Find the Best Meat Dehydrator for Jerky Here

03/18/2024 12:55 pm GMT

Dehydrating meat is serious business. Obviously, aside from good quality meat, you also need a lean and mean machine to accomplish this task. We are going to determine the best meat dehydrator for jerky in this article, so you will never have such a stubborn and chewy beef jerky.

Preserving or drying out meat can really be a tough process because you are dealing with a thick piece of individual grains. More often than not, the whole process can take up to two days. So once you get into dehydrating meat, there is really no turning back.

We are going to go through the top brands and choose the best meat dehydrator for jerky based on each product’s features. Further, we will list down the pros and cons of each, for easier comparison. Read on for more information.

We also added one more dehydrator to this best meat dehydrator list. It’s a best seller and very popular among hunters. And not only for meat but it works great on vegetables as well. Read till the end to find out more.

Best Meat Dehydrator for Jerky

STX International Food and Jerky Dehydrator

If you’re looking for an efficient and reliable dehydrator that can turn your fresh food into healthy snacks, STX Food Dehydrator is definitely worth considering. I recently had the opportunity to test out this dehydrator. Its functionality, design, quality, durability, and ease of use impressed me.

This mean-looking dehydrator has a total of 1200 watts power, contributing to its tough exterior is its construction that is of stainless steel. At the same time, it has a front door that can absolve heat, so no burnt fingers for you.

The flow system that it uses is that of a horizontal one, wherein the motor is mounted at the rear, while the fan is sitting close by, to provide that uniform dehydration. This process also helps with airflow within the machine. It also has a digital temperature control that is 97°F-165°F. Lastly, it has a timer where the maximum time is 40 hours.

Design and Build Quality

One of the standout features of the STX Food Dehydrator is its sleek and modern design. The stainless steel exterior looks great and is also durable, making it perfect for everyday use. The unit comes with ten stainless steel trays, each measuring 16 x 14.5 inches, which provide ample space for dehydrating food items. Additionally, the trays are easy to clean.

Functionality and Ease of Use

The STX Food Dehydrator has some advanced features that set it apart from similar products on the market. With a powerful 1200 watts motor and a 7-inch rear-mounted fan, the dehydrator provides even and consistent heat distribution, ensuring that your food dries out evenly. The unit also has precision temperature control, allowing you to accurately set temperatures between 97°F and 165°F with seven heat settings.

Another great feature of this dehydrator is its easy-to-use digital timer. You can set the timer from 15 minutes to 15 hours, depending on the food items you’re dehydrating. The unit also features a front hanging door and transparent viewing window, which allows you to monitor your food items without opening the dehydrator repeatedly.


I tested the STX Food Dehydrator on various food items, including fruits, vegetables, and jerky. I was happy with the results; the food items dehydrated evenly, and the end products were crispy, tasty, and nutritious—just as advertised. In addition, the motor and fan system work quietly, making it possible to leave the unit running overnight without disturbing anyone.


You do not have to consistently check on your meat because it has a timer that will shut the machine off automatically. Also, this feature is a good safeguard against fire hazards.

This is best used when you want to make beef jerky. It still retains the right amount of moisture to the beef, that once you bite into it, it will still have the impression of freshness, even though it has been dehydrating for 40 hours.

You can also dehydrate big batches in this because you have a lot of space to put in your meat. You can process a lot of meat without taking too much space in your kitchen, as the machine is not bulky.


The door rattles whenever you use it. It will rattle so much, that eventually, it will no longer close properly. So there are issues with its durability.

Further, the air is still not properly circulated all throughout the 10 trays. The bottom trays will be done way earlier than the top ones. More often than not, the meat at the bottom tray will be overly dehydrated.

The other downside I found with this dehydrator was the slight inconvenience while adjusting the trays during operation. Sometimes, the top trays made contact with the bottom of the dehydrator, affecting the drying efficiency. Nonetheless, reconfiguring the trays solved this issue.

Overall, the STX Food Dehydrator is a great device that delivers excellent results, and it’s perfect for people looking to make healthy snacks at home. Its sturdy build, advanced features, and ease of use make it an excellent value for money. The slight issue with the trays was not a dealbreaker. I highly recommend this dehydrator to anyone looking for a high-performance device to handle moderate to high dehydration tasks.

