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Mesquite Smoked Jerky Recipe

This recipe presents an easy and authentic way to make delicious mesquite smoked jerky. Using simple ingredients, you can recreate this savory snack in your own kitchen. This jerky is perfect for a quick protein boost or just a tasty treat to enjoy anytime.

Mesquite Smoked Jerky Recipe

Photos of Mesquite Smoked Jerky Recipe

The key ingredient to note here is mesquite flavored liquid smoke concentrate. This might not be a staple in all kitchens but it is easily available in most supermarkets or online. It gives the jerky a deep, smoky flavor that sets it apart from typical jerky.

Mesquite Smoked Jerky Ingredients

Beef eye of round: Lean and flavorful, it is the ideal cut for making jerky.

Soy sauce: Adds a savory, umami flavor to the jerky.

Brown sugar: Provides a mild sweetness to balance the saltiness.

Mesquite flavored liquid smoke concentrate: Gives the jerky a unique, smoky flavor.

Ground paprika: Adds a hint of warmth and color to the jerky.

Garlic: Provides a subtle, aromatic background flavor.

Salt: Enhances the overall flavor of the jerky.

One reader, Galvan Rosen says:

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This mesquite smoked jerky recipe is a game-changer! The flavors are rich and the meat is perfectly tender. The combination of soy sauce, brown sugar, and mesquite liquid smoke creates a mouthwatering taste. It's a must-try for anyone who loves homemade jerky.

Galvan Rosen

Techniques Required for Making Mesquite Smoked Jerky

How to marinate the beef: In a shallow glass baking dish, stir together the soy sauce, brown sugar, liquid smoke, paprika, garlic, and salt. Ensure the beef strips are fully coated in the marinade.

How to dehydrate the beef: Arrange the marinated beef strips in a dehydrator in a single layer, ensuring they are not overlapping. Let them dry for 6 hours, or until they reach the desired dryness.

How To Make Mesquite Smoked Jerky

You won’t miss the store-bought kind with this easy smoked jerky recipe! The beef is flavored with mesquite, soy sauce, and spices for a sweet-savory snack.

Preparation: 30 minutes
Refrigerate and Dry Time: 12 hours
Total: 12 hours 30 minutes



  • 1lbbeef eye of round,sliced into ¼-inch strips
  • 1cupsoy sauce
  • ½cupbrown sugar,packed
  • 2tbspmesquite flavored liquid smoke concentrate
  • 1tbspground paprika
  • 3garlic cloves,minced
  • ¼tspsalt


  1. In a shallow glass baking dish, stir together the soy sauce, brown sugar, liquid smoke, paprika, garlic, and salt.

  2. Lay the meat strips in the liquid in a single layer. Cover the dish, and refrigerate for at least 6 hours.

  3. Arrange strips of beef in a dehydrator, and let dry for 6 hours, or to desired dryness.

  4. Serve and enjoy!


  • Calories: 306.99kcal
  • Fat: 10.70g
  • Saturated Fat: 4.06g
  • Monounsaturated Fat: 4.45g
  • Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.69g
  • Carbohydrates: 22.58g
  • Fiber: 1.15g
  • Sugar: 18.04g
  • Protein: 30.18g
  • Cholesterol: 79.38mg
  • Sodium: 3571.07mg
  • Calcium: 62.41mg
  • Potassium: 727.95mg
  • Iron: 3.63mg
  • Vitamin A: 41.87µg
  • Vitamin C: 0.72mg

Technique Tip for Perfect Mesquite Smoked Jerky

When preparing your beef eye of round for this mesquite smoked jerky recipe, it's important to cut the meat against the grain. This will result in a more tender jerky. Also, ensure your knife is very sharp to make clean, even slices. If you're having difficulty, try partially freezing the beef before slicing. This will make it easier to handle and cut.

Time-Saving Tips for Making Mesquite Smoked Jerky Recipe

Prep ahead: Marinate the beef overnight to save time on the day of cooking. Use a dehydrator: Using a dehydrator can significantly reduce the drying time compared to using an oven. Slice uniformly: Cut the beef into uniform slices for even drying and consistent texture. Adjust seasoning: Customize the flavor by adjusting the seasonings to suit your taste preferences. Invest in a meat slicer: Consider investing in a meat slicer for quick and consistent slicing of the beef eye of round.

