O/T - Making Venison Jerky - Looking for feedback.

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Species8472
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O/T - Making Venison Jerky - Looking for feedback.

Post by Species8472 » Sun May 01, 2016 12:46 am

My son and I want to try making venison jerky. I have a decent amount of venison in the freezer and wanted feedback on the following:

1. Can I thaw the frozen venison and than make it into jerky or does the venison need to be fresh;

2. Any recipes for seasoning you are willing to share;

3. Any opinions on the best dehydrator for less than $500.

Thanks.
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Re: O/T - Making Venison Jerky - Looking for feedback.

Post by Hunt it » Sun May 01, 2016 8:12 am

TSC stores stock good jerky cures. A smoker makes better jerky than a dehydrater.
Meat should be all trimmed so all you are using is pure red meat, no fat or sinew or silver skin etc. Dehydrater is used when you make jerky from ground meat using a gun to spray/ spread line. This is awful jerky and referred to as regurgitated jerky by most.

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Re: O/T - Making Venison Jerky - Looking for feedback.

Post by longbow joe » Sun May 01, 2016 2:05 pm

I like making my bourbon beef jerkey hangin on toothpicks in the oven for 75percent of the trip then put it in the smoker for 2 hours ...plenty of flavor i just smoke on a piece of wire mesh .no need to rehang it . ( my recipe use any commercial jerkey mix you like add red pepper n substitute the burbon for water in the marinade. Let sit 2 days the burbon seems to break down the meat making a very pliable jerkey .any beef deer turkey is fine frozen thawed dont matter just thaw n marinate.theres no discrimination in jerkey meat at all
Last edited by longbow joe on Sun May 01, 2016 2:12 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: O/T - Making Venison Jerky - Looking for feedback.

Post by longbow joe » Sun May 01, 2016 2:08 pm

Image[/URL] bourbon jerkey made today gone tomorrow.
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Re: O/T - Making Venison Jerky - Looking for feedback.

Post by Bullzeye » Sun May 01, 2016 6:28 pm

Yes you can use your frozen venison. You have to decide if you want to use thin sliced pieces or grinded meat from a jerky gun. I like both, one is like leather and the other is chewy, but I think I prefer chewy( regurgitated as mention by an earlier post LOL) from my jerky gun.

I've tried many commercial spices and found Uncle Abe's to be my favorite, but it's from the USA at " The Sausage Maker". Unfortunately I now have a Gluten allergy, so I can no longer use the Uncke Abe's :( so I am now looking to find a homemade spice mix containing no gluten.

You can make it in your oven(leave it open a crack so humidity can escape), dehydrator or a smoker, depends on what equipment you have. Your oven is a last choice, but if you do not have a smoker or dehydrator it will still do ok.

As for which dehydrator to buy, I think you will find that Excalibur Dehydrators get top marks. The higher end machines run a fan from behind the trays, not on top like the cheaper machines, which means the multiple trays dehydrate more evenly, with the other machines you usually have to move your trays around. For your budget you can get a nice 10 tray Excaliber, and a 10 year warranty. Once in a while they have deals giving the 10yr warranty for free, along with special trays to do dehydrated fruit(think fruit roll ups)
Last edited by Bullzeye on Sun May 01, 2016 6:42 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: O/T - Making Venison Jerky - Looking for feedback.

Post by flightattendant100 » Sun May 01, 2016 6:42 pm

I have used some ready mixes in past and all were pretty good, but I'm not sure my fave is not; Hickory smoke season salt ( available at groc. store) and black pepper. Both are gray in color so your meat will have a grayish color after seasoned. Wrap and refrigerate overnight to marinate. Dehydrate. I just got a Cabela's Deluxe 10 tray dehydrator, but haven't gotten to try it yet. You can also use the ground meat in a jerky shooter and it works very well.
A few years ago, I met some friends from Oklahoma, in Colorado for an elk hunt. As we broke camp to come home, I noticed one of them put something in the seat of my truck. It was a gallon zip lock full of jerky. Man that made for a great trip home! Is good to have friends. :D
Good luck, Joe. I hope it turns out great.

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Re: O/T - Making Venison Jerky - Looking for feedback.

Post by Waif » Tue May 03, 2016 9:06 am

Oven will work. 170 degrees F.
Depending on oven ,some have to be used in "keep warm" warm setting while others need a wood spoon or other shim in door to crack it.(Safety first though!)
I use soy sauce,Worcestershire sauce,a few drops of liquid smoke ,a hint of sweet basil,red pepper ,black pepper, brown sugar.
Usually look in the cupboard for what's available.

Any venison will work but no fat ...
Ground can be run through a jerky shooter, or I imagine rolled out or pressed.
Slice intact meats no thicker than 3/8 inch or it takes a long time to dry.
Other dimensions ,I'll cut inch wide , or on occasion as wide as possible.
Marinate your strips a few hours or as long as overnight.
Line oven bottom with foil to catch drips.
Meat can be suspended by toothpicks through an end .
I have a set of metal racks for jerky allowing stacking them in oven that besides having to clean after, increases oven capacity though probably upd drying time.
Average time around six to eight hours.
Experimentation is part of jerky making to customize it to personal desires.
Enjoy!
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Re: O/T - Making Venison Jerky - Looking for feedback.

