Making great jerky is not always easy. You need to know how to tenderize it in order for the meat to be soft and flavorful. This step-by-step guide will show you how!

Why Should I Tenderize My Jerky?

Tenderizing jerky will make it easier to chew, and more flavorful. Follow these steps for how to tenderize your meat before you put it in the smoker or oven. You’ll have a better tasting jerky as a result!

Step One: Cut Off Excess Fat from The Meat

Cut off any excess fat from the outside of the meat. This step is necessary because if there’s too much fat on top then when you cook your jerky it might not be cooked all the way through and may end up with an unappetizing texture. Slice any large chunks into smaller pieces so they can easily fit inside your dehydrator (or other cooking device) without overlapping each other. Now that we’ve removed the excess fat, proceed to step two.

Step Two: Cut off all the gristle

Gristle is the chewy and tough part of meat that’s near where muscles attach themselves to bones on animals’ limbs, so it often has a lot more connective tissue than muscle does. This means that when you cook your jerky, even if you have some nice marbling (which is how much intramuscular fat there is in any given slice of meat), it still might not turn out great because girstles take longer to break down at high heat. To make sure this doesn’t happen, just remove them before cooking! If they are really difficult to find then don’t worry about it – as long as you trim the fat and connective tissues, your jerky will still taste great.

Step Three: Trim off all visible fats

This is really important because even if you cut out as much of the gristles as possible, there might be a tiny bit left over that can’t be seen at first glance. Even though it doesn’t look like much when you compare how little meat looks compared to how much fat on an average slice of ham or bacon (for example) in real life, for some reason this piece of fat seems to have incredible power! It’s just enough so that after hours in a dehydrator or oven, it starts to chew up into rubbery strings and make everything else around it – including other pieces of meat – tough and chewy.

Step Four: Add a tenderizer

Luckily, there are some really good home remedies for how to tenderize jerky that don’t involve cooking or dehydrating it first (although you can do both steps at the same time if you want). The best way to make your own is by combining water with uncooked oatmeal.

Step Five:  Let it sit overnight

It’s best to tenderize jerky in the fridge, but you can also put it on a counter for about 24 hours. When your meat is done and ready to eat after this time period, be sure how tight the seal of the container or bag is before storing your food!

Step Six: Eat up!

Now that the beef jerky has been made into something delicious and chewable, all that’s left is how many enjoy it with friends. We hope the tough jerky isn’t as difficult for you now! For more information on fully cooking dehydrated meats like how long does pork stay good in the freezer go here.

Taking the time to tenderize your jerky will not only make it more delicious, but also ensures that you can enjoy even better flavor. Be sure to follow these easy steps for making a soft and juicy piece of beef jerky at home with just 5 minutes of prep work. The next time you’re craving a salty snack, head over to the grocery store or butcher shop and pick up some fresh meat!

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