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Slow Cooker Venison Stew Simple, Delicious & Hearty

This slow cooker venison stew has the most incredible flavour thanks to port, juniper & thyme and you will not believe how easy it is too!

Portrait image of extra gravy being poured over a slow cooker venison stew or casserole served with peas, carrots and mashed potato

Slow Cooked Venison Casserole

Growing up wild meat was a long way from our dinner tables, but I am a curious cook!

It now forms a regular part of my diet and it is nowhere near as intimidating as it would seem.

This slow cooker venison stew joins both a fancy venison burger and some rather innovative venison meatballs that come with an Indian inspired sauce.

It is a glorious meat to cook with! Rich in flavour and generally speaking, commercially available venison is not too “gamey”.

It is also fairly lean which is great if you are watching your fat consumption.

Although that also means that it can dry out a little if you are not careful. As a result, I usually choose to cook my wild game stews in a slow cooker.

Both this venison casserole and my wild boar stew are great in the old Crockpot!

Portrait over head image of a slow cooker venison stew or casserole served with peas, carrots and mashed potato

Frequently Asked Questions

What cut of meat should I use?

The cut of meat that I usually rely on for this dish is the shoulder. It is one of the more widely available cuts of venison.

It is lean and gently flavoured but still bold enough to stand up to the port wine we use to base our sauce on.

However, if you can get hold of it I would also say give the neck fillet a try. You will need to cook it for an extra hour or so, but it adds the most incredible flavour.

Can I use something other than port?

Port is a fortified wine from Portugal, imaginative hey? It has a rich, bold almost sweet flavour.

Nothing quite tastes like it, but alternatives that will point your dish in a similar direction are Madeira, Marsala and sherry.

Can I use dried thyme?

Yes, if you have only got access to dried thyme, then use 1-1½ teaspoons in space of the 4 sprigs.

Portrait close up image of a slow cooker venison stew or casserole served with peas & carrots

Serving Suggestions

You will notice that I chose not to add any potatoes to this venison stew.

That’s because this dish absolutely sings when it sits alongside a pile of creamy buttery mashed potato.

But oranges ain’t the only fruit and all that, so I have done some testing, life is hard!

This dish also works really well with both celeriac mash and swede and carrot mash.

And if plain old mash ain’t enough for you then amp up the veggies with a classic Irish colcannon!

Landscape image of a slow cooker venison stew or casserole served with peas, carrots and mashed potato

Equipment Used

I only mention brands of equipment if I think that they make a material difference to a recipe. But if you have any questions feel free to ask them in the comments section below the recipe.

  • Stovetop.
  • 28cm or 11″ frying pan.
  • 4 litre (4 quart) slow cooker or crockpot.
  • Kitchen knife.
  • Chopping board.
  • Kitchen tongs, stirring and serving spoons.
  • Weighing scales and or measuring jug, cups and spoons.
Square image of extra gravy being poured over a slow cooker venison stew or casserole served with peas, carrots and mashed potato
Yield: 4 Servings

Slow Cooker Venison Stew Recipe

Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
Additional Time: 8 hours
Total Time: 10 hours

This simple slow cooker venison stew or casserole is a real winter warming treat, featuring a rich port gravy it will have everyone begging for more!


  • 600g (21 oz) Stewing Venison
  • 1 Tbsp Flour
  • ½ Tsp Salt
  • 2 Tbsp Oil
  • 300g (2 Cups) Onion
  • 75g (1 Cup) Celery
  • 300g (1½ Cups) Carrots
  • 10 Cloves Garlic
  • 4 Sprigs Thyme
  • 1 Bay Leaf
  • 1 Tbsp Juniper Berries
  • 500ml (2 Cups) Ruby Port
  • 250ml (1 Cup) Beef Stock
  • 2 Tbsp Tomato Puree
  • 60g (¼ Cup) Butter
  • ½ Tsp Black Pepper
  • 200g (1⅓ Cups) Frozen Peas


