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Campfire Skillet Venison Chili

All over the USA bowhunters are either already bowhunting Whitetail Deer, Antelope, Elk and more or else preparing for their Opening Weekends. Tens of thousands of us will participate in the age old tradition of cooking fresh Venison Chili In a Skillet on their hot campfire. Nothing beats it.

Here is how to do it right.


Serves 6-8 ¼ cup vegetable oil 2 lbs venison Salt & pepper (to taste) 2 poblano peppers, stemmed and diced ½ large onion, chopped 5 cloves garlic, chopped 1 ½ tablespoons ancho chile powder 2 teaspoons cayenne pepper (or to taste depending on how much spice you like!) 1 tablespoon ground cumin ½ teaspoon oregano 1 can black beans 1 can chili beans 1 can canned diced tomatoes 2 cups game stock or chicken broth


Brown the venison on medium-high heat with a smidge of the vegetable oil, just enough to swirl around your large cast iron skillet. The oil and small amount of fat grease from the meat will keep the venison from sticking (if using venison with no fat mixed in, note that it will be leaner).

Sprinkle with salt and pepper. When the venison is browned, transfer it to another bowl and set it aside. Add the remaining oil, reduce the heat to medium and add the poblano peppers and the onion. Stir often and cook until the peppers and onions are soft. Increase the heat to medium-high and add your garlic, ancho chile powder, cayenne pepper, cumin, and oregano and continue to cook, stirring regularly. Add the beans, tomatoes, stock, and put the venison back into the pan. Stir until ingredients are combined and then bring everything to a simmer. Cook, partially covered, stirring occasionally, for 2 hours.

Your Chili is ready!

Serve with whatever fixins you like, cheese, sour cream, onions, corn chips, etc.

Note* If you firmly believe beans don’t belong in chili, just use more meat.

I borrowed a video (below)  from Texas Parks and Wildlife that shows the Chili cooking process.

Gather everyone and enjoy your venison Chili.




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