Making rabbit jerky is a tasty and protein-packed snack. Here’s a basic recipe for making rabbit jerky at home using a dehydrator:
- 1-2 pounds of rabbit meat (boneless)
- 14 cup soy sauce
- 14 cup Worcestershire sauce
- 1 tablespoon liquid smoke (optional, for added flavor)
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- 12 teaspoon salt (adjust to taste)
- Sharp knife
- Cutting board
- Ziplock bags or airtight containers for storage
- Prepare the Rabbit Meat:
- Ensure the rabbit meat is boneless and free from any skin or fat. Fat can make jerky spoil more quickly. Slice the meat into thin strips, about 14 to 18 inch thick. It’s easier to slice evenly if the meat is partially frozen.
- Prepare the Marinade:
- In a bowl, combine the soy sauce, Worcestershire sauce, liquid smoke (if using), onion powder, garlic powder, black pepper, and salt. Mix well to create the marinade.
- Marinate the Rabbit Strips:
- Place the rabbit strips in a ziplock bag or a shallow dish.
- Pour the marinade over the meat, ensuring that all the pieces are coated evenly.
- Seal the bag or cover the dish and refrigerate for at least 4 hours or overnight for better flavor penetration. You can even marinate it for up to 24 hours for maximum flavor.
- Preheat the Dehydrator:
- Preheat your dehydrator to 160°F (71°C). The specific temperature may vary depending on your dehydrator model, so consult the manufacturer’s instructions.
- Drain and Arrange on Dehydrator Trays:
- Remove the rabbit strips from the marinade and pat them dry with paper towels.
- Arrange the strips on the dehydrator trays, ensuring they are not overlapping to allow for proper air circulation.
- Dehydrate the Rabbit Jerky:
- Place the loaded dehydrator trays into the dehydrator.
- Dehydrate the rabbit strips for about 4 to 6 hours, or until they are fully dried and have a leathery texture. The drying time can vary based on the thickness of the meat and your specific dehydrator model.
- Check for Doneness:
- Test a piece of jerky by bending it. It should bend but not break. It should also be dry but still slightly pliable.
- If the jerky is not yet done, continue dehydrating and checking every 30 minutes until it reaches the desired consistency.
- Cool and Store:
- Let the rabbit jerky cool completely on a wire rack.
- Once cooled, store the jerky in airtight containers or vacuum-sealed bags to maintain freshness.
Homemade rabbit jerky can be a delicious and healthy snack. Enjoy it on its own or as a portable source of protein while on the go. Make sure to store it in a cool, dry place, and it should last for several weeks to a few months.