Home » Jerkyholic’s Original Ground Beef Jerky

Jerkyholic’s Original Ground Beef Jerky

This original ground beef jerky recipe is rich and flavorful as well as easy and quick to make! No marinating required. Everyone will love these meaty protein snacks.

A rich and flavorful ground meat beef jerky that is easy and quick to make! No marinading required. Everyone will love these meaty protein snacks. | Jerkyholic.com

I have had several questions lately about making beef jerky out of ground meat. There will soon be a page on here dedicated to making ground meat jerky (How to Make Ground Beef Jerky); but in the meantime I thought I would share a great, quick, and easy recipe that you can whip up anytime.

Jerkyholic Original Beef Jerky made with an LEM Jerky Gun

 

Most of the ingredients are ones that you will have hanging out in your pantry. The only ingredient that you might not have and can see in the picture above, is curing salt (It’s the pink salt in the white 1/4 tsp). If you decide not to use curing salt, substitute with 1/2 tsp of table salt and make sure to heat your jerky to 160°F to kill any potential bacteria.

When making ground beef jerky, liquid ingredients have to be kept to a minimum. I did add a tiny amount of soy sauce and worcestershire sauce to round out the taste of this jerky, but most ground jerky recipes will have 1oz of liquid ingredients per 1lb of meat. (1oz of liquid ingredients = 2 tbsp)

I used my super fantastic LEM Jerky Cannon to squeeze out and form my jerky strips for this recipe . I REALLY love this gun. I feel like everything we buy now a days is made completely of plastic and lasts for about 3 uses before it breaks and finds its way to the trash. Well, not this jerky gun. This baby is made to last and I love it for that. Super easy to use and comes apart easily too, making clean up a breeze.

Jerky Gun Being FilledMix all the ingredients into one pound of lean ground beef, at least 90% lean. I used 96% lean 4% fat ground beef when making this jerky. Mix well and refrigerate for 4-24 hours to help the meat bind together. Take out of the fridge and pack into the jerky gun making sure there are no air pockets.

Shoot strips of jerky onto your dehydrator trays or on baking sheets if using an oven.

Shooting strips of jerky on dehydrator tray

Dehydrate for about 3 1/2 to 5 hours at your dehydrators highest setting until beef jerky has reached 160°F and has dried. I used my Excalibur Dehydrator which took me only 3 1/2 hours to dry this batch. If using an oven, heat the strips for 10 minutes at 300°F for 10 minutes with the oven door closed. Then turn the temperature down to the oven lowest setting (normally about 170°F), crack the door and “cook” until it has dried. The ground jerky will be a lot easier to chew and has a totally different texture than whole muscle jerky. The only way to see whether you like ground jerky is to make a batch and eat it! Let me know how it turns out.. Enjoy!!!

Jerkyholic Original Ground Beef Jerky Finished

For more in depth directions on how to dry your beef jerky, visit my page Jerky Making Methods or click on the pictures below.

How to make Beef Jerky in the OvenLearn how to make Beef Jerky in a dehydrator. It's easy, fast, and delicious! | Jerkyholic.com

4.6 from 9 reviews
Jerkyholic's Original Ground Beef Jerky
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Ingredients
Lean Beef
  • 1lb Lean ground beef (10% fat or less)
Marinade
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp worcestershire sauce
  • ¼ tsp curing salt (prague powder #1)
  • 1 tsp ground black pepper
  • 1 tsp ground lemon pepper
  • 1 tsp curry powder (red)
  • 1 tsp ginger powder
  • ¼ tsp coriander
  • ½ tsp garlic powder
  • ½ tsp onion powder
Instructions
  1. In a bowl, combine the 1lb of ground beef with the other ingredients
  2. Mix the ground beef and seasonings thoroughly
  3. If using a jerky gun, load the gun with the ground beef mixture & shoot 4-5" long strips onto a dehydrator tray or on a baking sheet
  4. If not using a jerky gun, spread the ground meat on a baking sheet, cover with wax paper, and roll with a rolling pin until meat is ¼" thick
  5. Slice the pan of beef into jerky strips 4-5" long and 1" thick
  6. Dry with your favorite jerky making method. I used a dehydrator at 160F for 3½ hours
  7. Ground jerky is finished when it first starts becoming dry to the touch. It should bend without breaking in half. If it cracks in half when bent a little bit, it was over dried

