by Taylor Woodruff

Backstrap steaks, marinated and grilled to succulent perfection, may be the star entrée for most deer hunters, but a close second must be a good chili. It’s easy to make and a great way to use the non-prime cuts of venison. Venison chili is also a quick-serve meal you can make at home and take to hunting camp. After a long day in the field, no one wants to spend hours cooking for a hungry crew, so chili is the ideal heat-and-serve meal.

Here’s how we make ours…


  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 medium yellow onion -diced
  • 1 pound ground venison
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 2 tablespoons ground cumin
  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 tablespoon garlic powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper* -optional
  • 1 1/2 cups beef broth
  • 1 (15 oz.) can petite diced tomatoes
  • 1 (16 oz.) can red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 (8 oz.) can tomato sauce


  • Heat olive in a large soup pot. Add chopped onions and cook for 5 minutes.
  • Add ground venison and break it apart with a wooden spoon. Cook for 6-7 minutes.
  • Add chili powder, cumin, sugar, tomato paste, garlic powder, salt, pepper, and optional cayenne. Stir until well combined.
  • Add diced tomatoes, kidney beans, beef broth, and tomato sauce. Stir well.
  • Simmer for 20-25 minutes.
  • Let the chili rest for 5-10 minutes before serving.

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