Bacon-Wrapped Venison Backstrap Roast is marinated in teriyaki sauce before roasting in the oven or air fryer. Best and easiest venison backstrap or tenderloin recipe! Perfect for Thanksgiving, Christmas, first day of deer season or Fathers Day dinner.
Venison is as organic as it gets! It also has less cholesterol than turkey and 50% less fat than beef and it's high in protein.
Scott harvested an 8 point buck one year with his bow and the first recipe we made with it was this 3 ingredient Bacon-Wrapped Venison Backstrap.
What is venison backstrap?
It's another name for the loin, not the tenderloin. Backstrap refers to a length of loin on the back of a deer, elk, moose, etc. It's the ribeye in beef and the loin in pork.
Deer meat tenderloins are the two strips of very tender meat under (and inside) the loin, behind the ribs. This is filet mignon in beef.
Is Venison a healthy choice?
Venison is as organic as it gets! It also has less cholesterol than turkey and 50% less fat than beef so we're talking lean protein here! Plus, you know exactly where your meat came from!
If these reasons aren't enough to sway you over to the wild side of the freezer, check out these 27 Benefits of Harvesting and Eating Wild Venison: A Look at Venison vs. Beef
Is deer meat expensive?
For my family, it is also drastically less expensive than beef because my husband and son are avid hunters and we have a deep freeze full of venison hamburger, sausage, tenderloin, and stew meat. I often mix one pound of ground venison with one pound of 80/20 ground beef because venison is extremely lean.
This week alone, I used the combination of ground venison and ground beef for meatloaf and shepherd's pie.
If you have a deer hunter in your family, you don't have to worry about the food supply chain breaking when your freezer is full of wild game.
Consider making this impressive alternatives to turkey and ham (or add it to your menu) for one of your Easter, Thanksgiving or Christmas meals.
We use our FoodSaver vacuum sealer to freeze venison burger, sausage, stew meat, cubed steak, and of course backstrap (tenderloin).
Is this recipe hard to make?
I have to give my husband, Scott, credit for developing this recipe. He said it was not hard at all.
He prepared this roast the first time completely on his own, including wrapping the bacon and roasting it in the oven. He is handy with a knife because he dresses and processes the deer himself most of the time.
I usually do the cooking but he surprised me with this roast one day while I wasn't at home. If he can do it, you can too! The pictures you see here are my own but his photos were on this post until I updated them recently.
We believe in "If you kill it, you cook it" when it comes to game animals.
This roast was cooked to somewhere between medium and medium-well to suit me (The Queen of this domain), but the men in the house prefer it more on the medium-rare side.
I recommend using a digital in-oven meat thermometer. It takes all the guess work out of reaching exactly the internal temperature you desire.
In case you didn't know, the internal temperature will continue to rise about 5 degrees after you remove it from the oven, so, if you want your roast to end up at 150 degrees, take it out of the oven at 145 degrees.
Pro Tip: The reason for letting it stand 10 minutes before slicing isn't to let it cool down enough to eat. While cooking, the heat causes the juices to head toward the center of the roast.
If you cut it immediately, you will lose all those juices. If you let it rest just a few minutes, it gives it time to reabsorb the juices making the roast juicier. Ok. Enough of the food science-I just love it, though!
Scott prepped and cooked this particular roast and took the how-to pics with his phone. His was a little bigger than the one in my photos below.
Here he is trimming the silver skin. It is a very lean cut of meat so not much fat to trim.
We use a FoodSaver vacuum sealer at this point if we were going to freeze it. It seems like it more than doubles the freezer life of the meat.
(These pictures were taken before our kitchen renovation! 🙂
- 1 (2-pound) venison backstrap or tenderloin roast
- 1/2 cup Teriyaki sauce
- 8 to 10 slices of bacon
Pro Tip: Avoid thick cut bacon. It takes longer to cook which cook overcook the deer meat.
How to marinate venison backstrap or tenderloin
Cooking Venison Backstrap
The process of making bacon wrapped deer backstrap in the oven is very simple.
After marinating the roast in teriyaki sauce and draining it, arrange 8 pieces of bacon side by side on a work surface or cutting board. Lay two pieces of bacon in the middle end to end.
Place the roast on top of the pieces of bacon that are touching end to end and pull these two pieces up, covering the ends of the roast and lay them on top of the roast.
Then, pull up the crosswise pieces of bacon and over lap them on top of the roast and two pieces of bacon covering the ends.
Secure the bacon with toothpicks or flip the roast, seam side down, to make sure the bacon doesn’t shrink when baked.
Place the venison backstrap or tenderloin in a greased (or aluminum foil-lined) roasting pan or baking dish. Bake according to the printable recipe below.
Pro Tip: I also like to place the roast on a wire rack first. It lets the bacon drip and the bottom of the roast gets crispier.
Can I make this recipe with beef or pork?
Yes. If you do not hunt or have access to venison, you can still make this yummy roast with beef tenderloin or pork tenderloin. It's harder to find a 2-pound beef tenderloin, so you may have to use more bacon cook it longer. You could also cut it in half lengthwise and use the remaining beef tenderloin for other recipes.
How to cook venison backstrap in the air fryer
Here's how to make air fried venison backstrap or tenderloin. A one pound venison tenderloin cooked in the air fryer turns out perfectly in the basket size air fyer.
- Marinate a one-pound venison or pork tenderloin in 1/4 cup Teriyaki sauce.
- Wrap the tenderloin in 4 to 5 pieces of bacon
- Cook in the air fryer on a rack at 375 degrees for 12 minutes; turn over. Cook another 3 to 4 minutes depending on desired degree of doneness. Use an instant read thermometer to check.