For more in depth directions on how to dry your beef jerky, visit my page Jerky Making Methods

51 comments

    • Will
      Will says:

      Nice! I am going to smoke a couple batches this upcoming weekend. Can’t wait! Let me know how your jerky turns out.

    • Robert says:

      Hi what if I don’t want my Jerky so dry it’s crispy? Can it still be cured correctly but have a little chew to it?

      • Will
        Will says:

        I find that my ground beef jerky doesn’t tend to be crispy, but more chewy in general. You can definitely use cure and have it moist, the curing salt won’t make it dry. I have found that 1/2 tsp of corn syrup solids helps bind the ground jerky together as well making it more chewy.

  1. Brandon Marceaux says:

    My dehydrator and gun are coming in today! After i get the hang of it we can talk jerky over a beer. I’ll even buy you one for helping me get started using your recipes my fellow Austinite! Our wives can talk about shopping or something…lol

    • Will
      Will says:

      Nice man! You are going to love making jerky. It’s an addiction for sure. A beer and jerky talk sounds right up my alley.

  2. Scott says:

    Thank you for posting this recipe. I’ve been looking for ground beef jerky recipes that doesn’t have a packaged spice mix. I’ve found a few but the ratios of meat to liquid were off. Today my son and I will be making a batch of your bourbon jerky and a batch of my jerky recipe but I can’t wait to try your ground beef recipe! I will also post my review about the bourbon in a couple of days. Thanks again.

  3. Maurice says:

    Great recipe!!! I just got an Excalibur like yours and it puts my old Harvest Maid to shame (you do at times get what you pay for)! The best thing is that because I can now dehydrate at 160F I can use regular sea salt instead of curing salt. So much better than the two part mystery mixtures I’ve been using over the years. I now know what it is going in it.

    My wife even likes it and she’s always stuck her nose up to jerky.

  4. Bill Gotschika says:

    I am glad I found your directions. My daughter has Ciliacs disease (do not know how to spell it) and cannot have wheat products and almost ALL store bought products contain wheat. Now I can use your recipe minus the soy sauce and do some experimenting with different recipes.

    • Will
      Will says:

      I’m glad I could help. If it is only wheat that she can’t have, you can buy Tamari. Tamari is a Japanese soy sauce that is made out of 100% Soy Beans (some have a tiny amount of wheat, so check the label). My wife buys a brand called San-J, it is 100% soy, 0% wheat & gluten free. Here is a link to purchase San-J Tamari on Amazon, but you should be able to find it at your local grocery store.

  5. Mike says:

    Howdy! First post…thanks for the site. Have made lots of jerky over the years, particularly from deer. It’s been a while, your site inspired me to fire up the dehydrator. I’ve never made ground beef jerky so I decided to try this recipe. I didn’t have, nor could get curing salt locally (will order some) so I used Creole seasoning instead (high in salt) and latex gloves. I also minced up one large jalapeno and added it to the mixture. I love spicy…when I’m sweating and my nose is running I’m in heaven! 😉 Anyway, just gave a fresh batch the taste test. Hmmm. Wonderful flavor. But the texture is really weird. When I bend it it just barely wants to crack, so I know it’s done. But I just can’t get accustomed to it. So I’ve put it back in the oven for a bit. I’ll see how it turns out. I have a second batch of Tabasco Habanero marinating until tomorrow. We’ll see how that turns out. Again, thanks a million. Made your chili lime recipe with eye of round…the bomb!! Mama liked it a lot!

  6. Benedict Gomez says:

    Why not mix the cure with the wet ingredients first so it dissolves? Wouldn’t it distribute the cure more evently to the meat?

