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Venison Breakfast Sausage Recipe

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This Venison Breakfast Sausage recipe is easy and delicious! Make your own. Here is a step by step tutorial that will make you a pro.

It has less fat and calories than pork, so you can eat it guilt free. It’s great in casseroles, stuffing or dressing mixes, breakfast sandwiches, any place you would use pork sausage.

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Venison sausage coil with fresh herbs for garnish.Pin
Venison Breakfast Sausages

Not only can making your own sausage save you lots of money in game processing, it is fun and easy.

It seems many us forget when we go to the grocers and buy meat that we are buying an animal that someone else has harvested and processed. This ends up costing us so much more than when we do it ourselves.

Links of sausage cooked with breakfast foods.Pin

Making sausage with venison is a great way to stretch a buck (pun intended 🙂 ).

Venison is Healthier than Beef and Pork

Notice the word healthier. This sausage is not necessarily health food. Just healthier because of the use of venison.

It is so much healthier than pork or beef breakfast sausage, because Venison Sausage is lower in fat. According to Outdoor Life, venison contains roughly half of the calories and 1/6th of the saturated fat. A much healthier choice.

Venison even has 10% less fat than chicken breast, according to this article from Superfoodly.

 Photo of Great Sausage Recipes and Meat Curing book by Rytek KutasPin

The original recipe concept came from Great Sausage and Meat Curing, by Rytek Kutas. As you can see on the cover Chef Craig Claiborne calls it the “most definitive manual on sausage making in the English language.

That is pretty high praise. This recipe is an authentic, traditional sausage recipe that lends itself beautifully to venison.

Do I have to add fat?

The simple answer is yes. Venison fat is not really suited for cooking. It also is not very flavorful.

Because venison is so low in fat, it needs the extra fat to add flavor and to ensure the meat doesn’t not become dry and fall apart.

For our venison burgers, we like to use beef steak trimmings. They give the burgers the best flavor and texture. For the sausage however, we like to use ground pork. It has a more mild flavor so that the venison and spices are the stars.

Buy a pork shoulder or pork butt and grind your own. Use both the meat and fat, when you grind the pork. Look for a marbled cut, so that it has a greater fat content. Ask your favorite butcher. It will save you lots of money!

You want to use about 30% pork / 70% venison for the sausage. This will give you the best flavor and texture. You can go as low as 20% pork but you may be disappointed with the outcome.

Eggs potatoes and sausage with toast and garnished with orange slices.Pin

Do you need to put the sausage in casings?

Sometimes you just want a nice cased sausage for breakfast with your pancakes and eggs. But other times, it doesn’t matter.

Many times we don’t even bother casing the sausage. It’s just an added step and if we’re doing a recipe that calls the removal of the meat from the casing why bother?

Whichever way you choose to go the sausage will be delicious.

Spiral roll of venison sausage with herbs.Pin

What casings to choose?

The casing you choose will depend on the size of the sausage you wish to case. Traditionally breakfast sausage are small and are actually lamb casings.

If you want larger breakfast sausage or you are making Italian, Polish, chorizo, then use hog casings.

The photograph above we made them with hog casings because lamb casings were not available. Either way will work fine.

Hog casings are much easier to case and have a tendency to tear less than lamb casings.

Sausage in hog casings tends to freeze better for a longer period of time.

Where to find casings for sausage

Most grocery butcher departments carry casings. All you have to do is ask. Lamb casings may or may not be available. Casings can also be obtained at most local butchers and are very inexpensive.

open faced venison breakfast sandwich with sausage, egg and cheesePin

What you need

  • ground venison
  • ground pork
  • kosher salt
  • white pepper
  • ground sage
  • ground thyme
  • ice water
Ingredients for sausage- venison, pork, thyme, sage, salt, curing salt.Pin

Optional ingredients

  • ground hot pepper
  • freshly ground nutmeg
  • ground ginger
  • Try adding pure maple syrup and make a maple breakfast sausage.
  • Add some brown sugar if you like a sweeter sausage.
  • If you like a spicy sausage, add red pepper flakes or ground cayenne pepper.

Seasoning for Deer Sausage

The seasoning for venison breakfast is a mild, but flavorful blend of sage, thyme and salt. That is it. No huge secret! No fillers, msg, or corn syrup. Just meat and seasoning.

Once you get the basic recipe for sausage down, feel free to make other sausage types. Italian, beer and cheese, chorizo, Polish, the flavor combinations are endless really. We even made smoked Venison Summer Sausage.

We love asiago with roasted peppers and spinach. It’s fantastic. Red wine, parsley and cheese is another keeper.

How to Make Deer Breakfast Sausage

  1. Add measured spices to a container with a lid.
  2. Shake container to mix spices together well
  3. Measure ice water.
  4. Add ice water to spices. Mix well.How to make seasoning photo collage. See recipe for details.Pin
  5. Grind deer meat and pork.
  6. Place meat in large container, preferably with a lid.
  7. Chill meat to 32-35°F. Add spices and ice water to the meat.
  8. Mix well with hands or a mixer.
  9. Immediately return to refrigerator and chill overnight. Case sausage or bulk wrap in freezer paper, or vacuum pack. See below for casing instructions.
How to mix sausage photo collage. See recipe for details.Pin

How to case sausage

You can case sausage in lamb casing for small, breakfast sausage style links or in hog casings for more of a Canadian breakfast sausage vibe.

