Smoked Venison Tenderloin Backstrap Traeger Style Recipe

Welcome to my smoked venison tenderloin backstrap Traeger-style recipe! I’m excited to share my favorite venison recipe with you. Venison is a prized meat that has a unique flavor and texture, and it’s perfect for smoking because of its lean qualities.

With the right cooking technique, smoked venison tenderloin backstrap can be incredibly succulent and tender. This dish is a great option for anyone who wants to switch things up from traditional grilled venison or roasted venison. This recipe combines the smoky flavor of a wood pellet smoker with the savory taste of soy sauce, garlic, and fresh rosemary.

I’m an avid hunter and outdoorsman, so I have had plenty of opportunity to experiment with various ways of preparing venison. Through trial and error, I’ve found that smoking is my preferred method for achieving the perfect tenderness and flavor in my venison dishes.

In this article, I’ll provide you with everything you need to know about making this mouth-watering smoked venison backstrap tenderloin dish. From ingredients to cooking techniques, substitutions, variations, and tips for perfect results, you’ll find everything you need to create the ultimate smoked venison experience right here.

Whether you’re an experienced pit boss or just getting started in your smoking journey, this recipe is sure to take your venison game to the next level! So, strap on your pellet grill and let’s get started.

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Smoked Venison Tenderloin Backstrap Traeger Style
Smoked Venison Tenderloin Backstrap Traeger Style

My friends, let me tell you why you’ll absolutely love this smoked venison tenderloin backstrap recipe. First and foremost, it’s a guaranteed crowd-pleaser that will surely leave everyone speechless. Whether you’re hosting a backyard party or just craving some delicious grilled venison, this recipe is the perfect one for you.

Not only is this recipe easy to make, but it’s also packed with an irresistible combination of flavors that will leave your taste buds begging for more. From the rich blend of soy sauce and dry red wine to the refreshing touch of lemon juice and red wine vinegar, every bite will tantalize your senses in ways you never thought possible.

But what sets this recipe apart from all other venison backstrap recipes out there is the smoking process. With enough time and care, the smoked venison backstrap turns tender and juicy, with a smokiness that penetrates deep within the meat.

The trick is to keep a close eye on the internal temperature of the meat to ensure perfection. And once you have reached the perfect medium-rare temperature of 130 degrees, let it rest for a few minutes before slicing into it. Trust me; your patience will be rewarded with the juiciest and most flavorful venison tenderloin backstrap you’ve ever tasted.

If you’re looking for something extra special, try stuffing your deer backstrap with some cream cheese or wrapping it in bacon for an unforgettable flavor experience. The options are endless, and with some creativity, you can take this recipe to entirely new heights.

So what are you waiting for? Start firing up your smoker and get ready for a feast unlike any other. Once you’ve tasted this smoked venison tenderloin backstrap recipe, I guarantee it will become your go-to dish for all occasions.

Ingredient List

 A mouth-watering smoked venison tenderloin backstrap just off the Traeger grill 🔥
A mouth-watering smoked venison tenderloin backstrap just off the Traeger grill 🔥

Here’s a list of ingredients needed for this smoked venison tenderloin backstrap recipe:

  • 1-2 lbs venison tenderloin or backstrap
  • Coarse Salt
  • 1/4 cup Olive Oil
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 Rosemary sprig (or 1 tsp fresh rosemary)
  • 2 tbsp Red Wine Vinegar
  • 2 tbsp Lemon Juice
  • 2 tbsp Soy Sauce
  • 3 Garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/4 cup Dry Red Wine

Note that the amount of seasoning may vary depending on the thickness of the meat. Make sure to adjust accordingly as thicker cuts will need more salt and pepper.

How To Smoke Venison Tenderloin?

Preparing the Meat

Step 1: Thawing the Venison
Make sure that the venison is fully thawed before cooking to ensure even cooking. A defrosted venison taste better than a frozen one.

Step 2: Tenderizing
Venison is naturally a tender meat, but it still requires some tenderizing. Massage your meat with your favorite marinade or rub, like soy sauce, olive oil, or any spice rub of your choice.

Step 3: Bacon Wrapped Venison Backstrap
Slice jalapeno poppers lengthwise and scoop out the seeds. Put a small part of cream cheese in each half, then spoon bacon bits on top. Lay the popper on top of the piece of venison and wrap tightly with bacon.

