How To Prepare Canned Venison

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Open any avid hunter’s freezer and you are bound to see dozens of steaks, roasts, ground venison, backstraps, the list is endless. All are delicious, filled with protein, and make for a nice, hearty meal.  However, there is one less popular method that most hunter’s have yet to try and that is canned venison. It may sound strange, and almost a little displeasing, however, it has been a crowd favorite to those who know the trick, and we are here to tell you why.

First, it is important to understand the advantages to canning your venison.

Advantages To Canning Your Venison

Canning your own venison provides your venison with a very long shelf life.  Most canning experts say that canned venison is good for up to 2 years. Some even say that it can be stored this way for 4 years, however, 2 is still plenty.  Canning your own venison also frees up space in the freezer, allowing you to save money on purchasing another freezer, or have more room for your other game.

Another advantage of canning venison is that you don’t have to wait hours for it to defrost, or spend time putting it in the microwave, worrying that it might start to cook.  This give you a fresh and juicy taste every single time, eliminating the “game” flavor and leaving you satisfied.

Next, after understanding why you should can your venison, it is time to gather all of your materials and ingredients and start the preparation.

Materials/Ingredients Needed To Can Your Venison

What you will need:

  1. Pressure Cooker

  2. Canning Salt (or any other salt will work)

  3. Jars and Lids

  4. Spices and vegetables to add to your canned meat (this is optional, it just adds a little extra flavor to your meat)

Now that you have all of your ingredients, let’s get cookin’.


  1. Trim all your meat to get rid of bruises, silver skin, and fat. Typically, you will want to have each cube squared away into 1 inch slices.

  2. Now, place of the cubed meat into sanitized jars.  Pack it firmly to squeeze out excess air within the jars. Leave about 1 inch of room at the top of each jar.

  3. Add a couple pinches of salt to each jar. If you desire to add more than just salt, such as other seasonings/veggies for extra flavor, now is the time. Usually, it is recommended that you add 1 teaspoon of salt per quart.  However, make this your own, and add as much as you desire. You will figure it out the more you prepare it this way.

  4. Clean the top of the jars so there is no obstruction between the lid and the jar. Do NOT add any liquid.

  5. It is now time to follow directions on your pressure cooker. Generally, an hour and a half at 10 lbs of pressure is acceptable for the amount of quarts that we can. However, if you are using pint jars, consider about 1 hour and 15 minutes for cook time.

  6. When all is said and done, and you are finished with your pressure cooker, dry off and place your cans in a cool, dark place. FDA rates canned venison as safe to eat for two years, but we have heard many people eating them after four years.

And there you are.  You now have made canned venison.  As we stated before, it is a much less popular version than ground venison, steaks, or roast, however, it is very tasty, easy to store, and lasts a long time.  Now that you know the ins and outs of canning, it is your turn to try. Let us know how it works by posting your final results as a log on the HuntWise app.  We can’t wait to see.  Good luck hunters.