This gamey, tender venison meat can be a tasty, lean alternative to beef, lamb, and pork. Continue reading to find out more about deer backstraps.

What is Venison Backstrap meat

The venison spine is a thin cut of meat running along the crest of a deer. Due to the limited use of muscle by animals, backstraps have a low-fat content. The lack of fat makes this meat easy to overcook. Home cooks often prepare this tender cut in the same way as Pork Tenderloin. They sear it on high heat until the outside is crispy, brown and the inside is juicy and moist.

How to cook Venison Backstrap

Here are some tips on how to cook deer backstrap meat.

Add fats. Due to its low-fat content, this gamey, lean beef will benefit significantly from adding additional fats such as butter, bacon, or olive oil.

Try different seasonings. You can add a dry rub to any venison recipe. Use your favorite herbs, spices, and seasonings. Paprika and cumin are great additions to this wild game. You can also marinate your deer meat in oil, Worcestershire sauce, and seasonings overnight.

Cook according to your preferences. You can cook your venison to different temperatures depending on your desired level of doneness. The internal temperature for rare meat should be 125 degrees Fahrenheit. Meat cooked to medium-rare should reach 130 degrees Fahrenheit, and meat cooked to medium at 135 degrees Fahrenheit. Meat cooked to medium well should be 140-145° Fahrenheit. Well-done meat is 150° Fahrenheit.

Keep in the refrigerator. In an airtight container, cooked venison can be stored in the fridge for up to four days. Let the meat cool down to room temperature before refrigerating.

How to serve Venison Backstrap

This protein is excellent with a variety of creamy sides, roasted vegetables, and grains, as well as fresh salads. Here are some sauces and sides to pair with the venison backstrap.

Buttery Sauces: Buttery gravies such as mushroom sauce and Hollandaise add flavorful fats to this lean meat.

Rich Side Dishes: Low-fat, lean venison meat pairs well with rich buttery dishes. Mashed potatoes, potatoes au gratin, porcini risotto, and cheese-based pasta (like cacao e pepe) complement backstrap meat perfectly.

Roasted Vegetables: Roasting root vegetables and leafy greens with venison adds a hearty, earthy flavor: roasted beets and oni, onions, and sprouts round this balanced meal.


Fresh rosemary chopped to 2 teaspoons.

One teaspoon of kosher salt

½ teaspoon black pepper

½ teaspoon garlic powder

½ teaspoon onion powder

One venison backstrap tenderloin

One tablespoon of olive oil

Two tablespoons of unsalted butter

Note: Total time does not include the 30 minutes of idle time.

Make your dry rub. In a small mixing bowl, combine the salt, pepper, and garlic powder with the onion powder.

To remove excess moisture, use a paper towel and pat the backstrap.

Brush the olive oil onto the meat using your hands or a pastry brush.

Spread the dry rub on the backstraps and massage the meat with it.

Rest the meat for 15 minutes at room temperature.

Preheat the oven to 375 Fahrenheit.

Melt the butter in a large cast iron skillet or ovenproof frying pan on medium-high heat.

Place the tenderloin into the hot pan, and sear both sides until browned. This should take 1-2 minutes for each side.

Bake the skillet in the oven until the temperature reaches 140 degrees Fahrenheit. This should take about 10 minutes.

Remove the skillet. Let the venison rest for 15 minutes before slicing.