Smoking Time

Preheat your smoker or pellet grill to 225°F (107°C). The temperature is essential when it comes to smoking. The cooking time varies depending on the thickness of the meat, you need about 1½ – 2½ hours for 1-1 1/2 inch backstrap, or 2-2 1/2 hours for a 2-2 1/2 inch backstrap until it reaches an internal temperature of 130°F (54°C) in the middle.

Step By Step Grilling Guide

Lay venison pieces flat and season them generously with fresh coarse ground black pepper, fresh rosemary, and kosher salt. Allow at least a tablespoon of coarse salt per pound.

Place seasoned backstrap in Traeger grill or electric smoker for around two hours depending on the thickness meat at low heat of roughly 180-200 degrees Fahrenheit (82-93 degrees Celsius).

Remove from smoker onto aluminum foil and let rest for fifteen minutes before slicing.

Slicing and Serving Tips

Ready to be served! Smoked Venison Tenderloin Backstrap Traeger Style Recipe has most excellent juicy flavors you can’t resist. Slice diagonally against the grain into desired thickness, either thin or thick slices, arrange nicely on a plate, add a sprig of rosemary, a drizzle of olive oil and lemon juice mixed with roasted garlic and red wine vinegar makes an elegant and memorable meal that will rival any gourmet restaurant’s dish.

Enjoy your meal along with any side dish of your choice like grilled corn on the cob, mashed potato, baked potato, potato salad, vegetable salad or grilled vegetables will balance excellent flavor and pair well with this delicious smokey tenderloin backstrap.

Now that you know how to cook smoked venison backstrap, grab your pit boss or pellet grill and follow these easy steps to have a wonderful dinner tonight!

Substitutions and Variations

 Don't skimp on the seasoning, it's what will make your venison shine 🌟
Don’t skimp on the seasoning, it’s what will make your venison shine 🌟

One of the best things about this smoked venison tenderloin backstrap recipe is that it can be easily adapted to suit your taste preferences. Here are some substitutions and variations you can try:

1. Spice rub: While the recipe calls for a simple mix of coarse salt, fresh coarse ground black pepper, and fresh rosemary, you can switch it up by adding other herbs and spices like thyme, oregano, or cumin.

2. Marinade: If you prefer a more intense flavor, you can marinate the venison backstrap in a mixture of red wine vinegar, soy sauce, lemon juice, garlic cloves, and olive oil before smoking it.

3. Type of meat: This recipe works well with any type of venison meat, but if you don’t have access to deer backstrap or tenderloin, you can use other cuts like venison steaks or even a whole roast.

4. Wrapping: The bacon-wrapped venison backstrap is already delicious, but you can also try stuffing it with cream cheese and jalapeño poppers for an extra kick of flavor.

5. Pellet grill: Though this recipe calls specifically for a Traeger-style smoker pit boss pellet grill could also be used with few adaptation.

Remember to adjust cooking time depending on the thickness of the meat and internal temperature. No matter what variations or substitutions you choose to make, these tips for smoking venison will ensure your dish comes out deliciously tender and flavorful every time. So experiment away and find your new favorite way to enjoy this fantastic cut of meat!

Serving and Pairing

 The deep smoky flavor pairs perfectly with the tender texture of the backstrap 🤤
The deep smoky flavor pairs perfectly with the tender texture of the backstrap 🤤

Serving the smoked venison tenderloin backstrap Traeger style recipe is a feast for both the eyes and the palate. The rich flavors and tender texture of the meat make for an unforgettable dish that pairs well with a variety of sides and wines.

To showcase this delicious meal, I like to slice the smoked venison tenderloin backstrap into 1/2-inch pieces, displaying its vibrant pink center. If you’re feeling fancy, you can even arrange it on a platter with some rosemary sprigs around the edges, adding a pop of fresh green color.

As for pairing suggestions, consider opting for lighter sides such as roasted vegetables or a simple spinach salad with blue cheese crumbles. This will help balance out the smokiness and gamey flavor of the venison while still allowing it to be the star of the show.

In terms of wine, consider going for a dry red like a Cabernet Sauvignon or Pinot Noir that can hold up to the bold flavors of the meat without overpowering it. Additionally, if you’re indulging in some bacon wrapped jalapeno poppers or stuffed deer alongside your smoked venison tenderloin backstrap, consider pouring a crisp light beer or hard cider.

