Recipe: Smokin’ Hot Beef Jerky

The Chilli Project Beef Jerky

This Smokin’ Hot Beef Jerky recipe has been developed by The Chilli Project’s jerky master, Jimmy, who has been making his own range of delicious dried meats for years. As soon as we released our Smokin’ Hot BBQ Sauce, he was keen to use it in his jerky marinade, and the result is utterly delicious (if we do say so ourselves!). You can increase or decrease the amount of chilli depending on your heat tolerance, but this recipe delivers a fair punch without being volcanic!


2kg piece of topside (ask your butcher to trim any visible fat)

3 cloves garlic, crushed

1/2 cup soy sauce

1/2 cup Worcestershire sauce

50ml The Chilli Project Smokin’ Hot BBQ Sauce (approx 3 tablespoons)

4 tsp chilli flakes

1 heaped tbsp brown sugar

1 tsp liquid smoke (natural smoke concentrate)*

*Liquid smoke can be purchased from most delis, butchers and food stores. In  Try and get the natural smoke concentrate rather than an artificial flavouring.


1. Wrap the trimmed piece of topside firmly in cling film and place in the freezer for 2-3 hours until semi-firm

2. Whilst the meat is in the freezer, mix all marinade ingredients together in a bowl and pour into a large zip lock bag

3. Remove meat from freezer, unwrap and using a meat slicer (or a very sharp knife), cut into 5mm strips against the grain for more tender jerky or with the grain for chewy jerky.

4. Add meat to marinade in zip lock bag and shake / massage thoroughly to ensure all meat is covered with the liquid mix.

5. Leave meat in fridge to marinate for 12-24 hours

6. Place meat slices in a single layer on trays of a food dehydrator and dry at 70˚C for approx 4 hours (turning at least once in this time).

7. Once cooled, store in an air tight container in the refrigerator (if you don’t eat it all straight away!)

Hints and Tips

  • If you don’t have a food slicer or aren’t confident with your knife skills, your butcher will slice the meat for you, but be sure to check the slices aren’t too thick before drying
  • Venison and Kangaroo would also work brilliantly in this recipe. Just ensure all sinew has been trimmed
  • The quality and variety of the chilli flakes will drastically change the heat level of your marinade. General supermarket varieties give a moderate heat.
  • Jerky can also be dried in an electric fan forced oven. Place the meat  slices directly on the oven racks or on drying racks over a tray to ensure the air circulates properly around the meat (also, line the base of your oven with foil to catch all the drips or it can be a very messy exercise!)
  • If you have a Vacuum Sealer machine, marinating the meat this way will concentrate the flavour through the meat even more!

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