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5 Best Venison Marinades for the Wild Game Chef

Here are the top five venison marinades from around the web.

Many will tell you that venison does not need to be marinated, that the natural flavor of the meat only needs a touch of salt and pepper and a hot cooking surface to taste delicious. While those folks have a good point, some cuts of venison really benefit from a little tenderizing and flavor – and that’s not to say you can’t marinade a steak either, it’s really all up to the cook in the kitchen.

If that cook is you, and you’re stumped on what to do after hunting for venison, here are some great marinades that won’t destroy your venison but rather enhance its natural flavor.

1. Ancient Roman Venison Marinade (adapted)

Look, the Ancient Romans may have had their fair share of problems, but they did know how to host a pretty spectacular feast. Since wild game was commonplace from soup kitchens to the royal palace, having a tried-and-true marinade was a necessity for every chef. Straight from the pages of “On the Subject of Cooking” that is often attributed to Apicius, this recipe makes a marinade and gravy for any cut of venison.

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Venison Osso-Bucco prepared with Ancient Roman Marinade

Image and Recipe via: Silk Road Gourmet

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup game or beef stock
  • 1 cup red wine to replace half of beef or game stock (marinade only)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon freshly-ground black pepper
  • ¼ preserved lemon peel – finely sliced
  • 1 cup pomegranate juice
  • 1/3 cup barberries – Order online HERE.
  • 1 teaspoon celery seeds
  • 1 onion, peeled and finely diced
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 2 tablespoons malt vinegar
  • 6 dates, pitted and finely chopped
  • 4 tablespoon raisins
  • 3-4 bay leaves
  • 1 teaspoon rosemary, finely minced
  • 2 sprigs fresh thyme

View Instructions

2. Red Wine Venison Marinade

Here we have a great classic. Red wine is the perfect accompaniment to game meats, especially when you allow them to soak in it as a marinade for a few hours. This recipe includes allspice and mustard, which will add a nice earthy tang to your meat without being overpowering.

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Venison Steaks made with Red Wine Marinade

Image and Recipe via: Arkansas Outdoors Online

Ingredients:

  • 1/3 cup red wine
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • pinch of allspice
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • ½ small onion, chopped
  • 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tbsp Soy Sauce
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp ground black pepper
  • 1 tsp Dijon mustard

View Instructions

3. Quick-n-Easy Venison Marinade

This recipe is a great basic marinade that you could tinker with and alter to suit your own tastes. What’s important is the apple cider, which helps break down some of the tissue in the meat to tenderize and plump up your cut.

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Venison Steaks with Quick-n-Easy Marinade

Image and Recipe via: The Rustic Man

Ingredients:

  • ¼ cup apple cider (or apple juice)
  • ¼ cup Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tsp dried rosemary
  • 2 tsp garlic powder, or 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • ½ tsp ground black pepper

View Instructions

4. Steak Sauce/Soy Venison Marinade

For a true “steak-like” flavor to your venison meat, grab the A1 and some soy sauce. The results will surprise you, especially with the addition of oregano and basil. If you’re trying to sneak a bite of venison into an anti’s mouth, well – this is how you git ‘er done. As noted in the WikiHow article where we got the image, this recipe would go great with some venison jerky.

Marinade-(soy-sauce,-vinegar,-garlic-and-sugar)

Venison Steak with A1 and Soy

Image via: WikiHow, Recipe via: Yummly

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup water
  • 1 tbsp steak sauce (HP or A1)
  • 1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 3 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp oil
  • 1 tsp vinegar (white or cider)
  • 1/2 tsp oregano
  • 1 pinch dry mustard
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 11/2 cloves garlic (minces)
  • 1 tsp ground black pepper (fresh)
  • 1 dash chili pepper (optional)
  • 4 fresh basil leaves (optional)

View Instructions

5. Honey-Ginger Venison Marinade

This is not for the traditional venison lover, but rather those who love a little bit of Asian zing and aren’t afraid to experiment. The honey leaves a tasty residue on the venison that will create a nice glaze over the meat while cooking. To tenderize meat with this recipe, add a little bit of lemon juice to break down the meat tissue.

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Honey Ginger Marinaded Venison Steak

Image via: Spa Week Blog, Recipe via: Washington Post

Ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 2 tablespoons ground ginger
  • 3/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/3 cup teriyaki sauce
  • 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tablespoon low-sodium soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1/4 cup red wine
  • 1 scallion, white and light-green parts, coarsely chopped
  • 6 medium cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1 (24 ounces) venison sirloin or flank steak, trimmed of excess fat and any silverskin
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • Garlic powder (optional)

View Instructions

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5 Best Venison Marinades for the Wild Game Chef