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Applewood Bacon-Wrapped Venison Backstrap with Raspberry Sauce

A mouthwatering recipe for bacon-wrapped venison backstrap soaked overnight in an herb-infused milk bath then wrapped in applewood bacon and seared in a cast-iron skillet topped with a warm raspberry sauce.

venison tenderloins wrapped in bacon seared in a cast iron skillet with fresh rosemary sprigs

This bacon-wrapped venison backstrap recipe (venison loin) is seriously one of the best meals of my life!! This amazing recipe for pan-seared venison came from an edition of Outdoor Life magazine. I don’t always browse my husband’s hunting magazine collection, but when I do, I look for recipes. 😉 

Chef Walter Bundy from the Jefferson Hotel in Richmond, Virginia submitted this wild game culinary masterpiece. It really is incredible and this is coming from someone that doesn’t usually get excited about cooking and eating venison meat.

My husband is a hunter and harvested the venison that graced our plates this evening. Hunting is a family tradition that he enjoys with his brother and brother-in-law. He’s responsible for introducing me to more ways to eat and enjoy wild game. My favorite venison cuts are the tenderloin, the backstrap, and I also love homemade venison jerky from the rump or hind leg meat.

I’m still warming up to using ground venison in my recipes, but I’m always open to trying new ways to prepare it. There are so many benefits to eating venison meat. Venison is nutritious and a great source of lean protein. I am learning to master the art of venison preparation and loving every bite. 

You’re going to want to serve venison backstrap rare to medium-rare (130-140 degrees F) for the best flavor and texture. I use a meat thermometer to check for doneness. If you cook it longer than that you will be sacrificing moisture in the meat.

overhead shot of venison seared in a cast iron skillet

Bacon-Wrapped Venison Backstrap Ingredients 

  • 1 Venison loin (aka backstrap)– all silver skin removed
  • Whole milk– for soaking
  • Fresh garlic cloves– crushed
  • Black peppercorns– to spice up the milk soak
  • Fresh rosemary– picked off the stem and chopped
  • Raspberry preserves– using premade preserves is a great shortcut for the sauce
  • Water– for thinning out the preserves for the perfect drizzling consistency.
  • Unsalted butter– for adding flavor and a creamy texture to the sauce.
  • Applewood smoked bacon– for wrapping the loin.
  • Avocado oil– for seasoning the cast iron skillet.
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper– to season to taste.

How To Cook Deer Backstrap

The secret to a great venison backstrap is soaking in a milk bath. Remove silver skin on venison loin. Cut the venison loin in half and soak it overnight in the refrigerator in a covered bowl with whole milk, minced garlic cloves, black peppercorns, and rosemary.

Soaking a Venison loin for bacon-wrapped venison loin recipe

To prepare the raspberry preserve sauce, combine the raspberry preserves and water in a small saucepan and place it over medium-high heat. Swirl in the butter and cook until it’s slightly thickened and reduced, whisking occasionally.

raspberry sauce for venison

Set the raspberry sauce mixture aside and keep it warm.  Drain the milk from the venison, discard all other ingredients and pat the venison dry with paper towels. Place the bacon strips on a cutting board, and wrap each half loin in two large bacon sheets (maybe more depending on the size of your loin), stretching to cover the meat. Repeat the process with the other half of the backstrap. Season the bacon-wrapped backstrap with salt and pepper.

venison loin wrapped in bacon seasoned with salt and pepper
raw venison wrapped in bacon and seasoned ready to sear

Pan-Seared Venison Method

Place a large cast-iron skillet, seasoned with oil (I used about 1 tbsp of avocado oil and used a pastry brush to cover the bottom of the pan with the oil), on a stove over medium-high heat. Place the backstrap halves in the hot skillet, seam side down. Sear them for 4 to 5 minutes, until the bacon becomes golden brown and crispy. Turn over and sear the other side for the same amount of time. With a pair of tongs, continue to turn the venison to sear all sides, so the bacon is crispy on all sides. Cook the meat to medium-rare (about 135 degrees F).

close up overhead shot of venison cooked with fresh herbs

Pull the backstrap halves out of the skillet and let them rest for 2 minutes. Gently slice into medallions and drizzle with the warm raspberry sauce. Garnish with fresh rosemary sprigs, if desired.

bacon wrapped venison sliced and plated with a sprig of rosemary

This recipe also works great for venison tenderloin! The loin, also known as the backstrap, is from the backbone of the deer, while the tenderloin cut comes from inside the rib cavity.

