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15 Perfect & Healthy Beef Jerky Recipes With Intense Flavor

Beef jerky is a really tasty snack that’s also rich in protein. Store-bought jerky can be a little expensive, though. Luckily, however, if you weren’t aware, it’s super easy to make jerky at home.

You can make beef jerky in a regular household oven, but if you own a dehydrator or a smoker then that’s even better.  

If you want to give making your own jerky a try, then you should check out our list of 15 amazingly tasty beef jerky recipes.  

Quick Table: Beef Jerky Recipes

RecipeCalories Per ServingPreparation Time
Garlic And Black Pepper Jerky708 Hours 30 Minutes
Chili Lime Beef Jerky1304 Hours 45 Minutes
Mexican Heat Beef Jerky1406 Hours
Cajun Beef Jerky705 Hours
Vietnamese Beef Jerky2315 Hours
Kikkoman Teriyaki Beef Jerky895 Hours 15 Minutes
Honey Beef Jerky903 Hours 45 Minutes
Mai Tai Beef Jerky2605 Hours 30 Minutes
Jalapeno Lime Beef Jerky806 Hours
East Coast Jerky1165 Hours
Smokey Joe’s Beef Jerky806 Hours
Red Wine And Fish Sauce Jerky1414 Hours 30 Minutes
Tropical Island Beef Jerky1946 Hours
Cherry Bomb Beef Jerky906 Hours
Kentucky Bourbon Beef Jerky805 Hours 15 Minutes

1. Garlic And Black Pepper Jerky

This garlic and black pepper jerky are really delicious. By adding simple ingredients to your jerky you can really bring it to the next level and get some serious flavor.

Garlic and black pepper are classic additions to homemade jerky. You can either make this jerky in a smoker or a dehydrator. The flavor of the garlic goes really well with the meat, and the black pepper adds a nice little spicy kick. 

Calories Per Serving: 70

Preparation Time: 8 Hours 30 Minutes

2. Chili Lime Beef Jerky

This intensely flavorful beef jerky recipe is a great option for your homemade jerky. The marinade used is low in refined sugar and it’s gluten-free.

This jerky is a nice balance of salty, sweet, tart, and spicy. This combination of flavors makes for a delicious snack that’s high in protein

Calories Per Serving: 130

Preparation Time: 4 Hours 45 Minutes

3. Mexican Heat Beef Jerky

This spicy beef jerky recipe is one for lovers of heat! Using both serrano peppers and red pepper flakes, this jerky really packs a spicy punch. If you have a craving for a spicy snack then give this hot and spicy jerky recipe a try.  

Calories Per Serving: 140

Preparation Time: 6 Hours

4. Cajun Beef Jerky

This New Orleans-style cajun beef jerky is full of flavor and spice. If you love cajun food, then give this recipe a try.

The marinade for this jerky recipe consists of cayenne pepper, seasoning salt, smoked paprika, black pepper, vinegar, horseradish, garlic powder, oregano, red pepper flakes, and thyme.

These French-inspired flavors really lend themselves to beef jerky, especially if you’re using a high-quality cut of beef. 

Calories Per Serving: 70

Preparation Time: 5 Hours

5. Vietnamese Beef Jerky

This spicy and sweet Asian-style beef jerky is definitely one of our favorites. The main ingredient that sets this recipe apart from the others on our list is undoubtedly the turmeric powder. This gives the jerky a really interesting and unique flavor that really works well.

Another ingredient that really gives this jerky that Vietnamese flair is lemongrass. These fresh flavors really go well with a good high-quality cut of beef.  

Calories Per Serving: 231

Preparation Time: 5 Hours

RELATED: 15 Corned Beef And Cabbage Recipes You Can Try Tonight

6. Kikkoman Teriyaki Beef Jerky

This Kikkoman teriyaki beef jerky recipe is a really tasty, homemade treat. The umami flavors of teriyaki combined with the beef are so delicious.

Once you make a batch of this jerky, it won’t stay around long. Who could resist these sweet, salty, and savory flavors? Make sure to remove as much fat as possible from your beef, as fat spoils quicker than meat does. 

Calories Per Serving: 89

Preparation Time: 5 Hours 15 Minutes

7. Honey Beef Jerky

This jerky recipe features a delicious, light, sweet seasoning. If you don’t want something overly spicy or intense in terms of flavor, but want something sweet that brings out the flavor of the beef more, then give this recipe a try.

The sweetness of the honey is complimented by the saltiness provided by the use of soy sauce in the marinade.  

Calories Per Serving: 90

Preparation Time: 3 Hours 45 Minutes

8. Mai Tai Beef Jerky

This interesting beef jerky recipe is named after the delicious, tropical cocktail. This jerky recipe uses all these tropical flavors for its marinade to create a sweet and fruity meat snack.

The marinade also incorporates spiced rum which gives the jerky a really unique flavor and it works very well. The orange juicy in the marinade provides the beef with a lot of sweetness. 

Calories Per Serving: 260

Preparation Time: 5 Hours 30 Minutes

9. Jalapeno Lime Beef Jerky

This jalapeno and lime-flavored beef jerky recipe is really easy to make. If you like your jerky to have a nice spicy kick then this recipe is for you.