Post by paulaboutform » Tue May 03, 2016 11:33 am

I use my Bradley smoker. Here's a useful hint, cut your meat while it's still half frozen. You want it thawed just enough to be able to cut through it. This is MUCH easier. I also bought a cheap wooden cutting board and cut it down to 8" × 10". On one side, on the long edge of the cutting board, I used a pinner (tiny nail gun-you can do it with a hammer), to nail a 1/4"h × 3/4"w × 10"L piece of hardwood to the long edge of the cutting board face. (Both sides). I did the same on the opposite face of the cutting board but cut my two hardwood strips 3/8"h.. What this does is give me a guide when slicing my meat so it's all the same thickness. Lay the cutting board on the counter, place the roast on top, lay the knife on it's side, on the cutting board and slice away. :wink:

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Re: O/T - Making Venison Jerky - Looking for feedback.

Post by j.krug » Tue May 03, 2016 12:12 pm

I make venison jerky both ways and both are very good. I like the Hi Mountain seasonings as they are quick and simple. I have also found a couple good marinade recipes online that are very good and can easily be tweaked to your liking. I've done it in my Bradley smoker a couple times but seem to have better product consistency when using my LEM dehydrator. When using ground meet I have an LEM Jerky Cannon that is handy as all get out. Avoid the plastic jerky guns....seen a couple of them blow up.

Good luck and happy jerky making. :)
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Re: O/T - Making Venison Jerky - Looking for feedback.

Post by nchunterkw » Tue May 03, 2016 12:34 pm

j.krug wrote:I make venison jerky both ways and both are very good. I like the Hi Mountain seasonings as they are quick and simple. I have also found a couple good marinade recipes online that are very good and can easily be tweaked to your liking. I've done it in my Bradley smoker a couple times but seem to have better product consistency when using my LEM dehydrator. When using ground meet I have an LEM Jerky Cannon that is handy as all get out. Avoid the plastic jerky guns....seen a couple of them blow up.

Good luck and happy jerky making. :)
What he said. I like the Hi Mountain jerky seasonings, and use ground venison and a jerky gun. However, I do use about 50% more of the spices than they call for in their recipes. I just use my oven. Takes about 2 hours depending on how dry you like it. Apparently I'm doing something right as it never seems to last at my house for more than a few days.....
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Re: O/T - Making Venison Jerky - Looking for feedback.

Post by j.krug » Tue May 03, 2016 2:31 pm

nchunterkw wrote:
j.krug wrote:I make venison jerky both ways and both are very good. I like the Hi Mountain seasonings as they are quick and simple. I have also found a couple good marinade recipes online that are very good and can easily be tweaked to your liking. I've done it in my Bradley smoker a couple times but seem to have better product consistency when using my LEM dehydrator. When using ground meet I have an LEM Jerky Cannon that is handy as all get out. Avoid the plastic jerky guns....seen a couple of them blow up.

Good luck and happy jerky making. :)
What he said. I like the Hi Mountain jerky seasonings, and use ground venison and a jerky gun. However, I do use about 50% more of the spices than they call for in their recipes. I just use my oven. Takes about 2 hours depending on how dry you like it. Apparently I'm doing something right as it never seems to last at my house for more than a few days.....
Ya, I have to hide a bunch of it once the wife and kids find out there's jerky or it will be gone in a heart beat! lol
I like to tweak and add to the Hi Mountain seasonings as well....especially a touch or two of cayenne pepper! :wink:
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Re: O/T - Making Venison Jerky - Looking for feedback.

Post by Bullzeye » Wed May 04, 2016 9:38 am

Oh, and if you go the oven route, I found the best thing to use is stackable jerky Racks.
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Re: O/T - Making Venison Jerky - Looking for feedback.

Post by nchunterkw » Wed May 04, 2016 10:49 am

Bullzeye wrote:Oh, and if you go the oven route, I found the best thing to use is stackable jerky Racks.
This too
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Re: O/T - Making Venison Jerky - Looking for feedback.

Post by Species8472 » Thu May 05, 2016 8:29 pm

Thanks for all the feedback. I think I'll save my money for now and experiment with the oven a little with some different marinades.
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Re: O/T - Making Venison Jerky - Looking for feedback.

Post by scope422 » Thu May 05, 2016 10:26 pm

One magic ingredient.........Teriyaki!!!!! Makes the world a much better place, lol. Mix with a little Worcestershire, garlic powder, some crushed pepper if you like it spicy and whatever other spices you like, be creative. Like someone else said, cut meat while still partially frozen, makes for near perfect cuts. Marinate a day or 2 in the fridge. Kinda hard to screw it up, always tastes great. I've been using the same cheap $40 dehydrator for years now and it works fine, I wouldn't sweat getting a high quality one. I do all sorts of vegetables and fruits in mine as well for backpacking meals. I did the oven method before I had the dehydrator, it works too, just much easier and cleaner with a cheap dehydrator.
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