I really love making jerky on my dehydrator. I’ve been using ground top round for my ground beef jerky, but any lean ground meat will work. This sweet BBQ ground beef jerky on the Nesco Snackmaster Pro has a nice mellow smoky BBQ flavor that is definitely not overwhelming. It has a bit of sweetness, but it’s definitely not candy-like. The meat has the perfect ‘bite’, just a little tug.
Make sure you rotate your trays every 2 hours or so when making sweet BBQ ground beef jerky on the Nesco Snackmaster Pro. The bottom trays will not dry as quickly as those on top. Rotating the trays will give you nice, even drying and perfect jerky on every level.
Try these other great jerky flavors from Eastman Outdoors: spicy jalapeno, Cajun, whiskey pepper, mesquite, sweet habanero and hickory.
Check out my guide to using the Nesco Snackmaster Pro
. You will be making fantastic jerky at home in no time at all!
Sweet BBQ Ground Beef Jerky on the Nesco Snackmaster Pro
This recipe is for starting with 1 pound of meat. You'll end up with about 1/2 pound in the end. You can easily double/triple/etc this recipe for large quantities of meat, however 5-6 pounds is about all you can fit onto a Nescao Snackmaster Pro fitted with 12 trays (the unit comes with 5).
Prep Time 8 hours
Cook Time 6 hours
Total Time 14 hours
Servings 1 /2 pound
- 1 pound lean ground beef
- 1 heaping tablespoon Eastman Outdoors Sweet BBQ Jerky Seasoning see my note below
- 1 teaspoon curing salt Comes with the seasoning. Optional if you're going to refrigerate the finished product
- 1/4 cup water
NOTE: The package for the Eastman Outdoors jerky seasoning states that it makes up to 5 pounds of jerky. I personally feel that the flavor is too mellow, so I use just about an entire package for 1 pound of jerky. I end up with a little left over seasoning, which I store in a labelled air-tight container. I'll eventually mix it with more seasoning. I think I can get 3 pounds of well-seasoning jerky out of two packages of Eastman Outdoors mix.
Place beef in a resealable bag or container.
In a small bowl whisk together the seasoning, curing salt and water. Pour over the meat and seal. Shake to coat.
Refrigerate the meat for up to 8 hours, shaking or massaging every hour or so to get the marinade distributed and absorbed evenly.
Remove meat from the marinade and add to a jerky gun. Squeeze out onto Nesco trays. Do not overlap meat.
Add the dehydrator top, set to maximum temperature setting and dehydrate for 5 hours, rotating the trays (bottom to top) every 2 hours or so.
To test for doneness remove a piece and let cool slightly. Try to bend the meat. If it gives and starts to tear at the bend it is done. If it bends without tearing return to the dehydrator and let it run another 15 minutes and test again. If the meat is crunchy it is overdone but still good. It's really personal preference as to how you like your jerky. Soft, chewy, crunchy. There's no wrong here.
Let cool before storing in an airtight container.
I tend to be a dry-herb kind of guy, but sometimes a recipe needs fresh instead. To keep from wasting any unused fresh herbs I just toss them onto my Nesco Snackmaster Pro dehydrator and let them dry for later use. I needed rosemary for a dish I was making (rosemary grilled potatoes, using the rosemary as a skewer!), and had a few sprigs left. I could’ve kept the rosemary intact, but I opted to remove it from the sprigs instead. You can do it either way.
I keep the dried rosemary made on the Nesco Snackmaster Pro in air-tight containers. So I remember what is what, I write the contents on a small piece of blue painter’s masking tape. The tape is great for marking items, dry or in the freezer or wherever. It peels off so easily, you never have to worry about fussing with it.
You can dry any fresh herbs in the Nesco Snackmaster Pro. Like cilantro and basil.
Dried Rosemary on the Nesco Snackmaster Pro
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 8 hours
Total Time 8 hours 5 minutes
Rinse the rosemary to remove any foreign material.
Dry well with kitchen towels.
Optionally: remove the rosemary from the sprigs
Place onto the Nesco Snackmaster Pro trays. Do not let the sprigs overlap.
Dry at 95 F for 6-8 hours. Rotate the trays every hour or so.
If drying whole sprigs, remove the rosemary from them.
Store in an air-right container.
I plant a (small) garden of herbs every year. This year it didn’t do so well, but I was able to get just enough to make dried basil on the Nesco Snackmaster Pro. I will be rewarded for my efforts (which granted, weren’t much) this fall and winter with fantastically aromatic and flavorful crumbled basil.
Basil turns almost black in color when you dry it, but don’t despair. It’s normal for it to do that. I keep the herbs that I’ve dried using my Nesco Snackmaster Pro in mason jars. I seal the jars with the optional jar sealer on my vacuum sealer. Whew, I said ‘seal’ three times in one sentence!
You can dry any fresh herbs in the Nesco Snackmaster Pro. Like cilantro and rosemary.
Dried Basil on the Nesco Snackmaster Pro
Cook Time 12 hours
Total Time 12 hours
- Fresh basil rinsed and patted dry. Remove leaves from stems.
Place leaves onto the dehydrator trays.
Set the dehydrator to 95 F and let dry for 12-24 hours or until the leaves are dry and crispy, rotating the trays every 2 hours.
Let leaves cool slightly then crumble (by hand) into a resealable air-tight container.