How to Make Jerky in an Electric Smoker

How to Make Jerky in an Electric Smoker 2 Rating(s)


Best Smoked Beef Jerky Recipe

This type of recipe and post is a little bit off the beaten path for us. In a house full of boys, it was inevitable that we would one day have a smoker and play around with some recipes. However, being unsure of exactly how much we would use such a contraption, we opted for an electric smoker, hoping to keep the task a little easier than the old-fashioned smoker.

One of the biggest hits, though, of dishes that we’ve tried in the smoker is this Beef Jerky recipe! It really hits the spot for an easy snack, full of protein, and an abundance of homemade flavor (which you can easily adjust to your own tastes).

When I first tried doing this, I bought a chunk of beef and tried cutting it up into small, thin strips (no easy task for myself). Then I discovered the stir-fry beef strips already sliced nice and thin and available in the meat section at the grocery store. Yay for keeping things simple and easy!

Stir fry beef strips and marinade for beef jerky

The marinade for the beef is made up of everyday ingredients – soy sauce, Worcestershire sauce, honey, red pepper flakes, onion powder, garlic powder, and black pepper. Mix all those together and pour over the beef strips in a Zip-lock bag or container with a lid.

Then let it marinate overnight in the refrigerator so all that good flavor soaks in really well.

Next day, heat up the smoker to 165 degrees F and add your favorite wood chips. Do not add water to the water pan, though, especially if cooking a really large batch of jerky (filling up the smoker racks), as the water really keeps the jerky from drying out sufficiently and greatly prolongs the needed cooking time.


beef jerky on rack in smoker

I bring the smoker racks inside and set them on a large tray covered in aluminum foil so I can easily lay out the beef strips, with a little space between each strip, and prepare it for putting in the smoker. Once the smoker is heated up, I just carry the racks out to the smoker and put them in place.


It takes about 3 hours for one pound of jerky in my electric smoker, but it may be a little longer in yours, and it will definitely take longer if you double the recipe.

Once your cooking time is close to finished, check the jerky to see if it’s done by pulling out one strip and seeing if it’s limp and floppy when you hold it or if it’s fairly stiff. If it’s still limp and floppy, let the jerky cook a little longer and check it again.

Smoked beef jerky with seasonings

We usually eat this jerky up pretty quickly, so I just store it in an airtight bag or container for the few days until it’s gone. However, if you cook up a bunch and want to freeze it, it can last for about 3 months in the freezer.

Beef jerky in serving bowl

Is this something you would consider making at home now in your own smoker? Do you have another favorite way to make jerky or a favorite smoker recipe to share? Please take a moment and let us know what you think in the comments below.

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April 27th, 2018

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