Venison Osso Buco

venison osso buco
Donald Russell
Prep: 20 mins
Cook: 3 hrs
Total: 3 hrs 20 mins
Servings: 6 to 8 servings
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
354 Calories
15g Fat
15g Carbs
30g Protein
Show Full Nutrition Label Hide Full Nutrition Label
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 6 to 8
Amount per serving
Calories 354
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 15g 20%
Saturated Fat 6g 31%
Cholesterol 114mg 38%
Sodium 856mg 37%
Total Carbohydrate 15g 6%
Dietary Fiber 3g 12%
Total Sugars 6g
Protein 30g
Vitamin C 21mg 106%
Calcium 99mg 8%
Iron 3mg 15%
Potassium 755mg 16%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

Osso buco is a classic Italian dish of braised veal shanks. In this inspired variation of the traditional recipe, courtesy of Broken Arrow Ranch, venison shanks are substituted for the veal shanks, and they give a fuller, more robust flavor to the braise. Slowly braised in red wine and beef broth with vegetables and herbs, the venison is tender and the dish is absolutely delicious. Like most braised dishes, the osso buco will taste even better reheated the next day.

Serve it with a side of risotto or polenta, or a nice crusty loaf of homemade bread.


  • 4 pounds venison osso buco, elk osso buco, or whole venison shanks

  • 1 to 2 pinches kosher salt

  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil

  • 1 large onion, finely chopped

  • 1 large carrot, finely chopped

  • 2 stalks celery, finely chopped

  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped

  • 3/4 cup red wine, preferably Burgundy, pinot noir, or zinfandel

  • 1 (14 1/2-ounce) can diced tomatoes, drained, or 2 fresh tomatoes, diced

  • 4 cups beef broth, homemade or packaged, not canned

  • 2 bay leaves

  • 2 teaspoons fresh thyme

For the Sauce:

  • 1 to 2 teaspoons cornstarch, optional

  • 3 tablespoons fresh flat-leaf parsley, chopped

  • 1 large clove garlic, minced

  • 1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

  2. Preheat the oven to 325 F. On the stovetop, heat a Dutch oven or large heavy pot over medium-high heat. Season the venison shanks with kosher salt and several good grinds of freshly ground pepper.

  3. Add the butter and olive oil to the pot over medium-high heat, When the butter has stopped foaming, add the venison shanks 2 at a time, and brown them on all sides. Transfer the browned shanks to a platter.

  4. Reduce heat to medium, and sauté the chopped onion until golden brown, adding a little more butter and olive oil or both if necessary.

  5. Add the chopped carrot and celery, and sauté until tender, about 7 minutes. Add 2 cloves chopped garlic, and sauté 1 minute (take care that it doesn't burn).

  6. Stir in the red wine and deglaze the pot by scraping up the crusty bits with a wooden spoon or spatula. Add the tomatoes, beef broth, bay leaves, and thyme to the pot. Return the browned shanks to the pot along with any juices that have accumulated on the platter.

  7. Cover the pot and braise in the oven until venison is tender—about 2 1/2 to 3 hours. You can tell the venison is tender when a fork or knife will easily pierce the meat and separate it. If the venison hasn't become tender, just keep cooking it.

  8. When the osso buco is tender, remove the shanks from the pot to a warm platter. Put the pot on the stovetop over high heat and bring the pan juices to a boil. Allow them to reduce by half, about 5 minutes.

  9. If you want a thicker sauce, mix equal parts cornstarch and water in a small bowl, then whisk into the sauce. You can also mix softened butter and flour together, and add it to the boiling sauce.

  10. Mix the parsley, 1 clove minced garlic, and lemon zest in a small bowl to make a gremolata. Place the osso buco on a serving platter, topped with sauce and several sprinkles of the gremolata.

  11. Serve and enjoy.

How to Store and Freeze

  • Osso buco can be stored in the refrigerator in an airtight container for up to three days.
  • You can also freeze osso buco for two to three months.


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