Nesco FD 75A Food Dehydrator

NESCO FD-75A Snackmaster Pro Food Dehydrator, For Snacks, Fruit, Beef Jerky, Gray
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    The Nesco FD 75A is another famous food dehydrator brand with exceptional drying performance. In addition, this dehydrator has several unique features that make it stand out from other dehydrators in the market.

    You might take this dehydrator for granted with its humble looks, but this thing will dehydrate meat like nobody’s business. It has an impressive 600 watts for drying, for such a small machine. Moreover, its trays can be expanded up to 12 layers.

    As for its dehydration process, it has an air flow that is forced by the fan and is radial. This means that the air will be properly circulated for consistent heat, all throughout the trays.

    It is also easy to clean as all components and attachments are safe to be put in the dishwasher, except for the power head.


    One of the best things about the Nesco FD 75A is its powerful and efficient drying system. It has a top-mounted fan evenly distributes heat to all trays, ensuring that your food dries evenly and quickly. Additionally, this dehydrator comes with an adjustable thermostat that allows you to set the temperature between 95°F and 160°F, giving you a wide range of options to dry almost anything from fruits, vegetables, jerky, and herbs.

    The Nesco FD 75A also has a spacious capacity, which can hold up to 5 trays that can be easily expanded to 12 by buying additional trays. Each tray can hold up to one pound of food, making this dehydrator suitable for small to medium-sized families.


    I found the Nesco FD 75A to have excellent performance when drying food. The top-mounted fan ensures that the food is evenly dried. At the same time, its adjustable thermostat allows for complete control over the drying process to get the desired results. Plus, it has the patented Converga-Flow System, which helps to reduce the drying time.

    Ease of Use

    Using the Nesco FD 75A is incredibly easy. Its temperature settings are easy to control and adjust. In addition, the dehydrator comes with a detailed instruction manual and recipe book that provides practical insights into how to make the most out of this product.

    I found it really easy to turn the temperature dial; it’s at the top of the dehydrator. Plus, the trays are easy to remove and clean after use.


    The heat and airflow systems of this product are really great; it can balance out the heat, so all your meat, whether they are at the bottom or at the top, dry out evenly.

    It is very easy to clean because all you need to do is to detach the parts, then put it in the dishwasher. You need not care for it too much as the parts are very durable and will last you a long time.

    At the same time, it can make the natural flavor of your meat become more robust, which makes it one of the best meat dehydrator for jerky and drying out steaks.


    This machine makes a very loud sound during the drying process. The bottom tray will start to warp over time, which is actually normal for plastic trays, but still, it would have been better if the trays were made of sturdier plastic. At the same time, this issue can become drastic, as you might be unconsciously eating burnt plastic.

    The trays can be challenging to load and unload, mainly at total capacity. In addition, unlike Excalibur, where the trays can be removed by sliding them out, Nesco requires each tray to be pulled apart.

    Overall Impression and Recommendations

    Overall, the Nesco FD 75A is an excellent food dehydrator for small to medium-sized families. Its spacious capacity, powerful drying system, and adjustable thermostat make it stand out from other similar-priced dehydrators.

    If you’re looking for an alternative dehydrator, check out the Excalibur 3926TB. This dehydrator offers impeccable features and performance but comes with a higher price tag.

    The Nesco FD 75A can be purchased from leading retailers such as Amazon and Walmart, which offer buyers affordable prices and quick shipping.

    In conclusion, if you are looking for a reliable and easy-to-use food dehydrator, the Nesco FD 75A is an excellent choice. It offers exceptional features, a spacious capacity, and efficient performance, ensuring you get the best results every time.

    NutriChef Food Dehydrator

    The Nutrichef PKFD06 Food Dehydrator is a powerful kitchen appliance designed to dry food quickly and effectively. It has various features that make it a popular choice among home cooks and food enthusiasts. Let’s take a closer look at this product’sproduct’s design, materials used, functionality, efficiency, and usability.

    This food dehydrator has five stackable food trays that are removable. At the same time, this makes it easier to clean.  It is also versatile, as it can dehydrate not only meat but fruit as well.