  1. Soak casings in ice water to remove some of the salt that they are packed in. Rinse under very cold water well.
  2. Feed casing over the sausage stuffer attachment of your grinder.
  3. Twist the end of the casing. Load ground meat in hopper.
How to case sausage photo collage. See recipe below for details.Pin

Turn on grinder. Push the sausage down with the pusher tool slowly. Carefully guide the casing to fill up the space inside.

Do not overfill because casing may break. If the casing breaks, turn the grinder off. Pinch down and twist the end where the break is. Cut the casing with clean scissors

Twist the other end and continue to stuff the casings. The goal is to get the meat to evenly fill the out the casing without leaving lots of large air holes.

Especially when starting out with the process it is so much easier to have 2 people. One to load and feed the hopper, the other to guide the casing.

If you get a lot of large air holes after the casing process, poke them with a sharp knife or sterile pin or needle if you don’t they may pop when cooking.

 Close up of venison breakfast sausage sandwich on a toasted hard roll with melted cheese and egg yolk drips on side of sandwichPin

Use within two days or freeze for longer storage

Deer Sausage can be frozen

Yes, but… the only caution I have is don’t make too much! Sausage has a tendency to get freezer burned more quickly than other forms of meat.

Frozen breakfast sausage is best if used within 1 month and Italian, Chorizo and Polish are best if used with 3-4 months. Vacuum packing will lengthen the freezer life slightly but not indefinitely. Using a good vacuum sealer is the best way to store it however.

If you don’t have a vacuum packer, wrap portions in plastic wrap or freezer paper and then place it inside of a freezer bag. Remove as much air as possible. Double wrapping will help prevent freezer burn.

The thing I do, is make several small batches, whenever I like during the year. I label the freezer bag with “for ground” when we process the deer. Then I will take out a few pounds and grind it and make it into sausage.

Coil of uncooked sausage of brown paper.Pin

Pro tips for success

  • Chill grinder parts well before grinding meat.
  • Partially frozen (or very cold at the least) meat is best to grind.
  • Always return meat to refrigerator immediately, between steps.
  • Always use very clean hands, or food grade gloves when working with the meat.
  • If using utensils to mix, make sure they are extra clean.
  • Freeze immediately after wrapping for storage.
  • Keeping sausage cold is the key to food safety.
  • When letting rest overnight place container on the bottom shelf in back, where the temperature is coldest.
  • Best to use frozen sausage within one month, for best flavor.

How to cook it

The key with a lot of venison preparations is to not overcook the meat. Since you are adding pork fat, you should cook the sausage to at least 160°F.

Just do not exceed that temperature. It has a tendency to dry out, depending on the fat content of your mixture.

How to use it

  • Serve with breakfast foods like pancakes, French toast, waffles, eggs, etc.
  • Make sausage gravy and serve it with homemade biscuits for a delicious Southern inspired breakfast.
  • Use it for breakfast sandwiches or casseroles.
  • It makes delicious stuffing or dressing for chicken or pork.

Want to learn more about How to Cook Venison? Don’t miss our awesome, Ultimate Guide! Complete with 65 FREE Recipes from some of the top venison recipe developers in the world!

Large breakfast plate with sausage links.Pin

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I hope you enjoyed the recipe today.

Enjoy. And have fun cooking!

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Whirl of venison breakfast sausage on brown paper.Pin

Venison Breakfast Sausage

This Venison Breakfast Sausage recipe is easy and delicious! Make your own. Here is a step by step tutorial that will make you a pro.
See Step by Step Photos Above!Most of our recipes have step by step photos and videos! Also helpful tips so that you can make it perfectly the first time and every time! Scroll up to see them!
4.88 from 25 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Breakfast, Main Course
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes
Servings: 10 pounds
Calories: 756kcal
Author: Beth Neels
Cost: $5


  • 6 2/3 pounds ground venison
  • 2 1/3 pounds ground pork ( I use whatever cut is on sale)
  • 4 Tablespoons kosher salt
  • 1 Tablespoon ground white pepper
  • 2 Tablespoons sage, dried
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 pint Ice water
  • hog casings if you choose to case them
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon hot ground pepper optional
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg optional
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon ginger optional


