Who doesn’t adore Korean BBQ Pork? Absolutely everyone loves it. That’s why this delectable blend of sweetness and spiciness is truly remarkable. You’ll want to keep it all to yourself, hiding it from your friends, spouse, and even your kids. It’s that good!
I’m seriously craving it right now. I made this recipe a couple of weeks ago and I’ve already devoured it all. But boy, do I wish I had a piece right now…
Slicing The Meat
I usually choose pork tenderloin to make pork jerky, but this time I decided to give pork loin a try for the three pork recipes I recently made. However, it had a bit more fat inside than I prefer, so I’ll stick to tenderloin in the future.
Select a pork tenderloin or pork loin and trim away the fat cap and any other visible fat. By removing as much fat as possible now, the jerky will last longer after it finishes drying.
I’ve trimmed the fat cap and will slice the meat with the grain, making it about ⅛″ – ¼″ thick.
Here are the pork loin slices, about ¼″ thick. You can see the white fat on the strips due to the interior fat in the loin. As I mentioned earlier, I believe tenderloin is a better choice for making pork jerky.
Related Page: Dozens of Jerky Recipes – Click Here!!!
Making The Marinade
I previously created an amazing Korean BBQ jerky recipe, featured in my cookbook (shameless plug), which was made with beef. I loved it so much that I decided to tweak it by adding a few ingredients and using pork instead.
Most of the ingredients can be found at your local grocery store, except for rice wine. Please note that this is not rice wine vinegar, which is easy to find. Rice wine can be found at an Asian market. Let’s get started on the marinade:
Begin by combining all the ingredients in a small bowl or ziplock bag. Add the jerky strips to the marinade, ensuring that each strip is fully covered. Marinate the strips in the refrigerator for 6-24 hours, mixing them in the bag every 4 hours to ensure even marination.
After marinating, strain the pork jerky using a colander. Note that the jerky will not absorb all of the marinade, so using a colander is an effective way to remove the excess.
Before pre-heating the pork, pat the strips dry with paper towels to remove any excess moisture. The paper towels won’t remove any of the flavorful ingredients on top of the strips. Don’t worry, it will still be packed with flavor!
Drying The Jerky
When I make pork or turkey jerky, I prefer to pre-heat the meat to an internal temperature of 165°F as recommended by the USDA. Pre-heat your oven to 350F and place the jerky on baking sheets.
I use a cooling rack to elevate the jerky above the baking pan. This adds a little extra time to the pre-heating process, but it prevents the meat from cooking too much since it’s not directly on the hot pan.
Wrap a thin piece of meat around an oven thermometer and place it in the oven until the jerky reaches an internal temperature of 165°F. In my case, it took 22 minutes for the pork to reach that temperature.
Once the strips reach 165°F, remove them from the oven and place them on your dehydrator trays. I used my Nesco Gardenmaster Dehydrator for this jerky. As you can see in the image, the strips are not touching, allowing for sufficient airflow and even drying.
You can also use an oven or smoker to make this recipe. For step-by-step instructions on how to use a dehydrator, oven, and smoker to make jerky, visit the Hook’d Up Bar and Grill website.
Testing For When The Jerky Is Finished
While drying the jerky, start testing to see if it’s finished around the 3-4 hour mark. Take a piece of jerky out of the dehydrator, oven, or smoker and let it cool for 5 minutes at room temperature. Bend the jerky in half; it should bend and crack but not break in half. You’ll also notice white fibers in the meat, particularly when the piece is torn in half.
If the jerky isn’t finished, continue drying for another hour and repeat the same process until it’s done. Typically, 90% of the jerky I make is ready within 4-6 hours in a dehydrator or oven, and 6-9 hours in a smoker.
After pre-heating the jerky in the oven, it took 5 hours to dry at a temperature of 145°F in my dehydrator. This recipe truly captures the taste of Korean BBQ pork. It’s delightfully sweet, with the flavors of sesame oil and chili garlic sauce shining through. The chili garlic sauce adds just the right amount of kick. It’s both sweet AND spicy!
To ensure the longevity of your jerky, using curing salt and storing it in airtight containers is highly recommended. For more information on how to store jerky and additional steps to extend its shelf life, check out our jerky storage page.
Old Pro Tips:
- Trim all fat from the meat before marinating for longer-lasting jerky.
- Use curing salt or celery juice powder to enhance the jerky’s shelf life.
- Marinate closer to 24 hours for the most intense flavor.
- Pork tenderloin is my favorite cut to use; pork loin can be a bit too fatty.
- Opt for local honey, as it contains local pollen that can strengthen the immune system and reduce pollen allergy symptoms.
For more detailed instructions on how to dry your jerky, visit our Jerky Making Methods page.
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- Best Cuts of Beef for Jerky
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- The Best Dehydrator for Making Beef Jerky
- Slicing Meat for Beef Jerky