If you have ever lived in the US, you have surely tried out beef sticks for a snack at least once in your life. This is an extremely delicious and addictive snack that you can never get enough of.
However, you may find that the store-bought sticks might be too acidic or too bland for your taste. Some may have to be refrigerated, while some can be consumed directly.
They are also quite costly. The only solution to these problems is to make your own sticks at home, just the way you like it.
Let’s proceed to know how to make beef sticks at home.
How to Make Beef Snack Sticks with Some Methods
Beef sticks are usually made with natural or collagen casings. However, you can skip the casings if you want to and make skinless beef sticks as well. In this article, we will tell you how to make beef sticks with casings.
We recommend using natural casings made out of sheepskin, but if you can’t afford them, you can use collagen casings as well. You can use about 18 to 22mm edible collagen for the casings.
The best way to get the right taste and flavor in your beef sticks is to smoke the stuffed sticks for at least a couple of hours.
Wait until the internal temperature comes to about 152 degrees F. You can use any type of flavor and spice that you want in the beef stick recipe to make it suitable for your tastes.
In this recipe, we will tell you two ways to make beef sticks:
- How to make beef sticks in a smoker and
- How to make beef sticks in a dehydrator
Ingredients You Will Need
- About 8lbs of beef chuck (you can use any cut of meat, provided the fat to meat ratio is 20 to 80)
- 7 tablespoons of snack sticks seasoning
- 1 tablespoon of curing salt
- Collagen casings – use 19 to 21mm of casings, for best results
Modifications in the Ingredients That You Can Try
While these are the basic ingredients you will need, you can also try the following modifications if you want to learn how to make sticks perfectly at home:
- Instead of using beef chuck fully, you can mix equal amounts of beef chuck and pork roast.
- For spicy and flavorful sticks, you can make your own seasoning at home. For this, you can use equal amounts of ground black pepper, granulated onion, and granulated garlic. If you love tangy flavors, you can use about 50g of Fermento as well. For the final touches, you can use mustard powder and celery seeds to complete the seasoning.
How to Make Beef Sticks at Home
- The first step of making sticks involves grinding the meat properly. Grind the meat once it is at a temperature of 30 degrees F. Grind it into a thick paste, and transfer the ground meat into a bowl immediately. Keep the bowl in the refrigerator for about 30 minutes. After 30 minutes, take the bowl out and grind the meat once again, but with a small grinding blade, this time.
- You need to add whatever seasoning you have into the meat and knead the meat well until all the contents mix. Use your hands to mix the meat well for about 10 minutes. Now, add one small glass of ice-cold water to the meat mixture and knead the contents for another 5 minutes, before you put it back in the fridge again for at least an hour.
- After one hour, please take out the meat and grind it again using the small grinding blades. This way, you can be sure that all the spices and flavors have mixed well into the meat.
- If you’re using a stand mixer, you need to put a nozzle on the mixer. Stretch the casings, so that they cover up to 3 to 4 inches over the nozzle. Get somebody to help you push the meat in the stuffer, while you have an eye on the casings to see the meat slides over properly. If you have a jerky gun, you can easily push the meat into the casings without worrying if they will slip past.
After your casings are ready, all that’s left is to cook them properly. Here’s how you can do it in three ways:
How to Make Beef Sticks in a Smoker
Smoking helps to get the best flavor out of the beef sticks. Preheat the smoker or your grill to about 100 degrees F and smoke the sticks inside it for an hour.
After 1 hour, increase the temperature to 125 degrees F and allow the sticks to smoke inside for another 4 hours.
After 4 hours, increase the smoker’s temperature to 180 degrees F and cook the sticks till the meat’s internal temperature comes down to 150 degrees F.
Now, you can switch off the smoker and enjoy your beef after they have cooled down a bit.
How to Make Beef Snack Sticks in a Dehydrator
Keep the prepared beef snack sticks in a dehydrator and allow them to cook until the temperature reaches 155 degrees F. At this time, the sticks are only like a sausage.
For them to turn into crispy snack sticks, they need to remain in the dehydrator for about 8 to 12 hours. After 12 hours, you can enjoy them with your favorite seasonings.
There are many techniques to learn if you want to master the art of how to make beef sticks at home in the right way.
However, you’re free to experiment with flavors in this recipe to make great beef sticks, using natural ingredients right in your homes.
Once you learn how to make them, you’ll never want to buy store-bought sticks anymore.
You can make these in large batches, seal them in plastic bags, and put them in the freezer as well so that you can enjoy them whenever you want.
If you enjoy making beef sticks then check out our article on making bacon jerky too.