Deer Jerky Marinade

Venison jerky is one of the best ways to use deer meat. It's juicy, savory and just enough chewiness to be satisfying. There's a variety of different ways to make delicious venison jerky, here are a few.


Napoleon Grills offers a savory recipe for smoked jerky. Start by marinating the venison in the following mixture:

4 tablespoons soy sauce
4 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon onion powder
1/4 teaspoon Bone Dust BBQ seasoning
Sriracha to taste
Salt and pepper to taste

Marinate the venison for at least 24 hours. Get your smoker heated to 200 degrees Fahrenheit and then place the venison far from the heat. Add your favorite wood to the heat and smoke for about 15 minutes. Turn the meat and then smoke for another 15 minutes or so until the meat is stiff.

Another delicious recipe from Napoleon Grills is one for teriyaki-style venison jerky. Start by combining about two pounds of venison in the following marinade.

1 clove of grated garlic
1 inch of fresh grated ginger
1 tablespoon of vegetable oil
1 teaspoon sesame oil
3/4 cup soy sauce
1 cup of sake
1/2 cup of honey
1/2 cup of brown sugar
2 tablespoons rice vinegar
1 tablespoons of red pepper flakes

Refrigerate the meat and marinate for a minimum of eight hours, but as much as 24 is fine. Afterwards, prepare your smoker for heat between 230 and 250 degrees. Cook between two and five hours, flipping the meat every hour or so, until the meat is dehydrated. If it is burning or cooking too fast, mist with apple juice or beef stock. Allow to cool before eating.

A savory, peppery recipe for Black Pepper Jerky comes from Food and Wine. Combine the following into a marinade.

3 cups amber ale or lager. For a richer version, try stout or porter instead.
2 cups soy sauce
1/2 cup Worcestershire sauce
2 tablespoons cracked black peppercorns

Cut 2 pounds of venison into quarter inch slices, then add to the marinade a few slices at a time, making sure to fully coat each slice. Cover, or seal if using a zip plastic bag, and refrigerate for about eight hours. Preheat an oven to 200 degrees. Pat the meat dry and arrange on wire racks over baking sheets. Add more ground pepper and then bake for about four hours, or until meat is dried and firm.

The final recipe comes from Yankee Kitchen Ninja and is for Cider Venison Jerky. Start with two pounds of venison cut in strips. Then combine 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar, 1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce, 2 tablespoons brown sugar, 1 tablespoon sea salt, 1 teaspoon garlic powder, 1/2 teaspoon black pepper and 1/2 teaspoon of dried mushroom powder. Marinate for up to 24 hours.

The recipe recommends using a dehydrator at 145 degrees, but you can also follow previous instructions for oven or smoker drying.

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