Temps for jerky?

Discussion in 'Making Jerky' started by pitrow, Aug 20, 2008.

  1. pitrow

    pitrow Smoking Fanatic

    I recently bought a jerky cannon from LEM to try some ground beef jerky. I'm reading the instructions and it says to do it 200 degrees in the oven. Is this right? Seems awfully high to me, most jerky I've done is around the 150 range. But that was all cut strips, not ground.

    200 just seems like it's cooking the meat instead of dehydrating it to me.
  2. dingle

    dingle Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member

    I have not done ground jerky but I agree with everything you just said.
  3. earache_my_eye

    earache_my_eye Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member

    Ditto.....too high of temps. Also....use the leanest meat you can for making ground jerky....I mean really, REALLY lean. Fat in the ground jerky can make it go rancid quickly. Keep it refrigerated/frozen and this isn't a problem.
    Then again, if it lasts long enough to go bad, well, you get the idea...

  4. pitrow

    pitrow Smoking Fanatic

    yeah, that's the only thing that I can think of is the higher temp helps render the fat out of the ground. The beef I've got defrosting i'm not sure what the exact fat content is, it's from a local butcher and is usually pretty darn lean so I'm not too worried about it. Besides, like you say, my jerky usually doesn't last long enough to worry about.

    Thanks guys. I think I'll give it a shot with a slightly lower temp, like 175 and see how that works.
  5. walking dude

    walking dude Smoking Guru SMF Premier Member

    i don't use heat AT all...........in my dehydrator...........alton brown did his just using a box fan and paper furnace filters.
  6. placebo

    placebo Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Per the instructions that come with the Hi Mountain seasoning kits I smoke my jerky @ 200 degrees for 2 hours and it comes out perfect. I even slice mine about 3/8" thick. Have never done ground jerky so I can't say anything there except I agree with Earache that any fat will taste rancid so the leaner the better.
  7. daboys

    daboys Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Just made another batch of burger jerky yesterday. I use 93/7 hamburger, but have used 80/20. My dehydrator runs around 156*. With the 80/20 it takes about 7-8 hrs and with the 93/7 about 4-4 1/2 hrs. It's good stuff.
  8. pitrow

    pitrow Smoking Fanatic

    Hmm... interesting Mark, I didn't realize that the higher fat content would take longer, but now that you mention it it makes sense. Thanks for the tip!

    Well, since I don't own a dehydrator, my jerky racks won't fit in the MES and my oven only goes down 170 I guess I'll be trying it at 170 lol.

    Thanks everyone, as soon as the meat defrosts I'm going to give it a shot, thanks for the input and wish me luck!
  9. dingle

    dingle Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member

    Hey PitRow...Good Luck!!
  10. daboys

    daboys Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Here's the batch I did yesterday. It was done with 93/7.
  11. walking dude

    walking dude Smoking Guru SMF Premier Member

    nice mark.........REAL nice
  12. daboys

    daboys Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Thanks Steve.
  13. tasunkawitko

    tasunkawitko Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    i've done both ground and strips of meat for jerky and personally wouldn't want it over 160 degrees; having said that, 200 degrees isn't too far out of line but i would think of this as an ultimate maximum for the reasons you mentioned - you're not trying to cook the meat, only dry it.

    also, keep in mind that nearly all jerky is already cured, unless you are simply drying raw meat. this means that in a sense, it is already "cooked" as far as bacteria are concerned. the plains indians made jerky simply by cutting thin strips and letting it hang in the hot prairie wind. it has been enar a hundred here and windy the last few days and i can attest to the fact that it wouldn't take long to make jerky from that.

    my advice would be to disregard the instructions, which were probably written by a lawyer or a liability insurance risk manager, and set your heat to anywhere between 140 and 160 degrees.
  14. pitrow

    pitrow Smoking Fanatic

    Well i'm happy to say the jerky was/is a success. I ended up doing it at 170 degrees in the oven with the door held about an inch open. It was in there for a total of about 2 and half hours and I think it could have gone just a tad longer, maybe 5 minutes or so.

    I used the backwoods orignal seasoning and surprisingly there's not as much flavor as I had expected, but it's still good.

    Sorry, no pics, the camera batteries were dead, but maybe I'll snap some tonight if I remember.

    Thanks All!
  15. cowgirl

    cowgirl Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Congratulations Mike, glad it turned out for ya!
  16. pitrow

    pitrow Smoking Fanatic

    Thanks Jeanie!

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