Packaging and Storing Wild Game Meat

August 13, 2020

Image of pork, food, confectionery, sweets

You just killed that huge buck you’ve been chasing all season. You field dressed him, hung him in for a week, and deboned all the meat. Now, you need to package the meat in a way that will ensure it stays fresh during the entirety of its time in the freezer, whether it is eaten a week from now, or in a year. Now is not the time to break out the gallon freezer bags and cross your fingers. You already spent months shooting your bow or rifle, scouting your spots, and were finally rewarded for your hard work, so don’t get lazy now. Here are some steps and tricks to help ensure that you will be able to enjoy the fruits (meats) of your labor for months to come.

Trimming

How you trim your meat comes down to personal preference. However, there are some steps that will help your meat last longer and taste better. First off, animals like deer do not have the same kind of fat as a cow or pig. Unlike beef or pork, deer fat does not render well and has an unpleasant waxy mouthfeel. It also tends to spoil in the freezer. Because of this, it is important to remove all of the fat from your deer meat before packaging it for the freezer. On the other hand, animals like wild hog or bison have delicious fat that will only add to the flavor of your game meat. Second, whether you trim the silver skin from your meat is up to you. Taking it off makes things easier when you go to cook it down the line, and if you plan to give any of the meat away, the recipient will receive an aesthetically pleasing piece of meat ready for the grill. However, leaving the silver skin intact acts as a barrier against freezer burn and other degradation. Because of this, if the person that will be cooking does not mind removing it later on, we suggest you keep it as is.

Packaging your Meat

Vacuum Seal

Vacuum sealing your meat is a great option for several types of game. When it comes to game birds like pheasant or ducks, the vacuum sealer preserves them exceptionally well. This process also works very well for packaging any type of ground meat. We recommend sealing your ground meat in thin sheets, as this greatly reduces the time required to defrost before cooking. In addition, meat from a deer or elk can be sealed with a marinade that helps reduce the amount of prep time down the line.

Paper

The best technique for preserving cuts of red meat from animals like a deer or elk utilizes plastic wrap and waxed butchers paper. Here, you want to lightly dry your meat with a paper towel, wrap it tightly in plastic wrap until it is completely contained, and finish it with a tight wrap of the waxed paper, much like your butcher wraps a steak at the meat counter. This method works very well for these big game cuts and is extremely effective at protecting against freezer burn.

Now that you know how to store your meat to maximize its longevity, the next step is to find your next buck. Search trips on HuntAnywhere.com today, and book your next hunting adventure with confidence!

 

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