Substitute Ingredients For Mesquite Smoked Jerky Recipe

  • beef eye of round - Substitute with venison: Venison is a lean and flavorful alternative to beef, which can be used to make a delicious jerky with a unique gamey flavor.

  • soy sauce - Substitute with coconut aminos: Coconut aminos provide a similar salty and umami flavor to soy sauce, but are soy-free and lower in sodium, making them a suitable alternative for those with dietary restrictions.

  • brown sugar - Substitute with maple syrup: Maple syrup offers a natural sweetness and depth of flavor similar to brown sugar, adding a rich and caramelized taste to the jerky.

  • mesquite flavored liquid smoke concentrate - Substitute with hickory flavored liquid smoke concentrate: Hickory liquid smoke provides a similar smoky essence, adding depth and complexity to the jerky, albeit with a slightly different wood flavor profile.

  • ground paprika - Substitute with smoked paprika: Smoked paprika offers a deep, smoky flavor that complements the jerky, enhancing its overall smokiness and adding a rich, earthy undertone.

  • garlic - Substitute with onion powder: Onion powder can provide a savory and aromatic element similar to garlic, enhancing the overall flavor profile of the jerky.

  • salt - Substitute with tamari: Tamari, a gluten-free soy sauce alternative, can be used to add a savory and salty flavor to the jerky while catering to dietary restrictions.

Presenting Your Mesquite Smoked Jerky

  1. Elevate the jerky with a unique serving vessel: Present the mesquite smoked jerky in a handcrafted wooden tray or a sleek slate platter to add a touch of rustic elegance to the dish.

  2. Incorporate a variety of textures: Pair the jerky with crunchy pickled vegetables or crispy kale chips to create a delightful contrast in textures that will impress the judges.

  3. Highlight the smoky flavor: Garnish the plate with a subtle swirl of mesquite-flavored aioli to enhance the smoky essence of the jerky and add a sophisticated touch to the presentation.

  4. Create an artistic arrangement: Arrange the mesquite smoked jerky in an intricate pattern, perhaps in a circular formation, to showcase your attention to detail and artistic flair.

  5. Introduce a pop of color: Add a vibrant element to the plate with a sprinkle of chili flakes or a drizzle of spicy honey to infuse the dish with a burst of color and flavor.

  6. Offer a unique dipping sauce: Present the jerky with a side of homemade barbecue sauce or a tangy chipotle mayonnaise in a miniature ramekin to provide a personalized touch to the dish.

Essential Tools for Making Mesquite Smoked Jerky

  • Cutting board: A flat surface used for cutting, slicing, and chopping ingredients.
  • Chef's knife: A versatile knife used for various kitchen tasks such as chopping, slicing, and dicing.
  • Dehydrator: An appliance used to dry foods by circulating air at a low temperature.
  • Glass baking dish: A dish made of glass used for marinating and baking.
  • Measuring cups and spoons: Used to accurately measure ingredients for the recipe.
  • Mixing bowl: A bowl used for mixing and combining ingredients.
  • Tongs: Used for handling and turning the meat strips during the drying process.
  • Garlic press: A tool used to crush and mince garlic cloves efficiently.
  • Plastic wrap: Used to cover the dish during marinating.
  • Spatula: Used for flipping and transferring the meat strips during the drying process.

Storing and Freezing Mesquite Smoked Jerky

  • Once the jerky has cooled completely, store it in an airtight container or resealable plastic bag. This will help maintain its freshness and prevent it from absorbing moisture from the air.

  • When storing the jerky, place a piece of parchment paper or paper towel between each layer to absorb any excess moisture and prevent the pieces from sticking together.

  • To keep the jerky fresh for an extended period, consider adding a food-safe desiccant packet to the container. These packets help absorb any remaining moisture, which can cause the jerky to spoil more quickly.

  • Store the container of jerky in a cool, dry place, such as a pantry or cupboard, away from direct sunlight and heat sources. Properly stored, homemade jerky can last for up to 1 month at room temperature.