  • Grind meat through 3/8" grinder plate through meat grinder.
    6 2/3 pounds ground venison, 2 1/3 pounds ground pork
  • Place meat in a container large enough to mix in, preferably with a lid.
  • Chill meat thoroughly. (Recommended temperature is 32-35°F)
  • Mix spices in a container with a lid and shake to combine.
    4 Tablespoons kosher salt, 1 Tablespoon ground white pepper, 2 Tablespoons sage, dried, 1 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme, 1 1/2 teaspoon hot ground pepper, 1 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg, 1 1/2 teaspoon ginger
  • Add ice water to spices.
    1 pint Ice water
  • Add spices to meat. Mix thoroughly using hands or a mixer.
  • Return again to refrigerator and refrigerate overnight for flavors to develop.
  • Case sausage or wrap bulk sausage in freezer paper or vacuum pack.
    hog casings if you choose to case them
  • Best if used within 1 month.
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The optional spices are in the original recipe I based this on.
We prefer it without those spices.
Will last about 2 days, uncooked in refrigerator.
Reheat in microwave.
Strive to keep the meat as cold as possible, for food safety.
You can also pack in lamb casings for small breakfast sausage.
Store sausage in packages large enough to serve your family one serving, we store in packages containing about 16 ounce.
Wrap sausage well, before freezing, to prevent freezer burn.
Best if used within 1 month.
To cook sausage, 
  1. Add olive oil to a frying pan or cast iron skillet. 
  2. Form venison patties or slice off portions of link sausage.
  3. Fry sausage until internal temperature reaches 160°F. Do not overcook.
  4. Let sausage rest for about 5 minutes before eating.
Serving suggestions:
  • serve sausage with fried or hashed brown potatoes.
  • top with egg
  • make sausage breakfast casserole for the holidays with eggs, onion, garlic, potatoes, bacon, salt and freshly ground black pepper and cheese, Mix all ingredients in a large bowl and pour in a casserole dish. Bake at 350°F for about 40-50 minutes.
  • Add sausage to quiche.


Serving: 1lb | Calories: 756kcal | Protein: 83g | Fat: 44g | Saturated Fat: 18g | Cholesterol: 318mg | Sodium: 3079mg | Potassium: 1305mg | Vitamin A: 35IU | Vitamin C: 1.2mg | Calcium: 60mg | Iron: 10mg
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This post may contain affiliate links, which means I get a small commission if you click the link and purchase something. See FTC Disclosure, here.

Originally Published 11/27/2015 Updated with new photos and content 4/18/2021


  1. This is seriously the BEST deer sausage I’ve ever tried! I had pork skins with fat from a hog we butchered. I pulled the skin from that and used it. PERFECT! Thank you so much for sharing.

    1. I am so glad you like it Samantha! That sounds great using pork fat that was home grown! Thanks for letting me know!

  2. 5 stars
    Oh wow! I have not had venison in so long. I absolutely love how you used the sausage to make that breakfast sandwich. Looks incredible.

  3. 5 stars
    It’s been awhile since I’ve had venison. This breakfast sausage looks like the perfect addition to start your day!

  4. 5 stars
    This looks so delicious and yummy! My husband is going to love this recipe! I can’t wait to give this a try! So excited!

  5. I hoped to have an answer to my prior question related to the picture of the spices. There is a Paprika or Chili colored spice in the photo that is not listed in the ingredients. Can you please clarify this for me? Thank you.

    1. Hi Gary, I don’t have a previous question from you. Perhaps my spam filter deleted it. Sorry. Anyway, the red spice in the photo is hot ground pepper. We decided we prefer the sausage without it. I have edited the recipe and included the spices that we eliminated as optional. If you would like a bit of heat, feel free to add it. Thanks for checking out the recipe! Again, sorry if I missed your question earlier!

  6. Thanks for your yummy recipe! My husband just got our first deer yesterday so we will be making this tomorrow! I always thought you can’t refreeze food, but you mentioned that you will freeze your venison and then later make the sausages and then keep them for a month. After you make your sausages do refreeze them for a month or keep them in the fridge for a month? Thanks in advance for your advice!

    1. Any that we do not eat in a few days, I refreeze, so I only make small quantities at a time. You need to use them up within a month, or the flavor suffers. Thanks for checking out the recipe Yasmina! Congrats on your first deer! They are fun and delicious to cook!

    1. The photo with the red spice is paprika. It is for venison chorizo, which used to be on this post, as well. I am in the process of redoing the shots. Did you not like the sausage, Jenn? I see you gave it only 3 stars.

  7. 5 stars
    I don’t think I have ever stumbled upon Rytek Kutas books before… But looking at your recipe now I realize that perhaps I should do something about that because the images look stunning!

  8. 5 stars
    I love venison and making my own sausages too! You’re so right about knowing what’s in them, it seems even more important these days, right? I’m always looking for new venison recipes so thanks for sharing this one, can’t wait to try it, YUM!!

  9. 5 stars
    These photos are awesome! Love that you used venison, I can’t wait to move up north so my hubby and son can bring some venison home!

  10. 5 stars
    Sharing this with my uncle! He has made a goal to be cooking more now that he’s on his own and this is right up his alley! Thanks!

    1. Thank you, Ann! I appreciate the invitation! It’s strange it was down for a bit 2 days and now has been working fine all week!

  11. My spouse and I stumbled over here from a different web page and thought I may as well check things
    out. I like what I see so i am juust following you.
    Look forward to going over yoour web page yet again.

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