around with the amount of black pepper YOU like.
My parents gave us a dehydrator for Christmas last year and I've been wanting to make beef jerky (I haven't used it yet - it is one of those 'cheap plastic ones lol- I will check out our recipe!
Hey, don't get me wrong. My cheap plastic one served me well for 4-5 years. But little bits of the plastic trays kept breaking off and the trays had more and more, bigger and bigger holes in them. Small pieces of jerky would "fall through the holes" and I had to make less and less jerky as time went on. Then the fan motor finally died.
I seem to recall an episode of "Good Eats" where Alton Brown made a dehydrator out of a couple of box fans. I'll see if I can find a link.

Here's one, not to Alton Brown but a pretty ingenious DIY:

Here's AB's recipe:

I'm amused that they suggest a wine pairing for beef jerky (merlot).
The recipe looks good; the method seems bizarre, but obviously it works. Yeah, on the wine, I prefer to cook with my wine rather than drink it. Yes, I found that laughable, too. But I'm not so fond of Alton's antics.
I bought a dehydrator and jerky gun a few months ago; my spouse loves jerky for his snack bag. I found the ground meat jerky easier to chew and it dried more uniformly. He loves spicy, so my last batch I added a couple tablespoons of dehydrated jalapeno peppers for a nice kick.

Thanks for the recipes.

Thanks for the recipes.
Tell me more about ground meat jerky, please?!?
Yes, tell us more. I'm very curious. Seems like bits of the ground mixture would break apart and fall through the tray holes, as my smaller 1-1½" pieces tend to do that. Only the 2-3" (or longer) pieces "stay put" on the wire trays for me.
I make jerky with ground beef also, using a Nesco jerky gun:

Nesco Jerky Gun

Buy low-fat ground beef (95%), mix with spices, make ribbons with the gun (I do it right on my toaster oven racks; the oven has a deydrator setting), and about three hours later you have jerky.

The finished product is "strong" enough to easily handle in strips, but also is easily chewed. I much prefer it to jerky made from sliced beef.

I'll check out the jerky guns. I think I would like that kind better. But my husband actually likes the tough, chewy aspect of the sliced variety. For him, the thicker and tougher it is, the better it is. LOL Thanks for the link though, Jim. I'm gonna go look at them.
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