Beef Jerky

Total Time:
20 hr 20 min
20 min
8 hr
12 hr

10 to 12 ounces


Trim the flank steak of any excess fat, place in a zip-top bag, and place it in the freezer for 1 to 2 hours in order to firm up.

Remove the steak from the freezer and thinly slice the meat with the grain, into long strips.

Place the strips of meat along with all of the remaining ingredients into a large, 1-gallon plastic zip-top bag and move around to evenly distribute all of the ingredients. Place the bag into the refrigerator for 3 to 6 hours.

Remove the meat from the brine and pat dry. Evenly distribute the strips of meat onto 3 of the air filters, laying them in the grooves and then stacking the filters on top of one another. Top these with 1 empty filter. Next, lay the box fan on its side and lay the filters on top of it. Strap the filters to the fan with 2 bungee cords. Stand the fan upright, plug in and set to medium. Allow the meat dry for 8 to 12 hours. If using a commercial dehydrator, follow the manufacturer's directions.

Once dry, store in a cool dry place, in an airtight container for 2 to 3 months.

Pairs Well With

Jammy, earthy red wine

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    165 Reviews
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    Very good! Partially freezing the steak really does help with the slicing, but if you have a sharp enough knife it doesn't really matter. Don't mess with the salt-ratio like I did on my second run through where I replaced the Soy Sauce with Teriyaki and more honey. It NEEDS to be salty. Also, always marinate the full six hours if you can, any less than five and it comes out bland in my opinion. 
    Went to my store's meat department and asked for a flank steak. The guy said he didn't have any. I asked if London Broil was like flank steak and he said it wasn't. I went home and re-watched the episode and feel like an idiot. I'm not trusting my meat department again. 
    Air Filters are a lot more expensive than he says. I couldn't find any for less than $6, but luckily I only had to buy three filters. When I get some money I'll buy a few big cooling racks and line those with paper towels instead to see if those work any better or worse.
    The foundation of the recipe is excellent. I tried the box fan except used screens (aluminum ones) and ended up sick after a longer time than specified. Maybe I tried it during to much humidity or something was off that was not in the show, but food poisoning is not fun. Even today though using a dehydrator I still use this recipe because it tastes good. Sometimes during drying I add a mixture of honey and halbenero (for a big extra kick). Using the box fan method did produce great taste, but the after affects were a turn off to the method even if far better tasting than a dehydrator. As of right now I have some "stir fry meat" in my dehydrator with this (modified to taste with extra spices) recipe. I plan on eating it later today and enjoying it. Maybe I did something wrong or the time of year was off is to blame, minus the process (which I am taking a star off for due to my issue) the recipe itself is great and very similar to what I was using before.
    You probably got sick because you used aluminum
    Love this recipe!!! 
    I built jerky "trays" which are basically window frames and I attached 1/4" wire mesh to make the tray and I set the fan on top blowing down. This eliminates the task of "de-fuzzing" the jerky after sitting on the air filter and dries the meat more evenly. (not to mention reusable!)
    is it galvanized ?
    Awesome and easy to make. Make sure you wear cutting glove when slicing the meet however.
    This was my first attempt at jerky, but it won't be my last. Very easy and WAY better than store bought. I'm allergic to beef, so I used lamb, but everything else was the same. Great! The red pepper flakes add a definite kick, so beware if you are afraid of a little heat.
    Followed this recipe to the T! Came out to be the best beef jerky i have ever had.
    I used the marinade and it was great! I added brown sugar to the recipe and extra pepper flakes. My family, who can be quite picky, really enjoyed it! I also let the meat marinade for 48 hours.
    I've tried this recipe. It was ok. However, it can't beat jerky recipes from "Jerky Bible" book though. I got it on amazon. This recipe has some unhealthy ingredients and doesn't taste that good because of some kind of after taste or what.
    A fairly easy and straight forward recipe with great results.
     An additional thought would be to add to taste DRY ONLY spices to the finished jerky. i.e. I like mine on the spicy side so I add cayenne pepper and crushed pepper flakes to the plastic bag and shake before putting in the freezer. The depth of the flavor is greatly increased.
