Ground Venison Breakfast Sausage Patties
A recipe by Ryan Lisson as featured in the Outdoor News Taste of the Wild
I’ve always been a breakfast person. I especially love breakfast sandwiches (whether it’s actually served at breakfast or not). If you’re a hunter and in the same boat as me, you can easily incorporate venison into this meal with these venison breakfast sausage patties. Whether you serve them on an English muffin or bagel, or alongside some fried eggs, you’ll definitely enjoy these.
Venison grind meat can include anything from neck meat to shoulder bits to odds and ends leftover from processing your deer. For the best sausage though, try to remove as much silver skin and fat as possible. Because venison is very lean, you definitely need to add some fat. Fatty pork trimmings from a pork shoulder/butt work well to grind in (save them in the freezer for this recipe). But when you’re in a hurry, just mix some ground pork with some ground venison. I mix it about 50/50 here for simplicity, but you can play with the ratio to suit your preferences (more venison if leaner, more pork if fattier). If using the grinder, pre-chill your ingredients and the metal grinder parts in the freezer for about 15-20 minutes. This will keep everything cold and stop the fat from melting and clogging up the grinder plates.
As far as spices and herbs, you can customize this a thousand different ways. I think breakfast sausage should be pretty bold. The typical seasonings include sage, thyme, salt, pepper, red pepper flakes, and a little sugar. But you could add fennel seeds, nutmeg, cloves, cayenne, honey, maple syrup, garlic, etc. Try making a few small batches to find your perfect spice blend. While best enjoyed fresh, you can do a larger bulk batch of breakfast patties and freeze them in a single layer. After frozen, you can store these little hockey pucks of goodness in a vacuum-sealed bag in the freezer for a convenient breakfast option in the future.
Yield: 6-8 servings
1 pound venison chunks (or ground venison)
1 pound fatty pork trimmings (or store-bought ground pork)
1 tablespoon dried sage
2 teaspoons each: salt, dried thyme, brown sugar
1 teaspoon each: black pepper, smoked paprika, red pepper flakes
Grinding the Meat:
- Cube the venison and pork trimmings into roughly 2-inch chunks. Place a bowl beneath the grinder to catch the meat. Using the coarse dye plate, alternate the venison and pork fat as you add it to the grinder.
- Switch to a medium or fine dye plate, and re-grind the meat. This will produce a more cohesive sausage. Thoroughly mix the seasonings into the ground meat mixture, and form into patties.
Using Ground Meat:
- If you have pre-ground meat, it’s even easier. Simply mix the meat and spices/herbs together in a bowl. Form into patties.
Cooking the Patties:
- Preheat a skillet or griddle over medium heat. Add about 1 tablespoon of vegetable or olive oil to the pan, and coat the surface.
- Fry a small patty at first, to test the seasoning level. Adjust as you wish.
- Add the remaining patties without crowding them. Cook approximately 3-5 minutes on each side until thoroughly cooked.
- Serve with fried eggs, on a breakfast sandwich, or enjoy them by themselves.
About the Chef: Ryan is a biologist, hunting mentor, and outdoors writer from Saint Paul, Minnesota. He enjoys spending time outside with his wife and two kids, and preparing different wild game recipes. He is also the founder of zerotohunt.com, a website to mentor and coach new adult hunters so they can experience the outdoors too.