Venison, also known as game meat, is not a type of ingredient that holds a strong bond with any food culture. Still, these days, people are trying out venison as a substitute for beef or mutton in dishes like steak, burger, stew, etc. as deer hunting is becoming a type of hobby for some people.

But exactly what spices go well with venison? It can never be cooked like other meats. Dishes made using venison might taste and smell bad if the seasonings don’t fit too well. 

So, it is important to add seasonings and spices that reduce the strong flavor of the meat and make dishes perfectly eatable. Here, we are about to show you some of the common and available spices needed to be used in venison dishes for the perfect taste.

What You Need to Use 

According to chefs across the world, there are more than 20 spices that you can use with venison. But you don’t need to use every one of them in a dish. Depending on the type of dish, some of them need to be added to your ingredients list.

Below here, I am mentioning some of the common spices that you must use to strike against the raw taste of venison. 


No matter which wild meat you are going to cook, sage is always a must-go herb along with other spices. The rich-flavored aroma and freshness of greenery-dried sage can fade the gamey flavor of venison. It not only makes it tastier but also gives a robust tangy kick to the recipe.

The taste of sage goes higher after freezing the meat (after preparing using deer meat grinders for better merinate) for some time. So, it must be used at the beginning of cooking.


To reduce the heaviness of venison, rosemary plays a vital role while cooking. The strong meat taste is cut off with an added natural minty flavor if rosemary is rubbed on the meats before cooking. Whether you cook with veggies or stew the meat, adding rosemary will give a mouth-watering vibe.

If you want to add a slightly bitter and peppery taste to your venison, then rosemary can be the perfect ingredient every time.

Juniper Berries

The best way to tame the gaminess of wild meat like venison is to add an acidic citrus flavor. In such cases, juniper berries can be used easily. It reduces the meaty odor greatly and adds a strong sizzling taste to the venison making it more tempting.

Juniper berries can be used after crushing them and marinade before cooking or can be simply added with other spices.

Fennel Seeds

Venison can be made more delicious if an extra sweet texture is added along with the spicy kick. For this reason, fennel seeds or cumin can be used. These small seeds can enhance the seasoning flavors by adding an aromatic and sweet taste while chewing through the meat.

Crushed or baked fennel seeds can be used in the curry to spice up the overall tang of the meat perfectly.

Chili Seasoning

One of the most important taste factors to be fulfilled for cooking a delicious venison recipe is chili seasoning. The spicier kick in every bite will result in a more heavenly flavor. To make this seasoning, all you need to mix is salt, onion powder, paprika, garlic powder, and cayenne pepper.

The gamey flavor gets nullified perfectly when the chili seasoning is added to the venison. The curry broth and meat both get tastier with this chili seasoning.


Coriander is a must-go ingredient for cooking venison. It enhances the taste of other spices and fades meaty texture by adding an aromatic and refreshing taste. The tender venison meat gets a sweet tang and natural floral aroma if ground coriander is sprinkled while cooking.

Oregano and Nutmeg

Apart from paprika and garlic powder, the role of oregano and nutmeg is a must to add an enhanced savory flavor to the venison. A sizzling taste of the oregano and smoky curry of the nutmeg texture completes the wild meat recipes perfectly. So, the meat must be rubbed properly with these spices before cooking them.

Bay Leaves

The strong aromatic flavor of the bay leaves is an ideal factor to eliminate the gaminess of the venison. The slow release of the natural flavor of the bay during cooking can increase the richness of the meats greatly. Besides, the curry or broth of the meat is highly influenced by the aroma and fades the excessive meaty smell.

The bay leaves can be removed from the dish before serving to keep a constant taste of the venison.

Savory Herb

To make your venison recipes more flavorful and aromatic, the savory herb can be used while marinating other spices. An earthy and bitter taste is added with the meats if savory herbs are sprinkled on top while stewing. Whether you chop or add full savory herbs, the taste will get heavenly every time.

Dry Rub

To eliminate all types of meaty and gamey odor from venison, all the meat pieces must be dry-rubbed with all the necessary spices and herbs. A spice seasoning with salt, pepper, crushed coriander, and rosemary will give a smoky and aromatic layer on wild meats.

Using these dry rubbing processes will result in perfectly barbequed or stewed venison by removing meaty flavor.

Final Words

One of the most difficult challenges that is faced while cooking venison is to tame the gaminess of the meats. In this case, the seasoning of different spices and herbs can fade such odor by adding various natural flavors to the meat. Marinating the meats with spices for a couple of hours before cooking will give better results.

By choosing the correct spices and herb ingredients for your wild meat, you can make delicious venison recipes with the goodness of heavenly taste every time.