Venison tenderloin, or deer tenderloin, makes an elegant main dish. The tenderloin is the premium cut and yields a rich, delicious recipe.

Venison Tenderloin Recipe from

I grew up going hunting and fishing with my Daddy. From pond fishing in the afternoons to spending all day on the lake to quail and pheasant hunting, I always looked forward to getting to go with him. He’d tell me stories of going hunting or fishing in the mornings before school and then his Mama cooking and serving it for their supper that evening. It was his way of life and one that I loved learning more and more about. I never proved to be a great shot and, regrettably, my interests turned to other things as I got older and our trips became less frequent and then stopped altogether. 

One thing that I continue to love and be intrigued by is the way of life my Daddy led as a little boy and the preparation of his reward from the hunt by my Grandmother.

Venison Tenderloin Recipe from

If you do not have venison tenderloin available to you, or prefer not to use it, you can substitute beef tenderloin for the venison in this recipe. Beef does not generally have as rich of a flavor as venison but benefits from the treatment of salting as does the venison.

Here’s my Venison Tenderloin recipe. I hope you love it as much as we do!

Venison Tenderloin Recipe

5 from 5 votes
Venison tenderloin, or deer tenderloin, makes an elegant main dish. The tenderloin is the premium cut and yields a rich, delicious recipe.
Prep Time: 1 hour
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
Servings: 8



  • Pat venison dry with paper towels. Place tenderloin onto a rimmed baking sheet lined with paper towels. Sprinkle salt onto both sides of the tenderloin and cover with additional paper towels. Refrigerate for four hours to overnight.
  • Remove from the refrigerator and allow to rest an hour before cooking. Add fresh black pepper, if desired.
  • Preheat grill, smoker, or oven to 400º F while the venison is resting. Roast tenderloin until it reaches an internal temperature of 140º F.
  • Remove and place on a cutting board to rest for 5 minutes. Cut into tenderloin medallions and serve with mushroom cream sauce, if desired.


Total time does not include resting time used in this recipe.


Calories: 156kcal | Carbohydrates: 1g | Protein: 10g | Fat: 12g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 5g | Cholesterol: 40mg | Sodium: 609mg | Potassium: 174mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 1IU | Calcium: 5mg | Iron: 1mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Robyn xo

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Robyn Stone is a cookbook author, wife, mom, and passionate home cook. Her tested and trusted recipes give readers the confidence to cook recipes the whole family will love. Robyn has been featured on Food Network, People, Southern Living, and more.

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Recipe Review


    1. Calvin, there is a section underneath the recipe where you can subscribe to emails from me with my latest posts and recipes. Just enter your email address and click Subscribe.

  1. 5 stars
    There is a difference between venison tenderloin and venison backstrap. They come from different parts of the deer. Should I fix both the same way?

  2. 5 stars
    Your recipe is great in every way. Allow me to be picky for a moment. Backstrap is not the same as tenderloin. The backstraps are the loin which are located along the spine closest to the skin. The tenderloins are much smaller, and are located on the underside of the spine closer to the internal organs.Both are tender and delicious cuts. Thanks for the recipe.

  3. Robyn, I am so excited to try this! We eat quite a bit of venison since my husband has a co-worker who gifts it to us, but I need more recipes. I am not very confident in the kitchen and have a question. I realize the cooking time will vary depending on the thickness and size of tenderloins, but please give me a ballpark on this. Is it going to be really quick, like five minutes? Or longer, like 20? I really have no idea. I have only grilled or cooked venison in a skillet. Thank you! And I am trying your simple pork recipe tonight.

  4. 5 stars
    That tenderloin in the picture looks far better than any venison I’ve ever had. Please make some for me! Haha.

    1. 5 stars
      Delicious. We added garlic and red onion to the creamy mushroom sauce and used 2%milk because that’s all we had.