    • Will
      Will says:

      You could totally do that Benedict. I have never had a problem mixing it straight in the bowl with the ground meat, but mixing the cure with the liquid ingredients before adding to the beef is a great way to distribute the cure evenly. Thanks for the heads up and stopping by the site!

  7. Joe E.S. says:

    Hi Guys !!! Im smoky Joe I smoke fish but mainly do deer I use the lean muscle from shoulders and hams. Loins Well !!!… Their breakfast steaks I just butterfly cut sauté with a little butter and salt n pepper. Mmmm. Now about ground jerky well I must admit I have never tried it YET !! but I have ordered the Lem gun since you are a fanatic and I believe you. I also make slim jims with venison the variety of flavors is in your imagination. Where I get my seasoning is on the internet there are several places that sell every ingredient. the guys I work with love my tar-e-o-key. Dam I cant spell. grilled steak caygen sweet pepper. I use apple wood with a chipotle for smoke cheery too if I can get it. im talking right out of the orchard. Well you im getting hungry.LOL talk to you guys later. Keep up the good work its always a treat when its good to eat.

  8. Katie says:

    Do you refrigerate the meat and seasonings before dehydrating? and Do you place in the oven for a bit before or after the drying? I am VERY new to this jerky making idea… Thanks for the recipe! super excited to try it soon!

    • Will
      Will says:

      Welcome to the world of making jerky Katie! You always keep the meat refrigerated before you use it. But when making ground beef jerky, you do not need to marinate the meat like you would with whole muscle jerky (sliced meat jerky). So when you are ready to make your jerky, pull the meat out of the fridge, mix with the seasonings, and immediately start making your jerky. I would place it in the oven BEFORE drying. Bacteria can become more heat resistant during the drying process, so heating it to an internal temp of 160F BEFORE (or towards the beginning if your dehydrator heats to 160F) of drying is key.

  9. Chris says:

    Hi There, I found your site while searching for dry cure recipes for ground meat jerky. I have always made muscle meat jerky using marinades, but I got a jerky gun for Christmas and found it far easier to prep and get consistent size pices. What I didn’t care for was the saltiness of the commercial seasoning and/or cure that I used. So I started my quest for alternatives. My question is regarding the amount of Prague powder you use in this recipe. By all accounts the use of Prague power as a preservative in meat should be on the order of 1 tsp per 5lbs of meat. While close, your 1/4 tsp per 1lb of meat seems a little high. Can you tell me how it worksed? I am assuming the taste was good. In terms of curing, how did you store the finished product and how did it hold up/last?

    • Will
      Will says:

      It is true that it is 1 tsp per 1lb of meat. For easy measurement purposes, these companies say to use 1/4 tsp per 1lb. Technically, you could use a little less than 1/4tsp per 1lb and be fine. I do not find the Prague Powder #1 to be that salty. I DO like salty jerky though, so my taste and yours might be totally different. The Prague Powder is very effective in preserving the jerky for longer than if it was not used. Also, when making ground meat jerky there is more handling of the meat than whole muscle jerky, for this reason there is more chance of bacteria to be introduced into the meat. The cure helps kill these bacteria and make the jerky safer. The jerky would last about 10-14 days, though my jerky doesn’t ever last that long…

  10. Christopher Cooper says:

    Just wanted to say thank you for the reply. I made this recipe with ground buffalo and a few minor substitutions based on the spices I had in my pantry. I did the math on the curing salts and using my kitchen scale used .04oz of curing salts. I am very happy with the finished product! Just to be safe I am keeping the finished product in the refrigerator.

      • Keegan says:

        If I am making ground jerky using the Presto dehydrator, should I bake the strips before or after in the oven to make sure they reach a high enough temperature? Also, what temperature would you bake it at and for how long? Thanks for the site and all the great recipes and tips!

