Barbecued Venison Chuck Roast

Here’s a recipe for a deer roast that is located between the shoulder and the neck of the animal. This slow-roasting, low-temperature method is ideal for cooking lesser cuts of antlered game. Also, try it with the hindquarter roasts of older deer, elk, etc. that may be a little tough when cooked medium-rare. It is important to keep the temperature low, ideally at about 220 degrees. If you try and speed up the process by increasing the heat, the meat will dry out. The mopping sauce is critical to keeping the meat moist. With a larger roast, make a double batch and mop often. An average deer chuck roast will take about 4 hours to cook.

This is a typical Texas-style recipe for beef brisket. It calls for real wood barbecue smoke and a fair amount of patience. It can be done with a gas barbecue, but you won’t get the smoky flavors and the reddish smoke ring that forms around the outside edges of the meat. This recipe will not explore the technique of indirect cooking of meats. There are a number of good sources available that I recommend. The internet is full of free information or pick up any of the barbecue books by Steven Raichlen.

The size of the roast will determine the number of people the cooked roast will feed. Because of meat shrinkage and charring of the outside, allow about 1 pound of meat per person. If you happen to have any leftovers, the sliced meat is great on a sandwich.

Barbecued Venison Chuck Roast


The Rub

  • 1/2 cup Kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup coarse ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons paprika
  • 2 tablespoons garlic powder
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon each dried oregano leaves basil leaves and thyme (optional)

Combine rub ingredients.

    Moppin' Sauce

    • 2 cups water
    • 1/2 cup lemon juice
    • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
    • 1 stick butter melted
    • 1 tablespoon granulated garlic
    • 1 tablespoon onion powder

    Mix it up.

      The Finishing Sauce

      • 2 cups ketchup
      • 3 tablespoons Worcestershire
      • 1 tablespoon black pepper
      • 2 cloves garlic minced
      • 1 lemon juice only

      Cook all ingredients in a saucepan for 5 – 10 minutes over medium-low heat to blend flavors.


        • 1Trim deer roast of most visible silver skin, gristle and fat. Tie roast with string or butcher netting, if necessary. Work the rub into the roast. Place covered or wrapped roast in the refrigerator for 12-24 hours to let the flavor penetrate the meat.
        • Place the meat on the barbecue at the point farthest away from the heat source. If you are using a traditional kettle-type barbecue, spread the coals to the outside edges of the bottom grate and place the roast on the center of the top rack. Crack the vents on top and bottom just enough to keep the coals burning, but closed enough to keep the temperature low.
        • Apply the mopping sauce to the meat liberally every 30 - 40 minutes. Add a few briquettes or wood chunks as necessary to maintain smoke and minimal heat.
        • The meat is done when, if cooked at 200 - 220 degrees with plenty of smoke, it is black and crusty on the outside. The internal temperature will be about 150 degrees. About 30 minutes before removing the meat from the ‘cue, brush on the finishing sauce. You can also wrap it with foil to keep it moist.
        • Remove from the barbecue and allow the meat to rest for 15 minutes. Slice and serve with the finishing sauce.

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