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Air Fryer Beef Jerky

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a close up shot of Air Fryer Beef Jerky
Air fryer beef jerky combines the rich flavors of beef with a blend of seasonings, delivering a crispy, savory snack with every bite.
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Table of Contents
  1. Air Fryer Beef Jerky Ingredients
  2. Taste Profile
  3. Substitutions and Additions
  4. How To Make This Air Fryer Beef Jerky Recipe
  5. Trouble Shooting This Recipe
  6. How To Serve
  7. When to Serve Beef Jerky
  8. Storing Air Fryer Beef Jerky
  9. Why We Love This Recipe
  10. Frequently Asked Questions
  11. More Recipes You’ll Love
  12. JUMP TO RECIPE

For the perfect snack, experience the magic of homemade air fryer beef jerky – where traditional flavors meet a new way of cooking it. Thinly sliced beef is marinated in a flavorful, savory sauce and cooked in the air fryer until dried.

a close up shot of Air Fryer Beef Jerky

Air Fryer Beef Jerky Ingredients

Air Fryer Beef Jerky raw ingredients that are labeled
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For this air fryer beef jerky recipe, you will need:

  • 1 pound of beef sirloin tip steak, thinly sliced, cut into ¼-inch thick strips
  • ¼ cup of low-sodium soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons of Worcestershire sauce
  • 3 tablespoons of brown sugar
  • ½ teaspoon of garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon of onion powder
  • ¼ teaspoon of black pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon of red pepper flakes

Taste Profile

Lean and flavorful beef sirloin tip steak is the main component, enhanced by the saltiness of soy sauce and the tang of Worcestershire. 

Brown sugar adds sweetness, while garlic, onion powder, and black pepper provide aromatic depth.

For a spicy touch, red pepper flakes can be adjusted to taste.

Substitutions and Additions

BEEF SIRLOIN TIP STEAK: You can replace the sirloin tip steak with top-round, bottom-round, or flank steak. Each offers a unique texture and flavor. 

LOW-SODIUM SOY SAUCE: For a gluten-free option, try tamari instead of the soy sauce in this recipe. 

BROWN SUGAR: Maple syrup or honey can be used for a different kind of sweetness for your air fryer jerky. 

RED PEPPER FLAKES: Adjust the quantity of red pepper flakes for the desired heat or use chili powder for a smokier flavor.

OUR RECIPE DEVELOPER SAYS

Make sure to check your air fryer manual for cooking time guidelines for your specific model, as times and temperatures vary depending on the type of air fryer you have.

How To Make This Air Fryer Beef Jerky Recipe

The air fryer’s ability to circulate hot air ensures that the meat dries evenly, resulting in a homemade jerky that is tasty and has a satisfying texture.

Let’s break down the steps to making homemade beef jerky in the air fryer:

STEP ONE: Using thin (no more than ¼ inch thick) slices of sirloin steak, cut any larger pieces into ¼-inch long strips.

Cut against the grain for the most tender pieces. Be sure to trim off any excess fat or tough gristle pieces from your beef.

Place your beef strips in a bowl and set aside.

PRO TIP:

If you are cutting a larger piece of beef down yourself, you can place your beef into the freezer for 30 to 40 minutes to firm up.

This will make it easier to get thinner, uniform slices. You also want to ensure you use a very sharp knife to get nice thin, even slices.

soy sauce, sugar, garlic powder, onion powder, pepper, red pepper flakes, worcestershire combined

STEP TWO: In a small mixing bowl, make your marinade by adding the low-sodium soy sauce, Worcestershire sauce, brown sugar, garlic powder, onion powder, black pepper, and red pepper flakes.

Stir to combine and pour into the bowl with the beef strips. 

STEP THREE: Coat all the slices of beef with the marinade, cover the bowl with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for a minimum of 8 hours, but overnight is best.

beef marinaded and cover with plastic wrap and refrigerated

STEP FOUR: Once the beef strips have marinated, drain all the liquid from the beef.

