Deer: Cooking series A-Z with SSG Sadler – Part 7

A popular Michigan meat, deer.

Deer are native everywhere throughout the world except Australia and Antarctica. There is an estimated 100 types of deer throughout the world, but the best known in Michigan is the white-tailed deer. Deer hunting is considered a big holiday in Michigan when it comes to opening day in November. The sport is so popular it generates around a half billion dollars every year for the state of Michigan.

Deer meat is very lean and dense, therefore you don’t have to worry about fat content when consuming it. Deer meat is high in potassium, iron and protein and low in cholesterol, which makes it an ideal choice for meat. Deer meat varies in taste depending on what they eat, giving it a “gamey” taste. One thing that you can do to cut down of the “gamey” taste is to marinate it in something that has a strong flavor, for example something with a vinegar or garlic base. There are many dishes that use deer, from stews to steaks and even pasta.

The Michigan State University Extension Bookstore has a book called “Michigan Venison” that will help you with all of your venison needs. Although you can cook deer in so many ways, we will be looking at a deer mushroom bleu burgers recipe today.

Deer mushroom bleu burgers

Makes 4 servings

2 lbs. ground deer meat

½ cup finely chopped portabella mushrooms

1 cup bleu cheese

¼ cup semi-sweet red wine

2 tsp. garlic powder

2 tsp. onion powder

1 tsp. salt

1 tsp. course ground pepper


  1. In a bowl combine your ground deer meat, pepper salt, garlic powder, onion powder and wine.
  2. After the first step add your mushrooms and blue cheese.
  3. Form equal patties a quarter of pound a piece and place on a hot grill and or in a hot skillet.
  4. Cook on each side for about seven to 10 minutes or until the middle is no longer pink.

Allow the burgers to rest for three to five minutes and enjoy!

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