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Easy Wild Game Meat Recipes with Matt Pittman

WriterAcademy Staff
10 min read
Matt Pittman

Take Your “Game” to the Next Level

Matt Pittman – renowned pitmaster and founder and CEO of Meat Church BBQ – is dedicated to helping you add bolder flavor to the game meats you cook up on your grill, smoker, or outdoor cookware.

Watch below to see Matt share three easy wild game recipes that will turn your hunting season meats into memorable and delicious meals the whole family will enjoy.

Chicken Fried Elk with Granny’s Gravy

Bringing some elk meat to the table this hunting season? Check out Matt’s tips for elevating a tougher meat cut with one of his favorite game recipes, including a cherished gravy his grandmother created.

Chicken Fried Elk Ingredients

  • 1 ½ c. AP Flour
  • 2 tbsp.
  • 2 tbsp.
  • 4 - 6 lbs. elk, tenderized
  • 3 c. frying oil (Peanut recommended)
  • 4 Eggs
  • ½ can of beer (optional beer choice)

Gravy Ingredients

  • ½ c. High quality, unsalted butter
  • 5 tbsp. All-purpose flour
  • 2 ½ c. milk
  • Meat Church Holy Cow

Frying Oil Preparation
Heat the oil to 325°F degrees in a Dutch oven or deep, heavy cast iron skillet.

Wash Preparation
Whisk the eggs then whisk in the beer. Set aside.

Steak Preparation
Tenderize elk round steak or cut of your choosing and lightly season both sides with Meat Church Holy Cow and then set aside.

Dredge Preparation
Mix 1 ½ c. All-Purpose flour and 2 tbsp. of Meat Church Holy Voodoo.

Batter the steaks
Coat tenderized and seasoned steaks in the chicken fried steak dredge Then dip the dredged steaks in the egg wash. Finally, re-coat the steak thoroughly in the breading again. So breading, wash, breading for maximum coverage.

Fry the Steaks
Once all steaks are coated and oil is at temperature, carefully place the steak in the hot oil. Cook from three to four minutes. Turn the steak and repeat on the other side or until golden brown. You can keep steaks warm in a cast iron skillet in your oven on the lowest setting while you fry more steaks.

Granny’s Gravy
Melt the butter in a medium saucepan on medium heat. Whisk in the flour. Cook until the flour starts to brown and starts to smell fragrant. Slowly add 2 ½ c. of milk, whisking constantly to prevent clumping. Simmer while continuing to stir until it thickens and add the Holy Cow to taste.

Did you know? Elk is becoming a more popular meat option because of its savory flavor, natural sustainability, low fat, low cholesterol, and high protein health benefits.

Smoked Whole Quail with Jalapeno Cheese Grits

Quail hunting has been the most popular game bird hunt in the sport over the years. If you want to take your quail meat to the next level, Matt has the perfect recipe for creating this juicy and scrumptious quintessential Texas dish.

Smoked Quail Ingredients

  • 4-8 Whole quail
  • 3 Large lemons, sliced and quartered
  • 3-5 Cloves of garlic, minced
  • 3 Sprigs fresh rosemary, minced
  • 2-3 Sprigs fresh rosemary, whole and bound
  • 4 tbsp. Butter, melted
  • Meat Church Holy Cow BBQ Rub

Jalapeno Cheesy Grits Ingredients

  • 3-4 c. Chicken stock (3 cups will produce stiffer grits, 4 cups be looser in consistency)
  • 1-2 tbsp. Meat Church Holy Voodoo BBQ Seasoning
  • 2 tbsp. Minced fresh Jalapeño
  • 1 c. Stone ground grits
  • ¼ c. Heavy cream
  • 1 c. Grated sharp cheddar cheese
  • 2 tbsp. Butter
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Quail Cooking Instructions

Set your smoker to 375°F. If you want a smoker flavor, set smoker to 250°F, but the skin will become tougher

  1. Stuff quail with lemons and minced garlic. Mix minced rosemary into melted butter and use bound rosemary sprigs to spread mixture all over quail.
  2. Liberally apply Meat Church Holy Cow BBQ Rub onto all sides of the quail.
  3. Place quail on grates back side down. Once the quail hits a 165°F internal temp, take off the smoker.

Jalapeno Cheesy Grits

  1. Bring 3 or 4 cups chicken stock to a boil in a medium saucepan. Turn the heat to medium-high.
  2. Add grits, stirring constantly for the first two to three minutes to be sure it doesn't clump.
  3. Turn heat to low and cover the pot. Cook grits for 30 minutes (preferably 45-60 minutes) stirring occasionally to keep the grits from sticking to the bottom of the pan.
    NOTE: If grits start to dry out---add a little warm water (about an ⅛ of a cup at a time) to the pan and stir to incorporate.
  4. After grits reach a creamy texture (30-60 minutes) remove from heat. Stir in ¼ cup heavy cream. Add butter, cheddar, and minced jalapeño, stirring to combine. Whisk in Holy Voodoo BBQ Seasoning for an extra flavorful kick.
  5. Cook about five additional minutes for desired consistency.

Bacon-Wrapped Venison Tenderloin with Chimichurri Sauce

Sure, you already love venison…But what about venison wrapped in bacon??

Watch how Matt Pittman turns this venison recipe into a snackable crowd-pleaser packed with flavorful and savory melt-in-your-mouth bliss.

Bacon Wrapped Venison Tenderloin Ingredients

  • 1 - 2 Venison tenderloin, backstrap, or strip loin
  • 1 Package bacon
  • Meat Church Holy Cow BBQ Rub

Chimichurri Sauce Ingredients

  • 6 Cloves garlic, finely
  • 1 Shallot, minced
  • 1 Jalapeno, chopped fine
  • 2 Bunches cilantro, chopped
  • 1 Bunch flat leaf parsley, chopped
  • 1/3 c. fresh oregano, chopped fine
  • 3/4 c. extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 c. red wine vinegar
  • 1 lemon, juiced

Chimichurri Sauce

Pour the cilantro, parsley, and oregano into a mixing bowl. Add the garlic, shallot, jalapeños, lemon juice, vinegar, and olive oil into the bowl. Whisk and allow to sit refrigerated for five to ten minutes.

NOTE: The sauce is best if you cover and chill it for a few hours to let the flavors fully meld together.

Bacon Wrapped Venison Cooking Instruction

  1. Prepare your smoker with the wood or pellet of your choice (anything but fruit wood) to get up to 250°F.
  2. Remove silver skin using a sharp boning knife. Lightly season all sides of venison with Meat Church Holy Cow BBQ Rub.
  3. Wrap venison in a single layer with bacon. Using chilled bacon makes handling it easier. Lightly season the bacon wrapped venison with Meat Church Holy Cow or Meat Church seasoning of your choice.
  4. Once smoker is to temperature, place venison directly on the grates. Wild Game is lean, and you will want to cook to a final temp under what you would typically do for a piece of beef. Shoot for a final internal temperature between 125°F to 128°F. Use a meat thermometer to nail the temp and get the best results.
  5. Once your venison has reached temperature, remove, and let rest for 15 minutes. You can loosely tent with foil.
  6. Slice up the venison and either spoon the chimichurri sauce over your venison or use as a dip. Enjoy!

Find all of your favorite Meat Church seasonings and rubs along with other outdoor cooking essentials in-store and online at Academy Sports + Outdoors.