Place the beef onto a paper towel-lined tray and use a second paper towel to pat the beef strips dry very well.

drain liquid from the beef

STEP FIVE: Place half the beef strips into the air fryer basket in a single layer, being sure that you have a little space between the strips.

Cover the remaining beef strips with plastic wrap and refrigerate until ready to air fry.

beef strips placed into the air fryer basket

STEP SIX: Set the air fryer to 200°F for 60 minutes (that is the maximum amount of time the 6.8-quart Cosori brand air fryer could be set to).

Once that time is up, you will set your air fryer for another 60 minutes at 200°F. 

cook beef jerkies in air fryer

You will need to note that depending on the thickness of your beef strips, and the power of your air fryer, you may have to add a little extra time to your air fryer time when making your beef jerky.

STEP SEVEN: Once your beef jerky is done, remove it to a container and repeat step 6 with the remaining half of your marinated beef strips.

remove beef jerkies and place in container

Trouble Shooting This Recipe

Jerky is Too Moist or Chewy

This is typically a result of not enough air circulation. Ensure the meat slices are not overlapping and there’s enough space between them for proper air flow.

Consider cooking in batches if necessary.

Unevenly Cooked Jerky

Make sure all meat slices are of uniform thickness. In addition, arrange slices in a single layer without touching each other.

Mold on Jerky

Ensure the jerky is fully dehydrated before storing. Use airtight containers for storage and consider storing in the refrigerator if you’re in a humid climate.

How To Serve

Beef jerky is a great grab-and-go snack. You can enjoy it straight out of its storage container, making it perfect for quick snacks, hiking trips, or as a protein-rich addition to lunchboxes.

Our homemade air fryer beef jerky is versatile and pairs well with various accompaniments.

Add beef jerky to a charcuterie board alongside cured meats, olives, pickles, and crusty bread. It adds a unique flavor profile to the spread.

For a unique pizza experience, sprinkle bite-sized beef jerky pieces on top before baking. It pairs well with barbecue sauce, red onions, and bell peppers.

Homemade Beef Jerky – An Edible Gift

Homemade beef jerky, especially when nicely packaged, can be a thoughtful and unique gift for food enthusiasts, friends, and family. It’s perfect for occasions like birthdays, holidays, or as a thank you gesture.

When to Serve Beef Jerky

PARTIES AND GATHERINGS: Serve beef jerky as part of a snack platter or appetizer table at casual gatherings, BBQs, or sports viewing parties.

It’s a crowd-pleaser that pairs well with beers and soft drinks.

GAME NIGHTS AND MOVIE NIGHTS: For a relaxed evening with friends or family, beef jerky can be a great snack to munch on while playing games or watching movies.

Our beef kabobs and slow cooker beef tips are two more ways to add more protein to your meals.

Storing Air Fryer Beef Jerky

Once you’ve made this delightful air fryer beef jerky, storing it correctly ensures it remains fresh and tasty.

Tips for Storing Beef Jerky

  • Allow the beef jerky to cool completely after it comes out of the air fryer. Warm jerky can cause condensation in the storage container, leading to spoilage.
  • Zip-top bags, vacuum-sealed bags, or containers with tight-fitting lids work well as airtight containers. If using bags, squeeze out as much air as possible before sealing.

On the Counter

If not refrigerating, store the container in a cool, dark place like a pantry or cupboard to protect it from light and heat, which can degrade quality.

If you notice any signs of spoilage, such as off odors, mold, or unusually soft texture, discard it.

In the Fridge

(Optional) For added safety and to extend freshness, you can store beef jerky in the refrigerator in an the airtight container. This is recommended if your home is very warm or humid.

In the Freezer

Beef jerky can be frozen to extend its shelf life further. Jerky can last several months to a year when frozen in an airtight container.

overhead shot of Air Fryer Beef Jerky in a bowl

Why We Love This Recipe

LONG SHELF-LIFE: Properly stored, beef jerky can last quite a long time, making it a convenient snack to have on hand.