  11. Jenn says:

    Hi Will…
    I’m about to attempt making ground beef jerky. I’ve purchased the jerky gun and my beef. I have a Nesco dehydrator with I believe four trays. How many lbs of ground beef will I need to fill up my trays. I don’t want to defrost more than I can use at a time. Also, by about how much does a lb of beef shrink to?

    Your site is awesome and contains so much valuable information. Thanks for putting this all out there!!!

    • Will
      Will says:

      Hey Jenn! I wouldn’t defrost more than 3lbs of meat. I would expect to get about 3lbs of ground beef on 4 trays. Also expect to lose about 50%-70% weight loss when making jerky! You will lose a lot of weight, but that’s still a good amount of jerky. Good luck, and let me know how it turns out!

  12. Drew says:

    Hey Will, great site and great recipes. I’ve been making Jerky for a while, pretty experimenting along the way. I am following a Paleo program so many of these recipes are perfect- with a few minor adjustments. For those who don’t want soy sauce, you can get an alternative called Coconut Aminos (Amazon and Trader Joe’s have them… different than liquid aminos!). I bought a Chef’s Choice slicer 615 model- very happy with it. it’s just great for making sure the slices are cut uniformly. The biggest thing to remember: freeze the meet for 2-4 hours and then when slicing you should rotate the meat every couple of slices as it tends to get caught it up if you don’t. Any way, I’ve got my beef marinating in the fridge and look forward to smoking it in a day or two. Thanks for the recipes (I make a ground turkey and ground chicken jurkey… a little onion powder, frank’s red hot and celery salt… “Buffalo Jerky” without the wing-mess).

    • Will
      Will says:

      Hey Drew, thanks for stopping by. My wife uses Coconut Aminos instead of soy sauce in her cooking all the time. It’s pretty good! Thanks for the information about the meat slicer. I have been staying away from them because of of so many people stating that the meat gets caught and won’t slice. I might get a couple and give them a try pretty soon though. I’ll have to check out the Chef’s Choice 615 and try the rotating method. Thanks!

    • Will
      Will says:

      Hey Joan! Dehydrate for about 3 1/2 to 5 hours at your dehydrators highest setting until beef jerky has reached 160°F and has dried. If using an oven, heat the strips for 10 minutes at 300°F for 10 minutes with the oven door closed. Then turn the temperature down to the oven lowest setting (normally about 170°F), crack the door and “cook” until it has dried. Hope that helps!

  13. Dale Mance says:

    Will, your grnd beef recipe sounds great. Have been making jerky with my dehydrator off and on for years using london broil/top round cuts. They’re pretty much through the roof price wise and have been looking for recipes for grond beef. Can’t wait to try yours!!
    I hope to start backpacking some “long trails” and the jerky will be a main staple on the 1-3 nighters. Question for you regarding this plan…should I plan to vacuum seal the jerky and open as I consume them while on the trail? Is the vacuum sealing overkill for this or are zippys ok? If these turn out as good as the reviews, i plan to make quite a bit per batch and am wondering again if I should vacuum seal then then freeze, refrigerate, or can I just keep then at room temp? Any estimate how long these keep once dried (in freezer/fridge. at room temp?

    Appreciate your input.

    Dale

    • Will
      Will says:

      Hey Dale, thanks for stopping by the site! If you are making jerky and taking it on a 1-3 night hike, ziplock bags would be fine. If you are making more of it and wanting to store it for future hikes, I would vacuum seal it and refrigerate up to 1-2 months, and freeze up to 6 months. You can check out my page on storing jerky to read a little more. Hope that helps!

  14. Merv says:

    Will
    I make bologna from various cuts of meat (ground). Usually as lean as possible, though the fat is interesting if I’m hanging it over a flame to smoke it. Fat makes good tasting smoke 🙂

    The water ratio is 1/3C per pound, much wetter than you’re using for jerky, but homemade bologna is much more emulsified than the homemade ground jerky I’ve seen. So I’m wondering, could you put the bologna mixture in a jelly or wort bag and let it drip in the fridge ’till it’s about right to make jerky? Especially with a jerky gun.