    I have been making this jerky with this recipe for 3 years. My son's track team counted on having it on the way home from a meet. Now he is in college and it is the highlight of our "care packages", his friends all look out for the express mail boxes. Off to make more, the boys really love it. I alway triple it, it goes very quickly. Great recipe!
    Well now that was tasty! I made about 7# and it almost filled my dehydrator. I marinated it about 24 hours only because I got side tracked organizing my pantry. The flavor was WOW! Everyone who tried it, loved it. I should also mention that I used gluten free soy sauce, ran out and switched to Braggs Aminos. The soy needs replacing to make it Gluten Free. Oh I also tripled the recipe for my 7# of meat. I placed it in a large stainless bowl (with a lid and stuck a plate over the beef to keep it in the marinade. My next batch will be with regular soy for the rest of the gang.
    Good recipe... almost same as what ive been using my whole life on venison and beef. Few differences, i usually do about 4-6lbs of meat at a time so i have to double or tripple the recipe i also substitue honey with brown sugar, use a tbs of salt, add tbs or so of garlic powder, and eliminate the red pepper because the worcestershire and black pepper adds enough bite for my taste. I let marinate for at least 2 days. I also cut it across the grain seems to be easier to eat less chewey stringy...i usually use venison pieces trimmings not big enough for meal or do a whole front shoulder or buy round roasts when they are on sale... nothing i do is exact measurement just approximate by eye from years of making it i also use a dehydrator, takes between 6-8 hrs... always relatively the same everyone enjoys it. Aweful hard to give away as its so delicious and addictive.
    This was the first time I've made beef jerky. It is so delicious! I followed the recipe exactly, but I didn't have red pepper flakes so I used a 1/2 tsp of ground red pepper instead. I couldn't find flank steak so I used the round cut. There was hardly any fat on it. I used the oven at 170 degrees and it was done in about 4 hours. Definitely making more next weekend! This will be gone by tonight! Thank you for such an awesome recipe!!
    I followed the recipe exactly, but I didn't have red pepper flakes so I used a 1/2 tsp of ground red pepper instead. I couldn't find flank steak so I used the round cut. There was hardly any fat on it. I used the oven at 170 degrees and it was done in about 4 hours........"I FOLLOWED THE RECIPE EXACTLY....." Oh, the irony....still laughing!  
    thank you cmay23, for oven cooking to dry tip, temps here expected at 0, so no fan in the window, and no oven food dehydrator , oven drying for me the only way to go thanks
    Really simple and easy recipe. Tastes great, have to force myself to stop eating it. I made minor changes to accomandate my tastes. I eliminated the red pepper flakes and reduced the pepper to 1/4 teaspoon. I also added 1 teaspoon of garlic powder. I let the mixture sit for one hour at room temp before adding the beef. Used food dehydrator and did my "quality control" checks starting after 6 hours and than checked every half hour. Makes the best jerky I ever had.
    i tried other jerky recipes, this is the best by far
    I've used AB's Jerky recipe on wild game, including: antelope, deer, elk with excellent results. This has become our base for jerky; sometimes we add more of this or that: pepper flakes, teriyaki, pepper, etc. just to mix it up and the results have always been well received.  
    Since I have a dehydrator, I use that instead of the filters & fan. I set my dehydrator to low ~140 degrees, takes longer, but doesn't change the flavor and less chance of turning the jerky into brittle. I like AB's tip to store in plastic or glass jar - like snack food containers, instead of plastic bags. Bags don't seem to let air circulate as well and can mold.
    I've made this recipe DOZENS of times, and it is ALWAYS great! I've shared the resulting jerky at baseball games, football games, scout outings, family gatherings, and church events; and it ALWAYS gets rave reviews. People almost ALWAYS ask for more! I've made it with flank steak, london-broil, brisket, and sirloin. The flank steak version is pretty hard to beat. A standard food dehydrator (I got mine at a garage sale for $2 works just fine, and is easy as pie to use. This is the one recipe from AB that we ALWAYS return to.
    Very good recipe. First it doesn't make sense to use furnace air filters. The one's shown in the video are $4 - $5 five bucks a pop. The cheapest you can get are fiberglass filters and no one should put meat on fiberglass. Buy a dehydrator Bass Pro has them at $45.00 you do the math it makes sense. 
