The Pawcurean Presents: Super Simple Chicken Jerky

Chicken jerky is one of those things I had never even thought of trying to make until recently. I know my dogs love it, and until the FDA put out multiple warnings about how imported jerky was making pets ill it was something I included in their treat regimen.

About a year ago I got a dehydrator, in one of my occasional crunchy fits of health (it never lasts.) I used it a handful of times and then let it sit on the counter. A few weeks ago, I thought I would try and figure out how to make my own chicken jerky with some chicken that had been languishing in the freezer, and guess what: it is, like, the easiest thing in the world to do.ย 



Cooking Spray

Sage or rosemary (optional)

Cut the chicken breast into crosswise slices about 1/4″ thick. A sharp knife will help quite a bit. Tip: don’t use those little chicken tender things unless you really enjoy making things complicated.

Spray both sides with cooking spray, and sprinkle with the seasonings if you are using them.

Place the strips on your dehydrator tray, or on a foil lined cookie sheet if you’re using an oven. Either way, set the temperature to 160 (I’ve seen it suggested as low as 140, but 160 works just fine and is closer to FDA food safety guidelines for dehydrating meat.)

Leave in the oven or dehydrator until all the moisture is removed- about 2-3 hours for the oven and 5-6 for the dehydrator depending on how thinly you have the pieces sliced.

Voila! Because you’ve put in no preservatives, best keep these in the fridge.

Enjoy the adoration of a happy dog.

Added bonus! Rick from Dog Food Dude has provided a suggested daily allowance:
“Looks like the chicken strips are an average of 32 calories each. Daily Allowances: 10 lbs: 1 strip, 20 lbs: 2 strips, 40 lbs: 3 strips, 60 lbs: 4 strips, 80 lbs: 5 strips. These are for an average, active dog and represent 10% of the dog’s caloric requirement.” Thanks Rick!

If you prefer video instructions I did one of those too. Why not. It’s always better with audio!

Filed: Blog, Cooking, Fit Life, Health, Pawcurean, Videos Tagged: , , ,
  • Anonymous

    I think I can do that! It does look super easy. And it was fun to catch a glimpse of Apollo in the video, by the way. ๐Ÿ™‚

    • I love when I do these videos because I never know what the pets are doing in the background until I watch it back. I didn’t even realize he was there! ๐Ÿ˜€

  • What you loose at 160F is nutrients though. With safe handling practices and the choice of safe meat, you can stay at lower ‘raw’ food temperatures. We do this at my company and seem to do it right. Even meat processed at higher temp can get contaminated if not handled properly.

  • Cyd

    Can you use cow liver? A friend gave me some left over side of beef she bought and raw liver for the dogs just seemed to gross.

    • That was on my list of things to try next. I agree, dehydrated liver is way less gross. I can do a whole series of “things that are gross until you dehydrate them”. LOL!

      • Annette

        Love it! I want to do this with you in NYC! Need more time….

  • Cstonero

    This is the bomb! Thanks!!

  • This is awesome! I want to make some for ME!

    • They smell like bacon, for the record.

  • Annette

    Nice job! So easy to do with virtually any meat, sweet potatoes, or other vege’s too.

    Off topic, what program do you use to edit your videos?

    • I used iMovie until this weekend when I started with Final Cut Pro. The new version is great.

  • Jasouza9

    If you are too lazy to do it yourself, Trader Joe’s chicken jerky is made in the USA and reasonably priced. I used to buy mine at Target or Petsmart, but stopped due to concerns over imported snacks.

    • Good to know- thanks for that!

  • Anonymous

    I’m taking Cookie’s internet away because she saw this post and won’t leave me alone now. Guess I’m making her some jerky!

  • Anonymous

    I’ve read that 170 is needed to kill bacteria on chicken,, is 160 close enough? – my dehydrator’s highest setting is 160 – I’ve been baking it slightly until it turns white before putting it in the dehydrator – am i wasting time & effort?

  • Katie C.

    I just put this in the oven!! I had some chicken in the freezer that I left in the fridge to thaw overnight; it was still a little frozen when I sliced it & I think that made it way easier to get the thin slices.

  • We started making our own Chicken jerky a few weeks ago, super easy!