Venison backstrap is a premium cut of meat, so it should be treated carefully when cooking.
While the backstrap size will influence the cooking time, a general rule of thumb is 15-25 minutes of cooking time in the oven per pound of meat.
However, other things may affect the cooking time, like whether the meat is marinated, whether you are searing or reverse searing, and what degree of cooked you would like.
Ideally, you should use a meat thermometer and cook by temperature instead.
Deer Backstrap Cooking Times in Oven
As I mentioned above, the general rule of thumb for backstraps is 15-20 minutes per pound.
Time per pound
- Rare: This is the least amount of cooking time on a backstrap. The interior temperature will reach 125F, and there will be a deep red color in the center. The time for a rare cook on a venison backstrap is between 14-17 minutes per pound. This will fall on the lower side if you are searing the meat.
- Medium Rare: If you are choosing one of the most popular cooks for your backstrap, it will take 18-20 minutes per pound. The interior temperature will reach 130-135F.
- Well: While I don’t recommend cooking venison backstrap to well as it will dry out the meat and leave a livery taste. If you do want to cook it to well, it will take about 25 minutes per pound in the oven.
Searing the backstrap will affect its overall cooking time.
However, I highly recommend searing venison backstrap.
There are two methods of searing your backstrap; pre-searing and reverse searing.
As the name suggests, one is before you place the backstrap in the oven, and the other is after.
Pre-searing the backstrap will have the biggest effect on the overall time in the oven. This is because you will cook the backstrap briefly at extremely high heat.
This will begin to raise the overall temperature of the backstrap; however, it will not change the time by much as it is a short time of high heat, so it will not reach the center of the backstrap.
Reverse searing has no real effect on how long the backstrap spends in the oven as you do not reverse sear until after the meat has rested.
If you are searing the meat before it enters the oven, aim for the lower end of the numbers above; if you are reverse searing, you can use the longer cooking times.
An important part of cooking backstrap, especially in the oven, is resting the meat.
Resting should be considered part of the cooking process as the meat is not consumed before resting.
The resting process allows for the muscles to decontract, making the meat tender.
During this time, it will also release juices. I should note that the meat will continue to cook slightly during the resting process.
A general rule of thumb for venison backstrap is to rest the meat for half the duration it was in the oven.
So if you are cooking a 1-pound backstrap to medium rare, you should let the meat rest for 9-10 minutes.
Cooking such a premium cut of meat like venison backstrap may seem daunting.
However, it doesn’t need to be difficult. Cooking by time is a tricky skill, and even pros get it wrong.
This is why I recommend cooking your venison backstrap by temperature instead.
Rusty enjoys connecting food and nature and has done so since a child. He was fortunate enough to explore cuisine worldwide and work at great European restaurants. He now enjoys thinking up new recipes that he can find around him in nature in North America.