Easy Breezy Recipes

Beef Jerky: Healthy Snacks You Can Make at Home

Author: Angie Goeser

Most people don�t think of beef jerky when they are trying to come up with a healthy, filling, low calorie snack. Beef jerky is also high in protein and low in fat. Best of all, you can make your own in 5 simple steps.

STEP 1: Select Meat Choosing a lean cut of beef is best for ease of preparation and flavor. You can�t go wrong with sirloin, top round or eye round. But don�t forget! Although jerky is traditionally made using beef-- turkey, chicken, deer and fish make a delicious jerky snack you won�t want to pass up!

STEP 2: Slice Meat Cut the meat into slices approximately 1/8� thick, trimming off all of the fat as you go. You can cut with or against the grain of the meat�some say cutting strips against the grain make a jerky that easier to chew. And here�s a trick of the trade! Freeze the meat for 20-30 minutes before slicing to make this step a breeze!

STEP 3: Marinate Meat This is my favorite step�get creative! Place the meat in a container and coat it with whatever you want! Try a mixture of soy sauce, brown sugar, fresh ground pepper and water for a sweet jerky or kick it up a little with your favorite bottle of spicy marinade, some cayenne pepper flakes and a good 20 shakes of Louisiana Hot Sauce! Place in the refrigerator for 4 to 12 hours to allow the meat to absorb the flavor. Check out http://www.jerky.com/Beef-Jerky-Recipes.html for some great flavor ideas.

Step 4: Dehydrate Meat Preheat your oven to 150 degrees. Place strips of meat on a wire rack over a foil-lined cookie sheet and place in the oven. Keep the oven door cracked a bit while drying to let out any extra moisture. If you are making your jerky in a dehydrator, place meat evenly on racks, making sure the strips are not touching. Now remember�this step takes time. The perfect jerky can take anywhere from 6 to 12 hours to complete�but trust me--it�s worth the wait!! Begin to check the jerky frequently after 6 to 7 hours. Your jerky will be done when it appears firm and dry. It should bend so it cracks a bit, but should not snap in half.

STEP 5: Store Meat If you are anything like me and will eat up your jerky in a matter of days, you can store it in a sealed container or Ziploc baggie at room temperature. Also, placing jerky in plastic bags and storing it in your refrigerator or freezer will ensure freshness for several months!

STEP 6: ENJOY!! I know, I know! I said �Five Easy Steps� and I actually have six! But this one doesn�t require any work at all! Enjoy your jerky�whatever kind you make! And don�t forget that it�s healthy! High in protein and low in fat. So whether it�s a for an afternoon snack, a munchie to pack with the camping gear or an �extra� in the kids� lunchbox...after you make your own jerky, all you have to do is enjoy, enjoy, enjoy!!

Article Source: http://www.articlesbase.com/recipes-articles/beef-jerky-healthy-snacks-you-can-make-at-home-607507.html

About the Author

Angie has her Doctorate in Pharmacy and writes for several pharmacy-related journals. She is a beef jerky enthusiast and in her free time, writes articles and blogs for http://www.jerky.com/