Big Game

Hand-Held Venison Quesadilla

Chef and author of several wild game cookbooks, Eileen Clarke, shares her thoughts on this "convenience food" option for wild game enthusiasts. I love quesadillas, but they’re hard to eat in a blind—or pickup. So, as soon as I saw this folded version, I jumped on it. One, it’s easier to handle: instead of being 10 inches around—and needing both open hands to hold it—it fits easily in one hand. Plus, it’s easier both to get in and out of the pan, and to flip it.  Each folded tortilla can be totally different, to suit everyone’s individual tastes.

Smoked Venison Meatloaf

When it comes to options for smoking meat, author of several wild game cookbooks - Eileen Clarke, shares that the good old water smoker is still one of her favorite cooking devices. In this recipe, she shares tips on preparing a smoked venison meatloaf that pairs well with potato salad.

Chimichurri Venison Tacos

Tacos are a great summer crowd-pleaser because each person can adjust the fixings to suit their taste buds. The simple chimichurri sauce adds a ton of fresh herby flavors and a zing of acidity by itself. But some other great toppings that work with this recipe include grilled onions, pico de gallo, avocado, a good crumbly cheese (e.g., queso fresco, cotija), or corn salsa. It’s the perfect summer meal to use up some of last fall’s venison and impress your friends.

Fair Day Venison Corn Dogs

Venison Corn Dogs are perfect as a make-ahead meal and can be frozen after they’re cooked for up to 3 to 6 months. Simply quadruple the recipe, fry them all, then allow them to cool on cooling racks. Once cooled, just place them in freezer bags and bring them out during hunting season to quickly reheat.

Seared Venison with Wild Mushroom Port Sauce

Jamie Carlson shared this recipe with the Outdoor News Taste of the Wild, and said to simply use whatever cut of venison you like best. For this version, he used the eye of round that was cut into medallions about 1 ½ inches thick. For the mushrooms, while Jamie said he prefers to use wild hen-of-the-woods mushrooms, he will also use a wild mushroom blend available at the grocery store.

Ancho and Chipotle Chile Smoked Venison Sausage

A recipe contributed to the Outdoor News Taste of the Wild by Harvesting Nature's John Vile, this venison sausage requires basic equipment including a meat grinder, a sausage stuffer and a smoker. John recommends using real hog casings for this sausage, which incorporates ancho chile peppers and spices for sausage smoked over hickory or apple chips.

Venison Shepherd’s Pie

Technically, a true Shepherd’s pie is supposed to contain lamb meat, while cottage pie generally uses another meat (e.g., beef). But venison is very lean and similar to lamb in several ways, so I’m stealing the name. The nice thing about this recipe is that you can tweak the ingredients based on your family’s preferences, and it turns out great with nearly any combination (we’ve tried many). You can add or subtract vegetables, mix beef and venison together, and use real mashed potatoes or instant versions – it all works.

BAKED SPAGHETTI PIE WITH VENISON

This venison recipe is easy to assemble, and is a great comfort food dish for the table. Make a big batch and if there are any leftovers, you'll find this Venison Spaghetti Pie also reheats well - making it convenient for the approaching spring season when we all want to spend more time outdoors, and less time in the kitchen.

Venison Steak Marsala

As featured in the Outdoor News Taste of the Wild, this venison recipe was shared by Chef Justin Townsend of Harvesting Nature. This meal is also a one pan meal, minus the pasta or starch. I use a stainless-steel pan or pot for the recipe because it gives the steaks a great crispy brown crust. You can use a non-stick pan but you will not get the steaks as brown. Don’t worry about the flour sticking to the pan/pot because you are going to deglaze the pan with the stock and wine while making the sauce. This method captures all those delicious brown bits you get from browning the meat. Enjoy this meal over pasta, creamy polenta, cheese grits, or mashed potatoes for a great dinner any day of the week.

