Skip to main content

Happy Thanksgiving: Best Thanksgiving Wild Game Recipes

This is the ultimate guide to making the most out of your Thanksgiving meal.

Happy Thanksgiving: Best Thanksgiving Wild Game Recipes

Impress friends and family this holiday with an elaborate roast quail and stuffing dish from Tom Minchella. (Photo courtesy of Tom Minchella)

Print Recipe

Thanksgiving is one of the greatest holidays of the year. It is a special time when family and friends come together and reflect on the past year and everything they are thankful for. Creating a meal with your own wild game meat adds a personal touch to this great holiday. Whether it is wild turkey, duck, goose or venison, the recipes below are sure to impress your friends and family at your Thanksgiving meal. - Recipes compiled by Game & Fish Staff

Balsamic Roast Quail With Sage Chestnut Stuffing Recipe

This Balsamic Roast Quail With Sage Chestnut Stuffing Recipe is the perfect recipe for a festive, fancy feast this season.

Stuffing Ingredients:

  • ½ pound fresh chestnuts
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 tablespoon chopped garlic
  • ½ cup chopped onions
  • ½ cup chopped celery
  • 6 slices stale bread, broken into pieces
  • ½ cup chicken broth
  • ½ tablespoon chopped fresh sage
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper

Quail Ingredients:

  • 8 fresh quail
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • ¼ cup balsamic vinegar
  • Salt and pepper

Get the Recipe: Balsamic Roast Quail With Sage Chestnut Stuffing Recipe

Homemade Turkey Brine Recipe

Homemade Turkey Brine Recipe
Soak your turkey for 12 hours in turkey brine before cooking. (Photo courtesy of TheKohser via Wikimedia Commons)

This is the best turkey brine recipe to use. It's perfect for deep frying, smoking or roasting – it's hands down the BEST. To be honest, I don't want to try another. This recipe is great because the compliments are never-ending ...

Use a fresh, unfrozen turkey for the best flavor.


Get the Recipe: Homemade Turkey Brine Recipe

'Best Turkey Ever' Recipe

'Best Turkey Ever' Recipe
You can baste your turkey ‘till the cows come home, but all that does is make the skin crispier. The basting ritual doesn’t help make the breast meat juicy – putting it in a cooler does. Give this ‘Best Turkey Ever’ Recipe a try and see for yourself, you won’t be disappointed.

If you want to enjoy the best-tasting Thanksgiving turkey ever, try this recipe involving a cooler from "The Sporting Chef"


  • 1 gallon water (or more depending on the size of your turkey)
  • 1 cup kosher salt (or ¾ table salt)
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 trussed turkey
  • 2 onions, cut into wedges
  • Chopped celery
  • Chopped carrots
  • Chicken broth

Get the Recipe: 'Best Turkey Ever' Recipe

Grilled Goose Breasts With Chestnut Stuffing Recipe

grilled goose recipe
Serve these grilled goose breasts with chestnut stuffing and a vegetable of your choice. (Photo courtesy of Jacques Haeringer)

Chef Jacques Haeringer shows you how to prepare his mouthwatering grilled goose breasts with chestnut stuffing.

Chestnut Stuffing Ingredients:

  • 1 pound fresh chestnuts
  • 4 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • ½ pound pork shoulder, cubed
  • ½ pound veal, cubed
  • ½ pound pork belly, cubed
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 1 cup dried bread
  • ½ cup milk
  • 3 eggs, beaten
  • 2 teaspoons sea salt
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • ½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • ½ teaspoon minced garlic

Goose Ingredients:

  • 4 wild goose breasts
  • 2 tablespoons oil
  • Sea salt
  • Freshly ground pepper

Get the Recipe: Grilled Goose Breasts With Chestnut Stuffing Recipe

Sweet Potato Eggplant Gravy Recipe

Sweet Potato Eggplant Gravy Recipe
This gravy recipe has sweet potato and eggplant as the key ingredients, for a unique twist that will make you never go back to traditional gravy.

With Thanksgiving coming up quickly, what better way to get tasty recipes than from your fellow Florida Sportsman members?


  • ½ cup drippings from the Turducken, plus the reserved duck skin
  • 4 cups peeled and chopped eggplants
  • 1 ½ cups chopped onions
  • 1 cup peeled and finely-chopped sweet potatoes
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 1 ½ teaspoons salt
  • 1 ½ teaspoons white pepper
  • 1 ½ teaspoons cayenne
  • 1 teaspoon dry mustard
  • ½ teaspoon dried thyme leaves
  • 8 cups chicken stock, turkey stock or duck stock
  • 1 cup dark brown sugar, packed
  • 3 tablespoons Grand Marnier
  • ½ cup finely-chopped green onions

Get the Recipe: Sweet Potato Eggplant Gravy Recipe

Venison Roast Recipe

venison roast recipe
Serve this Venison Roast Recipe with a side of warm bread.

