A thick, juicy venison steak is a dream come true for all barbecue lovers.
And when you grill and flavor it with the right amount of salt and fire, you are sure to enjoy one of the greatest meals you can have – provided you prepare it properly. It is also one of the best dishes to make your camping trip better after a good ol’ hunting trip with your folks and friends.
The only problem is that venison can be a very tricky meal to prepare. You have to ensure you cook and season it properly since this steak isn’t like your beef. Trust us, we are not exaggerating this at all.
If your meat is cooked perfectly, you can surely enjoy exquisite flavor and texture. But if it isn’t, you and your dinner party may end with a chunky, unflavored piece of meat.
But don’t worry, we have listed a handy guide below to help you understand how you can grill a venison steak properly.
Ready? Let’s take a quick look!
Keep Your Steak Cold and Not Hot
You may have already come across recipes where they tell you to rest a venison steak on the counter for at least 30 minutes – preferably two hours even – before you start to grill it. And this is not without reason.
While this may work with thick steaks that take longer to cook, you will have to adjust the timings if you’re cooking a skinnier version.
You see, a thinly-cut venison steak that starts at room temperature can transform from rare to a black hard piece of meat faster than one that is cold on the inside. So make sure you take out your skinny steak directly from the fridge before placing it directly on your grill.
Make Sure Your Grill Is Hot
We would highly recommend setting up a two-level fire in your grill – one that has a hot as well as a cold side – for greater cooking control. A thick venison steak needs high and intense heat (kind of like a jet burner) to preserve that delicious taste.
If you have a propane grill, make sure that it is as hot as it can go. You can also consider using double the coals than you usually would, to get that perfect hot temperature. In addition to this, if there is a chance you can lower your grill grates, don’t stop.
All of this will help you ensure that perfect grilled texture.
Only Flip the Steak Once
The best venison steak should have a rich flavor, along with a perfectly grilled exterior, and for this, you will have to leave your meat to sit over the fire for as long as possible – without, of course, burning it.
If you prefer cooking an elk steak or a thinly cut deer, remember that you don’t have a very long cooking window. So what you can do is let the steak rest without moving it. Flip the steak to cook the second side after about two minutes and then pull it off the grill once the internal temperature reaches a max of 130 degrees.
Add a Bit of Butter to Your Steak
This is actually a well-preserved secret of barbecue experts. Add a knob of butter after you take the steak off the grill for that irresistible flavor. Plus, the butter will give your steak that crusty, rich sear.
If you don’t want the butter, you can also apply a thin coating of clarified butter (also known as ghee) on the venison steak before you grill it.
Keep Your Grill’s Lid Closed for Thick Steaks
Often, people prefer using thickly cut venison steaks. To cook this properly, always keep the grill‘s lid closed to cook the interior properly while the exterior develops that crispy outer layer.
However, keep in mind if you have a thin steak, you should leave the lid off – and make a point to always stay near your grill. Yes, even for a second. You really don’t want to take any chances with a thinly cut steak.
And that’s it! Just make a point to follow the above-listed five golden rules of grilling your venison steak and you won’t have to worry about undercooked or overcooked steaks. Make sure you check out our article on smoking wild meat too!