Can Beef Jerky Go Bad in Heat? (Explained!)

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It has been with us for a very long time, but jerky continues to be one of the most well-liked snacks in the modern day, particularly in the United States. Since it was one of the few alternatives people had to preserve their food for extended periods of time before the invention of refrigerators, this is primarily why this is the case.

Because of this, it was very well-liked by a lot of people, for instance those who traveled large distances. As a result, during a significant portion of human history, jerky was likely the greatest option for those looking for some food that wouldn’t go bad right away.

So can beef jerky even go bad in heat? Yes, beef jerky can go bad in the heat. It simply doesn’t matter how well-known it is for its ability to stay fresh; even jerky will eventually expire.

But, this is just a simple explanation; in order to provide one that is more comprehensive, we will need to investigate this subject in more depth. Now that we have everything out of the way, should we get down to business?

Can unopened beef jerky go bad in heat?

The condition of the package of beef jerky is the most important factor to take into account when attempting to determine whether or not your beef jerky will go rancid when exposed to heat. To put it another way, as long as you don’t open the package, you shouldn’t have any problems. Having said that, even if the package remains sealed, there is no guarantee that the jerky will remain edible forever.

This just means that, so long as the packaging is not opened, you may anticipate the jerky to remain edible for a considerable amount of time. This is particularly true if you keep the jerky in the appropriate manner (that means in a dark place at room temperature).

But, beef jerky that has not been unwrapped might go bad if exposed to high temperatures.

Can opened beef jerky go bad in heat?

It should thus not come as much of a surprise that unsealed packages of beef jerky will get rancid when exposed to high temperatures. Naturally, this will also need considerably less time, but we won’t go into that for a little while longer.

How long can jerky stay in heat?


Jerky that is packaged in airtight bags is manufactured in such a manner that it should be able to keep for an indefinite amount of time. But, this will only take place if you store them in the appropriate manner.

It’s possible that they’ll go bad in as little as two or three days if you put them in a warm setting that gets a lot of sun.


Since an opened bag of beef jerky should be genuinely kept inside of a refrigerator if at all feasible, letting it sit out in the heat might ruin it even after a few hours. And it is obvious that the situation will not improve in relation to the packages that have already been opened.

Can beef jerky go bad in a hot car?

Nevertheless, if you leave an unopened bag of beef jerky in a hot vehicle for a day, you won’t have any problems with it going bad at all. However, if you leave an opened bag of beef jerky in a hot car, it will go bad rather soon.

If you are considering about picking up some bags of jerky as a snack for your next road trip, there is no need for you to be concerned about anything happening to them as long as you do not leave the bags open for an extended period of time.

What happens when you eat bad beef jerky?

You are aware that your beef jerky may get rancid, but what if you discovered this the hard way and are now concerned about what would occur to you as a result of consuming the rancid jerky? We have information that is applicable to you as well!

To begin, you do not have to be concerned that you are going to pass away. Be prepared for feelings of sickness and discomfort in your stomach, even though it doesn’t always imply you won’t have any problems at all. You could also feel sick to your stomach or have diarrhea, but as long as you haven’t consumed an excessive amount of it, you’ll be OK in a short while.

Do not delay in coming to the doctor if you are concerned that you may have consumed an excessive amount of subpar beef jerky; nonetheless, it is most likely that you will be OK after the appointment.

How can you tell if beef jerky has gone bad from the heat?

Yet, this does not give you license to continue acting in the same manner! Now that we’ve covered everything else, it’s time to talk about how to determine whether your beef jerky has gone bad or not.

You can’t really tell anything about the status of your jerky by looking at it (that would be possible only if the mold began to develop), so simply take a good whiff, and you’ll know for sure. This can be done in a number of different ways, but the most straightforward method is to use its fragrance.