Wild Game Grilled Tenderloin Stuffed with Piggy Salsa

This recipe, and 99 other big game recipes and 43 side dishes, is from Slice of the Wild, Eileen Clarke’s bullet-to-fork big game cookbook. Eileen considers the most crucial part of making your game tender and tasty, starts with the shot.

Venison Heart over Wild Rice

Besides the love for the hunt and family, there’s no better reward than the venison. Growing up, my mom would always boil her deer’s heart and cut it up for us with a little salt sprinkle and we loved the taste of it. When I harvested my first deer, though, I wanted to try something different than how I had grown up eating it.

Venison Meatballs with Cherry Barbecue Sauce

A 50/50 venison pork blend flavored with ground Juniper berries builds a definitive meatball that is bathed in spicy-sweet BBQ sauce where fresh cherries add color and balance in this recipe courtesy of Jon Wipfli's VENISON cookbook.

Venison and Black Bean Chili with Cornbread Waffles

Step aside chicken and waffles, you’ve got competition with this hearty venison dish from chef Justin Townsend. The recipe calls for Drop Tine Chili Seasoning by Tacticalories Seasoning Company. Justin recommends it because he feels it is a quality seasoning…

Venison Taco Corn Bread Casserole

This recipe from the pages of Outdoor News was featured during the height of the COVID-19 quarantines, when people were digging deep into the pantry to see what they could use for casseroles featuring their stash of venison in the freezer. This recipe makes a large pan, but the great part is that you'll love the leftovers. Save this recipe for the days when we get back to potlucks and tailgate parties!

Wild Game Meat Pie

Utilizing a variety of game meat to fill a crust for a savory meat pie, this recipe taps venison and ruffed grouse, but you can use pheasants, ducks, cottontails/hares, squirrels, wild boar, and even pigeons.

Venison Shank Stew

There's something about spending time outdoors and walking into the house to smell the aroma of a delicious stew simmering in the slow cooker. This venison shank stew recipe by Ryan Lisson will be sure to hit the spot, whether you're battling cabin fever, or spending time enjoying spring weather across the northland.

Traditional Venison Pasties

There are various spinoffs from the traditional Cornish pasties, including empanadas infused with spices, and a similar dish called a hand pie that uses salted fish as the main filling. This basic recipe that was featured in the Outdoor News Taste of the Wild, is a mainstay of many homes across the Great Lakes states, relying on ground venison, potatoes and vegetables.

Venison Stroganoff with Cognac Cream Sauce

With a foundation of venison, this recipe by Eileen Clarke builds flavor with Cognac instead of wine, and by brining the wild game meat overnight. It makes this wild Stroganoff amazingly tender and flavorful.

Deer Camp Favorites- Venison Jerky Challenge: The Smoker vs. The Dehydrator

In this recipe, Chef Justin Townsend pairs the two preparations methods of crafting homemade venison jerky against each other using the same recipe. One using a smoker, the other using a dehydrator, comparing time, texture, and overall flavor of both. After he passed the pieces out to some work colleagues for a blind comparison, you may be surprised by the top choice.

Venison Birria

Birria is a Mexican dish from the state of Jalisco. The dish is a spicy stew, traditionally made from goat meat. However this version is a recipe that appeared in the Outdoor News Taste of the Wild feature was adapted by Chef Ara Zada with an optional slowcooker method.

Wild Game Steak with Chimichurri Sauce

As seen in the Outdoor News Taste of the Wild cooking feature, this recipe has a robust chimichurri sauce that is a flavorful accompaniment to your wild venison that is bright in color and profile, with flavors dominated by the garlic and cilantro. You can adjust the intensity according to your personal heat index by removing the seeds in the peppers.

Outdoor News Store

odn_fan
A Year's Subscription starts at
$22
per year
Subscribe Today!

Shop our online store for products and gear: Print of the Year, Outdoor News History Book, Outdoor News Clothing and more!

Submit your own recipe.

Have a great recipe that you want to submit to us to use on our website, and in the print edition of Outdoor News? Fill out the form below and submit a photo of your creation and you might just see it in an upcoming issue of Outdoor News.