You don’t know how to make the best beef jerky. You will after reading about the best cut for meat for jerky in this article! Beef jerky is incomplete without knowing the best cut of meat. Only the right meat cut will make all the difference. And give you a delicious and savory beef jerky recipe.
If you didn’t know this already, maybe it’s time that you do. You can continue making mediocre beef jerky forever. Even if your guests tell you it’s amazing! It’s time to upgrade your style of cooking to that of a professional chef’s. It’s what everyone else is doing.
What is the Best Cut of Meat for Jerky? – It’s Time to Find Out!
The secret to finding the best cut of meat for jerky is this. Choose a cut which has the least fat content. If the meat has too much fat in it, it can spoil the taste and aroma of beef jerky.
I don’t want to leave you hanging. So let me tell you all that you need to know about cooking beef jerky. Before you search for the least fattening meat cut!
What I’ve listed below are the best cuts of meat for cooking jerky. Trust me, after reading them you wouldn’t want to settle for anything less!
1 Eye of Round
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Eye of Round is not only the most popular meat cut but it’s also the most tender. To prepare the Eye of Round for jerky. This is what you need to do.
Some cuts come with a chunk of fat which you can trim around the edges. The meat, by itself, is lean muscle. And it has little to no interior fat content to show off. A good reason to buy this meat cut is that of its inexpensive price tag.
2 Bottom Round
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Bottom Round is best for people who want something tough. Contrary to Eye of Round, Bottom Round is not tender at all. But it’s still a popular choice for beef jerky. Because it has plenty of flavor and is lean muscle.
3 Top Round
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When compared with bottom round, top round is tender. But it’s not as tender as the Eye of Round. You want this meat cut if you’re looking for something cheap, flavorful, and lean.
4 Sirloin Tip
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After Eye of Round, Sirloin Tip is the most tender meat cut on the market. And it makes the best beef jerky. When you see Sirloin Tip, it’s a bit leaner than the rest. This does add some texture and taste to the cooking process. However, most of you know that Sirloin Tip is an expensive cut.
5 Flank Steak
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Flank Steak may not be the ideal meat cut for jerky. But that’s just for beginners. If you know how to cook a mean beef jerky. You must know how to slice the meat. As with the Flank Steak, slicing against the grain is necessary. Because if you don’t, the beef will become hard and chewy.
6 Ground Meat
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Ground meat is also another famous choice for jerky. But only with meat that’s lean. Ground meat is the best option out there for sensitive eaters. This is when you don’t want a chewy texture. That said, ground meat does change the texture of beef jerky. As compared to using whole meat cuts.
Make sure you buy meat that’s at least 90% lean. You will also need extra tools such as a jerky gun. This helps you cut the beef into strips or flatten it.
What’s the Best Way to Slice Meat for Jerky?
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Now that you’ve been acquainted with the best cut of meat for jerky. It’s time to turn to the basics. And that is the slicing meat method for jerky. The slicing part is essential because it dictates how your beef will taste. You can slice meat to make it either chewy or tender.
Fat is a big no-no when it comes to cooking jerky. Fat spoils the recipe fast. And so trimming all the extra fat off the meat is important. That way, you can increase the shelf life of the meat. Make sure you use a sharp knife and a cutting board. The more fat you can get off, the fresher the meat will taste.
Only those who have mastered the art of basic cooking know about the ‘Grain of Meat’. It is a simple way to slice meat without spoiling it. The way you cut it affects the texture and taste of the meat. Making it either more or less tender and chewy.
For jerky, slicing with the grain gives you chewy and hard meat. And slicing against the grain gives you tender and less chewy meat.
Now, the grain of meat refers to the direction of the muscle fibers. You will notice a few lines running parallelly on the cut of meat. They go from top to bottom or side to side.
If you do not want to use a standard sharp knife. You can buy a jerky cutter. A jerky cutter or slicer gives you amazing cuts of meat. They’re all evenly cut which is good for dehydrating. Sometimes, with a knife, you are bound to cut uneven slices of meat. This means some pieces will be more or less cooked than the other. To avoid that, a jerky cutter is essential.
Science: How to Slice Steak and Make Cheap Beef Cuts (like Flank Steak) Tender with Only Your Knife
The best cuts of meat for jerky do not come easy. But that doesn’t mean they never will. As they say, “Practice makes perfect!” It’s time to learn more about the best cut of meat for jerky. But this time, you’re not second-guessing your way to the best beef jerky recipe.
Always remember beef jerky demands leaner meat. The reason being that lean muscle is easier to dehydrate. Meat that has too much fat in it has moisture too. This is a bad way to cook jerky. It not only ruins the recipe, but it spoils the recipe faster. You won’t be able to store beef jerky if that’s what you were planning to do.
Apart from the basics, practice does make perfect. Keep experimenting with different cuts of meat. To find what works best for you and for the recipe. After all, isn’t cooking all about having fun? After learning about the different cuts of meat, you can only cook as much as you want. Without making any mistakes and overcooking or undercooking the meat!
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