Venison Jerky Seasoning Recipe
Making homemade jerky is a great family activity during deer season. It’s easy to get the whole family involved and you can make a variety of flavors of venison jerky!
The first step in making jerky is selecting the right cut of meat. Aim for a lean muscle that is easy to chew.
How to Make Your Own Seasoning Blend
If you’re looking to make a flavorful venison jerky, there are a few things that you need to know. First, it is important to use a high-quality meat.
Next, you’ll need to trim off any excess fat and connective tissue from the venison. This will make your jerky much easier to slice and can save you a lot of time in the process.
Finally, you’ll need to season the venison with a variety of spices and seasonings. You can experiment with different combinations to find your favorite flavor combination.
You can also choose to add liquid smoke to the venison marinade for added smoky flavor. You can purchase liquid smoke at your local grocery store or order it online.
How to Customize the Flavor of Your Venison Jerky
You can customize the flavor of your venison jerky by using different seasonings. You can mix your own seasonings, use store-bought jerky seasoning packets, or buy premade marinades that include a variety of spices and flavors.
You’ll also want to choose the right cut of venison for your recipe. Deer meat is rich in natural fat and has a unique flavor.
Slice your meat into uniform strips that are 1/4 inch thick (slightly frozen meat cuts easier). Trim the sides and edges of the meat before cutting to ensure that the jerky is even.
Once the venison is cut, you’ll want to marinate it in the refrigerator for at least eight hours. This will allow the seasonings to penetrate and add extra flavor.
Making homemade venison jerky requires a few basic ingredients and steps. These include choosing a cut of meat, grinding the venison, adding seasonings and marinating the venison.
The first step is to choose lean venison that is free from sliver skin, tendons and other tough connective tissue. Trim the venison of excess fat and any connective tissue, then cut it into strips no thicker than 1/8-inch.
Next, grind the venison to finely ground strips in your LEM Big Bite Electric Meat Grinder. This process will help you to get consistent, thin jerky strips.
After grinding the venison, combine the venison with your jerky seasoning recipe in the largest bowl you have, then marinate it overnight or longer to allow the flavors to soak into the meat.
When you’re ready to dry the jerky, place the sliced meat on the trays of your dehydrator or oven and dry at 160 degrees until it’s done to your liking. Check periodically to make sure the jerky is drying properly by gently bending it and checking that the meat doesn’t break when pressed.
There are several ways to cook venison jerky, but the most popular is in a food dehydrator. You can also cook venison jerky in an oven. It’s important to remember that the venison will dry out more in an oven than it will in a dehydrator, so you should use a low temperature and place a pan or foil under the rack to catch any drippings.
To get the best chew and flavor in your jerky, you need to cut it into thin slices. Ideally, you’ll want strips that are 1/8 of an inch thick or thinner. Any thicker and you won’t get the smoky texture you’re looking for.
You can season your jerky in a variety of ways, including salt and spices sprinkled on the raw meat or in a marinade. You can also add herbs and spices like garlic, pepper, and onion powder to the mix. You can also add a bit of liquid smoke to the marinade for added smoky flavor.
Making venison jerky is a great way to preserve and enjoy the flavor of venison. Here are a couple of venison jerky seasoning recipes to try. You can adjust the ingredients and quantities to suit your taste preferences:
Basic Venison Jerky Seasoning
- 1 pound of thinly sliced venison (around 1/8 to 1/4 inch thick)
- 1/4 cup soy sauce
- 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
- 1 tablespoon liquid smoke (optional)
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 1/2 teaspoon paprika
- 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes (adjust to taste for spiciness)
- 1/4 teaspoon curing salt (optional, for food safety)
- In a bowl, mix together the soy sauce, Worcestershire sauce, liquid smoke, and all the dry seasonings. If you prefer less spiciness, reduce the amount of red pepper flakes.
- Place the venison slices in a zip-top bag or a container with a lid. Pour the marinade over the venison, ensuring each slice is coated. If you choose to use curing salt, mix it into the marinade.
- Seal the bag or container and refrigerate for at least 4 hours, or overnight for better flavor infusion. The longer it marinates, the more intense the flavor.
- Preheat your oven to the lowest setting (usually around 175-200°F/80-93°C). Alternatively, you can use a food dehydrator or smoker.
- Remove the venison from the marinade and blot off excess moisture with paper towels.
- Arrange the venison slices on a baking sheet, wire rack, or dehydrator trays.
- Dry the jerky for 3-6 hours, depending on your chosen method. Check it periodically; the jerky is ready when it’s firm but still slightly pliable.
- Allow the venison jerky to cool, then store it in an airtight container. Properly dried jerky can be stored for several weeks or even longer.
Sweet and Spicy Venison Jerky
Sweet and spicy venison jerky is a delightful combination of flavors that’s sure to satisfy your taste buds. Here’s a recipe for making sweet and spicy venison jerky:
- 2 pounds of venison (deer) meat, thinly sliced (about 1/4-inch thick)
- 1/2 cup soy sauce
- 1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
- 1/4 cup honey (adjust for sweetness)
- 2 teaspoons garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon paprika (smoked paprika for added smokiness, if desired)
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper (adjust for spiciness)
- 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes (optional, for added heat)
- 1 tablespoon brown sugar (optional, for extra sweetness)
- 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
- Optional: liquid smoke (a few drops for added smokiness)
- Dehydrator or smoker (with jerky racks)
- Jerky seasoning or marinade injector (optional)
- Food-safe gloves (for handling raw meat)
Slice the Venison
- Begin by slicing the venison meat into thin strips, approximately 1/4-inch thick. Placing the meat in the freezer briefly can make it easier to slice.
Prepare the Marinade
- In a bowl, mix together the soy sauce, Worcestershire sauce, honey, garlic powder, onion powder, black pepper, paprika, cayenne pepper, red pepper flakes (if using), and brown sugar (if desired). Add the apple cider vinegar and mix well. You can also add a few drops of liquid smoke for extra smokiness.
Marinate the Meat
- Place the sliced venison in a large resealable plastic bag or a shallow dish. Pour the marinade over the meat, ensuring it’s evenly coated. Seal the bag or cover the dish and refrigerate for at least 4 hours or overnight for maximum flavor.
Preheat the Dehydrator or Smoker
- Preheat your dehydrator or smoker according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Aim for a temperature of around 160-175°F (71-79°C).
Prepare the Jerky Racks
- If using a dehydrator, place the marinated venison strips on the dehydrator racks. In the case of a smoker, use jerky racks or place the meat directly on the smoker grates. Leave some space between the strips for proper air circulation.
Dry the Jerky
- Dehydrate or smoke the venison for approximately 4-6 hours or until it reaches your desired level of dryness. The jerky should be dry but still pliable, not brittle. Keep an eye on the temperature and adjust it as needed.
Cool and Store
- After the jerky is ready, remove it from the dehydrator or smoker and let it cool to room temperature. Blot any excess moisture or oil with paper towels. Store the sweet and spicy venison jerky in an airtight container or vacuum-sealed bags. Properly stored, it can last for several weeks.
Sweet and spicy venison jerky is a tasty and protein-packed snack that’s perfect for various occasions, whether it’s for outdoor adventures or simply as a delicious treat. Feel free to adjust the seasonings and spices to suit your heat and sweetness preferences. Enjoy your homemade venison jerky!
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