Make Venison Sliders with Venison Backstrap Roast
Simply slice the Bacon Wrapped Venison Backstrap Roast in thin slices, place on slider or small buns and slather with your favorite barbeque sauce.
Since the venison backstrap and tenderloin is fairly small, it is the perfect size for sliders to eat during the big football game (or whatever game you're watching).
Why spend time outdoors with your kids?
I couldn't resist throwing in a picture of my guys all decked out in camo. It's an older picture (Grayson is now over 20) but it shows how much fun they have being outdoors together.
Spend some time with your dad this father's day or Thanksgiving hunting, fishing, golfing or just sitting on the front porch swapping stories. Make some memories!
I also love a good old-fashioned fish fry!
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Bacon-Wrapped Venison Backstrap Roast
- 1 2 pound venison backstrap or tenderloin roast (or pork tenderloin)
- 1/2 cup teriyaki marinade or Dales seasoning I used Moore’s teriyaki because it’s an Alabama-made product
- 8 to 10 slices applewood-smoked bacon center cut slices are not long enough, thick cut not recommended
- Place the roast in a large zip-top plastic bag and add the marinade. Seal the bag and marinate in the refrigerator at least 2 hours up to 24 hours or overnight, turning once.
- Preheat oven to 375°. Remove the roast from the bag and drain. Discard the marinade.
- Arrange 8 to 10 pieces of bacon side by side, slightly overlapping, on a work surface or cutting board to make it 1 inch longer on both ends than the length of the backstrap or tenderloin.
- Place the roast on top of the bacon toward the lower third, not right in the center. Then, pull up the shorter pieces of bacon up to the backstrap on one side, then pull the longer pieces up and over the backstrap. Lift up the backstrap and tuck the longer pieces under the bottom of the backstrap.
- Place in a small, greased aluminum foil-lined roasting pan or baking dish. Bake at 375° for 20 to 25 minutes for medium-rare or 25 to 30 minutes for medium. Let roast stand in the pan 10 minutes. I often put the pan under the broiler the last 3 minutes to be sure and get the bacon crispy.
- Let the roast stand at 5 to 7 minutes. Cut roast on a cutting board and transfer to a serving platter.
Nutrition analysis on GritsAndGouda.com recipes are mostly calculated on an online nutrition calculator. I am not a dietitian and nutritional information is an estimate and can vary based on products used.
Cara J Jones
I can't thank you enough for this recipe.....my BF gave me some of his recent kills backstrap and I had NO IDEA where to start but wanted to surprise him....I googled and your recipe first popped up..... Gonna try it tonight... I'm sure it will be delicious.... Unfortunately he only eats meat well done so that's the only down fall....I don't want to burn the bacon .. Hoping if I wrap it all in foil for the first 6-7 minutes then unwrap and cook to YOUR specifications it'll be just as good.....thanks again for your post.
So glad you found my recipe and my site. I totally understand about wanting to cook red meat with no pink. Try baking it in the oven uncovered the first 25 minutes to get the bacon done, then loosely cover with foil for 10 minutes. For no pink at all you want your instant read thermometer to read 155 degrees. Let it rest on a cutting board for 5 minutes (covered with foil) and it should continue to rise to about 160 degrees. This will be well done and firm. If he likes a bit of pink, just cook a total of 30 minutes and check it. I hope you love it!
Turned out awesome! I love cooking, but I’m new to cooking with wild game so I was a little nervous. This recipe was the perfect in between (you can’t go wrong with bacon!) and so easy. I cooked ours for 22 minutes then broiled for 3 minutes. The texture was great and our whole family enjoyed it. Thank you!
Fantastic! I'm so glad you tried it and loved it! My husband is getting ready for deer season to start here in a few days in Alabama. This recipe is always first on our list to make. Thank you for sharing!
Can you marinade it in something other than teriyaki (not a fan of it)??
Absolutely! Here in the South, we have Dales Seasoning marinade and Moore's Marinade that will give it a very deep, rich flavor. You can also use store-bought marinades but be careful of those that say salad dressing and marinade together. Some salad dressings are thickened with ingredients other than oil emulsification. This tends to hinder the flavor penetrating the meat and even making it sticky. You can also use a mixture of Worcestershire or soy sauce with a bit of vegetable oil, garlic and onion powder.
Would you also recommend wrapping in deer bacon? Thanks!
I'm not sure how that would work, but I would love to hear if it works for you! Do you make your own deer bacon? If you try the roast with it, come back and share in the comments how it worked or share a pic on Facebook or Instagram and tag me @gritsandgouda or use #gritsandgouda. That's so interesting to me!
My husband grounds his deer at home & takes the rest to the butcher for bacon, sausage, ect. But I think I’m going to try it as we’re all out of pork & I’ll let you know how it is! Unfortunately, I don’t have social media so I’ll have to comment back on here.
Sure! I'd love to hear how you like it. Just leave a comment right here and I'll get it!
I’ve never left a comment on a recipe before but I just have to now.
I’m usually an awful cook but I was able to nail this thanks to your smooth instructions. Everyone was impressed! I got requests to make it again!
I also used Worcestershire sauce with oil, parsley, a tiny bit of syrup, and garlic powder instead of teriyaki sauce as the marinade. It gave it a more sweet flavor rather than salty which I think goes well with the bacon.
Using the aluminum wrapping method made the meat juicy and tender.
Incredible recipe which well written instructions. Definitely gonna make again. Thank you so much!
I am humbled and thrilled at the same time! I appreciate you leaving this comment so very much. I am most happy that this venison recipe worked well for you and you got requests to make it again. Thank you for sharing your success with me and I hope you will try more of my recipes!