  1. Cut The Venison into large 2-3cm (¾-1¼") chunks.
  2. Cut the onion into a 1.5cm (½") dice and place in the bottom of the slow cooker.
  3. Cut the celery into 5-7mm (¼") thick slices and add to the slow cooker.
  4. Finely dice the garlic.
  5. Peel or scrub the carrots, cut them into 3.5 cm (1½") lengths and throw them into the crockpot.
  6. Tie the bay leaf, thyme and juniper berries in a cloth bag and add to the slow cooker with the garlic.
  7. Dredge the venison with the flour and season with salt.
  8. Heat half of the oil in a 28cm or 11" frying pan over a medium-high heat and when it's hot brown half of the venison and transfer to the slow cooker. Repeat with the 2nd tablespoon of oil and remaining venison and add to the slow cooker.
  9. Dot over the butter, add the tomato puree and sprinkle with black pepper.
  10. Deglaze the pan with the port, scrape the base to remove any cooking residue and pour it into the slow cooker.
  11. Add the beef stock, give everything a stir then add a lid and allow to cook on low for 6 hours.
  12. Around 10 minutes before serving add the frozen peas and give them a stir.
  13. Remove the cloth bag giving it a good squeeze before serving.


You can just throw in the ingredients rather than tying them in a cloth bag but try not to serve them they are not really nice to eat but add a great flavour.

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 509Total Fat: 23gSaturated Fat: 10gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 11gCholesterol: 151mgSodium: 922mgCarbohydrates: 23gFiber: 4gSugar: 8gProtein: 48g

Calorific details are provided by a third-party application and are to be used as indicative figures only.

Did you make this recipe?

If you made this recipe, I'd love to see what you did and what I can do better, share a picture with me on Instagram and tag me @krumplibrian and tell me how it went!


Sunday 31st of December 2017

I cooked this as was described and enjoyed it! Loved buying the juniper berries! My dad gave me a beautiful venison roast and I marinaded it as described. The only tricky part for me was drying the meat before searing. It was so juicy and didn't use paper towels or anything, so it was harder to get a clean sear. I overcooked the meat a bit at that stage, but it was a very flavorful, warming, satisfying outcome! I did mashed potatoes instead because I didn't see the bake for 90minutes before I peeled the potatoes. Perhaps an asterix....throw in the potatoes :) THANKS!

Brian Jones

Tuesday 2nd of January 2018

So glad you liked it Angela, I always leave meat out on the side for a few hours under a cloth to dry out a little, hopefully that will help out in future. I'll take a look at the recipe and try and make the 'baked' bit more prevalent :)


Sunday 12th of February 2017

I'm cooking this today. We eat a lot of venison and so I'm always on the look out for recipes - this one caught my eye :)

Brian Jones

Monday 13th of February 2017

I hope you enjoyed it Joanna, one of our favourites :D

Mary * Goodie Godmother

Tuesday 8th of November 2016

I have got to see if some of my hunter friends will trade game for baked goods now that hunting season has started. Venison at the store is not so easy to find where I live, but it adds such a lovely flavor and must be divine in this stew!

Brian Jones

Thursday 10th of November 2016

Fingers crossed for you, I love cooking with game it does not feature here often as I know it can be a little difficult for some to get there hands in but I do like to squeeze a couple in occasionally.

Platter Talk

Tuesday 11th of October 2016

Venison & champ. That is one amazingly looking appetizing dinner! A very hearty meal, indeed. Thanks for the Fall idea.

Brian Jones

Thursday 13th of October 2016

You're welcome Dan, aint no point in messing around when it comes to food based central heating ;)


Tuesday 11th of October 2016

The humble spud is a superfood in my house ;) Well done for doing so many different recipe photoshoots this week! I wish I could get that much done - I barely have time for one :O

Brian Jones

Tuesday 11th of October 2016

Hehe, yay for the humble spud... I knew I would find someone out there who felt the same :)

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