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Chicken-Fried Elk Venison Steaks With Brown Gravy Recipe

While this venison recipe is made with brown gravy, it can be substituted for a homemade country white gravy. (Jenny Nguyen-Wheatley photo)

This venison recipe is a stick-to-your-ribs kind of meal that will hit the spot after a long, cold day in the outdoors

It's that time of year, cooler weather that calls for comfort food. And what could be more comforting than chicken fried steak? Elk, deer, moose, or antelope, this recipe will work with just about any kind of red meat. It's one of my favorite ways to utilize the quarters, which tend to be more sinewy and tougher than the loins on an animal. There are few cuts a meat tenderizer can't handle.

A mallet will work just fine. I find that a mallet is less expensive and much more versatile in the kitchen than other tools. Choose one that has a smooth and rough side. The smooth side is for pounding and flattening, while the rough side can do both those tasks plus tenderizing. In addition to chicken fried steak, you can use your meat mallet to prepare other dishes such as schnitzel, Panko-crusted pork cutlets, carpaccio and stuffed chicken breasts. In a pinch, I have also used my mallet as a makeshift ice crusher, nutcracker, and for chasing nosy guests out of the kitchen.

chicken fried elk mallet
Use a mallet to tenderize the toughest cuts of elk. (Jenny Nguyen-Wheatley photo)

All that gravy may not be good for your waistline, but you'll burn it off tomorrow. Right? Well, that's what I tell myself, anyway. Also, I prefer brown gravy, so please don't condemn me if you're a traditionalist. You may use my recipe below or your favorite Aunt Dora's country white gravy. Prepare to your liking. That's all that really matters.

Serves: 4
Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 30 minutes


  • 1 pound elk venison steaks
  • ¼ cup vegetable oil
  • ½ cup all-purpose flour
  • Lawry's Season Salt, to taste
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 2 cups chicken stock, heated to a simmer
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • Kosher salt, to taste
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • Ground white pepper, to taste
  • 1 sprig fresh thyme, leaves removed and chopped


  1. Rinse steaks under cold water and pat dry with paper towels. Slice steaks into serving size pieces; steaks will become larger after pounding. Lay a piece of steak between two sheets of plastic wrap and pound with a meat mallet (rough side) until it is ¼ inch thick. Repeat with the rest of the meat. Sprinkle salt and freshly cracked pepper on both sides of each steak. Set aside.
  2. chicken fried elk seasoning
    Season the elk and venison with elk and venison. (Jenny Nguyen-Wheatley photo)

  3. In a 10-inch skillet, heat oil over medium-high heat. Meanwhile, prepare dredging station by placing 1 beaten egg in a wide bowl. Combine ½ cup of all-purpose flour and season salt in a second bowl.
  4. chicken fried elk dredging station
    Prepare a bowl of eggs and flour to make it easy (Jenny Nguyen-Wheatley photo)

  5. Once oil is hot, dip elk steaks into flour mixture first, shaking off excess, and then dip into the egg and then the flour again.
  6. chicken fried elk dredge
    Coat the elk venison steaks in eggs and flour. (Jenny Nguyen-Wheatley photo)

  7. Fry coated steaks until golden on both sides; fry in batches and do not crowd the pan. Lay cooked steaks on a rack or paper towels to drain. Keep warm.
  8. chicken fried elk fry
    After frying the elk venison steaks, let them cool on a paper towel or rack to drain the excess oil. (Jenny Nguyen-Wheatley photo)

  9. Lower heat to medium-low and remove any large pieces of burnt flour from the oil. Sprinkle 3 tablespoons of flour into the oil and whisk for a couple minutes to allow flour to cook. Next, slowly whisk in heated chicken stock and blend until smooth. Add thyme leaves. Raise heat to medium and allow gravy to bubble and thicken, stirring frequently. Season with salt and white pepper, to taste. Serve chicken fried elk steaks with homemade mashed potatoes, gravy and your favorite vegetables.
chicken fried elk gravy
This homemade brown gravy also tastes great when served with mashed potatoes. (Jenny Nguyen-Wheatley photo)

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