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Best Cut of Meat for Making Beef Jerky

Origins of Beef Jerky

Jerky is one of the most appetizing meat treats, which has gained popularity over the years. Even though it’s not a new recipe, it has kept and maintained its popularity for centuries. This treat has been discovered by the Quechua people in 1550. Back in time, there were not any refrigerators and people depended on hunting most of the times. Actually, it represents the purest beef meat, with no fats, cut into strips. The strips were perfectly dehydrated to resist over time. People also used salt to prevent bacteria development as well as prevent the food from spoilage. The stunning recipe can be easily prepared, as it doesn’t imply colossal effort. You need salt and some heat, then you can keep it into a refrigerating device for months.


The main aspect to take into consideration when starting the process is the cut you’re going to use. Choosing a proper cut will ensure the best outcomes, and also make the difference. Therefore, you have to carefully pick it so you can obtain the expected results. To ensure you have picked a suitable one, go for the cuts with the slightest amount of fats. Otherwise, you might not get what you want. This is because fat destroys the cooking process, leading to failure during the dehydration cycle. As well as, it will damage the original taste. This is why it’s important to always choose lean meats.

What to Consider?

After you have chosen the leanest cuts, you should also take into consideration some other aspects that play a very important role. Considering the following features will bring added convenience when cooking, as well as it will provide you with the most appetizing results. In this case, it’s also important to:

  • Pick the freshest meat, never buy outdated meat – Fresh meat is compulsory for one’s healthiness but also for obtaining appetizing, tasty beef. Considering that we only dehydrate it, it’s important to be as fresh as possible, as it doesn’t get through a boiling process in order to eliminate harmful elements. Therefore, make sure to check the label and purchase only the freshest one.
  • Consider the proper amount – After the dehydrating process, it will lose a part of the initial weight, so it’s important to buy enough. For instance, if you purchase 3 pounds, you’ll finish up with just a single pound. So, take into consideration the number of people and the amount the meat that should be bought to ensure servings for the entire group.
  • Purchase already sliced meat – Finally, the meat we need has to be sliced. It’s even better if you can do this right away from the shop or butchery. This is a time-saving task, as you won’t have to spend time at home slicing it. Therefore, as the merchant or the butcher to slice it. When coming home, you just have to dehydrate it, add salt and spices. Another convenience of already-sliced food is that you can obtain the perfect thickness. Nevertheless, it’s still correct to slice it with a meat slicer, if you have one or if you intend to buy one.

Types of Beef Cuts

We’ll now get through the most popular and most common cuts, which are the best for preparing jerky. You can find them in any butchery store, as well as meat-related market. In this case, to obtain delicious, crispy and flavorful beef, we recommend using:

  • Eye of round – It’s the most popular cut people choose to prepare this delicious treat. This is due to the delicate texture that makes is the most fragile part of beef. More to be mentioned, it’s an extremely lean meat, with the lowest amount of fat, so it’s the most suitable one. Even better, it’s not an expensive part, so you’ll get cost-effectiveness, as well. You can prepare this one on a gas grill, as you’ll get delicious flavor.
  • Bottom round – This is the second best part to take into consideration. However, note that it isn’t a soft part. It’s actually the toughest of the rounds. Even so, it’s lean, tasty, and works excellent for making this recipe. To soften it, you can use a meat tenderizer to obtain the desired outcomes. You can cook this one on a charcoal grill, as you’ll get authentic flavor.
  • Top round – It’s the 3rd part of the round, very much alike to the bottom round. It’s obviously the opposite, therefore it’s more tender compared to the bottom part. As well as, it offers more fragility, the flavor is stunning, juicy and appetizing. It’s an affordable option, too, best to be cooked on an electric grill.
  • Flank steak – This one represents an exquisite alternative. It’s placed down the bottom round, and it’s the most expensive cut. It’s less soft compared to the other options, even so, we can assure it will delight your taste buds. The main convenience is that it’s very easy to work with due to the versatile shape. You can cook this one no matter the grill type, it can be a combo grill, for instance.
  • Sirloin – Even though it’s not as popular as the round parts, it’s the tenderest cut for making beef jerky. There’s very little fat on the sirloin on the outer side of the muscle that can be easily trimmed. It’s a pricier option but it will definitely worth it, as you won’t be disappointed by the results. It works excellent despite the grill type, for instance, you can cook it on an infrared grill.


We recommend all these cuts for preparing the beef jerky. After all, it all depends on your cooking style and preferences. Testing all these will help you decide which one is the best for you, so we reliably recommend all the above options. Even though the cut plays a very important role, do not forget that fresh meat is always a must. Fresh, lean, and high-quality meat will offer you healthy and tasty servings you can share with your family and friends.

Has gathered knowledge about meat from her family as her parents started a neighborhood butcher shop in Baltimore when she was just a child. Growing up, she learned the tricks of the trade from her father and later went on to get certifications. To obtain these certifications, Amy took courses in meat selection, evaluation, and processing. Moreover, she learned about the importance of reliable suppliers and thus makes it a point to only work with trustworthy sources.

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