Well crafted venison recipes can turn your harvest into a spectacular meal. There’s nothing better than a little wild game on the table when it’s well prepared.
With deer hunting season in full swing, it’s no wonder why fall is my favorite time of the year! If you spend autumn around your homestead out rifle and bow hunting whitetail or mule deer, there’s a good chance that you already have a freezer stuffed to the gills with organic, grass-fed, wild game. Try these delicious venison recipes and start utilizing every part of the animal, from nose to tail!
I love deer (that doesn’t mean I don’t try to keep them out of my garden!) and the earthy rich flavor of their meat that’s infused with the flavor of the land on which they were harvested. Dispatching any creature is never easy, but upon sitting down to a meal that was prepared with respect using even the less desirable bits, I become yet more thankful for what the land surrounding our homestead has provided my family and further deepens my sense of place.
With the popularity of the carnivore, paleo, and ketogenic diets, it seems that wild game meat recipes grow exponentially. From simple venison stews that you can enjoy all winter long, to different cuts of steak, shanks, necks, organs, and more.
And if you’re eating low carb, I have included few keto venison recipes too!
Venison Stew and Soup Recipes
Making stews and soups is my go-to in the winter when most of my food is stored away in the freezer, on a canning shelf, or in our root cellar. I like to dehydrate extra garden veggies for all my winter soups, and then it’s easy enough to get a home harvested meal on the table quickly.
Pull all of those preserved goodies out and toss them in your favorite crockpot or Instant Pot. Fire it up and resume your busy schedule until your timer goes off! You can even make a huge batch of any of the recipes below and freeze them in individual size portions for an even quicker dinner later in the year.
- Instant Pot Venison Stew
- Venison Chili
- Hearty Northern Venison Stew
- Italian Venison Stew with Polenta
- Venison Soup with Barley and Vegetables
- Venison and Bacon Cheeseburger Soup
- Venison Bourguignon
- Slow-Cooked Venison Stew
Venison Loin and Backstrap Steak Recipes
Steak is an umbrella term for any tender cut of venison that can be cooked to perfection. It should come as no surprise that the tenderloin is aptly named and while it is without a doubt delicious, there’s usually not enough of it to feed a hungry family of four.
Enter, venison backstraps. These succulent cuts need little preparation and are great pan-fried in a cast-iron skillet or grilled on your favorite charcoal grill. Any of the incredible flavor profiles below will surely be a treat this winter!
- Stuffed Venison Loin
- Venison Steak Diane
- Venison Steak with Port and Red Berry Sauce
- Venison Swiss Steak
- Venison Tenderloin with Blueberry Sauce
- Grilled Venison Steak with Smoked Cherry Sage Butter
- Deer Steak with Blackberry Pan Sauce
- Venison Medallions with Whiskey, Mushroom, and Horseradish Cream Sauce
- Char-Grilled Deer Tenderloin with Smoky Chipotle Rub and Chimichurri Sauce
- Fried Backstrap or Tenderloin
- Grilled Venison Backstraps
- Stuffed Venison Backstrap with Walnut, Sage, and Mushroom
- Garlic and Herb Marinated Backstrap
- Chicken Fried Venison with Waffles and Serrano Honey
- Sticky Garlic Ginger Venison Stir Fry
- Venison Marsala
- Venison Grillades
- Applewood Bacon-Wrapped Venison Loin with Raspberry Sauce
Venison Neck Recipes
Deboning a deer’s neck takes quite a bit of technique, labor, and maybe some cursing. With lots of practice, you can have yourself an attractive deboned neck!
If you don’t have the time or patience for that, cut as much of the meat away from the bone and add it to your grind pile for burgers and sausage making. Probably my favorite way to cook venison neck is plain old bone-in style.
- Beer-Braised Venison Neck
- Smoked Venison Neck
- BBQ Braised Venison Neck
- Crock-Pot Venison Neck Roast
- Venison Neck Roast with Morel Mushrooms
- BBQ Pulled Venison Neck Roast
Venison Shank Recipes
While it’s true that they’re possibly the least tender part of the animal and can become super tough if cooked improperly, you’re missing out on a delicious cut of wild game if your deer shanks end up in the compost pile. Go ahead and give one of these recipes a try, you might be surprised at how delectable they can be!