Regardless of how you choose to serve and pair this dish, be prepared to have guests swooning over each and every bite. This recipe is truly a show-stopper that will leave your taste buds spellbound!

Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating

 Add some fresh herbs for a pop of color and flavor 🌿
Add some fresh herbs for a pop of color and flavor 🌿

Congratulations on a successful BBQ event with your delicious smoked venison tenderloin backstrap Traeger style recipe! Now, let’s talk about the best way to store and reheat any leftover smoked venison backstrap.

The optimum time to enjoy your masterpiece is right after it gets off the smoker. If you have any leftovers, wrap them tightly in aluminum foil or saran wrap before storing them in the refrigerator. Properly wrapped, your smoked venison backstrap can survive up to four days. Any longer than that, it’s not recommended to consume it anymore.

If you plan on saving some for the next day, carve the venison into small pieces and store it in an airtight container. This way, when reheating on a pan, saucepan or microwave oven to your desired temperature, each piece is cooked evenly without losing any juice or flavor.

For larger portions or whole smoked venison backstrap, we highly recommend using an open flame grill or oven for reheating. Start by preheating your grill at 450°F degrees and turn every two minutes until they reach the desired temperature. Alternatively, you can reheat it in the oven at 275°F degrees for 8-12 minutes until achieving an internal temperature of around 130°F degrees (medium-rare), depending on the thickness of the meat.

Remember that we put a lot of effort into mastering this recipe and preserving its flavor requires diligence in storing and reheating. Don’t let any bit go to waste!

Tips for Perfect Results

 The secret to perfectly cooked venison is controlling the temperature and timing ⏰
The secret to perfectly cooked venison is controlling the temperature and timing ⏰

First things first: when it comes to smoking venison tenderloin or backstrap, it’s vital that you start with a clean smoker. This ensures the smoke does not pair with any other flavors remaining from your previous cook.

For the perfect end result, be sure to carefully monitor the internal temperature of your meat. Remember that thicker cuts will likely take longer to cook compared to thinner ones.

When smoking venison, keep in mind that the key is to use gentle heat for a longer duration rather than high heat for a shorter time. This low-and-slow technique will guarantee a perfectly cooked tenderloin or backstrap every time.

If you’re not too familiar with smoking meat, don’t worry because it’s easier than you think! A meat thermometer will send you on your way straight into flavor town. Shoot for an internal temperature of around 130°F for medium-rare meat and 140°F for rare meat; these temperatures ensure that the meat stays juicy and packed with flavor.

Another tip is to wrap your venison in bacon before smoking! The result is savory goodness mixed with spice rub and wrapped backstrap — talk about mouth-watering!

Lastly, don’t forget to let your smoked venison rest for at least fifteen minutes before slicing it thin against the grain. This helps to redistribute the juices throughout the meat, which makes every bite as good (if not better) than the last.

With these simple tips and tricks, you’ll be able to prepare smoked venison backstrap or tenderloin like a pro!


Now that you have all the information you need to make this delicious smoked venison tenderloin backstrap Traeger style recipe, you might still have some questions in mind. I have compiled a list of frequently asked questions to help you get things right and ensure your success in smoking and serving a perfectly roasted venison backstrap tenderloin. Let’s dive into these FAQs and address any concerns you may have.

How long does it take to smoke a venison tenderloin?

First things first, you’ll need to fire up your smoker and crank up the heat to around 225 F degrees. This temperature is just right to achieve that perfect smoke on your tenderloin. Next, you’ll want to let the meat cook and soak up all those smoky flavors for about 1 and a half to two hours. However, the thickness of the meat will determine exactly how long it needs to smoke for.

It’s really important to keep an eye on the internal temperature of the tenderloin, especially if you want it to come out rare or medium rare. At this point, your meat needs to reach the internal temperature of at least 130 F for rare and 140 F for medium rare. Whatever you do, don’t overcook it by going all the way to medium! Keeping it slightly undercooked will ensure that it’s nice and juicy when you bite into it.

How do you smoke backstrap on a pellet grill?

To begin smoking the steaks, make sure to insert temperature probes into each one and set the temperature alert to 110 degrees. It’s best to place them in the center of the grill to ensure even cooking. Once the thermometer reads 110 degrees, which should take around 10-15 minutes, carefully remove the steaks from the smoker and set them aside in a warm place. This will help the flavors to fully develop and result in a mouth-watering taste.

