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Venison Brine Recipe for Smoking: How to Smoke Roast with Ease

If you’re a fan of smoked meats and are looking for a new challenge, look no further than this venison brine recipe for smoking. Smoking venison is a fantastic way to enjoy the rich, gamey flavor of deer meat, and the right brine will ensure that your roast is tender and packed with flavor. In this blog post, we’ll walk you through the process of smoking a venison roast, from preparing the brine to cooking the meat to perfection. Let’s dive in!

Why Brine Your Venison Roast?

Brining is a process that involves soaking meat in a salty water solution, called a brine, for an extended period of time. This helps to break down the proteins in the meat, making it more tender and juicy. Brining is particularly useful for wild game meats like venison, which can sometimes be a bit tougher and drier than more common cuts of meat like beef or pork. Using a venison brine recipe for smoking will ensure that your roast is full of flavor and has a great texture.

A venison roast soaking in a flavorful brine

Preparing Your Venison Roast

Before you start the brining process, it’s essential to prepare your venison roast properly. First, remove any silver skin and excess fat from the roast, as these can cause the meat to be tough and chewy. Rinse the roast under cold water and pat it dry with paper towels. If you’re unsure about how to trim the roast, check out this guide on how to trim a venison roast.

A trimmed venison roast, ready for brining

Creating the Perfect Venison Brine Recipe for Smoking

Now that your roast is prepared, it’s time to create the brine. You can experiment with different flavors, but a basic brine for venison consists of water, kosher salt, brown sugar, black pepper, garlic cloves, and bay leaves. You can also add other ingredients like soy sauce, citrus juice, or maple sugar, depending on your taste preferences. The key is to ensure that the brine is well-balanced, with a mix of salty, sweet, and acidic flavors.

Various ingredients for a venison brine, including salt, brown sugar, and garlic cloves

Brining Your Venison Roast

Once you’ve prepared your brine solution, it’s time to let the venison soak. Place the roast in a large stainless steel pot or a large plastic container, then pour the brine over the meat, ensuring that it is completely submerged. Cover the container with a lid or saran wrap, and let the roast brine in the refrigerator for at least 24 hours. For best results, flip the roast halfway through the brining process to ensure that it brines evenly.

A venison roast submerged in brine in a large pot

Preparing Your Smoker or Pellet Grill

While your venison is brining, you can start preparing your smoker or pellet grill for the smoking process. Preheat your smoker or grill to 225°F (107°C) and prepare your wood chips by soaking them in water for at least 30 minutes. Fruit woods like apple wood or cherry wood are a great choice for smoking venison, as they impart a mild, sweet flavor that complements the rich taste of the meat.

A smoker with wood chips, ready for smoking venison

Smoking Your Venison Roast

After the venison has brined for at least 24 hours, remove it from the brine and pat it dry with paper towels. Apply a light coating of olive oil to the roast, and then apply your favorite dry rub. This can be as simple as a mixture of salt, pepper, and garlic powder, or you can try a more complex rub like this award-winning brisket rub recipe.

A venison roast coated in dry rub, ready for smoking

Place the roast on the smoker or grill grates, and insert a meat thermometer into the thickest part of the meat. Smoke the venison at 225°F (107°C) for 2-3 hours, or until it reaches an internal temperature of 135-140°F (57-60°C) for medium-rare. If you prefer your venison more well-done, continue smoking until it reaches your desired internal temperature. Be sure to monitor the temperature closely, as overcooking can cause the meat to become dry and tough.

A venison roast smoking on a grill

Resting and Slicing Your Smoked Venison Roast

Once the venison has reached your desired internal temperature, remove it from the smoker or grill and let it rest for at least 10-15 minutes. This allows the juices to redistribute throughout the meat, ensuring a tender, juicy result. When you’re ready to serve, slice the roast against the grain to maximize tenderness. Enjoy your delicious, smoked venison roast!

A smoked venison roast, rested and ready to be sliced

Final Thoughts on Venison Brine Recipe for Smoking

Smoking venison can be a rewarding and delicious way to enjoy wild game meat. By following this venison brine recipe for smoking and taking the time to properly prepare and cook your roast, you’ll be rewarded with a flavorful and tender meal that is sure to impress. Don’t be afraid to experiment with different brine ingredients and dry rubs to create a smoked venison dish that is uniquely your own.  Be sure and add one of my classic BBQ sides like greasy beans or sweet potato casserole to complete the meal. Happy smoking!

And if by chance this main course didn’t tickle your BBQ fancy, why don’t you try my Masterbuilt Smoked Brisket Recipe or Smoking a Fresh Ham in an Electric Smoker.

Smoky and Succulent Venison Brine Recipe for Smoking

Smoky and Succulent Venison Brine Recipe for Smoking

Yield: 2-3 Servings
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 4 hours

This venison brine recipe for smoking guarantees a tender, flavorful, and juicy result that will leave your taste buds begging for more. Say goodbye to dry, tough venison and hello to a smoky and succulent dish that will impress your friends and family.


  • 2 quarts cold water
  • 1/2 cup kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons black peppercorns
  • 2 tablespoons juniper berries
  • 2 tablespoons whole allspice
  • 1 tablespoon dried thyme
  • 1 tablespoon dried rosemary
  • 1 tablespoon ground ginger
  • 4 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 large onion, sliced
  • 2-3 pounds venison roast or steaks


  1. Combine the water, kosher salt, and brown sugar in a large pot. Stir until the salt and sugar are dissolved.
  2. Add the soy sauce, Worcestershire sauce, apple cider vinegar, black peppercorns, juniper berries, whole allspice, dried thyme, dried rosemary, ground ginger, crushed garlic, bay leaves, and sliced onion to the pot. Stir well to combine.
  3. Submerge the venison in the brine mixture, making sure it is fully covered. If needed, place a plate or other weight on top of the venison to keep it submerged.
  4. Cover the pot and refrigerate for 12-24 hours, turning the venison occasionally to ensure even brining.
  5. After the brining process is complete, remove the venison from the brine and pat dry with paper towels. Discard the brine mixture.
  6. Prepare your smoker according to the manufacturer's instructions. We recommend using a combination of fruitwood (such as apple or cherry) and hardwood (such as oak or hickory) for a well-rounded smoky flavor.
  7. Smoke the venison at 225°F for approximately 1.5 hours per pound, or until the internal temperature reaches 130°F - 140°F for medium-rare to medium doneness. The exact cooking time will depend on your smoker and the thickness of the venison.
  8. Remove the venison from the smoker and let it rest for 10-15 minutes before slicing. This allows the juices to redistribute and ensures a tender, juicy result.
  9. Slice the venison against the grain and serve with your favorite sides and sauces.


Brining and smoking the venison ensures a tender and juicy result, while also imparting a delicious smoky flavor. Try our venison brine recipe for smoking the next time you have venison on hand – you won't be disappointed!

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 6 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 450Total Fat: 12gSaturated Fat: 4gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 8gCholesterol: 180mgSodium: 2500mgCarbohydrates: 10gNet Carbohydrates: 9gFiber: 1gSugar: 8gSugar Alcohols: 0gProtein: 70g

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