Through braising and slow cooking, you’ll have yourself a juicy, tender cut of game that will impress even the pickiest of eaters.
- Braised Venison Shanks with Garlic
- Smoked Venison Shanks Braised with Stout and Coffee
- Venison Shank with Cheesy Grits
- BBQ Venison Shanks
- Venison Shank Pho
- Portuguese Style Braised Venison Shanks
- Venison Osso Buco
Venison Sausage Recipes
Sausages are a great way to use up any meat that ended up in your pile for grinding! Since deer live natural lives browsing on plants and running through the forest (you know, like how all animals should?) their meat is leaner than domesticated farm animals.
Because of this, when grinding your wild game for sausage making, you’ll want to add a portion of fat. 25% fatty pork and 75% deer meat typically result in a delicious sausage. With this ratio, you’ll have a mixture that will produce a slight porky flavor, while the venison will still noticeably shine through.
- Venison Breakfast Sausage with Juniper Berries
- Venison Sausage Gravy with Sage Biscuits
- Venison Sausage with Bay and Garlic
- Venison Sausages Braised in Red Wine
- Jalapeno Cheddar Venison Sausage
- Venison Sausages with Roasted Garlic Mash
- Venison Sausage and Bean Casserole
- Venison Sausage Casserole with Mushrooms, Lentils, and Chestnuts
Keto Venison Recipes (Low Carb, High Fat)
Fifty years or so ago, natural saturated (animal, coconut), polyunsaturated (nuts, seeds), and monounsaturated (avocado) fats were replaced with “healthier” highly processed trans fats (partially hydrogenated oils). These bad fats could be found in grocery stores in the form of margarine and shortening. It wasn’t long until these oils made their way into much of the American diet from cookies to fast food.
Within the past few years, the perception that fat should be feared has finally started to dwindle and rightfully so! No thanks to the sugar industry who paid scientists to shift blame from sugar to fat over which causes more damage to heart health. With the introduction of diets like keto, carnivore, and paleo, humans are regaining lost knowledge that our ancestors knew so well, that healthy fats must be embraced for overall health.
- Keto Cauliflower Rice and Venison Recipe
- Keto Venison Jerky
- Keto BBQ Cheddar Venison Meatloaves
- Keto Ground Venison Lettuce Wraps
- Keto Venison Stroganoff
- Keto Venison Steak Nuggets with Chipotle Ranch
- Keto Spring Venison Stew
- Keto Venison TexMex Skillet Bake
- Keto Venison Meatball Alfredo with Zucchini Noodles
- Keto Venison Meat Pie
Venison Organ Meat Recipes
Don’t add that gut pile to your compost bin just yet, there are lots of ways to cook those less desirable bits of venison! I love cooking up heart steaks and find the texture to be a cross between a traditional steak cut and liver.
Contrary to popular belief, the heart, liver, tongue, and other offal of a deer are very nutritious and delicious! What’s more, they can be very inexpensive to purchase from your local butcher since they’re rarely sought after. Once you try any of the following recipes, I guarantee you’ll end up acquiring a taste for organ meats!
- Grilled Venison Heart
- Venison Lungs
- Seared Venison Heart with Whiskey Butter
- Grilled Deer Heart Kabobs
- Pickled Venison Heart
- Corned and Smoked Venison Heart
- Deer Tongue Tacos
- Seared Venison Kidneys
- Pan-Fried Venison Liver with Onions and Beer Gravy
- Venison Liver Pate
- Whitetail Deer Liver Dumpling Soup
- Venison Rocky Mountain Oysters (Testicles)
(Still not convinced? You can always turn venison offal into a nutritious organ meat stock.)
More Venison Recipes
Still want more? Here are a few more creative venison recipes to put deer on the table…
- Spicy Asian Venison Bowl
- Venison Wellington
- Stuffed Meatball Sub with Venison and Pork
- Venison Burgers
- 4 Easy Ground Venison Recipes
- 8 Ways to Try Venison in Your Favorite Dinner Dishes