How to Can Venison

November 22, 2011

Most people have things they associate with Thanksgiving, be it football, a trip to see the in-laws, or black Friday sales. Around here Thanksgiving coincides with hunting season. Our holiday is planned for it and around it. My in-laws have a  ranch in the mountains so luckily I don’t have to lose my husband to a hunting camp. He goes stalking up the mountain and I hang out with his mom. If he gets lucky, we have the whole family there to help make light(er) work of the processing!

The manly part (as in, leave me out, thanks) of the event involves hanging the deer and field dressing it. The meat is then soaked in brine, rinsed and soaked again for at least one night. This gets the gamey taste out and helps tenderize the meat. The next day everyone gets involved in the work. At this point the meat looks like something you would buy in an open air market (leg of lamb, anyone?).  We butcher as much as we possibly can. We cut off most of the sinew and fat, and portion the meat up for freezing, canning, grinding, or jerky. We prefer the frozen cuts and canned meat for it’s simplicity.

The awesome thing about canning the meat is that it comes out so tender, you don’t have to worry about the “silver” or gristle. This greatly cuts down on butchering time and uses up all the scraps. It’s also a homemaker’s dream when it comes time to prepare a meal in a hurry. Throw a jar into any recipe that traditionally calls for chunks of beef or lamb and dinner is done, no stewing required!

Canned Venison

Cook Time: 1 Hr 30 Min


  • Lean Venison
  • Salt


  1. Soak game in brine overnight, refrigerated. Rinse and cut up venison into approximately 1 1/2 inch cubes. Be sure to remove as much fat as possible for safety. Any gristle will tenderize in the canning process.
  2. Pack each quart sized jar 3/4 full with raw meat (approx. 2lbs of meat per quart). Add 1 teaspoon salt. Cover with hot water leaving 1-inch of headspace. Wipe rims.
  3. Lid jars and process in a pressure canner for 90 minutes (according to manual). Be sure to vent pressure cooker at steam for required minutes (see manual, all pressure canners are different) before closing petcock or putting on weight.
  4. Place jars in an area to cool where they will not be disturbed for at least 8 hours. Check seals after 8 hours. Refrigerate any jars that did not seal.

View recipe at

Prayer for Processing Game Meat:

Dear Lord,
Thank you for this life that was shed for me.
Help me to show it respect.
Please forgive my discomfort.
Give me the wisdom to be a good steward of this blessing.


2 Responses to “How to Can Venison”

  1. stephanie J. Says:

    This is so cool! My husband and I were just chatting about canning!
    Would you have any top five tips for living on one budget? I really love your blog & lifestyle.

    • Frances Says:

      Glad you like it! As for advice on living on one income…There is so much that could be said on that topic! I’ll try to narrow down what has really helped us and put it in a post soon. I would start by saying it’s a lot easier if you limit your media consumption though. It’s hard to be happy with what you have when the opposite message is being shoved down your throat all day. Instead seek out media that inspires you to make do with what you have. Living on One Dollar a day and the one dollar diet project are a few blogs you may find encouraging.

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