This hearty Slow Cooker Venison Stew with mushrooms, chestnuts and cranberries is easy to make and totally delicious. You can also make this recipe with beef shin or braising steak if preferred. Serve with mashed potatoes for the ultimate in comfort food!
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I made this Slow Cooker Venison Stew way back in December then somehow forgot to post the recipe. Big oops because it is packed with flavor and so easy to make too!
I love cooking venison in a crockpot as the meat turns ever so tender! And I usually make this stew around Christmas as it’s a great way to use any leftover red wine, port and cranberries!
Venison can stand up to strong flavors and goes really well with berries (like in my Venison Steak with Port and Red Berry Sauce recipe.
But if you can’t find any venison or simply aren’t a fan, you can easily swap it for beef shin which has a similar rich taste.
HOW TO MAKE VENISON STEW
You will need boned leg or shoulder of venison, diced into cubes or ready prepared diced venison for stewing. Remove any sinew or fat as you slice the meat.
Browning the meat ensures that your stew will be delicious – you can do this in your slow cooker if it allows for searing or in a separate pan. Avoid crowding the venison cubes when browning – allow them plenty of space so that they get a lovely color.
After prepping the meat you will need to sauté the onions and mushrooms before adding the remaining ingredients and allowing the venison to slowly braised in red wine and beef broth. I love how hands off slow cooker recipes are!
As with all stews, this succulent braised venison tastes even better the day after you make it! It is also beyond delicious as a pie filling, topped with homemade pie crust or even puff pastry (as in my Turkey Pie).
You can also make this recipe in the oven, prepping on the hob then cooking in a Dutch Oven for 1 1/2 – 2 hours. You will need to add more beef broth and wine however, take a look at the recipe notes.
You will also enjoy
- Slow Cooker Chinese Braised Beef
- Hearty Dutch Oven Beef Stew
- Slow Cooker Roast Beef
- Beef Stew and Dumplings
- Braised Beef | Video Tutorial
Slow Cooker Venison Stew
- 3 tbsp olive oil or as needed
- 2 lb (950g) venison cubed
- 1 large onion peeled and finely diced
- 1 ½ cups (200g) mushrooms sliced
- 3 garlic cloves minced
- 2 tsp brown sugar
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp ground black pepper
- 2 tbsp tomato paste
- 1 tbsp cranberry sauce or redcurrant jelly
- 1 cup (120g) cooked chestnuts (optional)
- ½ cup (65g) fresh or frozen cranberries
- 1 cup (240 ml) red wine or ruby port
- ½ cup (120 ml) beef broth (stock cube is fine too)
- 2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
- salt and pepper to season
- fresh thyme leaves to garnish
- Heat the oil in your slow cooker if it allows for searing or in a separate pan. Brown the meat over medium-high heat, in batches, until nicely browned. Use a slotted spoon to transfer to a bowl.
- Add a splash more oil if needed and reduce the heat. Sauté the onion and mushrooms for 5-7 minutes, stirring, or until softened.
- Stir in the garlic then the sugar, salt, pepper, tomato paste and cranberry sauce. (If you have been using a separate pan transfer everything to your slow cooker now).
- Add the meat, chestnuts, cranberries, beef broth, wine and Worcester Sauce and stir to combine.
- Cover and cook on HIGH for 4 -5 hours or LOW for 7 -8 hours or until the venison is tender.
- Check the seasoning and add salt and pepper if needed.
- Serve over mashed potatoes sprinkled with fresh thyme.
- To cook in a Dutch Oven, follow the steps to brown and sauté on the hob. Double the amount of beef broth and red wine then transfer to the oven, preheated at 160°C (325°F), for 1 1/2 – 2 hours or until the venison is tender.
- Keep any leftovers in the fridge for up to three days or freeze for up to three months.