Are you a fan of bacon but looking for a healthier alternative?
Look no further than venison bacon!
This lean and flavorful meat is perfect for those who want to indulge in the deliciousness of bacon without the added grease.
But how do you cook it?
In this article, we’ll explore different methods for baking venison bacon to perfection.
Whether you’re a seasoned pro or a beginner in the kitchen, we’ve got you covered.
So grab your apron and let’s get cooking!
How To Bake Venison Bacon?
There are a few different ways to bake venison bacon, depending on your preferences and the tools you have available. Here are some step-by-step instructions for a few different methods:
What Is Venison Bacon?
Venison bacon is a type of bacon made from a mixture of ground venison and pork fat. Unlike traditional bacon, which is made from whole muscle meat like pork belly, venison bacon is made from ground meat. This is because venison is an extremely lean meat, and the pork fat is added to create a mouthwatering fattiness that is reminiscent of traditional bacon. A mixture of cure and smoke adds that crispy, smoky bacon flavor to deer bacon. The end result is flavorful venison bacon-like strips that can be used in a variety of ways, such as in BLTs and sandwiches, crumbled into salads, or served alongside eggs in the morning. Making venison bacon requires a heavy ratio of fat to lean meat, typically around 50% venison and 50% pork trim, for a total ratio of 80% lean to 20% fat. The meat is ground twice to get the perfect texture and protein extraction, and then seasoned with a blend of venison bacon cure and other seasonings like maple or jalapeno hickory. Finally, the meat is smoked for around an hour to cure and form into crisp pieces that can be cut into strips and fried. Venison bacon is a great alternative to traditional pork bacon for those who want to watch their fat and cholesterol intake, while still enjoying the delicious taste of bacon.
Benefits Of Venison Bacon Over Regular Bacon
Venison bacon is a healthier alternative to regular bacon, as it contains much less fat and cholesterol. Venison bacon strips are usually ready to be fried, making them a convenient option for those who are short on time. Compared to regular bacon, which is loaded with fat and cholesterol, venison bacon can cut the amounts of these harmful ingredients in half.
While venison does contain slightly more cholesterol than other types of meat, it is still lower in total and saturated fat. This makes it a better option for those who are eating a heart-healthy diet or limiting their intake of saturated fat. Eating saturated fat isn’t directly linked to heart disease, but it can increase levels of LDL (bad) cholesterol, which may be a risk factor for heart disease.
In addition to being a healthier option, venison bacon is also surprisingly nutritious and good for mental health. Bacon contains a range of B-vitamins that are vital to many complex operations in the body. B-vitamin deficiency can result in reduced function in the heart, liver, kidney, and brain. Many B-vitamins, such as Niacin (B3), Pyridoxine (B6), and Biotin (B7), are involved in breaking down fats and carbohydrates during the digestion process. Others, such as Thiamin (B1) and Folate (B9), are essential parts of complex processes such as DNA replication, cell division, and the creation of neurotransmitters.
Venison bacon is also a natural mood enhancer that helps encourage positive mental states. The umami in bacon is an addictive substance that has a neurological impact on the brain. Eating venison bacon can cause a happy and blissful effect that improves mood, satisfaction, and lowers stress levels. Since stress is a serious complication to physical and mental health, it’s important to take measures to control this harmful emotional state. While several other options are available to reduce stress, many solutions take time. When time is short, grabbing a piece of venison bacon can help enhance mood and reduce stress levels within a short period of time.
Choosing The Right Cut Of Venison For Bacon
When it comes to making venison bacon, choosing the right cut of venison is crucial. Venison is a very lean meat, which means that it lacks the fat content necessary for traditional bacon. To make up for this, a fatty cut of pork is typically added to the ground venison to create that mouthwatering fattiness you love in traditional bacon.
When selecting a cut of venison for bacon, it’s important to keep in mind that not all cuts are created equal. Some cuts are better suited for other types of dishes, such as stews or roasts, and may not work as well for bacon. Here are a few cuts of venison that work well for making bacon:
1. Shoulder: The shoulder is a great choice for venison bacon because it has a good amount of fat and connective tissue, which helps to keep the meat moist and flavorful during the smoking process.
