Making Venison Sausage: A Complete Guide
Deer hunting is something that many of us look forward to all year long, not only because of the sport of it, but also because it fills our freezers with meat that we can use in different recipes, everything from soups to roasts, and deer jerky to ribs have been made out of deer meat and it makes us super happy to be able to serve it to our friends and family.
Of course, there have been debates being raged as to whether venison is safe to eat, so at the beginning of our blog on making venison sausage, and how to cook it as well, we’re going to throw in some diseases and let you know what to look for and if that meat is indeed safe to eat, just to ease your mind.
In our house, deer season isn’t just about trekking through the woods at the crack of dawn, and for some us stopping to breathe in the scent of the forest and to enjoy the peace and quiet of the early morning breezes, it’s also about knowing that we will have venison meat in the freezer for quite some time to come.
One of our favorite things to do as a family is gathering in the kitchen and make our own batches of venison sausage. It’s cheap to do, healthier for you, fun to do as a family and can be done in mild, medium or hot, of course.
In this blog, we will go into what we talked about in the second paragraph first, then move onto not only how to make your own venison sausage, but how to cook it as well. So, if you love the smell of deer sausage frying up in the morning with a batch of eggs and some grits on the side, join us as we delve into all thing’s venison. Ready, ya’ll? Then, let’s do this together.
Deer Diseases: Is it Safe to Eat or Not?
There isn’t much we enjoy more than BBQing deer meat on a fine day, but in recent years there have been some deer diseases that have come to light that make even some of the most loyal venison eaters wary. That’s why we’re going to talk about some of them, so we can put your mind at ease.
Safe to Eat: Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD)
CDW is a very real growing concern in the United States. The disease is similar to mad cow disease, but instead, it attacks deer, moose, elk, and any other members of the deer family. What it does is attack their brain causing them to lose bodily functions first, then finally killing them.
Symptoms You Should Look For
- The deer looks like it is starving
- It can’t seem to control its own movements
- It’s drooling excessively
Although Chronic Wasting Disease kills deer, it has not been proven to be capable of being transferred to humans, and humans can’t catch it by consuming the venison meat.
Safe to Eat: The Mange
Mange is a skin disease and doesn’t affect the meat of the deer at all, making it safe for consumption. It’s caused by mites and makes the deer to lose its hair in patches.
Safe to Eat: Deer Warts
Deer warts are easy to spot and is the deer’s way of healing an infected cut or abrasion. They are most common in bucks who like to fight, but the meat of the deer isn’t affected, meaning it’s safe to eat. It is said, that you shouldn’t eat the area where the warts are because that air is not fit for consumption by humans.
Unsafe to Eat: The Blue Tongue Virus and Epizootic Hemorrhagic Disease
These two diseases make deer meat very unsafe to eat. They are most often found in whitetail deer but have been found in other deer as well. While the disease can’t kill an animal, it can indeed be fatal to humans. Symptoms to watch for are listed below.
- A blue tongue
- Weight loss
- Drooling excessively
- Swelling in the neck, tongue, and face
- A fevers
- Deformed hooves
Two diseases that you have to exercise caution with are listed below as well so that you can do your research on them.
- Brain abscesses
- Gunshot infections
While it is very possible that you may never come across any deer with these wounds in the woods during hunting season, it’s best to be prepared and no what to look for as well.
Now, that we have the diseases to look for out of the way, let’s move into the reason for this blog, how to make venison sausage. So, let’s take your healthy deer meat out of the freezer or bag one first, and get started, shall we?
Tips for Making Venison Sausage
The thing about making venison sausage is that there are many different ways, many different spices, and many different recipes for cooking it out there. So, while we won’t go into the technical terms of how to make it here, you can do your research to learn. We are going to go into some tips below, however, so join us.
What You’ll Need for One Way to Make Venison Sausage
- 2 pounds of cubed, boneless venison meat, either that you hunted and cured or that you bought at the meat market
- ½ a teaspoon of garlic
- A ½ cup of red wine
- One pound cubed, slightly fatty pork shoulder
- ¼ teaspoon ground allspice
The Procedure to Use
- Combine all of the ingredients in a large bowl
- Mix it well with your very clean hands
- Once it’s completely mixed, scoop it into your electric or hand meat grinder and form it into a patty-like consistency. If it’s not the way you want it, run it through again.
- Once the sausage is done, stuff it into a mechanical meat stuffer so you can catch it in the sausage casing
- Tie your casings and repeat
Once done, you can refrigerate the sausage for up to 24 hours or smoke it for 12 hours. Either way, when it’s done you will be ready to cook and eat the sausages you made on your own.