    LOL I think I just described my next project!

    BTW, I have a feeling I wont get away without leaving a basic bologna recipe 🙂

    Ingredients
    3 pounds chuck roast (or ground beef if you don’t have a meat grinder)
    1 cup ice cold water
    1 tablespoon sea salt OR 1½ tsp. Tender Quick
    1 tablespoon brown sugar (optional)
    1 teaspoon all-natural liquid smoke flavor
    ½ teaspoon garlic powder
    ½ teaspoon onion powder

    Instructions
    Grind meat in food processor with spices.
    Add ice water and process for 30 seconds.
    Chill meat in freezer 10-20 minutes before proceeding.
    Divide meat mixture in half.
    With damp hands, form each mixture into a log, compressing with hands as you work.
    Wrap each log tightly in plastic wrap. Like rolling a smoke
    Refrigerate for 24 hours.
    Preheat oven to 300 F.
    Remove plastic wrap from meat.
    Cook meat on a baking rack propped over a rimmed baking sheet for 30 minutes at 300 F, turning halfway through.
    Reduce heat to 250 F and cook an additional 2½ hours.
    Refrigerate up to 3 days. May be frozen for longer storage.

    Use plenty of liquid, it needs to be really smooth before making log of it. I’ve started using bread pans to cook it. And a mixer with dough hooks to blend it. The liquid cooks out. Note, Liquid is not necessarily water 🙂

    • Will
      Will says:

      Man, thanks for the recipe! I have never made bologna before, but I should definitely try it. I would think that if you let it drip until it’s dry enough, you should be able to make jerky out of it. I am not sure though. Let me know how it turns out!

  15. Duane Rasmussen says:

    In this recipe is the ginger fresh or powder and is the curry red or yellow? Really want to try this out. Everything else is so salty and I already have Prague powder from making kielbasa.

    • Will
      Will says:

      I used ginger powder and the curry was red. Thanks for the question, I updated the recipe to reflect this. Let me know how it turns out Duane!

      • Duane Rasmussen says:

        Cool. Thanks. How do you think using teriyaki instead of the soy would be. Would it have to be in addition to and omit the worcestershire?

        • Will
          Will says:

          Teriyaki could taste great. I would recommend putting teriyaki instead of soy with all the other powder ingredients. Then taste it and see if it needs something else. Add the worcestershire sauce if you think it needs a little bit more flavor. I have not made that recipe with teriyaki instead of soy, so I am not sure how it would taste. It sounds interesting though! Let me know how it turns out!

  16. Rose says:

    I mixed up a large batch of ground beef and pork with seasoning and cure to be dehydrated. I had a pretty good bit left over and wondered if I could freeze it to be used later?

    • Will
      Will says:

      Hey Rose! I have never frozen marinated meat for a while before dehydrating. I’m not sure if it’s 100% safe. I would freeze it and just inspect it very well before dehydrating after thawed.

      • Jason says:

        Agree,

        If I mix more than intended then I keep making it until it’s all gone. Currently have 2 dehydrators and my oven working on batches now. 15 pounds of jerky is a tiring task. Oh well! My kids, wife and I usually share just as much as we eat. Pretty sad it will be gone this time tomorrow.

  17. Bill says:

    Hello Scott,

    Great web site. Have you used this recipe for venison? Do you always use the pink salt? What are your thoughts omitting this?

    Thanks

  18. Sherman D Brown says:

    Looking to get into making my own jerky. Thought I’d start off experimenting with ground beef then work on up to beef strips.

    There’s an Obertos store just down the road from me, but the prices are way to high. Got an old(er) Nesco dehydrator & thought I’d put it to use.

    Great, great site you’ve got. Signed up for emails & looking foward to trying some of your recipes. Thanks.

    • Will
      Will says:

      Awesome to hear Sherman. I am sure you will be hooked and move to whole muscle jerky pretty quick. Once you start making your own jerky, it’s hard to go back to paying the high prices for the store bought stuff!

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