High Protein Snacks

How to Make The Best 5-Ingredient Beef Jerky at Home (Try This!)

By Evelyn

Who would have ever thought that making your own homemade beef jerky could be so easy? Turns out you can indeed actually make some pretty darn good beef jerky with only five simple ingredients (plus a bit of water). This recipe will show you exactly how to make the best 5-ingredient beef jerky at home – you seriously need to try this. You’ll be making a tasty homemade marinade to soak your cuts of steak in before cooking them into savory pieces of jerky. The marinade is ridiculously good too – it’s made with a delightful mix that includes paprika and garlic. If you’ve been putting off trying to make your own homemade beef jerky because you thought it was a bit too tricky, then this recipe is just the thing you need to take the plunge.

Easy Beef Jerky Recipe

It Doesn’t Get Much Better Than This

When making this recipe, the first thing you’ll want to do is get the marinade out of the way. Simply get a bowl and mix together ½ cup of water, one teaspoon of garlic powder, two tablespoons of paprika, two teaspoons of black pepper, and two tablespoons of smoked salt. Using smoked salt instead of regular salt is a great way to give your beef jerky a ridiculously good smoky taste that’s just bold enough to add a ton of flavor without going overboard.

The rest of the ingredients do quite a bit when it comes to adding flavor to this recipe as well. The black pepper and paprika both help to add more of a peppery taste that blends perfectly with the smoked salt. Beyond that, studies have also found that paprika provides some pretty great health benefits. Carotenoids found in paprika are able to increase insulin sensitivity, making paprika potentially useful in helping to prevent obesity. (1)

Easy Beef Jerky Recipe

Easy Beef Jerky Recipe

Garlic powder is another ingredient that serves two functions – it tastes great and it offers a ton of health benefits. Garlic is one of my favorite flavors to cook with because it goes so well with so many different things. More importantly, it’s great for everything from boosting your immune system to lowering blood pressure to even helping to prevent the development of certain kinds of cancers. (2)

After mixing the marinade, go ahead and add in two pounds of top round steak that has been trimmed of any fat and sliced against the grain. Alternatively, you can also use an eye or flank steak if you’d prefer. Whatever cut of beef you prefer to use, I highly recommend going for grass-fed beef whenever possible. If you live in a location where that can be difficult, then you should check out ButcherBox. It’s a reliable way to ensure that you have high quality cuts of grass-fed beef delivered to you on a monthly basis – they also sell free-range organic chicken and heritage bred pork.

Easy Beef Jerky Recipe

Easy Beef Jerky Recipe

Leave the steak to marinate for at least eight hours – I usually just prepare it in the evenings and leave it overnight. You can then follow the directions below for preparing a baking sheet and wire rack to cook the beef jerky.

More Homemade Beef Jerky Recipes:

Gourmet Wine-Infused Homemade Beef Jerky Recipe
Easy Homemade Beef Jerky Marinade
The Best Grass-Fed Beef Jerky Recipe Ever (Try this!)
Homemade Korean Beef Jerky (Healthy High Protein Snack)
No-Fuss Oven Baked Teriyaki Beef Jerky (Easy Jerky Recipe)
Apple Cider Vinegar Black Pepper Beef Jerky (Yum!)
Bacon Burger Jerky – Homemade Ground Beef Jerky Recipe


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Easy Beef Jerky Recipe

How to Make The Best 5-Ingredient Beef Jerky at Home (Try This!)



2 pounds top round steak (or eye or flank steak), trimmed from any fat and thinly sliced against the grain

2 tbsp smoked salt

1 tbsp paprika

2 tsp black pepper

1 tsp garlic powder

½ cup water


  1. In a bowl combine water, smoked salt, garlic powder, black pepper and paprika.   
  2. Add the steak and toss until the steak is evenly coated.
  3. Cover and marinate in the refrigerator for 8 hours or overnight.
  4. Preheat oven to 175°F.
  5. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil and place a wire rack over the foil.
  6. Lay the beef strips out in a single layer on the wire rack.
  7. Bake the beef in the preheated oven until dry and leathery, about 4 to 6 hours, flipping the beef once about halfway through. (see note*)
  8. Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely.
  9. Transfer in a container and refrigerate for up to 1 month.


  • Serving Size: 1
  • Calories: 121
  • Carbohydrates: 1 g
  • Fat: 3.2 g
  • Sugar: .1 g
  • Protein: 21.2 g

The total time is dependent on the thickness of the meat.

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