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Venison Barbacoa

post #1 of 15
Thread Starter


Found this recipe on the web. Also saw that it has been done by someone on here. I have 5 front shoulders to make. Having a squirrel hunt derby this weekend and wanted to make something people hadn't ever had. 


Last year I cooked antelope loin and deer loin. 


This year we will have venison barbacoa, 2 bacon explosions, and deer loin.


I would like to get some smoke into the venison shoulders. This is my biggest question. My father bought a bradley smoker and it doesn't get very hot in this cold weather. Maybe 125 tops. Can I smoke the meat for 4-5 hours and then transfer to an oven to finish out cooking. My main concern is the meat being at that low of a temperature for so long and if something can go wrong from that? If this works I will probably cook Friday night and then pull Friday. Hunt is Saturday. 


I also have a small charcoal smoker that I do most things on, but doesn't work well in regards to cooking with something in a tin pan.


I have a friend that is bringing over his MES smoker to smoke the bacon explosions on for Saturday. I could probably fit the deer shoulders in the MES, but it might be a tight fit. I could then cook everything Saturday, but that could be more than I want to handle Saturday as I plan on taking things pretty easy.


What are the suggestions from the experts? As you can tell my mind is all over the place on this, but excited about trying something new. 

post #2 of 15

I would simmer the shoulders until an IT of 160 was reached, allow to dry for a bit, then into the smoker at around the temp you indicated (125) for a few hours.


Then place them immediately into the cooking pot of choice.  Allow to simmer until the meat shreds easily.  This is how I do whole cow heads and also beef cheek meat for barbacoa when I want smoke.



post #3 of 15

Maybe you can put a water heater blanket around the smoker.

post #4 of 15
Thread Starter 






Sorry for the delay in pictures. Figured out how to post photos on tapatalk.

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post #5 of 15
Thread Starter 
Meant to add to old thread I started and never got pictures. Sorry. Thanks for the suggestions.

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post #6 of 15

Now make some barbacoa that looks that good and we'll be rocking!  :drool



post #7 of 15
Thread Starter 

Would it do me any good to marinate or brine the meat overnight? I'm assuming that might be overkill. Should have plenty of flavor from the recipe I'm guessing.

post #8 of 15

Personal preference really.


A good barbacoa base does have a lot of flavor and the recipe you mention looks to be a good one.



post #9 of 15
Thread Starter 



Will add meat to smoker later this afternoon and then put back in pan with juices to simmer. Hope this works out well.

I used jalapeno and put fresh cilantro in the pan. Only part I varied on from original recipe.

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post #10 of 15

That looks like it will be a really good meal when finished!


When you put the meat on to smoke, take as many of the jalapenos as you can and place them in a colander or on a strainer and smoke them as well.


Looking forward to some pics.



post #11 of 15
Thread Starter 
I diced up jalapenos. Looking forward to the final product. I have bacon grease to use instead of lard.

I also have about 10 pounds of jerky to make tomorrow. Smokers will be going and dehydrator.

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post #12 of 15
Thread Starter 

Getting the smoke on. It smells really good from all the seasonings. Hope she falls apart in the end. Not until I get it back out of smoker though.

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post #13 of 15
Thread Starter 


Started at 1:00. In oven for 4 hours @ 250. Couple hours on smoker. Probably only getting temp of 125. Back into oven @ 300 until 3:00. Fell asleep. It is very tender and completely falls apart with ease. The added fat is a must. I tried some without and then added bacon grease I had saved.

I have two bacon explosions for tomorrow also.


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post #14 of 15

That is a mouth watering picture! Nice job.

Edited by Woodcutter - 1/25/14 at 7:59pm
post #15 of 15

I'm assuming that my invitation was lost in the mail!  :banana_smiley:


Looks to me like you NAILED the barbacoa!  Looking forward to more cooks from you!



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