Reverse Seared Venison Backstrap with Herb Butter

Hands down this is my favorite way to prepare a venison backstrap. Trust me, it’ll be yours too. When cooking with venison, you really don’t need to complicate things. The recipe requires only a few things: a backstrap, fresh herbs, butter/oil, and some salt and black pepper. With venison, you don’t always need to complicate things. Simple recipes are always the best recipes in my opinion

Reverse Seared Venison Backstrap

Reverse searing is a fool proof way to make a juicy venison steak. You start out at a low temperature then remove the steak from the grill while you heat it up to high heat. Once it’s fully preheated, you’ll simply give the steak a nice sear on both sides until it’s cooked to your preferred temperature. Then with this recipe, we are going to place a slab of the herb butter over top and let it melt before serving.

Making compound butters isn’t as hard as you would think. Really, all you need is softened butter and some fresh herbs. The herbs used in this recipe are my personal favorites to use with steaks, but you can alter them to your taste buds as you wish.

Cooking Temperatures for Venison:

  • Rare: Rare steaks fall between 125 to 130 degree. Steaks remain very tender in this temperature range with a cool red center.
  • Medium Rare: Medium rare steaks fall between 130 to 135 degrees F. I personally aim for 130 degrees. It still has a cool pink center and is plenty tender.
  • Nope

Ingredients You’ll Need:

  • Meat: For this recipe we’re using venison backstrap, but you can also use this recipe for the tenderloins. Just note that they’ll cook a bit faster than the backstrap would.
  • Butter/Oil: Use high quality butter and oil for this recipe. For the butter, I love to use Kerrygold brand. We will just need a little olive oil (or melted butter even) to rub the salt and pepper all over our meat.
  • Herbs: Fresh is best. I love the combination of thyme, parsley, and rosemary with steak, but feel free to use your favorite herb combination!
  • Minced Garlic: so aromatic and so delicious.
  • Salt & Pepper: Let’s keep it simple.

Reverse Seared Herb Butter Venison Backstrap

Reverse Seared Garlic Herb Butter Venison Backstrap

Venison steaks are reverse seared on your grill then topped with a homemade compound butter for a rich and delicious finish. 

  • Author: Jenn Homa
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 45 minutes – 1 hour
  • Total Time: 0 hours


  • 1.5 pound backstrap from Deer/Elk

  • Salt and black pepper

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil

Herb Butter:

  • 1 stick butter, softened

  • 2 tablespoons chopped herbs (Thyme, Parsley, Rosemary)

  • 2 teaspoons of minced garlic (optional)


  1. Trim any silver skin off of your elk/deer backstrap. Then pat the venison dry using paper towels. Season with salt and pepper all over to taste. Rub the seasonings into the venison with olive oil.

  2. Prepare your grill by adding Chophouse Blend Bear Mountain pellets to your hopper. These will add a bold smoky flavor.  

  3. Preheat the pellet grill to 250 degrees. 

  4. Set the backstrap into the smoker directly onto the grill grate. Cook until the internal temperature reads 120-125°F Check the temperature around the 30-minute mark to make sure you don’t overcook the meat. Once the backstrap reaches temperature, remove from the grill and set onto a plate to rest.

  5. While the venison is in the smoker, mix the garlic and herbs into the softened butter until smooth. Place the mixture onto a sheet of wax paper and roll into a log about 1½ inch in diameter and refrigerate.

  6. Turn the grill up to full or high and let it come to temperature while the steaks rest.

  7. Once the grill has come to temperature, sear the backstrap for 30 seconds to 1 minute per side, depending on how you like your venison prepared. I do not recommend cooking above 130-135 degrees. 

  8. Remove the venison from the grill and top with desired amount of the herb butter to each steak and let them melt over the backstrap.

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