Grilled Lemon-Garlic Elk Steaks

Outdoor bbq grill elk steaks
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  • Total: 27 mins
  • Prep: 15 mins
  • Cook: 12 mins
  • Yield: 2 pounds (4 servings)

This elk steak recipe combines soy sauce, ginger, garlic, and lemon juice to give your elk a nice bright flavor. It is recommended that you grill these steaks either medium or medium rare. As a lean meat, elk cooks faster than most meats. 

North American elk is the second largest mammal in the deer family next to moose. Elk graze naturally on grass, plants, leaves, and bark. Elk has more protein and less cholesterol than beef, pork, and chicken. There are 23 grams of protein in each 3-ounce serving. Elk is a good source of iron, phosphorus, zinc, vitamin B12, niacin, and vitamin B6.

With a similar color, elk tastes like a cross of venison and beef. Its flavor is not as gamey as moose. It is very tender and does not need marinating, but you can marinate it if you want to. It makes for a great alternative to beef and has only half the calories.


  • 2 pounds/900 g. elk (or other venison steaks)
  • 3 tablespoons/45 mL olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon/15 mL soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon/15 mL lemon juice (fresh)
  • 1 tablespoon/15 mL Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 cloves garlic (minced)
  • 1/2 teaspoon/2 1/2 mL onion powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon/2 1/2 mL ginger (ground)
  • 1/2 teaspoon/2 1/2 mL sea salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon/1 1/4 mL black pepper

Steps to Make It

  1. Place steaks in a shallow pan or large resealable plastic bag.

  2. Combine remaining ingredients in a small bowl and pour mixture over the meat, cover, and place in the refrigerator for 6 to 12 hours.

  3. Preheat grill for medium heat.

  4. Remove steaks from bag and discard marinade.

  5. Place steaks on the grill and cook for 5 to 7 minutes per side.

  6. When the meat is cooked to desired doneness, remove from heat and serve.

More About Cooking With Elk

Elk can be prepared as roasts, stews, burgers, meatballs, and so much more. The main rule of thumb with elk is to cook it at a shorter cooking time and at a lower temperature. Because of its low-fat content, if it is not already coated with oil, then you will need to brush on some olive oil before placing it on the grill.  

Cooking meats gently with a small amount of liquid breaks down the tough connective tissues over time and infuses the meat thoroughly with the flavors of the dish. Turn to cooking methods like stewing, braising, slow cooking, and pressure cooking for tougher cuts taken from the shoulder, neck, rump, and shanks.

Tender cuts, especially from the tenderloin, like the filet mignon, and backstrap (loin) are best cooked hot and fast. Aim to cook your roasts and steaks to medium-rare or medium for best texture. If cooking thick steaks, remove them just before you think they are done. Thick steaks usually continue to cook for a few minutes after they are removed from the heat.

Large roasts and ground elk benefit from quick cooking as much as they do from slow cooking. Cook a lean roast quickly in a hot oven to medium-rare or medium. Burgers made from ground elk cook on the grill just like their beef counterparts.

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