If the appropriate circumstances are met, beef jerky has the potential to remain fresh for an absurdly long period; nevertheless, exposing it to heat and sun significantly reduces its capacity to maintain its freshness. And while the fact that this does not imply that you need be concerned that it will no longer be edible after you have left it beneath the window for an hour, you still need to keep a close check on your jerky, particularly if the bag has been opened. If you don’t use it soon, it will go bad, and eating it will make you sick.

  • Does Beef Jerky Need to Be Refrigerated?
  • Can Beef Jerky Mold?
  • Can Beef Jerky Be Frozen?
  • Can You Dehydrate Jerky Twice?


Does beef jerky go bad in the sun?

Avoid Sunlight

In addition to this, you need to make sure that you keep your beef jerky in a place that is dry and cold, such as a pantry. When jerky is left exposed to direct sunlight, condensation may form within the bag, which can then give rise to mold growth.

What temp is too hot for jerky?

Jerky and the Safety of Food Pathogenic bacteria have a good chance of surviving the dry heat of a warm oven and especially the 130 to 140 °F of a food dehydrator when raw meat or poultry is dehydrated at home to make jerky that will be stored on the shelf. This is because a food dehydrator reaches temperatures of 130 to 140 °F more quickly than a warm oven does.

Can beef jerky spoil?

Does beef jerky spoil? In contrast to other perishable foods such as eggs, milk, cheese, and bread, beef jerky does not get rancid. Beef jerky, in contrast to perishable items, is marked with a “best-by” date rather than an actual expiry date. Because of this, beef jerky has been a popular snack for hundreds of years.

How long does it take for jerky to go bad?

Everything is determined by the manner in which the jerky is packaged. The jerky may be kept in the pantry for about one to two months if the packaging is vacuum-sealed, but it will keep for a longer period of time in the refrigerator. If you do not vacuum-seal the jerky, then it will only survive around one to two weeks in the pantry and approximately one month in the refrigerator if stored in either of those locations.

Can you leave beef jerky in a hot car?

Q1: Can beef jerky go bad in a hot car? To our great relief, no. What is this, exactly? In contrast to fresh food and food that spoils easily, dried beef jerky is unaffected by the heat that is present inside a vehicle.

How long does jerky last without refrigeration?

Jerky that has been properly dried and stored in an airtight container may be kept at room temperature for two weeks. If you want to get the best results, improve the shelf life of the jerky while keeping its greatest taste and quality, chill or freeze it.

What temp kills bacteria in jerky?

The Process of Producing Jerky Using Ground Meat

When it comes time to heat the product at the conclusion of the drying process, pay close attention to the instructions provided by the dehydrator manufacturer. To reiterate, an interior temperature of 160 degrees Fahrenheit is required in order to eradicate germs that might cause illness, such as E. coli O157:H7, if they are present.

Can you make beef jerky at 200 degrees?

The temperature range of 150 to 170 degrees Fahrenheit is generally considered to be optimal for smoking jerky at. Because of these lower temperatures, the meat is able to dehydrate without being subjected to the typical cooking process. You could go up to 200 degrees Fahrenheit, and it would probably be OK; but, if you go much higher, you run the danger of unduly charring your jerky.

Can you make jerky at 300 degrees?

Put the skewers across the racks in the oven so that the strips dangle down below them. Cook the beef in the oven at 300 degrees Fahrenheit for ten minutes. Next reduce the temperature in your oven to the lowest it can go (the average home oven can go down to roughly 170 degrees Fahrenheit). Beef jerky is typically dried at temperatures between 140 and 150 degrees Fahrenheit, with some kind of air circulation present throughout the process.

Does beef jerky go bad if not refrigerated?

You may store jerky in your pantry for up to a year, or until the “best-by” date that is printed on the packaging, whichever comes first. When it has been opened, your jerky has to be stored in the refrigerator. If you follow these steps after the package has been opened, you may keep your jerky fresh for up to three days. It need to be indicated on the container or the bag that your jerky needs to be refrigerated.