What To Serve With Venison

Anything that pairs well with steak will be perfect for serving alongside venison backstrap. We had steamed, fresh broccoli and roasted lemon-garlic fingerling potatoes as our side dishes and crustless coconut pie for dessert. This recipe would also be perfect with slow-roasted green beans.

*This recipe was originally published on Amee’s Savory Dish on February 6, 2011.  

The best bacon-wrapped venison loin
Bacon-wrapped venison loin with raspberry sauce

Bacon-Wrapped Venison Backstrap with Raspberry Sauce

Tender venison loin wrapped with crispy bacon, drizzled with raspberry sauce.
4.82 from 16 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Servings: 8
Calories: 495kcal
Author: Amee

Ingredients

  • 1 venison loin back strap (3 oz per person)
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 3 to 4 garlic cloves crushed
  • small handful of black peppercorns
  • 1 bunch fresh rosemary picked off the stem and chopped
  • 8 ounces raspberry preserves
  • 1 cup water
  • 2 ounces unsalted butter
  • 16 ounces applewood-smoked bacon sliced
  • Kosher salt
  • ground black pepper

Instructions

  • Remove silver skin from venison loin.  Cut venison loin in half and place into a container with whole milk, garlic cloves, black peppercorns and rosemary. Cover container and refrigerate overnight.
  • To prepare the raspberry sauce, combine raspberry preserves and water in a small saucepan and place it over medium-high heat.  Swirl in the butter and cook until it’s slightly thickened and reduced, about 5 minutes. Turn heat off and cover pan to keep sauce warm.
  • Drain milk from venison, pat venison dry with paper toweling and discard all other ingredients.
  • Place the bacon strips on a cutting board, forming two large bacon sheets. Place one half of venison on one of the bacon sheets and gently roll it, covering venison in bacon. Repeat the process with the other half of the loin. Season the bacon-wrapped loins with salt and pepper.
  • Place a large cast-iron skillet seasoned with oil on a stove top over medium-high heat. Place the loin halves in the hot skillet, seam side down. Sear for 4 to 5 minutes, until the bacon becomes crispy. Turn over and sear the other side for same amount of time. With a pair of tongs, continue to turn the venison to sear all sides, so the bacon is crispy on all sides. Cook the meat to medium-rare.
  • Remove venison from pan and allow to rest on a cutting board for 2-3 minutes, then slice venison into medallions and transfer to serving platter. Drizzle raspberry sauce over venison before serving.

Nutrition

Calories: 495kcal | Carbohydrates: 21g | Protein: 33g | Fat: 30g | Saturated Fat: 12g | Cholesterol: 120mg | Sodium: 435mg | Potassium: 477mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 14g | Vitamin A: 198IU | Vitamin C: 3mg | Calcium: 17mg | Iron: 4mg
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Amee Livingston
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4 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    Oh my goodness this was the best.
    Followed as instructed.
    We are low carb in this house , So We substituted with sugar free jam.
    Also made mushroom asparagus cauliflower rissiotto .
    Will definitely make again as we enjoy venison.
    Thinking this may work with pork.
    Thanks for sharing.

  2. 4 stars
    I really really enjoyed this milk bath backstrap. It was my first milk bath. I only got to marinate it from morning until dinner. My sauce didn’t turn out as I would have liked probably the jelly I used it didn’t make for a nice thick oozy sauce but I definitely loved this! I had back strap chunks and not a whole loin so I didn’t get to cook it as long and the bacon didn’t get as crispy. And I STILL loved it. Yum yum yum. Thank you!

4.82 from 16 votes (14 ratings without comment)

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