6 of the Best Venison Marinade Recipes

Jenny Nguyen-Wheatley shares her six favorite venison marinade recipes

BY: JENNY NGUYEN-WHEATLEY

Marinating greatly benefits wild game. More active and on the go, wild animals use their muscles much more often and intensely than their domestic counterparts, which naturally results in tougher meat. On a deer, cuts from the front and hindquarters are too often given away or ground up to make hamburger. The acid in a marinade – usually in the form of vinegar, wine or citrus – tenderizes meat by breaking down muscle and connective tissue.

Before you marinate your venison; however, make sure to remove as much silver skin from the meat as possible. This tough, thick connective tissue will not break down without moist, slow cooking, and if kept on, your marinade will have a tougher time penetrating the meat. If you’re hunting for meat, the best tip I can give anyone is to shoot younger deer.

Below is a list of my favorite venison marinade recipes. They are best used for steaks and skewers that will be cooked quickly over a hot flame.

Venison Carne Asada Recipe

Venison Carne Asada Recipe

Venison steaks in carne asada marinade with fresh cilantro. (Jenny Nguyen-Wheatley photo)

Serve this Venison Carne Asada Recipe as a main course or as a filling in tacos, burritos or fajitas.

Ingredients:

  • 2 pounds venison
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • ½ jalapeño chili pepper, seeded and minced
  • ½ teaspoon ground cumin
  • ¼ cup fresh cilantro, stems and leaves finely chopped
  • 1 lime, juiced
  • 1 orange, juiced
  • 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
  • ½ teaspoon sugar
  • ¼ cup olive oil

Get the Recipe: Venison Carne Asada Recipe


Jerk Venison Marinade Recipe

Jerk Venison Marinade Recipe

Red peppers and venison in jerk marinade. (Jenny Nguyen-Wheatley photo)

Throw all of the ingredients in a food processor, pulse until smooth, and you’ve got yourself a simple, garlicy marinade.

Ingredients:

  • 1 ½ pounds venison
  • 4 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 2 limes, juiced
  • 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
  • 4 scallions, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon ground allspice
  • 1 serrano chili pepper, roughly chopped
  • 3 cloves of garlic
  • 1 tablespoon fresh peeled ginger, roughly chopped
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • ½ teaspoon dried thyme
  • ¼ teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt

Get the Recipe: Jerk Venison Marinade Recipe


Apricot and Curry Venison Marinade Recipe

Apricot and Curry Venison Marinade Recipe

Apricot and yellow curry venison skewers on grill. (Jenny Nguyen-Wheatley photo)

This Apricot and Curry Venison Marinade Recipe is both sweet and savory and can be used with wild game such as elk or caribou.

Ingredients:

  • 2 pounds venison
  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 cup white wine vinegar
  • 1 cup water
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 tablespoons mild yellow curry powder
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 4 tablespoons apricot preserves
  • ½ tablespoon turmeric
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons water (for cornstarch slurry)

Get the Recipe: Apricot and Curry Venison Marinade Recipe


Oil, Vinegar and Herbs Marinade Recipe

Oil, Vinegar and Herbs Marinade Recipe

Venison marinating in olive oil, red wine vinegar and herbs. (Jenny Nguyen-Wheatley photo)

Simple doesn’t mean boring when venison is marinated in this Oil, Vinegar and Herbs Marinade Recipe.

Ingredients:

  • 1 pound venison
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • 4 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 teaspoon dried crushed rosemary or 2 teaspoons fresh, chopped
  • Freshly ground pepper and salt, to taste

Get the Recipe: Oil, Vinegar and Herbs Marinade Recipe


Wine and Soy Sauce Venison Marinade Recipe

Wine and Soy Sauce Venison Marinade Recipe

Wine and soy sauce venison with vegetables on grill. (Jenny Nguyen-Wheatley photo)

Make this marinade and let the wine and soy sauce soak into your venison for the ultimate, rich flavor.

Ingredients:

  • 1 pound venison
  • 1 cup burgundy wine
  • ½ cup low-sodium soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon curry powder
  • ¼ teaspoon ground ginger
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar

Get the Recipe: Wine and Soy Sauce Venison Marinade Recipe


Venison Chimichurri Sauce Recipe

Venison Chimichurri Sauce Recipe

Venison marinating in green chimichurri sauce. (Jenny Nguyen-Wheatley photo)

Skewer up some tasty venison and serve with a ramekin of this green chimichurri sauce.

Ingredients:

  • 1 pound venison
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • ½ cup cilantro, chopped
  • ¼ cup flat leaf parsley, chopped
  • ¼ cup onion, chopped
  • ½ jalapeño, seeded and finely chopped
  • ¼ cup red wine vinegar
  • ½ cup olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt, to taste

Get the Recipe: Venison Chimichurri Sauce Recipe

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