The spiciness from the jalapenos is complimented by a sweetness from the honey and the lime provides a nice, fresh, zestiness. If you can’t handle too much spice, make sure to remove the seeds from the jalapenos when making the marinade.  

Calories Per Serving: 80

Preparation Time: 6 Hours

10. East Coast Jerky

This east coast jerky really packs a spicy punch thanks to the cayenne pepper. Of course, you can add in the cayenne pepper to suit your taste.

If you’re a real heat lover, add more! The spiciness is balanced nicely with a slight sweetness. If this sounds like your kind of jerky, why not give this recipe a try? 

Calories Per Serving: 116

Preparation Time: 5 Hours

11. Smokey Joe’s Beef Jerky

This intriguing jerky recipe utilizes soda or root beer for its sweetness. If you like your jerky with a little extra sweetness, then give this recipe a try. The sweetness of the soda really comes through after the drying process. Real tasty!

Calories Per Serving: 80

Preparation Time: 6 Hours

12. Red Wine And Fish Sauce Jerky

You might think this jerky recipe sounds a little weird. Although it’s truly unusual, it’s also really delicious! Fish sauce is a common ingredient in Vietnamese food, and it really works well as a beef jerky marinade.

Beef and red wine isn’t such an unusual combination, however. Not only does the wine add a great flavor, but it also adds a wonderful dark red color to the jerky. 

Calories Per Serving: 141

Preparation Time: 4 Hours 30 Minutes

13. Tropical Island Beef Jerky

This delicious jerky recipe will transport you to a sunny, tropical paradise. It uses coconut water in its marinade which gives this jerky its tropical, sweet flavor.

Additionally, there is a little spice from the cayenne pepper and a nice warmth from the ginger. All of these ingredients come together to make a really delicious and sweet beef jerky.  

Calories Per Serving: 194

Preparation Time: 6 Hours

14. Cherry Bomb Beef Jerky

This deliciously spicy jerky recipe is jam-packed full of flavor. Its name comes from the use of cherry popper peppers and they add a really nice level of heat to this jerky.

If you want less heat, however, make sure to remove the seeds before adding them to the marinade, but of course, we recommend adding the peppers whole into your blender to make this spicy marinade.

Calories Per Serving: 90

Preparation Time: 6 Hours

RELATED: 15 Ground Beef And Potato Recipes That Are Easy To Make

15. Kentucky Bourbon Beef Jerky

If you love beef jerky and the bold and brash flavor of Kentucky bourbon then you must give this recipe a try. The bourbon adds a really distinctive flavor to the jerky, and it goes so well with the taste of the beef.

It also adds a nice sweetness to the jerky and a slightly smoky flavor. If you want to make something similar but do not want to use alcohol, then you can substitute the bourbon for apple juice.  

And that concludes our list of 15 seriously tasty beef jerky recipes that you can make at home. Which one do you like the look of most? Beef jerky is a delicious and healthy snack that’s rich in protein and can be incorporated into a keto diet.

Now you have the know-how, you can save money by making your own beef jerky that’ll taste even better than the store-bought stuff! 

Calories Per Serving: 80

Preparation Time: 5 Hours 15 Minutes

Frequently Asked Questions

Is Beef Jerky Good For You?

Although beef jerky is considered a healthy protein-rich snack, like everything, it is best consumed in moderation. Beef jerky is relatively high in sodium, which can cause health issues if consumed to excess. 

Why Is Store-Bought Jerky So Expensive?

Store-bought beef jerky can be rather costly for a few reasons. The cuts of raw beef used to make jerky are rather expensive, especially if it’s high-quality meat. Also, because manufacturing beef jerky involves a lot of non-automated processing, this raises the cost.

The process of dehydrating the meat involves a lot of time and energy, too. For these reasons, beef jerky is usually pretty expensive compared to other snacks on the market. 

Do You Need To Store Beef Jerky In The Refrigerator?

The drying process of beef jerky preserves it. For this reason, it does not need to be kept in the refrigerator.

This is what makes beef jerky great for hikes, camping, traveling, and other outdoor activities, as you can keep it in your bag and you don’t have to worry about it going bad.  

Is Beef Jerky Raw Meat?

Beef jerky is never raw. Beef jerky is meat that has been dried at a low temperature over many hours. This takes out all the moisture in the meat, which allows it to keep for much longer without spoiling.  

Where Did Beef Jerky Come From? 

The oldest evidence of dried meats can be dated back to ancient Egypt. Thousands of years ago, these ancient Egyptians would dry out mass amounts of meats by cutting them into strips and hanging them up to dry out in the sun.

Archeologists found this evidence by discovering dried foods that had been preserved in tombs.

15 Delicious Beef Jerky Recipes

Beef jerky is a delicious snack that can be made at home. Try one of these 15 delicious beef jerky recipes.


  • Pick a recipe from the list above
  • Click the recipe name and visit the website
  • Collect the ingredients and cook the food
  • Enjoy – don’t forget to leave a review

Recipe Video

Jess Smith

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Saturday 9th of July 2022


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