  • For longer storage, you can freeze the jerky. Place the jerky pieces in a freezer-safe bag or container, removing as much air as possible before sealing. Label the container with the date and contents for easy reference.

  • When stored in the freezer, jerky can last for up to 6 months without significant loss of quality. However, it's essential to thaw the jerky properly before consuming it to ensure the best texture and flavor.

  • To thaw frozen jerky, remove the desired amount from the freezer and let it thaw in the refrigerator for a few hours or overnight. Avoid thawing jerky at room temperature, as this can cause condensation to form on the surface, leading to a less desirable texture.

How To Reheat Leftover Mesquite Smoked Jerky

  • The best way to reheat leftover mesquite smoked jerky is to use an oven or a toaster oven. Preheat the oven to 275°F (135°C) and place the jerky strips on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Heat the jerky for 5-10 minutes, or until it reaches your desired level of warmth and texture. This method helps to preserve the smoky flavor and prevents the jerky from becoming too dry or tough.

  • Another option is to use a microwave, although this method may result in a slightly chewier texture. Place the jerky strips on a microwave-safe plate and heat them on high power for 10-15 seconds at a time, checking the texture and temperature after each interval. Be careful not to overheat the jerky, as it can quickly become tough and lose its flavor.

  • For a more unconventional approach, try reheating your leftover mesquite smoked jerky in a skillet or on a griddle. Heat a small amount of olive oil or butter in the skillet over medium heat, then add the jerky strips. Cook for 1-2 minutes on each side, or until the jerky is heated through and slightly crispy on the edges. This method can add a new dimension of flavor and texture to your leftover jerky.

  • If you prefer a softer, more tender texture, you can try reheating your jerky in a steamer basket over boiling water. Place the jerky strips in the steamer basket and cover with a lid. Steam for 2-3 minutes, or until the jerky is heated through and has reached your desired level of tenderness. This method can help to rehydrate the jerky slightly, making it easier to chew.

Interesting Facts About Mesquite Smoked Jerky

The Mesquite Smoked Jerky recipe is a popular choice for outdoor enthusiasts and hikers due to its high protein content and long shelf life. Mesquite wood, known for its sweet and distinctive flavor, adds a unique taste to the jerky. The process of smoking the meat with mesquite wood not only preserves it but also imparts a rich, smoky flavor. This method of preservation has been used for centuries, allowing people to enjoy meat for extended periods without refrigeration. Mesquite smoked jerky is a delicious and convenient snack that can be enjoyed on the go or as a part of a meal.

Is Making Mesquite Smoked Jerky at Home Economical?

The cost-effectiveness of this mesquite smoked jerky recipe is quite high, as it uses affordable ingredients and yields a substantial amount of flavorful jerky. The approximate cost for a household of 4 people would be around $15-$20, making it a budget-friendly option for a tasty snack or protein-packed addition to meals. As a culinary chef, I would rate this recipe an 8/10 for its simplicity, delicious flavor, and cost-effectiveness.

Is Mesquite Smoked Jerky Healthy or Unhealthy?

The mesquite smoked jerky recipe, while flavorful, has some aspects that could be considered unhealthy:

  • High sodium content from the soy sauce and added salt, which can lead to increased blood pressure and other health issues if consumed in excess
  • Significant amount of added sugar from the brown sugar, contributing to empty calories and potential dental problems
  • Lack of nutritional variety, as the recipe primarily consists of beef and seasoning

However, there are also some positive aspects:

  • Beef eye of round is a lean cut of meat, providing protein without excessive saturated fat
  • Homemade jerky allows for control over ingredients and processing, unlike many store-bought options that may contain preservatives or additives

To make this recipe healthier, consider the following suggestions:

  • Reduce the amount of soy sauce and omit the added salt to decrease the sodium content
  • Replace some or all of the brown sugar with a natural sweetener like honey or maple syrup, or simply reduce the amount used
  • Incorporate additional spices and herbs, such as cumin, chili powder, or rosemary, to add flavor without relying on sugar and salt
  • Experiment with using other lean meats like turkey or chicken breast for variety
  • Serve the jerky alongside nutrient-dense snacks like fresh fruits, vegetables, or nuts to balance out the meal

By making these adjustments, you can enjoy the smoky, savory flavors of homemade jerky while supporting a more balanced and health-conscious diet.