How long does it take to smoke deer backstrap?

Achieving a perfectly smoked, medium-rare meat is all about patience and technique. It’s crucial to smoke the meat until its internal temperature reaches 135°F, which typically takes anywhere between 2-4 hours, depending on the thickness of the cut. Once done, tuck the meat under a foil tent and let it rest for a minimum of 15 minutes. This is a critical step because it allows the juices to resettle within the meat, resulting in a tender, succulent bite. So don’t rush the resting process!

Is venison backstrap the same as tenderloin?

When it comes to deer, the backstraps are the prominent muscles that run down the sides of the spine and lie on top of the ribcage. On the other hand, the tenderloins are smaller muscles found inside the abdominal cavity under the backstrap and spine.

Bottom Line

In conclusion, this smoked venison tenderloin backstrap Traeger-style recipe is perfect for a special dinner or celebration. With its rich flavor and juicy texture, it’s sure to impress even the most discerning palates.

By following my simple guidelines and tips for smoking venison, you can prepare an incredible meal at home that rivals any restaurant dish. Whether you’re a seasoned pit boss or a novice cook, this recipe is foolproof and easy to follow.

So why not roll up your sleeves and give this delicious dish a try? Your family and guests will thank you for it. Just be sure to use the best quality venison you can find, season it with plenty of coarse salt and fresh ground pepper, and smoke it low and slow for maximum flavor.

In short, if you’re looking for the perfect way to enjoy the bounty of your latest whitetail deer hunting trip or any other time you’ve got some venison on hand, give this recipe a shot. It won’t disappoint!

Smoked Venison Tenderloin Backstrap Traeger Style

Smoked Venison Tenderloin Backstrap Traeger Style Recipe

Backstrap is the equivalent of a beef tenderloin—lean and very tender if cooked properly (i.e., not overcooked). I prefer mine medium-rare, but if you don’t have access to backstrap, feel free to substitute pork tenderloins. Recommend hickory or oak pellets.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 8 hours
Cook Time 15 minutes
Course Main Course
Cuisine Fusion
Calories 513.8 kcal


  • 2 -3 lbs venison tenderloins or 2 -3 lbs pork tenderloin
  • 1/4 cup dry red wine
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons red wine vinegar or 1 1/2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary, plus
  • extra rosemary sprig, for garnish
  • 1 teaspoon fresh coarse ground black pepper, plus more for grilling
  • 1/2 cup good-quality olive oil or 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • coarse salt


  • Trim any silverskin off the tenderloins and transfer to a sturdy resealable plastic bag.
  • Make the marinade: Combine the red wine, garlic, and soy sauce in a small mixing bowl and whisk to combine. Stir in the chopped rosemary and the pepper. Slowly whisk in the olive oil; whisk until the mixture is emulsified. Pour the marinade over the meat and refrigerate for 8 hours, or overnight.
  • When ready to cook, start the Traeger grill on Smoke with the lid open until the fire is established (4 to 5 minutes). Set the temperature to 450 degrees F (or High) and preheat, lid closed, for 15 minutes.
  • Remove the tenderloins from the marinade (discard the marinade) and pat dry. Knock off any pieces of garlic or rosemary. Season generously with freshly ground black pepper and less generously with coarse salt.
  • Arrange the tenderloins at a diagonal to the grill grate and sear, turning with tongs as needed, until well-browned on all sides, 3 to 4 minutes per side. Continue to cook until the tenderloins reach your desired degree of doneness, 15 to 20 minutes total for medium-rare (135 degrees F on a meat thermometer). Let the meat rest for 5 minutes before slicing on a diagonal. Garnish with rosemary sprigs, if desired.



Serving: 193gCalories: 513.8kcalCarbohydrates: 1.9gProtein: 49.9gFat: 33.1gSaturated Fat: 5.2gCholesterol: 40.9mgSodium: 504.8mgFiber: 0.3gSugar: 0.3g
Keyword Deer, High In…, High Protein, Low Cholesterol, Meat, Very Low Carbs, Wild Game
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

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Shara @The Bird BBQ

Shara loves to experiment with different flavors and techniques when it comes to BBQ. She has been perfecting her craft for years and loves hosting backyard BBQs with friends & family. She often comes up with creative recipes that her guests rave about.