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Elk Venison and Root Vegetable Stew Recipe

Here's a satisfying stew recipe for cold winter nights! It's full of tender chunks of elk venison stew meat and hearty root vegetables such as parsnips and turnips.

Elk Venison and Root Vegetable Stew Recipe

Garnish your Elk Venison and Root Vegetable Stew with freshly chopped parsley just before serving. (Jenny Nguyen-Wheatley photo)

Print Recipe

Wintertime is the season for root vegetables, which can keep for weeks in your refrigerator. I always keep some on hand – carrots, parsnips, turnips and rutabagas are my favorites. They are lower in carbohydrates and starch than potatoes, roast beautifully well, and are especially delicious in stew. Parsnips and turnips add herbaceous, sweet notes that you don’t get with regular spuds.

I made this elk venison recipe with a healthy dose of red wine, which provides depth. Do not use something sweet. A good $10 bottle will do – something cheap enough to reasonably cook with but good enough to drink with your meal. I enjoy a dark red blend.

How to Make This Elk and Veggie Stew Recipe

Serves: 4-6
Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 3 hours


  • 3 pounds of elk venison stew meat, do not remove silver skin
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 5 tablespoons of flour
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • Cooking oil
  • 3 ribs of celery, cut into large sections
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 teaspoon of dried rosemary or fresh, chopped
  • 1 ½ cups of dry red wine
  • 2 tablespoons of tomato paste
  • 5 garlic cloves, smashed
  • 2 quarts of unsalted/low sodium elk or beef stock
  • 2 large carrots, chopped into large pieces
  • 2 parsnips, peeled and chopped into large pieces
  • 2 turnips, chopped into large pieces
  • Flat leaf parsley for garnish
Elk Venison and Root Vegetable Stew Recipe
Chop the carrots, parsnips, and turnips into large pieces. (Jenny Nguyen-Wheatley photo)


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Pat elk meat dry with paper towels and toss with salt and pepper to taste in a bowl. Then toss with the flour.

    Elk Venison and Root Vegetable Stew Recipe
    After you've cut the elk venison into large chunks, season them with salt and pepper. (Jenny Nguyen-Wheatley photo)
  3. In a Dutch oven, coat the bottom with oil and heat over medium-high. Shake off excess flour from elk meat and add meat to the hot oil (in batches) and brown for a nice crust. Set remaining flour aside for a later step. Remove browned meat and set aside.

    Elk Venison and Root Vegetable Stew Recipe
    Brown the chunks of elk venison in batches. (Jenny Nguyen-Wheatley photo)
  4. Add more oil to the pot. Add chopped onion, pinch of salt, bay leaf, rosemary and celery and sauté until onion turns translucent; lower heat if necessary to avoid burning. Next, add the tomato paste, remaining flour from step 1 and garlic, and sauté for 1 minute.

    Elk Venison and Root Vegetable Stew Recipe
    Sauté the onion and celery mixture until the onion becomes translucent. (Jenny Nguyen-Wheatley photo)
  5. Then add wine and scrape the bottom of the pot with a wooden spoon to release brown bits. Allow wine to simmer and reduce to ¾. Return browned elk stew meat to the pot and pour in elk or beef stock. Stir and bring to a low boil.

    Elk Venison and Root Vegetable Stew Recipe
    After you add the red wine, use a wooden spoon to scrape up the little brown bits from the bottom of the pot. (Jenny Nguyen-Wheatley photo)
  6. Take off heat. Cover the opening of the pot with foil, and then place the lid on top—the foil helps to slow down moisture loss. Cook in a 350-degree oven for about 1½ hours, and then discard the foil so the sauce can thicken. Add the carrots, parsnips and turnips and continue to cook covered for another 30-45 minutes until meat and vegetables become tender.

    Elk Venison and Root Vegetable Stew Recipe
    Cover the pot with aluminum foil to slow down moisture loss. (Jenny Nguyen-Wheatley photo)
    Elk Venison and Root Vegetable Stew Recipe
    Add the root vegetables to the stew and continue to cook until the elk and veggies are tender. (Jenny Nguyen-Wheatley photo)
  7. Taste the stew for seasoning and garnish with freshly chopped parsley. Serve with crusty bread. This stew tastes better the day after.
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