Honey BBQ beef jerky, of course, requires some kind of BBQ sauce or seasoning. As you’ll learn in this article, both of these kinds of recipes are very easy to make, when you have the tools.
You don’t need a jerky cure, and you can use any kind of jerky meat. However, you can create the same amazing flavor of BBQ within your marinade or cure. You can make your own homemade BBQ sauce, using basic ingredients if you like, and even turn it into seasoning!
A recipe for honey BBQ beef jerky
- 2 lbs. lean beef (even ground)
- 1 cup tomato puree (or ketchup)
- 1 cup apple cider vinegar (to soften meat)
- 1 cup raw honey
- 1 tbsp. molasses
- 1 tsp. mustard
- Garlic powder, onion powder, salt and pepper, to taste
- 1 tsp. Paprika
First, prepare your honey BBQ sauce by mixing all of the ingredients, except for the meat, and stirring over medium heat. After 15 minutes, put it aside.
Dried beef is best cut 1/8” thick, in slices sized to fit in the trays of your meat dehydrator. If you’re using the BBQ sauce directly, cover each piece of meat thoroughly and marinade overnight for a more tender beef jerky.
You can also dry the BBQ sauce, itself. Pour it 1” thick on non-stick trays, or trays lined with parchment paper, and dehydrate at 135 degrees for about 6 hours. After cooling, it should be hardened enough to blend into a fine powder. Simply store it in an airtight container, and use as a beef jerky seasoning when needed.
You can use beef steak, rib and even lean ground beef. Dry at 160 degrees for about 8 hours. If you prefer a tougher jerky, this is where the marinade comes in handy. You can remove a lot of moisture by cooking it for about 10-12 hours, which will increase shelf life.
Beef jerky nutrition and related information
The good news about making your own honey BBQ beef jerky like this, is that you choose the ingredients. In fact, every kind of sodium, including the nitrates used in curing meat, can be replaced with homemade recipes.
That being said¸ the carbs in beef jerky are generally 2.2 grams per 20 grams of jerky meat. The recipe in this article might qualify as paleo beef jerky, if you used raw ingredients. Tomatoes, mustard seed, honey, salt and peppers can all be found in nature, and be made to replace conventional foods.
If you’re concerned about the fat and sodium content of beef jerky, you could replace it with jerk chicken. It has about the same amount of protein, and by dehydrating it, you preserve virtually all of its nutrients and minerals (including protein!).
Bulk beef jerky and saving money
As you know, dried beef costs a lot more in the store than it does when made at home. You can save even more on your grocery and snack bill by purchasing meat in bulk, whenever it’s on sale, and turning it into jerky.
You’ll start to notice that you can afford healthier foods, as well. Tomatoes, meats, herbs, spices, fruits, you name it; you’ll be able to prepare a lot of food in advance, and keep it for many months at a time.
A 6 tray food dehydrator is about the minimum capacity. However, most models aren’t suited for regular use, especially when drying a lot of meat simultaneously. An external air chamber, quality construction and efficient wattage power will go a long way.
A professional dehydrator is more affordable than you might imagine, when you choose a quality model that suits your needs!