It is possible to make sausage this way, to grind it into ground beef type sausages and much, much more.
How to Cook/Serve Deer Sausages in Different Dishes
Just like beef, pork, and chicken, deer meat and sausages can be cooked in many, many different ways. Below we will go into a few of those ways for you. Deer sausage can be fried up in a pan to serve with scrambled eggs for breakfast or even tossed onto the grill for an outdoor weekend BBQ. The point is there are so many different ways to cook this fragrant, delicious sausage, that we won’t be able to name them all.
Use in Pasta Recipes
If you’re looking for a meaty distinctive flavor to your pasta sauces, then using sliced deer sausages will be a hit with the entire family. You can also crumble the sausage over your already prepared pasta as well, for an added jolt of flavor to an already amazing dish.
Infuse in Your Rice Dishes
We all know that rice is a blank dish that you add whatever you want on top of. Whether it’s pork fried rice, tomatoes, or butter and beans, rice can be made into just about anything. So why not infuse some deer sausage into your rice dish for a change of flavor profile. Add some spicy venison sausage and mushrooms to your patella and your family will be in for an unexpected treat.
Use Deer Sausage Instead of Pork Sausage
There is no denying that deer is much healthier and a whole lot leaner than pork. Some things to try is baking venison sausages with a savory glaze, instead of the usual pork chops or switching out deer sausage for pork sausage and breakfast. You’ll be surprised how much healthier you feel and how happy your family will be with the substitute as well.
Use in Stews and Soups
Who can say that they don’t love a hearty, warm soup or stew on a blustery winter’s day? There are many recipes that call for some kind of sausage for their soups or stews. Why not put ground deer sausage in your hamburger stew or another kind of deer sausage in your gumbo? It will add a flavor to the mix that will have your family begging for seconds before their first serving is done.
Tips for Using Those Leftover Deer Sausages
Nine times out of 10, in our family I fix too much and have leftovers to decide what to do with the next day, and that includes any leftover deer sausages I have. Of course, you can serve them on a bed of rice or pasta or even make a sausage sandwich with them, but you can also combine them with some roasted veggies or slip them into your gumbo. There are many, many different ways you can use the leftover deer sausages, so they don’t go to waste, you just have to be creative and ready to experiment.
Top Dishes that Are Perfect with Deer Sausage
There are many recipes out there that can benefit from deer sausage and its distinctive taste and unique flavor profile. We’ll list a few of the top dishes we love below, so you can look up some recipes or even invent some of your own!
- Roasted Deer Sausage
- Grilled Deer Sausage
- Poached Deer Sausage
- Fried Deer Sausage
- Cold meals
- Deer summer sausage
- Deer sausage creole
- Venison sausage rolls
- Italian venison and pork
- Deer sausage, peppers, and onions
These are a few of the top recipes that we love and hope that you will as well. As previously mentioned, there are many different ways to make deer sausage, and certainly a ton of different ways to cook it. Now, we’ll list a few of the top reasons that you should consider making your own deer sausage today.
Top Reasons to Make Your Own Deer Sausage
There are quite a few reasons out there that you should make your own deer sausage, instead of just buying it at the local meat market. A couple of those reasons are listed below.
One of the main reasons to make your own deer sausage, and one of ours for sure, is that the taste is so much better than anything you could find at the store. Besides, this way you can add your own spices and blends, instead of having to settle for whatever is in the stuff you buy.
If you’re like us, you’re almost constantly on a budget and mass-produced sausage is expensive. Why would you buy it, when you can hunt your own deer, and make the sausage yourself, for a whole lot cheaper price.
You have no way of knowing what type of chemicals and preservative are going into the sausage you buy at the store. If you make that sausage yourself instead, then you control what goes into your meat, and your family will be healthier for it.
Hunting the deer yourself, and having someone you know and trust process it, then making the sausage yourself gives you control over the process and lets you know for certain what it is that you’re putting on the table for your family to eat for dinner every night. It also lets you determine the quality, since you only want to feed high-quality, safe, healthy foods to your family.
This concludes our blog on how to make venison sausage and a few other things we thought you should know about. Until next time, happy eating and stay safe in those woods, everyone!
- Musket Hunting: How to Cook Deer Sausage: The Easy and Simple Guide You Need
- Gizmodo: How to Make Your Own Deer Sausage at Home
- Sheepdog: 6 Deer Diseases: Is it Safe to Eat? Or Dangerous?