Editor's Thoughts on This Mesquite Smoked Jerky Recipe

This mesquite smoked jerky recipe is a delightful blend of savory and smoky flavors. The combination of soy sauce, brown sugar, and mesquite liquid smoke creates a rich and robust marinade that infuses the beef with a deep, complex taste. The addition of paprika and garlic adds a subtle warmth and depth to the jerky, while the dehydration process ensures a perfect texture. This recipe is a wonderful way to enjoy the bold flavors of mesquite smoke in a convenient, on-the-go snack.

Enhance Your Mesquite Smoked Jerky Recipe with These Unique Side Dishes:

Garlic Mashed Potatoes: Creamy mashed potatoes with a hint of garlic, perfect for balancing out the smoky flavor of the jerky.
Grilled Asparagus: Tender asparagus spears grilled to perfection, adding a touch of freshness to the meal.
Caramelized Brussels Sprouts: Crispy Brussels sprouts caramelized to perfection, providing a delicious contrast to the savory jerky.
Pineapple Salsa: A refreshing and tangy pineapple salsa to add a burst of tropical flavor to the meal.

Alternative Recipes Similar to Mesquite Smoked Jerky

Grilled Vegetable Skewers: Marinate the vegetables in a mixture of olive oil, balsamic vinegar, and herbs before grilling for a delicious and healthy side dish.
Braised Beef Short Ribs: Slow cook the beef short ribs in a flavorful broth with vegetables and herbs until they are tender and falling off the bone.
Mango Sorbet: Blend ripe mangoes with sugar and lime juice, then freeze for a refreshing and fruity dessert option.
Chicken Noodle Soup: Simmer chicken, vegetables, and noodles in a savory broth for a comforting and classic soup that's perfect for any time of year.

Appetizers and Desserts to Serve with Mesquite Smoked Jerky

Stuffed Mushrooms: Delight your guests with these savory stuffed mushrooms, filled with a flavorful mixture of herbs, cheese, and breadcrumbs.
Bruschetta: Satisfy your guests' appetites with these delicious bruschetta, topped with a vibrant combination of fresh tomatoes, basil, and balsamic glaze.
Chocolate Mousse: Indulge in a rich and creamy chocolate mousse, topped with a dollop of whipped cream and a sprinkle of cocoa powder for an elegant and decadent dessert experience.
Strawberry Cheesecake: Savor the creamy and tangy flavors of a classic strawberry cheesecake, topped with a luscious strawberry compote and a drizzle of sweetened sour cream for a delightful and refreshing treat.

Why trust this Mesquite Smoked Jerky Recipe:

This recipe uses high-quality beef eye of round and a flavorful marinade of soy sauce, brown sugar, and mesquite flavored liquid smoke concentrate. The combination of these ingredients creates a rich and savory flavor profile. Additionally, the use of garlic and paprika adds depth and complexity to the jerky. The marinating process allows the flavors to infuse into the meat, ensuring a delicious end result. With carefully selected ingredients and a well-crafted process, users can trust this recipe to deliver exceptional mesquite smoked jerky every time.

Share your thoughts and experiences with this Mesquite Smoked Jerky Recipe in the Recipe Sharing forum section.
How long should I marinate the beef for the best flavor?
I recommend marinating the beef for at least 6 hours to allow the flavors to fully infuse into the meat.
Can I use a different cut of beef for this recipe?
Yes, you can use other lean cuts of beef such as top round or bottom round if you prefer.
Is it necessary to use a dehydrator to make the jerky?
While a dehydrator is the most efficient way to make jerky, you can also use an oven set to the lowest temperature with the door slightly ajar to achieve similar results.
Can I adjust the level of smokiness in the jerky?
Absolutely! You can adjust the amount of mesquite liquid smoke to your preference to control the level of smokiness in the jerky.
How should I store the jerky once it's made?
Store the jerky in an airtight container or resealable plastic bag at room temperature for up to two weeks. If you want to keep it longer, you can store it in the refrigerator for up to a month.

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