WON Landing Page OCT 2022

Venison Salisbury Steak Meatballs with Mushroom Gravy

I’ve recently come to love the food blog recipetineats.com – the author, Nagi, believes that great food can be made with everyday ingredients. I subscribe to that same attitude, and was thrilled to find her take on Salisbury Steak, in the form of meatballs with mushroom gravy. I decided to try the recipe, but sub in ground venison for the mince beef Nagi called for her in version. The resulting meal, venison Salisbury Steak meatballs with mushroom gravy, was insanely delicious, and will definitely go into the rotation for our family’s weekly meals!

Venison Salisbury Steak Meatballs Ingredients

Gather the following ingredients. A note – this recipe serves 8. When I made the meal using these quantities, it fed three adults and two toddlers (most had seconds!) with a meal’s-worth leftover.

Meatballs:
  • 1 cup plain breadcrumbs
  • 1 onion 
  • 2 lb ground venison
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tbsp ketchup
  • 2 bouillon cubes crumbled – I used chicken
  • 1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 6 tsp mustard – I used Dijon
For the slurry (gravy thickener):
  • 6 tbsp flour
  • 4 tbsp water
  • 4 tsp mustard – I used Dijon
  • 4 tsp Worcestershire sauce
Mushroom gravy:
  • 4 tbsp butter
  • 8-16 oz mushrooms, cleaned and sliced
  • salt & pepper, to taste
  • 4 cloves minced garlic
  • 4 cups beef stock

Making the Venison Salisbury Steak Meatballs

First, add breadcrumbs to a bowl, and grate the onion over the top of the crumbs. Stir to combine.

Salisbury Steak Meatballs bread crumbs grated onion

Next, add the remainder of the meatball ingredients to the bowl, and mix thoroughly.

Salisbury Steak meatballs mixture

Scoop out about 2 tablespoons of meat mixture for each meatball. I used a cookie scoop and scooped out all of the meatballs first before rolling them. I was able to make 42 meatballs.

2 plates scooped out Salisbury Steak meatballs

Then, roll each scoop between your palms until you have tightly-packed, smooth meatballs.

2 plates rolled Salisbury Steak meatballs

I served these meatballs over mashed potatoes. At this point in the preparation, I peeled, rinsed and added my potatoes and a little salt to a stock pot filled with water. I placed the water on the stove to boil, then I continued preparing the meatballs.

In a small bowl, whisk together the slurry ingredients. Set this next to your stove – it will be used to thicken the mushroom gravy at a later time.

Making the slurry for Salisbury Steak Meatballs
Slurry mixture

Next, heat a large skillet over medium high heat and add two tablespoons of olive oil to the pan. Brown the meatballs, using a large spoon to roll the balls over the cooking surface frequently. The goal is to brown the outsides of the meatballs, but leave the insides raw. Then, remove the meatballs to a plate while you move on to cooking the mushrooms. I used my largest skillet, but still browned the meatballs in two batches.

Browning the Salisbury Steak Meatballs
Browning the Salisbury Steak meatballs
Browned Salisbury Steak meatballs
Meatballs after being brownedinsides are still raw!

Making the Gravy

Now, melt the butter in the same skillet you used to brown the meatballs. When the butter has melted, scrape up any stuck bits in the pan, and add the sliced mushrooms and minced garlic. Then, cook until tender, about two minutes.

Butter in the pan
Melting the butter
Browning the mushrooms

Next, add the beef broth to the pan and stir. Taste and season with salt and pepper. I even crushed up another chicken bouillon cube and added this to the mixture (but I like really salty gravy!). Add the meatballs back into the pan, and simmer until a meat thermometer reads 160°F when poked into each meatball. While the mixture is simmering, drain and mash your potatoes and steam (if in the microwave) your side veggies (if you want them).

Salisbury Steak meatballs cooking in the gravy
Venison Salisbury Steak meatballs cooking in the gravy

Serving the Meatballs

Last, serve over mashed potatoes. I steamed a bunch of snapped asparagus, and added the greens on the plate. Delicious! These venison meatballs are super tender and flavorful, and I’d bet that even the pickiest eater (or non-venison lover) will devour this meal. The next time I make this recipe, I’m going to double it and freeze half of the uncooked meatballs for easy meal prep at a later date.

Venison Salisbury Steak Meatballs with Gravy
While my plate doesn’t look quite as good as Nagi’s, the taste of these meatballs can’t be beat!
  • About Jackie Richardson

    Jackie Baird Richardson is an interior designer, editor at The WON and avid junker. Watch for her design tips and occasional crafting ideas, bringing the outdoors indoors.