If you love jerky, and want to try something different, this alligator jerky recipe is perfect for you!
While this may a little bit more of an unusual type of jerky, It’s easy to make, and more tender than beef or deer jerky.
We live in central Texas, which is just far enough south and east to have some cajun influence. Not enough to have fresh alligator in the stores, but enough to have frozen.
I’ve been intrigued with alligator since the first time I had fried alligator tail at a restaurant, and especially since visiting an alligator farm in the New Orleans, Louisiana area with the kids a few years ago.
They had some great alligator sausage there!
Where to find alligator meat
You can also buy fresh alligator meat to prepare yourself if you live in an area where alligators are farmed.
Otherwise, you may be able to find alligator tenderloin in the Frozen section at your local Walmart, and if not, you can order it site-to-store. I recommend checking the app before going to the store to see if it’s in stock, and putting in an order if it’s not.
You may have other options depending on your area, especially if you live near a population center.
Ingredients for Alligator jerky
Aside from the alligator meat itself, the ingredients are simple, fairly common to jerky recipes. I decided that an alligator jerky recipe deserved a Cajun flavor, so the spices reflect that.
- Alligator fillets
- Soy sauce (can also use Braggs liquid aminos)
- Worcestershire sauce
- Brown sugar
- Garlic powder
- Onion powder
- Tony’s or Slap Ya Mama Creole seasoning
- Crushed red pepper
Jerky is pretty easy to make substitutions to fit your taste preference, however, you do need to be aware of your sodium levels, since it serves as your preservative. In other words, change the spices, not the salt levels.
You’ll notice that we don’t add salt, instead, the sodium comes from the soy sauce, and Cajun seasoning. If you reduce either of those, you will need compensate with added salt.
With that said, some simple substitutions could be swapping brown sugar for white sugar, change or omitting the paprika, garlic powder onion powder, or crushed red pepper.
How to make Alligator Jerky
To make this recipe, we follow a pretty standard jerky-making procedure.
Combine your marinade ingredients together – the soy sauce, Worcestershire sauce, sugar, paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, Creole seasoning, and crushed red pepper.
Slice your alligator filets into 1/4-1/3 inch thick strips if they aren’t already, and stir them into the marinade. Really coat the alligator good.
Then cover the bowl, and refrigerate it for 12-18 hours.
After the refrigeration period, drain the excess marinade, and arrange the fillet strips on dehydrator trays.
Dehydrate on the jerky setting for 6-8 hours, until fully dried through. It’s nice for your jerky to still have some softness, but better to be crispy than not fully dehydrated.
How to store homemade Alligator Jerky
Jerky can keep for 3 or more months once it’s been dehydrated fully.
There are several options for storage:
- Seal in ziplock bags, squeezing out as much air as possible
- Vacuum seal jerky. I have this vacuum sealer, and I love it!
- Store in tightly lidded mason jars. It’s also good if you can vacuum seal them with a tool like this for extra protection.
Whichever way you choose, store your jerky out of direct light in a cool, dry place.
Can I make Alligator Jerky in the Oven?
Yes, making jerky in the oven is actually very simple, and you can read about it fully here.
This is a really good solution for if you don’t have a dehydrator, or have more jerky to make then you have room in your dehydrator for.
The basic process is the same, but you will have to work with your oven to provide airflow, and proper temperature. You will also need heat-proof racks such as wire racks usually used for cooling baked goods.
Other Jerky Recipes You’ll Love:
- Spicy Beef Jerky
- Pork Jerky
- Bacon Jerky
- Deer Jerky marinade
- Teriyaki Venison Jerky
- Old Fashioned Deer Jerky
Alligator Jerky Recipe
Dehydrated alligator fillets marinaded in a Cajun spice blend.
- 1 lb alligator fillet
- 1/2 cup soy sauce
- 1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
- 1 Tablespoon brown sugar
- 1 Tablespoon Tony’s Creole Seasoning
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- Prepare alligator fillets, but slicing them into 1/4-1/3 inch thick pieces. These can be long, or short strips, or a mix, but try to get the thickness pretty uniform for even drying time
- In a large bowl, combine remaining ingredients
- Add alligator and stir to coat well
- Cover bowl with plastic wrap, and place in refrigerator overnight
- Remove from refrigerator, and drain away excess marinade
- Arrange alligator pieces on a dehydrator trays (I have had this dehydrator for over a decade, and while it’s not an “influencer” brand, it has worked very well for me!) If you do not have a dehydrator, see how to make jerky in the oven
- Set dehydrator to jerky setting – this will likely be the hottest setting, at about 160º
- Dehydrate until jerky is completely dried through – about 8 hours
- Remove from dehydrator and store in airtight container out of direct light
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