2. Sirloin: The sirloin is another good choice for venison bacon because it has a decent amount of fat and a mild flavor that pairs well with the smoky flavor of the bacon.
3. Backstrap: While backstrap is a lean cut of meat, it can still be used for making venison bacon if it’s combined with a fatty cut of pork. This cut is also very tender and flavorful, which can add a nice touch to your bacon.
4. Steaks: If you have leftover venison steaks in your freezer, they can also be used to make venison bacon. However, keep in mind that steaks are typically leaner than other cuts of venison, so you’ll need to add more pork fat to compensate.
Ultimately, the best cut of venison for making bacon will depend on your personal preferences and what you have available. Just be sure to choose a cut that has enough fat to create that mouthwatering fattiness you love in traditional bacon.
Preparing Venison Bacon For Baking
Before you can bake your venison bacon, you will need to prepare it properly. Here’s how:
1. Preheat your oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit.
2. Cut your venison bacon into strips of your desired thickness.
3. Arrange the bacon in a single layer on a baking sheet lined with aluminum foil or parchment paper. Make sure the strips are not touching each other.
4. If you want extra crispy bacon, place a wire rack on top of the baking sheet and arrange the bacon on the rack.
5. If desired, you can season your venison bacon with spices or herbs at this point.
6. Bake the venison bacon in the preheated oven for 10-20 minutes, depending on the thickness of the strips and how crispy you like them. Keep a close eye on the bacon to make sure it doesn’t burn.
7. Once the bacon is cooked to your liking, remove it from the oven and transfer it to a paper towel-lined plate to cool and drain any excess fat.
By following these steps, you can enjoy delicious and crispy venison bacon straight from the oven. Experiment with different seasonings and cooking times to find your perfect flavor and texture.
Basic Baking Method For Venison Bacon
One of the simplest ways to bake venison bacon is to use a basic baking method. Here are the steps to follow:
1. Preheat your oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit.
2. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil or use a wire rack placed over a baking sheet for extra crispy bacon.
3. Arrange the venison bacon in a single layer on the prepared baking sheet.
4. Bake the venison bacon for 10 to 20 minutes, or until it is browned and crispy, or until it reaches your desired level of doneness.
5. Keep an eye on the venison bacon while it is baking, as the cooking time will vary depending on the thickness of the bacon and how you prefer it cooked.
6. Once the bacon is done, remove it from the oven and allow it to cool on a wire rack for a few minutes before serving.
This basic baking method is quick and easy, and produces delicious venison bacon that can be enjoyed on its own or used as an ingredient in other dishes. Whether you are a hunting enthusiast or just looking for a new twist on traditional pork bacon, venison bacon is definitely worth trying out.
Adding Flavor To Venison Bacon
One of the great things about making your own venison bacon is that you can customize the flavors to your liking. Here are a few ways to add some extra flavor to your venison bacon:
1. Seasoning Mix: As mentioned above, there are many seasoning and cure kits available for making venison bacon. Try experimenting with different kits to find your favorite flavors. You can also mix and match different seasoning blends to create your own unique flavor profile.
2. Marinade: Another way to add flavor to your venison bacon is to marinate it before smoking. You can use a simple marinade of soy sauce, Worcestershire sauce, and brown sugar, or get creative with your own blend of herbs and spices.
3. Rub: A dry rub can add a lot of flavor to your venison bacon. Mix together some brown sugar, smoked paprika, garlic powder, and black pepper, and rub it all over the bacon before smoking.
4. Glaze: For a sweet and sticky finish, try adding a glaze to your venison bacon during the last few minutes of smoking. Mix together some honey, Dijon mustard, and apple cider vinegar, and brush it onto the bacon before returning it to the smoker.
No matter how you choose to flavor your venison bacon, be sure to taste as you go and adjust the seasonings as needed. With a little experimentation, you’re sure to find a flavor combination that you love!