For the ultimate comfort food, give this delicious Venison Roast Recipe a try.


  • 1 venison roast (3-4 pounds)
  • 10 whole garlic cloves, peeled
  • 2 teaspoons dried crushed rosemary
  • 1 ½ teaspoons onion powder, divided
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 7 medium carrots, quartered
  • 5 small onions, quartered
  • 1 tablespoon beef bouillon granules
  • 1 teaspoon browning sauce, optional
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 3 tablespoons cold water

Get the Recipe: Venison Roast Recipe

Duck With Cranberry-Bacon Wild Rice Recipe

Duck With Cranberry-Bacon Wild Rice Recipe
Brown duck on all sides before baking in a 350-degree oven for 10-15 minutes.

A very tasty recipe for duck with cranberry-bacon wild rice.


  • 4 whole wood or teal ducks or 2 mallards
  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil
  • 1 cup uncooked wild rice
  • 6 cups beef broth
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 2 slices thick-cut bacon, chopped
  • ½ cup fresh (or frozen) cranberries, finely chopped or pulsed in a food processor
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • Brown sugar, to taste
  • Kosher salt, to taste
  • Freshly cracked pepper, to taste

Get the Recipe: Duck With Cranberry-Bacon Wild Rice Recipe


Venison Mincemeat Pie Recipe

venison mincemeat pie
This Venison Mincemeat Pie Recipe is both sweet and savory. (Photo courtesy of Steven Rinella)

A recipe for homemade mincemeat pie made with ground venison, fruit, spices and brandy.


  • 2 cups ground cooked venison
  • 3 cups chopped tart apples
  • 1 cup chopped suet (can substitute pork back fat)
  • ¾ cup seedless raisins
  • ¾ cup currants
  • ¾ to 1 cup stock
  • ½ cup chopped dried apricots (optional)
  • 4 tablespoons apple or beach plum jelly
  • 2 tablespoons blackstrap molasses
  • 1 ½ cups light brown sugar, tightly packed
  • 2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon cloves
  • ½ teaspoon ginger
  • ½ teaspoon nutmeg (or mace)
  • ¼ teaspoon allspice
  • ¼ cup cider
  • Brandy, to taste
  • Bear fat pie crust

Get the Recipe: Venison Mincemeat Pie Recipe

Beer Can Roasted Pheasant Recipe

beer can roasted pheasant
Beer-Can Roasted Pheasant Recipe (Photo courtesy of Scott Leysath, "The Sporting Chef")

Cooking a whole pheasant with a can of beer is fun and results in a flavorful, juicy bird with crispy skin, plus it's a heck of a lot easier than deep-frying.


  • 2 whole pheasants, skin intact
  • ¼ cup fresh, chopped rosemary leaves
  • ¼ cup fresh, chopped basil leaves
  • ¼ cup chopped parsley
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 lemon, sliced and diced
  • ¼ cup softened butter
  • Salt and pepper
  • 2 cans of beer

Get the Recipe: Beer Can Roasted Pheasant Recipe

Bear Fat Pie Crust Recipe

bear fat pie crush
Bear fat is very versatile. Not only can it be used for cooking but it can be used to oil down your firearm or to waterproof and treat leathers.

A simple recipe for pie crust featuring rendered bear fat.


  • 3 cups sifted flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup chilled bear fat
  • ½ cup cold milk

Get the Recipe: Bear Fat Pie Crust Recipe

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Recommended Articles

Recent Videos

Florida Sportsman Magazine Covers Print and Tablet Versions

GET THE MAGAZINE Subscribe & Save

Digital Now Included!


Give a Gift   |   Subscriber Services

Preview This Month's Issue

Buy Digital Single Issues

Magazine App Logo

Don't miss an issue.
Buy single digital issue for your phone or tablet.

Buy Single Digital Issue on the Florida Sportsman App

Other Magazines

See All Other Magazines

Special Interest Magazines

See All Special Interest Magazines

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Get the top Florida Sportsman stories delivered right to your inbox.

Phone Icon

Get Digital Access.

All Florida Sportsman subscribers now have digital access to their magazine content. This means you have the option to read your magazine on most popular phones and tablets.

To get started, click the link below to visit and learn how to access your digital magazine.

Get Digital Access

Not a Subscriber?
Subscribe Now

Enjoying What You're Reading?

Get a Full Year
of Guns & Ammo
& Digital Access.

Offer only for new subscribers.

Subscribe Now