"Rustic" casing-less snack sticks (AKA/Dog Turd Jerky)

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Master of the Pit
Original poster
OTBS Member
Nov 24, 2011
McDonough, GA
Well, I'm out of snack sticks so it's time to make some more.  Some of the gang at the office asked about the "rustic" jerky rounds, so I figured that meat recipe is what I'm using.  But I'm going to change things up this time.  Instead of taking balls of the marinaded meat and pressing them flat before dehydrating, I'm going to put the marinaded meat into the stuffer and make dehydrated casing-less sticks.

This mix uses the Smoking Gun Jerky Marinade as a base and is "doctored" up a little.  Recipe is for 5 pounds, and I had a 10 pound log of 90% lean beef from Sam's Club so I made it in two batches.  It is also easier to mix a 5 pound batch in my large stainless bowl instead of dealing with all 10 pounds at once.
  • 5 pounds of 90% lean ground beef (you can use leaner or venison if you have it)
  • 12 liquid ounces of Smoking Gun Jerky Marinade (a pre-mixed commercial product - see below)
  • 2 tsp crushed black pepper
  • 2 tsp crushed red pepper
  • 2 tsp onion powder
  • 2 tsp liquid hickory smoke
  • 1 tsp of Cure #1 (pink salt)
I ran the crushed red pepper through my spice grinder to break it up a little finer. Not into a powder, just a lot finer than as it normally is (CRP is the same as pizza peppers).

Mixed each 5 pound batch by hand and then stored overnight in the fridge in a 6 liter food container.  Two days later (got side tracked the next day), I loaded the manual stuffer and used a 1/2" tube to extrude casing-less sticks which were laid one at a time on the dehydrator trays.  The 10 pounds of meat filled about 7 1/2 of my LEM 10 tray dehydrator trays.

Dehydrated at 125* for 1 1/2 hours to set the outer layer of meat, then cranked it to 145* for about 4 hours, then to 155* to finish.  Total dryer time was about 8 1/2 hours.  This is a very wet meat mix so it took longer than some of my other recipes.

Final verdict.  Yep, they are rustic looking.  It's sort of funny, but the wife said the short pieces looked like "dog turds" and anyone who has had a smaller dog will know what I mean.  They were a hit at the office, and yes, the name "dog turd jerky" has now officially stuck.

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DTJ For short.

Dehydrating sure gives a different texture.

Looks good.
I used Smoking Gun Jerky Marinade, which is a commercial liquid product.  You can use any liquid or other jerky or stick mix.  I did add liquid hickory smoke flavor as I was not going to put these in the smoker.  I would imagine a jerky gun would make this a little easier as transferring the sticks from the extrusion tube to the tray was done by hand.  This was a very wet and loose mix.  A stiffer mix would be much easier to handle (or the gun would eliminate handling as you would extrude directly onto the tray if dehydrating).

I started with about 11.5 pounds of mixed wet meat & marinade/spice.  Ended up with about 3 1/2 pounds of dried product.  I figure I took about a half pound to the office before this photo was taken when I was packing them with the foodsaver. I let them bloom in the brown paper bag for at least 2 days for the remaining moisture to equalize throughout the stick.  Then I vacuum pack them in smaller batches and store them in the fridge.  I use pre-cut 1 pint bags.  So figure the dehydrator took this from 11.5 pounds of meat/mix to 3.5 pounds finished product.

Oh and as to the predicted Snow-poclapyse they were predicting for my area, it fizzled. 24 hours ago we were in the 5 to 6" of snow zone.  But we ended up with about 1/16" of freezing rain and maybe a Big Gulp cup of snow on top of that.  Ice was decieving and nearly invisible.  Slick, slick slick, so basically this is a stay the heck inside day. So for us, once the ice melted in the sun, this storm was a nothing burger.  Not so much for other areas of north GA.  Yeah, I know.... 2 snowflakes and we southerners freak out, buy all the bread and milk in a 2 state area and totally forget how to drive.   But it's only for about 2 days a year.

I think our rain and wind burnt out too. Its 72* right now low tomorrow 6am is 46* Freezing BRRRRRRR
The sticks look great and I love the name! I won't mention the two feet of snow and minus 12 it is here.


Great idea using the stuffer, I have always used a gun, never thought of using my stuffer.  That looks much easier.  I am going to try that next time. 


I bet they taste great.

Smoke ON!

- Jason
Just make sure to use a mix that is not very wet/loose.  The 12oz per 5 pounds of Smoking Gun marinade I used, made for a very, very wet and loose mix.  In a casing, it would not be an issue, but trying to free hand 6 to 8" lengths of a loose mix that did not really want to hold the stick shape was a challenge.  That is really the only issue I experienced, and that was just due to the mix I choose to use.  I would imagine that making sticks from a commercial dry mix like AC LEGG or OWENS BBQ, etc... would be much less of an issue.  I also know there are quite a few others in this forum who have made casing-less sticks as well.
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