KID-FRIENDLY: While it packs a flavorful punch, the recipe is mild enough for kids to enjoy. Plus, it’s a fun way to introduce them to different textures.

TRAVEL-FRIENDLY: Whether you’re going on a road trip, hiking, or just need a snack on the go, beef jerky is portable and requires no refrigeration.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I use a different cut of beef? 

Top round, bottom round, or flank steak are suitable alternatives for this homemade jerky.

How spicy is this jerky? 

The red pepper flakes add a mild heat, but you can adjust to your preference.

How long does the jerky last? 

This beef jerky will last for up to two weeks in an airtight container on the counter or six months in the freezer.

Our air fryer beef jerky recipe is a delightful blend of flavors, perfect for any occasion.

Whether you’re hosting a party or looking for a protein-packed snack, this jerky will impress. Its versatility and delicious taste make it a must-try.

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a close up shot of Air Fryer Beef Jerky

Air Fryer Beef Jerky

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Air fryer beef jerky combines the rich flavors of beef with a blend of seasonings, delivering a crispy, savory snack with every bite.
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 4 hours
Total Time 4 hours 10 minutes
Servings 4

Ingredients
  

  • 1 pound beef sirloin tip steak, thinly sliced (cut into ¼-inch thick strips)
  • ¼ cup low-sodium soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 3 tablespoons brown sugar
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon onion powder
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes

Instructions
 

  • Using thin (no more than ¼ inch thick) slices of sirloin steak, cut any larger pieces into ¼-inch long strips. Cut against the grain for the most tender pieces. Be sure to trim off any excess fat or tough gristle pieces from your beef. Place your beef strips in a bowl and set aside.
  • In a small mixing bowl, make your marinade by adding the low-sodium soy sauce, Worcestershire sauce, brown sugar, garlic powder, onion powder, black pepper, and red pepper flakes. Stir to combine and pour into the bowl with the beef strips.
  • Coat all the beef with the marinade, cover the bowl with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for a minimum of 8 hours, but overnight is best.
  • Once the beef strips have marinated, drain all the liquid from the beef. Place the beef onto a paper towel-lined tray and use a second paper towel to pat the beef strips dry very well.
  • Place half the beef strips into the basket of the air fryer in a single layer, being sure that you have a little space between the strips. Cover the remaining beef strips with plastic wrap and refrigerate until ready to air fry.
  • Set the air fryer to 200°F for 60 minutes (that is the maximum amount of time the 6.8-quart Cosori brand air fryer could be set to), then once that time is up, you will set your air fryer for another 60 minutes at 200°F. You will need to note that depending on the thickness of your beef strips, and the power of your air fryer, you may have to add a little extra time to your air fryer time when making your beef jerky.
  • Once your beef jerky is done, remove it to a container and repeat step 6 with the remaining half of your marinated beef strips.
  • Once your beef jerky is done in the air fryer, you can store it in an airtight container on the counter for up to 2 weeks. You can freeze your beef jerky for up to 6 months for longer storage.

Notes

  • If you are cutting a larger piece of beef down yourself, you can place your beef into the freezer for 30 to 40 minutes to firm up. This will make it easier to get thinner, uniform slices. You also want to ensure you use a very sharp knife to get nice thin, even slices.
  • Make sure to check your air fryer manual for cooking time guidelines for your specific model, as times and temperatures vary depending on the type of air fryer you have.

Nutrition

Calories: 191kcal | Carbohydrates: 12g | Protein: 26g | Fat: 4g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 62mg | Sodium: 755mg | Potassium: 529mg | Fiber: 0.3g | Sugar: 10g | Vitamin A: 44IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 46mg | Iron: 3mg
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Proudly Prepared by the Spaceships Kitchen

This recipe was developed, tested, cooked and photographed by the Spaceships Kitchen. From our dinner table to yours, we hope you think it's out of this world!

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