    The dehydration process uses temperature control that is user-friendly. You can adjust the temperature with just a push of a button. Additionally, the maximum temperature is 180°F.

    The heat circulation system of the dehydrator ensures you that it will only dry out, shrink, and preserve your meat faster than regular dehydrators, this is also strengthened by its 250 watts of power. By having this much power, your meat will dehydrate more efficiently, and will still have 97% of its original vitamins and minerals.

    Design and Materials

    The Nutrichef PKFD06 is designed to be compact and durable. It is made of high-quality plastic and features a transparent lid, which makes it easy to see the state of your food as it dehydrates. In addition, the tray system is easy to use and remove, and the fan is powerful enough to dry food evenly and quickly.


    This food dehydrator has many features to help make the process easier. One of the essential functions is the adjustable, easy-to-use temperature dial (low, medium, high), which allows you to set the perfect settings for different types of food. The Nutrichef PKFD06 dehydrator has a maximum temperature of 180°F, and it is ideal for making various snacks, including beef jerky, dried fruits, and vegetables.

    Efficiency and Usability

    The Nutrichef dehydrator efficiently dehydrates food, so it is perfect for those who want healthy, tasty snacks. It is effortless, and the clear lid makes monitoring the food as it dries easy. Regarding usability, this food dehydrator is user-friendly and has a decent capacity of 5 trays.

    Personal Experience

    I have used the Nutrichef Food Dehydrator once to make beef jerky and banana chips, and it worked perfectly. The process was quick, and the results were delicious. The adjustable 3-setting temperature allowed me to set the right option for each type of food, and the transparent lid made it easy to monitor the dehydration process.


    It is a durable dehydrator that will be perfect for making jerky. This can even dehydrate deer meat, which is quite thicker than other meats. Moreover, it does its job well, and it goes about it with the right amount of speed.

    It is easy to use since you only need to adjust the dial. At the same time, it is also easy to clean, because you can just put the components in a dishwasher.

    • Adjustable three-setting thermostat
    • Transparent Lid
    • Easy to Use


    You have to consistently check your dehydrating meat, which is a huge hassle on your part, especially when you have a lot to do. This is because it does not have a timer. You have to manually shut the machine off, for it to stop the dehydration process.

    • The stacking system could be sturdy.

    Recipes and Results

    I tested the Nutrichef PKFD06 with beef jerky and dried fruits. Both were quick and easy to make, and the results were delicious. The beef jerky was dry and had a well-balanced taste. The dried fruits were also tasty and perfect as a healthy snack.

    Some fruits took a bit longer than others, but the results were fantastic overall. I was impressed with how quickly and evenly the food dehydrator worked and the quality of the end product.

    Overall Thoughts and Recommendations

    The Nutrichef PKFD06 Food Dehydrator is a perfect appliance for anyone who likes to prepare healthy, tasty snacks at home. It is efficient, easy to use, and has an adjustable 3-dial thermostat to make the process hassle-free. The only downside is that the stacking system could be more sturdy. In conclusion, I highly recommend the Nutrichef PKFD06 Food Dehydrator.

    Excalibur 3926TB Dehydrator

    The Excalibur 3926TB Dehydrator is a premium kitchen appliance designed to provide efficient and consistent dehydration of foods. In this review, I’ll cover its features, key advantages, ease of use, cleaning process, and my overall opinion of the product.

    The Excalibur 3926TB is the best deer meat dehydrator because of its economical price and its dehydrating ability. If you’re trying to save a bit of money by making your own best deer meat snacks and best deer jerky, this is the product for you.

    This Excalibur dehydrator 9 tray machine has been around for quite some time. However, it is still one of the best and most efficient items for making dried food.


    The Excalibur 3926TB Dehydrator comes with nine removable trays, each having 15 square feet of drying space, providing ample room for large quantities of fruits, vegetables, meats, and herbs. It features a patented Parallex Horizontal Airflow, which ensures even drying of food across all trays. In addition, the adjustable thermostat allows you to set temperatures from 105°F to 165°F, making this dehydrator ideal for various food dehydration tasks. It also has an on/off switch, a 26-hour timer, and an automatic shut-off feature.

