Beef jerky is the ideal meal when you are in a hurry. Beef jerky is high in protein and tastes great. One piece of beef jerky has about 10 grams of protein. Jerky is also an excellent choice for when you are on the move since it does not need to be kept cold.
However, just because beef jerky does not need to be refrigerated does not imply that it lasts indefinitely. You should be conscious of the shelf life of any sort of beef jerky you buy or produce yourself. Read on for information on how long beef jerky will be safe to consume and some storage recommendations.
How Long Does The Beef Jerky Last?
The shelf life of beef jerky is determined by whether it is homemade or commercially produced. Commercial beef jerky has an average expiration date of one year. However, we recommend consuming premium flavor and texture within six months of purchase to fully enjoy the jerky.
If you make your own beef jerky, keep it in an airtight container and it should last one to two months. If you store the beef jerky in a safe Ziplock bag in your pantry, it will stay good for approximately a week. Storing beef jerky in the refrigerator keeps it fresh for one to two weeks.
Also Read: How Thick To Slice Meat For Jerky?
Does The Beef Jerky Require To Be Refrigerated?
Jerky has been used as a meat preservation technique since the invention of refrigeration. Because the drying and preserving procedure eliminates the moisture that usually interacts with bacteria and fungal enzymes, jerky can be kept for weeks or months.
As a result, jerky does not have to be kept in the refrigerator and will keep for a long time without it. It was created or developed for this purpose.
How Long Does The Jerky Stay Good In The Refrigerator?
I am sure some people will want to keep dried meat on ice. However, refrigeration will not make a significant difference. In truth, the best way to keep jerky fresh is to minimize the amount of oxygen in the storage container or bag, not to preserve it cold.
Also Read: How To Tell If Jerky Is Done Dehydrating
As a result, store-bought jerky will stay in the refrigerator for about as long as it would in the pantry, maybe a month longer. The homemade beef jerky that has been vacuum-sealed will last for roughly three months in the fridge. Homemade jerky stored under an open bag that has been resealed will keep for approximately a month before going bad in the refrigerator, whereas store-bought jerky will last around four months.
How Long Does TheJerky Last In The Freezer?
Extreme cold will extend the shelf life of any food, and jerky is no exception. If properly stored in the freezer, jerky will keep for considerably longer. When frozen, the shelf life of jerky can be up to a year long.
Place a vacuum-sealed package in the freezer as it is to freeze it. To prevent jerky from freezer burning after being opened, store it in an airtight container or bag.
Also Read: How To Keep Beef Jerky Soft
To ensure that your food stays fresh, I will suggest using vacuum saleable bags like those available on Amazon. I really enjoy how transparent they are and how easy it is to reseal them with a ziplock. Even without vacuum sealing the bags, this process may keep the jerky fresh for quite some time if you add in a few oxygen absorbers.
If you are interested in learning how to store food for a long time, I recently put up an article on How to Store Rice and Beans for Long-Term Storage. Check it out if you have not already. Allow the thawed jerky to come back to room temperature before eating.
Does Beef Jerky Go Bad?
Over time, the quality of jerky will deteriorate. Although jerky is intended to last a long time, it is made from a perishable foodstuff and will eventually go rancid and hazardous to consume. Improper storage, such as exposing it to sunlight rather than keeping it in a cool, dark place or airtight container, will speed up the deterioration of jerky.
Also Read: How To Eat Shredded Beef Jerky
How To Say If Beef Jerky Is Still Good
There are occasions when it is difficult to tell if beef jerky is still safe to eat. Unlike normally cooked meat, which gives off an aroma if not consumed within the expiry date time, beef jerky does not always give obvious indications of deterioration. If the color of the beef jerky has altered or it has become darker or more firm, it has probably gone bad. Spoiled beef jerky may have a faint odor in some circumstances.
Always check the expiration date on beef jerky packages if you bought them online or in a store. The bottom seal is generally where the expiration date is located. But remember, just because beef jerky has passed its best-by date is not to say it is hazardous to eat. The best-by date merely indicates when the jerky is at its peak freshness.
Also, inspect the jerky package for any tears or rips. If you notice any, the jerky has probably gone rancid and moisture has gotten into the bag.
How To Store Beef Jerky
To keep your beef jerky as long as possible, pay attention to good storage. The various ways to store beef jerky are listed below:
Vacuum Seal Bag
The ideal location to keep your beef jerky may be a vacuum seal bag. The vacuum seal bags will keep the moisture in while maintaining the oxygen out, and your jerky to stay soft and edible for longer.
The price is the only disadvantage, as vacuum sealers can be somewhat costly – usually between $100 and $200 for a new one. However, if you plan to make a lot of beef jerky or other items that require sealing, it is definitely worth the money.
If you want your beef jerky to keep for longer, we recommend freezing it in a vacuum seal bag. Your beef jerky may now be kept for up to 12 months using this technique.
Mason Jars/Dry Cans
You may keep dry canning beef jerky in a mason jar or dry can for months if it is sealed properly. Furthermore, this technique is much less expensive than vacuum sealing. To store your jerky in mason jars, follow these steps:
- Set the oven temperature to 350 F.
- Remove the lids from the mason jars and place them on a baking sheet.
- Set the jars in the oven for 10 minutes.
- Remove the jars from the oven with gloves, and put your jerky strips into them.
- After the jars have cooled to room temperature, screw on the lids and let them sit overnight. The mason jars will create a vacuum seal as they cool. If you hear popping noises, it is a good indication that the jars have established a perfect seal.
You can keep the beef jerky in the pantry or in the fridge after it is sealed.
Ziplock Or Paper Bag
Ziplock bags or newspaper bags are effective storage options for beef jerky if you are in a bind. If you want to keep your jerky fresh for three to four weeks, this technique is ideal since it will keep your meat dry. If you find that your jerky is a little too soggy, consider adding a food-grade desiccant bag to the paper or Ziplock bag.