Beef Jerky Disaster

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Sven Svensson

Master of the Pit
Original poster
OTBS Member
Dec 5, 2021
Sonoma County, California
My big fancy LEM dehydrator has been glitching on me and it finally went out on me as I started big batch # 2. I’ll be calling LEM tomorrow but I’m not sure what to do with all these 1/4” slabs I so beautifully cut and seasoned and now are about 25% dry.

Do I freeze it and wait for LEM to help me fix it? The issue is the electronic controls. It could be a couple weeks at least.

Do I cube it and make chili? Grind it into jerky sausage? I’m certain there’s a good reason none of us have ever heard of jerky sausage.
You can monitor your oven temp with a grill thermometer and if its higher then you would like( and your oven won't work with the door open) , shut down your oven for short periods of time and let the temp drift lower, then restart it when it starts getting a little too low. More work for you, but it should finish your jerky ok this time.
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Not sure why I didn’t think of the oven myself. I have a one-track mind, I guess. Glad I checked in here and did my complaining. There’s always a better solution than my solution. Although, it might have made good chili. But I’d rather have jerky. This stuff is beautiful.
On my oven at least, the switch that cuts it if the door is open has a little play before it engages. Roughly 1" on mine. You could try just barely propping it open with something like the handle of a metal ladle or a grill spatula. I'd be surprised if it wouldn't run like that
Late to seeing this , but after my dehydrator quit I bought a set of jerky racks for the oven . They work great . I do all mine in the oven at 170 ( or whatever it really is ) and just pull the pieces as they finish .
Not a jerky maker....But I love to see everyone chiming in with work arounds. Thats why this forum is the BEST!

My oven has a frame around it which makes cracking the door open very difficult. After much trial and error, using the door handle and a wooden spoon, I cracked the door open without turning off the oven. It took a while. It was worth the work. The jerky was saved. I usually dry mine at 140-145 so 170 was a concern. It was just fine and I learned a lot. 760A2420-9A44-4E25-9F1C-F28CCA59E9A4.jpeg

There’s a lot more to dry. I love the oven rack option, chopsaw chopsaw and had I known it would have worked this well I never would have invested $$$ in the big LEM dehydrator.

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