This venison tenderloin is seared to perfection and finished off with the most incredible herb butter. Taking on the flavors of garlic, thyme, and rosemary, this delicious cut of meat makes a delicious, elegant, restaurant-quality meal that's actually simple to make at home!
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The Best Venison Recipe Ever
Whenever I'm hosting, I love being able to make something that I know my guests probably don't have on a regular basis, and that's exactly what this venison recipe is.
Venison is a high-quality cut of meat that you typically only find on the menu at fine-dining restaurants. Well, that is until now! With this recipe, you can recreate the magic of a five-star meal at home. Trust me, everyone you serve it to will be blown away. From the ultra-tender meat to the big flavor of the garlic herb butter, every part of this recipe is a winner.
When I make it, I always serve the venison tenderloins with these sour cream biscuits, ranch potatoes, and a house salad for the full restaurant experience. So you might want to whip those sides up, too!
Ingredients For This Venison Recipe
For the meat:
- 1 lb. Venison tenderloin
- 1 Tbsp. Oil- a neutral oil for cooking the venison. Avocado oil and canola oil are great options.
- Salt and pepper- a pinch of each to enhance the flavor and help tenderize the meat.
For the herb butter:
- ¼ Cup Butter- unsalted, this is the base of our herb butter.
- 1 Tbsp. Garlic- minced, a beautiful deep flavor for the butter.
- 1 Thyme Sprig- my favorite herb to add a fresh, earthy flavor.
- ½ tablespoon Rosemary- a delicate spice that packs a lot of flavor.
How To Cook Venison Tenderloin
Step 1: Season the tenderloin. To start, season the venison with salt and pepper on all sides. After it's seasoned, cover the venison and refrigerate it overnight.
Step 2: Make the herb butter. In a bowl, combine the butter with the garlic, chopped rosemary, and chopped thyme. You'll want to mix until the butter is kind of smooth and the seasonings are fully incorporated.
Step 3: Cook the venison. Heat the oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. As soon as the oil is hot, add the venison to the skillet and cook it for 5-6 minutes on one side. Then flip the venison tenderloin and cook for another 8-9 minutes, depending on how you like your tenderloin.
Step 4: Add the butter. In the last two minutes of cooking, add the butter on top of the venison. Once the butter melts, carefully spread the butter over the venison and baste it for the two minutes.
Step 5: Rest and serve. Remove the cooked venison from the pan and let it rest for 5 minutes before serving. Then, finally, serve warm with your choice of sides.
What To Serve With Venison
- Potatoes: This tenderloin is delicious with red skin mashed potatoes, cream cheese mashed potatoes, or even pan fried potatoes!
- Vegetables: I think the venison goes best with these crack green beans or these turnip greens.
- Bread: No meal is complete without some bread, and some of my favorites to serve with venison are these Bisquick cheddar bay biscuits or baguette garlic bread.
Storing and Reheating Instructions
In the fridge: You can store any leftover venison in a shallow, airtight container or a sealed bag. It will stay good in the fridge for up to 3 days.
In the freezer: Allow the venison tenderloin to cool completely before placing it in a freezer-safe bag for up to 3 months.
Reheating: When you're ready to eat the venison again, I recommend reheating it first. The best way to reheat it is to put it in the oven at 400°F for 10-15 minutes or until it is heated through. Defrost any frozen tenderloin in the fridge overnight before reheating.
Frequently Asked Questions
What temperature do you cook venison to?
You can safely eat venison tenderloin when it reaches an internal temperature of 140°F. Depending on how you like your venison, you can then cook it all the way to well done at 165°F. I prefer mine on the rare side, so I cook it until it just reaches 140°F.
Is venison fillet the same as tenderloin?
No, venison fillet and tenderloin come from two different parts.
For the meat:
- 1 tablespoon neutral oil, for cooking
- 1lb. venison tenderloin
- Salt and pepper, to taste
For the herbed butter:
- ¼ cup unsalted butter
- 1 tablespoon minced garlic
- 1 chopped thyme
- ½ tablespoon chopped rosemary
- Heat oil in a skillet over medium-high heat.
- Season venison with salt and pepper. Cover the venison and refrigerate overnight.
- In a bowl, combine butter with garlic, rosemary, and thyme.
- Cook the venison for 5-6 minutes in a heated skillet.
- Flip the venison tenderloin and cook for another 8-9 minutes, depending on how you like your tenderloin. I like mine on the rare side, cooked to an internal temperature of 140°F.
- In the last two minutes of cooking, add the butter on top. Once the butter melts, carefully spoon the butter over the venison and baste it for those two minutes.
- Remove the venison and let it rest for 5 minutes before serving.
Serving Size:¼ lb.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 237Total Fat: 14gSaturated Fat: 8gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 127mgSodium: 149mgCarbohydrates: 0gFiber: 0gSugar: 0gProtein: 26g