    As for the jerky I put a teriyaki glaze half way through the drying process it gives a nice shine and flavor to it.
    I've made this dozens of times, but I've learned a bit while doing it. First, flank steak is the way to go. Unless you have a deli-slicer, there's no better cut of meat. I've tried everything, including Kobe beef roasts. The lean fat content and the ease of slicing it when partially frozen make flank the perfect choice. Second, I use way more pepper. I figured out that if I put the chuck of my drill on the top of my pepper grinder, I can grind out a couple of tablespoons in a minute. Finally, I have found that the box fan I got doesn't completely dry out the meat. So what I do is I put it on the fan overnight and then in the morning, I put it on the smoker (I don't put the liquid smoke in the marinade. I have the flower-pot smoker that Alton built in another episode, but I've also used the oven set on "warm" with some success. I like the smoker because I can set the temperature down to about 130 F.
    I followed the recipe exactly and didn't like the resulting flavor. The Worcestershire sauce flavor was too strong for me. It was just too front-and-center that it overpowered everything else. I usually love Alton's recipes but this one I won't be making again.
    I have tried many jerky recipes, but this one will be the one I will continue with here on out. Perfect balance of sweet, spiciness! As with all of Alton's just can't go wrong. I used organic London Broil on sale, and used our dehydrator. Brilliance. Thanks again, AB for your wisdom!!! :
    I use this recipe all the time since i seen it on food network. I use my dehydrator, but set it on the coolest setting. I do use some Sodium nitrite also about 1 teaspoon per each batch. this allows the meat to stay pink the meat looks better after it is dried.
    Love the idea, I definately don't mind paying a little more for a quality filter. In Seattle they're about 4$. In life cheap things aren't good and good things aren't cheap (usually. My jerkey took a long time to cold dry... Because it was rainy I guess? (big surprise I know. Don't be afraid to play with your recipes, make it mega hot or teriyaki, whatever you like. Thanks for the technique Alton, your among my favorite nerds of all time!
    Very good! I used a few more pepper flakes and sugar sub..worked well...very easy...I am a flight attendant and brought this to work...I have 4 orders for more!
    Really great recipe and very easy to do. I used the fan method, set to high instead of medium though, and it turned out wonderful and I would definitely do it again. I'm not sure why everyone is complaining about furnace filters being expensive because they're not. They're not the dollar like Alton said but they are two dollars or less a piece and if you buy them in the packs of three, you can get good deals ( I live in Hawaii so everything here can be expensive because of importing so If I can find them for cheap here then you can find them cheap where you are too. I used Alton's exact recipe this time but it's very adaptable to your taste, so feel free to experiment with the flavors. Also, I recommend getting the leanest piece of flank you can find or trim it very well. Another excellent recipe from Alton, no surprise there.
    Loved the flavor, I added extra red pepper flakes for more heat. I also used a dehydrator and let it dehydrate for about 10 hours rotating the trays about every hour. All the jerky was gone pretty much in a couple days. Everyone loved it. Definitely keeping this and making this more often. Way better than the stuff you buy in stores.
    This s the standard recipe we use to crank out a lot of beef jerky. To reduce the carbs we substitute Splenda for the honey. We do use a box dehydrator instead of the fan.  
    Simply Excellent!!
    Used 4 lbs turkey cut a half inch thick, doubled up marinade recipe and cut out red pepper and added spicy mesquite seasoning, 3 tblsp brown sugar, and teryakki in place of the soy. marinated 12 hrs, took 5 hrs to dry (used the oven method, put peices on rack and set oven to 170, opened door and pointed box fan at it. turned out great! turkey is way healthier too.
    Tough to find cheap filters, even at Home Depot. May make some from plastic grid. This time I put the filters on box fan sitting on plastic milk crates-plenty of air flow. Did it on screened porch so the house wouldnt get smelly. 
    Followed recipe exactly for the first time, and it is terrific. I'll lose the liquid smoke and cut the crushed reds in 1/2, and substiture ground chipotle peppers for the smoky flavor and the heat. May add a tbls of brown sugar.
    Thank you Alton Brown!!! This is the BEST Beef Jerky recipe I have ever made!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 
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