Ten Minute Venison Steaks with Spicy Jalapeno Garlic Butter

By Chef and Author, Eileen Clarke

With several wild game cookbooks to her name, Chef Eileen Clarke shares insight into how to best prepare and cook your wild game harvest. There’ll be no more complaining about ‘coping’ with game meat if you follow her tested steps.  This recipe was featured in the Outdoor News Taste of the Wild column.

Here are two slick tricks for perfectly done steaks: First cook the steaks on the first side until blood seeps through to the top, then flip them. Not before. That seepage is a natural timer whether you’re using a hot skillet or hot grill.

Second trick has to do with the low-fat nature of game meat. If you add softened butter to a hot steak, it makes that low-fat wild game steak taste fatter and richer. Add a good dose of garlic and it’s even better. And for those who like spicy, check out the chili powder and jalapeno chip variation in this recipe. There’ll be no more complaining about ‘coping’ with game meat!




2 pounds venison steaks

4 tablespoons butter, softened

8-12 cloves garlic, minced*

  1. In a small bowl, combine the butter and minced garlic.  Set aside.
  2. Start a large cast iron skillet over medium-high heat.  Add 2 tablespoons of oil, and when the oil starts to smoke, add the steaks.  Cook until blood appears on the top of the steaks, then flip and cook again about half as long.   Your steaks will be about medium rare every time.
  3. Transfer the steaks to a heated platter and brush them generously with the garlic butter (or spread it on with a table knife).  Wait 5-10 minutes to slice the steaks, then serve hot, awash in the rich garlic butter.

*I love garlic, so when I’m choosing cloves, I’m choosing the biggest in the bunch.  If all I have left in my bag of pre-skinned cloves is small ones, I’m eyeballing them and using 2 or 3 little ones to make 1 ‘normal’ sized clove.  Also, I mince my garlic very small, usually just tossing them into a mini grinder to make a paste.  The smaller they get chopped, the more flavor they have.  Did I mention I love garlic?


Spicy Jalapeno Butter 

4 tablespoons butter, softened

8-12 cloves garlic, minced

½ teaspoon chili powder

½ teaspoon dried jalapeno flakes, crushed or ground*

½ teaspoon hot smoked paprika*

¼ teaspoon salt

¼ teaspoon coarse ground black pepper

Combine as for the plain garlic butter and set aside until the steaks are done.

*We have a health food store with a huge selection of bulk spices right next to our favorite hook and bullet shop, and that’s where I found these. If your local grocer doesn’t carry dried jalapenos or hot smoked paprika I’ve found that online retailers: spicesinc.com and thespicehouse.com will have them.

Keeping your steaks flat in the pan is important. That opaque (not-see-throughable) sinew stuck on the side of a steak contracts and curls up when cooking, lifting the steak’s surface off the pan, resulting in uneven cooking. That sinew needs to be removed. It’s an easy process, just slip your knife under one end of the sinew, lift and slice to give you a tag to hold onto. Then keep lifting and slicing until it’s all gone.


This recipe is from Eileen Clarke’s bullet-to-fork wild game cookbook, Slice of the Wild, where there are several other seasoned butter combos that are just as easy and tasty as the Spicy Jalapeno Garlic Butter featured in this recipe.  Her cook books are available at www.riflesandrecipes.com  406-521-0273.  ($25)

Photo by Eileen Clarke

Categories: Big Game, Featured

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