What Does Deer Meat Taste Like?

June 1, 2023

Many people have a hard time with the taste of deer meat. They may describe it as “gamey” or “tough.” While some of the issues with gamey taste and tough texture are caused by improper handling, most can be addressed by a swift kill, proper field dressing, chilling quickly, and good processing.

Another factor that can influence the flavor of venison is what the animal has eaten. Wild animals tend to eat what is available in the area they live in, so the meat will take on some of the flavors of the plants that it has absorbed. A deer that has eaten a lot of grain will be milder in taste than one that has spent most of its life eating leaves, acorns, and herbs.

Lastly, if the deer has been exercised extensively prior to being killed, this can make the meat taste different as well. A muscular, active animal will have a much more robust and intense flavor than a cow that has a very sedentary lifestyle.


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