The Absolute Best Cut Of Steak To Make Your Own Beef Jerky

Packed with protein, iron, and other essential vitamins, via Healthline, beef jerky is a tasty choice for those who crave nutritious snacks on the go. These slices of dried meat, which originate from the "charqui" Spanish word, once relied on natural elements like the sun and wind for preservation purposes, per North Dakota State University. Nowadays, the meat is marinated in a salty solution that also cures it and then dried out, which gives it an intense meaty flavor, via Made How. And speaking of flavors, Made How also states that pepper-flavored jerky is one of the more popular types, along with teriyaki, BBQ, hickory-smoked, and spicy variations.

Jerky can be made with a wide variety of meats as well, such as duck, buffalo, alligator, and alpaca, as noted by PBFY, but since many home cooks don't have access to these, we're going to focus on which cut of beef to use to make the very best jerky.

Commercial jerky companies love this lean cut of meat

According to Two Chicks Jerky, the "London Broil," or top round steak, is beloved by commercial jerky companies for its low costs and lean flavors. They state that fatty cuts of meat are not an ideal choice for making jerky since it's difficult to draw out moisture from fatty tissues, which also makes their shelf life quite short. But this isn't a problem for top round steak since it only has 7.7 grams of total fat per every 3 ounces, according to Nutritionix.

Two Chicks Jerky has some advice for purchasing said beef as well, like choosing fresh cuts over ones with darker colors. They also explain that since fresh meat shrinks while it's dehydrating, you should buy three pounds of it to make one pound of dried jerky.

So next time you're feeling creative enough to make your own beef jerky, be sure to choose a top round steak since it's cost-effective, low in fat, and perfect for dehydrating.