Jerky in an Electric Smoker

Jerky in an Electric Smoker


Dehydrating meat was one of the first methods to preserve it. Although, we no longer have to dry meat to preserve it, many still enjoy the taste and convenience of jerky. And, because the fats have been removed, it’s actually a healthy source of protein.

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pound meat
cup soy sauce
tablespoon worcestershire Sauce
tablespoon honey
tablespoon red pepper flakes
teaspoon onion powder
teaspoon garlic powder
teaspoon black pepper

Ingredient Tips

Smoke-Flavored Jerky
Add wood chips for a smokey infusion.

For a mild, sweet flavor, add apple or cherry woods.
Hickory wood will add a hint of bacon.
Mesquite wood is a traditional smoking wood, but it can be strong. To tone it down, add a little apple or cherry. Blending apple or cherry wood with hickory will help balance out sweet, bacony flavors.



Along the grain of the meat, cut it into 1/4” thick strips. Remove any fat as you slice.


Thoroughly mix all your ingredients and marinate the meat overnight in the fridge.

Hot Tip: If you’ve made too much, homemade smoked jerky will usually last about 3 months in the freezer.

Preheat your smoker at 165 degrees Fahrenheit. Fill the water pan with water, and add your favorite wood chips.


When your smoker has reached 165 degrees Fahrenheit, add your meat. Either skewer the meat and hang the pieces from a rack, or lay them flat on the racks.

Hot Tip: When placing the meat in your smoker, a little touching is fine, but don’t overlap the meat. Use multiple racks instead of forcing all the pieces of meat onto one rack.

Smoke at 165 degrees Fahrenheit for about 4 -6 hours, or until the meat is firm. If you’re not sure if the jerky is done, take a piece and lightly shake it between your fingers. If it’s floppy or limp, put it back in the smoker and keep checking.

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  • PJ | Dec 5, 2017

    I’m going to try this with deer. I’ll let you know how it’s turns out. Should be done in a week. Simple recipe with minimal ingredients. Plus I’m partial to honey since I raise bees!

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  • Jake | Dec 10, 2017

    Just put some. Venison jerky in now. Hopefully it turns out good. Added some brown sugar to the recipe. Going with hickory and pecan chips

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  • BigBear | Jan 5, 2018

    Just tried this recipe using a big Traeger. The marinade was fantastic and I smoked the jerky with a gourmet blend of Oak (50%), pecan and cherry wood. I left the meat in the marinade a full 24 hours. The result was the best jerky I have made to date. This will be my go-to recipe until I find one better! Thanks for sharing this!

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  • Mike | Apr 8, 2018

    I used this recipe and it turned out great I making tonight but using brown sugar instead of honey it's a really great recipe i like it better that a lot that I've tried in the past going with Jim bean chips tonight its definitely better than store bought jerky

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  • Hpyfrog1. | Aug 12, 2018

    The time is way to long. Mine was burned at 3 hours and 15 minutes. Look else where for an idea.

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  • Surfer Joe | Aug 18, 2018

    I use a vertical smoker that stays around 225-250, my jerky is cut into 1/8 thick strips and I never have to smoke it for more than 90 minutes, most batches are just a little over an hour and I only flip them once. Even at lower temps 165-190 it should not take 3 or 4 hours, use your eyes and fingers to see if it's done.

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  • Amazing. I use this recipe all the time and it gets rave reviews. brown sugar will dissolve better than the honey and make it a little bit sweeter as it does have a kick to it. If you burned it using this recipe, then you probably should just stick to hot dogs. | Aug 22, 2018

    I like to set my electric smoker 175 instead of the 165. I leave the vent all the way open if you're putting any type of water or apple juice or beer in the pan so the moisture escapes since you're trying to dehydrate it anyhow.

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  • Chelsea | Sep 3, 2018

    I add jalapeños to my batch and I loved the flavor all together. Smoked it for 4 hours and it was perfect

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  • A.K. | Dec 28, 2018

    Been using this recipe for over a year now. Even have the owner of an establishment in the British Virgin islands that wants me to start sending jerky to him to sell down there using this recipe. Everything depends on your cut of meat. Whether you use flank steak sirloin tip eye of round and the thickness of it.4 hours is a good starting point but a little on the high end. Start monitoring it around two hours or so. Leave your vent open if you put liquid in there as it will take longer.

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  • Edl | Dec 30, 2018

    I use High Mountain jerky seasoning from Academy, perfect blend of season and cure. If your smokin long and slow, cure is recommended. My deer jerky comes out great at 185 degrees for 3 hrs on Masterbuilt electric smoker. After 2 hrs I continue to check it.

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  • eagle23z | Jan 2, 2019

    Everything was delish. I followed the recipe exactly, adding my own pepper flakes for extra spiciness. I just got my smoker and this was the first thing I tried, 1 for 1 so far.

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  • JR | Jan 21, 2019

    For the inexperienced your cook time shall vary based on ambient temp. I use a Traeger Timberline so I can monitor my temps closer. Time also depends on the thickness of your jerky. I’ve always had cook time vary between 4-6hrs. After 2hrs I tend to check my smoker every hour. When it looks close I will check on it more often. Some pieces will also get done quicker so I just pull those as needed. I store them in a cold oven to dry on a cookie sheet.

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  • SmokeU | May 16, 2019

    @Hpyfrog1 How do you burn jerky at 165 degrees? Not possible. I'm thinking it was running hot and also might have had a lot of sugar in the marinade.

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  • Digital Smoker | Jul 9, 2019

    Tried jerky with my older gas smoker but was very hard to control temperature. Just got a new digital smoker so if you do not succeed try again! What’s the best cut of steak to use?

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    • Char-Broil | Jul 15, 2019

      Here's a great article on the Best Cuts of Beef for smoking - Enjoy

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