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A good beef jerky recipe is important for any man to have in his arsenal of recipes. Whether you prepare your jerky in a smoker, dehydrator, or even your oven, using a homemade beef jerky marinade will make a world of difference.

Ingredients for Beef Jerky displayed on cutting board
These ingredients to make beef jerky are easy to find in any store.

That doesn’t mean you have to get fancy with your marinade. A good beef jerky marinade can be made using the simplest of ingredients. Let’s take a closer look at how to prepare a marinade along with some tips on cooking your beef jerky once it’s been marinated.

Beef Jerky Marinade Ingredients

The ingredients are very simple, and chances are you have them on hand.

How to Prepare Beef Jerky Marinade

Beef jerky marinade is also extremely easy to prepare.

brown sugar and black peppercorn in pot

All you need to do is add the ingredients to a saucepan and heat over low heat until the sugar and spices are dissolved and everything is well combined.

Beef Jerky Marinade in pot
Beef Jerky Marinade

Once heated, allow to cool to room temperature before adding to your meat.

Marinade for beef jerky
Just heat, cool, and pour. It’s that simple.

Ways to Prepare Beef Jerky Once Marinated

There are many ways to make beef jerky once the beef has been marinated.

Smoked – There is a great post on the site with information on how to smoke beef jerky.

Dehydrated – Dehydrators (like this one) are great, if you have the extra space. If you don’t plan on making beef jerky often, or drying other things such as fruit or spices, don’t rush out and purchase one. If you have one already, it will take around 4 to 5 hours to dehydrate the beef when cooked at 165 degrees. Your model of dehydrator will have specific instructions.

Air Fried – In the air fryer, you’ll cook the beef at 180 degrees for 2 hours.

Baked – You’ll want to set the oven temperature to 160 to 180 degrees, if possible, if not 200 degrees. Cook the beef until it reaches an internal temperature of 160 degrees (approximately 4 hours)

beef marinating in ziplock bag
Refrigerate and marinate for 12-24 hours.


  • Always use lean beef that has very little connective tissue.
  • Beef should be cut thin so that it will cook properly.
beef cut in thin slices on a cutting board
Cut beef in thin slices
  • Slices should be laid out in an even layer so that heat moves around the pieces as it cooks.
  • Keep the temperature low so that your jerky is tender.
Beef Jerky Marinade Ingredients

Beef Jerky Marinade

Whether you prepare your beef jerky in a smoker, dehydrator, or even your oven, using a homemade beef jerky marinade will make a world of difference.
3.93 from 121 votes
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Course: Appetizer
Cuisine: American
Keyword: beef jerky recipe
Prep Time: 1 day
Cook Time: 4 hours
Servings: 6 people
Calories: 324kcal
Author: Mark Rogers


  • ½ cup Worcestershire sauce
  • ½ cup soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt
  • 2 teaspoon black peppercorns
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 2 teaspoons onion powder


  • Place beef in a freezer for 1-2 hours, remove and trim any fat from the outside of the meat, and slice into ¼ inch thick slices. Slice across the grain for best results.
  • Add marinade ingredients to a saucepan and heat over low heat until they are combined. Set aside and allow to cool to room temperature.
  • Transfer marinade and sliced beef round into a shallow dish or ziplock bag covering completely.Place into the refrigerator and marinate for 12-24 hours.
  • Remove from the refrigerator and place on a baking rack to allow excess marinade to drain. Blot meat strips with a paper towel to remove any remaining moisture.
  • Cook beef jerky with desired cooking method.


Time Depends on Cooking Method


Calories: 324kcal | Carbohydrates: 70g | Protein: 15g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 9005mg | Potassium: 1606mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 40g | Vitamin A: 157IU | Vitamin C: 19mg | Calcium: 250mg | Iron: 12mg

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