    What Sets It Apart

    What sets the Excalibur 3926TB Dehydrator apart from its competitors is its patented Parallex Horizontal Airflow technology, evenly distributing warm air across all trays, ensuring consistent food drying. The result is a shorter dehydration time, which helps maintain the food’s full nutrient content. In addition, unlike other dehydrators, the Excalibur 3926TB eliminates the need to rotate the trays during dehydration. The consistent airflow means that every item is evenly dehydrated.

    Ease of Use and Cleaning

    The Excalibur 3926TB Dehydrator is user-friendly thanks to its straightforward design and easy-to-use buttons. In addition, the adjustable thermostat and timer make it easy to set the temperature and drying time, respectively.

    To clean your dehydrator, use a damp cloth. Make sure to rinse the fabric well. You can place the trays on the top rack of the dishwasher and soak the removable mesh inserts in warm, soapy water. The door can be cleaned with warm, soapy water as well. Use a damp sponge to wipe it down.

    Personal Experience

    I have used the Excalibur 3926TB Dehydrator to dry fruits, vegetables, and meats. The dehydration process is quick, even drying. As a result, the food retains its natural color, shape, and flavor. In addition, I appreciate the large capacity and easy-to-use buttons, which enable me to set the right temperature and time for each type of food I want to dehydrate.

    I’ve always been a fan of Excalibur dehydrators, and the 3926TB is no exception. It’s a perfect appliance for anyone who enjoys making healthy snacks at home.

    The Excalibur Food Dehydrator 9 Tray Features

    • 9 trays
    • 26 hour timer
    • Adjustable thermostat
    • Plastic BPA free tray material
    • Parallex Horizontal Airflow technology


    • It has a timer to make sure you don’t leave it on
    • Easy to clean and assemble. The trays are BPA free, and the unit itself is not complicated to use.
    • Even drying with patented Parallex Horizontal Airflow technology
    • Ample room for large quantities of food with nine removable trays
    • Adjustable thermostat and timer
    • User-friendly with easy-to-use buttons


    • It can take up a lot of counter space if you have a little kitchen area like in apartment or dorm settings.
    • Noisy when in use
    • There is no clear door for checking the drying progress
    • Bulky design

    Overall Opinion and Recommendation

    The Excalibur 3926TB Dehydrator provides excellent value for money. Its patented Parallex Horizontal Airflow technology makes it stand out from similar products. It is user-friendly, easy to use, and simple to clean. While it’sit’s noisier than other dehydrators and slower to complete the drying process, the even drying with no need for tray rotation easily compensates for these cons.

    Therefore, I recommend the Excalibur 3926TB Dehydrator to anyone interested in home dehydration.

    One alternative I recommend is the COSORI Premium Food Dehydrator Machine, which is less expensive than the Excalibur 3926TB. Still, the downside is it has six trays. The Excalibur 3926TB Dehydrator and the COSORI Premium Food Dehydrator Machine are found on Amazon.

    Excalibur 3926TB Dehydrator Manual


    The Excalibur 3926TB Dehydrator is designed to dehydrate fruits, vegetables, meats, and herbs, helping to preserve their natural qualities and extend their shelf life. This dehydrator features nine removable trays that provide 15 square feet of drying space, making it ideal for large batches of food. The appliance’sappliance’s key features include:

    • Patented Parallex Horizontal Airflow Technology.
    • An adjustable thermostat from 105°F to 165°F.
    • A 26-hour timer with automatic shut-off.
    • An on/off switch.
    1. Unpack the Excalibur 3926TB Dehydrator and place it on a flat surface.
    2. Ensure that the unit is unplugged.
    3. Arrange the nine trays, ensuring that they are balanced and stacked evenly.
    4. Connect the power cord and plug it into a grounded outlet.
    Loading the Trays
    1. Wash and prepare the food you wish to dehydrate.
    2. Cut the food into uniform pieces of even thickness.
    3. Place the food on the trays, leaving space between the pieces to allow airflow.
    4. Check the user manual for recommended temperature and time settings for different kinds of food.
    Temperature and Timer Settings
    1. Turn on the dehydrator by pressing the on/off switch.
    2. Set the desired temperature by using the adjustable thermostat dial.
    3. Set the timer to the expected drying time by turning the 26-hour timer dial.
    4. The unit will automatically turn off when the timer runs out, freeing you from worrying about over-drying.
    Safety Precautions
    1. Do not operate the dehydrator if the power cord or plug is damaged.
    2. Do not immerse the dehydrator in water, as it is not waterproof.
    3. Please do not cover the dehydrator while in use, as it can cause overheating.
    4. Keep the dehydrator away from children and pets.
    5. Do not overload the trays, as it can cause uneven drying.
    Maintenance and Cleaning
    1. After every use, unplug the dehydrator and let it cool.
    2. Remove the trays and wash them in warm soapy water or a dishwasher.
    3. Wipe the dehydrator’sdehydrator’s interior with a damp sponge or cloth, taking care to wipe up any spilled food debris.
    4. Allow the dehydrator to dry completely before storing it.

