Deer meat, commonly known as venison, is the best alternative for red meat. It is high in protein with low fats and lesser calories. Smoking dear meat is a bit different from smoking other types of meat. The reason being; deer meat is a bit leaner than other meat types, which means it can dry out quickly if you do not keep on basting it with sauce or cooking oil while smoking. It would not be wrong to refer to deer meat as luxury meat – to be handled with extreme care.
There are a few tips that you can follow to get juicy and tender smoker deer meat when cooked in an electric smoker.
Step 1: Removing excess fat
Unlike beef, deer fat tastes odd. It is preferable to clean off all the excess fat from the meat, or it becomes too chewy after smoking. Also, deer fat does not taste good at all and does not add to the meat’s tenderness as well.
Step 2: Marinate or brining the meat
There are two ways to smoke venison; brining and marinade. If you wish to brine your meat, you will need to soak your meat for 14 to 18 hours in brine solution and then prepare to smoke. If you plan to marinate, you have loads of options from the seasonings and sauces. You will have to marinate the meat for at least 24 hours before smoking.
Step 3: Choosing wood chips
Hickory chips are most recommended for smoking venison. It gives the perfect aroma and enhances the original taste of venison. Soak the wood chips in water for 2 hours before using them in the electric smoker.
Step 4: Getting the electric smoker ready
Preheating is the primary step here. Preheat your electric smoker at 250 degrees after adding the soaked wood chips. You have to keep the smoke levels light, so adjust the vents accordingly. For adjustment tips, go through the user manual of your electric smoker. When you see white smoke coming out of the smoker, it means your smoker has reached the desired temperature and is ready to be used.
Step 5: Place the meat on grill grates
Open the lid of the smoker using a mitten so you do not burn your hand, and place the meat on grill grates. Close the lid of your electric smoker and check for doneness once the internal temperature of the meat reaches 140 degrees. You can use a kitchen thermometer to check the internal temperature of the meat after 2 hours. Also, a mopping sauce will help the meat to retain the tenderness and keep it moist. You can apply the mopping sauce on the meat after every 2 hours while it is in the smoker.
It will take around 5 or 6 hours for a 5-pound piece of meat to be smoked and removed from the electric smoker.
Step 6: Remove the venison
Once the meat has reached the desired doneness level, it can be carefully removed from the electric smoker. Wrap the meat in aluminum foil for around 10 minutes to retain the moisture and tenderness of the meat. You can then cut and slice the meat as per the preferable serving style.
Related Guide: How to Smoke a Salmon in an Electric Smoker?