How to Preserve Meat in the Wild for Better Survival

How to Preserve Meat


There is a chance that you get to capture meat in the wilderness, but you do not have the best freezer for keeping the meat fresh for many days to come. Well, since you are outdoors, there is the need to come up with ways that will help you with preserving the meat in the wild.

Some might be thinking of just tossing out the meat they cannot eat. This is just wasting proper food that could have remained delicious if you knew how to preserve the meat. The common way of easily preserving the meat while in the wild involves turning it into a jerky. We get to look at the whole process on how to preserve meat in the wild below.

What you’ll need

  • Fire
  • Smoke rack
  • Knife
  • Wood


1. Get the right tools

You will need a few tools for making sure that the process goes on smoothly. These are some of the things that you might be already carrying for your hunting trip or you can make them easily while in the wild.

A smoke rack is the first you need. It serves an important role of holding the meat as you smoke it for preservation. You can build one in the wild with a few simple tools.

The next thing you will need is the fire. Well, it is logical that there would be no smoking if there is no fire. Making fire should not be a problem for any hunter. With your matches or any other method, you can have the fire burning in no time under the smoke rack.

The sunlight and the wind can be important when it comes to the preservation method. You simply have to expose the meat to the sunlight and wind and see just how much you can benefit from the two.

2. Keep the rack at the right height

When it comes to preservation, it is not as the same as cooking. This means that you get to put your meat far from the fire. It is important to consider the height of which the rack holding the meat is kept. For a rack too close to the fire, it means that the meat will end up accidentally cooking.

As you know, cooked meat would only be great if you get to eat it at that time. Storing the cooked meat is going to be hard and there is a chance of botulism happening. This is what often leads to food poisoning in some people.

3. Flavoring the meat

You still want the meat to taste great even after days of preservation. This is what will call for flavoring the meat while in the wild. Most of the time you might not have the common spices you use at home, so you need to get creative. You can look for commonly known spices in the wild if you understand them well.

Sometimes you can easily opt for salt and pepper as a way of flavoring the meat. You would not go hunting most of the time without such type of spices in your bag.

4. Let the meat smoke for 48 hours

Smoking your meat should not go beyond 48 hours. This is the maximum amount of time that is often recommended for this type of method. For someone who leaves it for longer, the meat might just end up cooking and you do not want that. This will happen even the meat is far away from the fire. It will cook because of the continuous heat getting to it over 48 hours. You simply have to maintain the fire low so as to make the smoking process a success.

5. Check the meat more often

How to Preserve Meat when hunting


You do not have to for the 48 hours to be over before you can check your meat whether it is ready or not. You need to watch for the meat that changes color and flip it whenever possible. The meat that is smoked will tend to turn into a darker color such as reddish brown. You can also get that the smoked meat will be harder and tends to retain the shape even after smoking.

Smoking is not the only way you can end up preserving meat in the wild. You could opt for sun drying the meat. You have to make sure to turn the meat into a jerky first as a way of keeping it fresh and also not ideal for the growth of bacteria.


The overall process when it comes to how to preserve meat is something that you will always love to do, as it is simple. Many people who have tried it before have always ended up with great pieces of meat days after the kill. This just goes further to show that you do not need high tech equipment to keep the meat fresh while in the wild.

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