    In case of any issues while using the dehydrator, the following steps may help:

    1. Check the power cord and plug for damage.
    2. Check the temperature and timer settings to ensure they are correctly set.
    3. Check the trays for proper placement and even distribution of food.
    4. Check for signs of overheating and remove any coverings that might be blocking the airflow.


    The Excalibur 3926TB Dehydrator is a helpful kitchen appliance for anyone who wants to preserve their food’s natural flavors and extend its shelf life. By following the user manual’smanual’s instructions and safety precautions, you can ensure that your dehydrator operates safely and efficiently. In addition, proper maintenance and cleaning after each use can provide a longer-lasting appliance for you to enjoy.

    Septree Food Dehydrator

    Are you a food lover who hates to see your favorite foods spoil? Do you frequently purchase fruits and vegetables in large quantities but struggle with storing them? If so, the Septree Food Dehydrator is what you need!

    This dehydrator is a standout product in the market, thanks to its unique features and high-quality build. The dehydrator can easily handle different food items, and its user-friendly controls make it a joy to use.

    With its four removable stainless steel trays, the Septree Food Dehydrator offers ample space for drying various foods. You can quickly dry apples, bananas, berries, and even meat. Its adjustable thermostat allows you to set the temperature between 68-194°F based on your food requirement.

    The device impressed me with its efficiency as it was able to handle everything I threw at it without any issues. In addition, the device dehydrated everything evenly, leaving no raw spots or under-dehydrated areas. I am glad that I didn’t have to manually rotate the trays this time, unlike with other dehydrators I’ve used before.

    In terms of design and build quality, Septree has done an excellent job. The device is durable and built to last with a sleek body made of high-quality Polycarbonate materials. The device’s low energy consumption (400 watts) also meant it was kinder to my wallet and the environment.

    The device’s user-friendly controls impressed me as I could easily set the time and temperature. I also appreciated the device’s automatic shut-off feature, which turned off once the set time was up.

    The only challenge I encountered was that the device had a maximum tray capacity of four. Still, its efficiency and ease of use remained relatively high.

    Overall, the Septree Food Dehydrator is an excellent investment for anyone looking to dehydrate their favorite foods quickly. The kitchen appliance is a must-have due to its high build quality, efficient operation, and low energy consumption. I recommend this device to anyone who cherishes the taste and flavor of their favorite foods.

    The Best Dehydrator for Meat: The Best of the Best

    The STX International Food and Jerky Dehydrator is the winner. This is the one we chose because it encompassed its competitors with its brilliant features. You get to dehydrate a lot of meat at once. You can also just leave the machine due to its auto-shutoff feature.

    Yes, its airflow is still not good, but this can be easily solved by rotating the trays every once in a while. Lastly, in a world of plastics, you cannot go wrong with steel. Having this type of material in your kitchen will prove to be a good buy in the long run.

    This is a great beef jerky machine for pros and beginners alike. So get yourself the best meat dehydrator for jerky today and start making tasty, crunchy snacks right at home! You won’t regret it.

    author avatar
    Hey there, since 2016, my mission has been to provide you with the information and guides you need to make food dehydrating simple and fun. Whether you're a newbie or a seasoned pro, my site offers helpful guides, reviews, and recipes to enhance your dehydrating experience. I take pride in only recommending products I believe in, ensuring my readers' trust. As an affiliate of various programs, including Amazon Associates, your support helps me continue providing quality content. Thanks for stopping by, and happy dehydrating!