Jerky Gun Recipe for Ground Beef Jerky
One of the more unusual dehydrator recipes is ground beef jerky. Typically, the jerky you find are made from strips of whole meat. That's what you find at the stores, such as the Jack Link's or Wild Bill's, and what most recipes call for. However, with the rising popularity of the jerky gun, ground meat jerky is becoming more common in home with dehydrators.
A jerky gun is a kitchen tool that resembles a caulking gun. You can find these online or at specialty stores like an outdoorsman shop. You certainly don't need one to make beef jerky, even ground jerky, but it's a great tool if you're looking for something different. You'll save money buying cheaper meat and the flavor is going to be amazing because all the spices get completely integrated with the meat.
Ground Beef Jerky
The following is a video showing you how to make ground beef jerky with a jerky gun and food dehydrator.
Ground Jerky Recipe
When it comes to making a great tasting jerky, the keys are having a good quality meat and excellent marinade.
For the meat, you have a few options. You can choose anything that's gone through a grinder. Beef and venison are the popular varieties. But, get creative and try other animal sources, such as ground turkey, chicken, or lamb.
Note: You can also try pork, but I would recommend cooking this thoroughly first, for food safety issues. After cooking, let it cool and then break it up again to stuff into the gun.
For the marinade, you can go with a wet sauce or a dry rub. The nice thing about using ground meat is the marinade gets into every little crease, guaranteeing a flavorful bite every time. Here is an example of what you can mix into your ground meat:
- Liquid Smoke
- Worcestershire Sauce
- Soy Sauce
- Salt and Pepper
After shooting the jerky mix into the dehydrator, you'll dry at high or about 145 degrees F for 8-12 hours.
The product is ready when it's completely dry. Allow it to finish cooling and then store in an airtight container when it reaches room temperature.
The Best Beef Jerky Kit
The Nesco BJX-5 American Harvest Jumbo Jerky Works Kit contains everything but the meat and dehydrator. The extruder is made of plastic and stainless steel; built to last a long time. The meat chamber is see-through, so you know how much meat you have left. With a pound of ground beef, which is what it can hold, you'll be left with about 1/2 a pound of delicious jerky. The kit comes with attachments to make strips, sticks, or double strips. It also comes with five spice and curing packs. At just $15, this is a wonderful deal for the budget conscious. With the gun, you can use less expensive ground meats, but the end result will be a very tasty snack.
The Weston Original
If you want the ultimate jerky kit however, you'll want to check out the Weston Original Gun. This is a heavy-duty, aluminium ground jerky tube that holds 1.5 pounds of meat. It costs $35, but is generally regarded as the top-quality ground jerky machine.
Food Dehydrator Jerky Package
If you don't have a dehydrator yet, Nesco sells a package where you get a dehydrator and a jerky kit. With the Nesco American Harvest FD-28JX Jerky Xpress Dehydrator Kit with Jerky Gun, you get the FD-28JX food dehydrator and a personal size jerky gun for about $50. This is definitely a smaller kit, made for just one or two people. It has a 350-watt heating element and four trays. You also get four flavor packets and three attachments for the gun.
If you want to find a better dehydrator-jerky combination, you'll be happier with the Nesco American Harvest FD-61WHC Snackmaster Express Food Dehydrator All-In-One Kit with Jerky Gun, which is described on the Best Dehydrators page. That dryer has 500 watts of power, 5 trays, and much more.