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Slow Cooker Sunday: French bourguignon made with venison

I can’t live without my slow cooker, and I never want to know what that would be like. On days like today, when it’s cold and I’m sick, the last thing I want to do is spend five hours preparing a meal for my family — especially when my husband requests dishes like venison stew or bourguignon. So instead I’ll spend just 20 minutes prepping, and then let the slow cooker do all its magic while I lie on the couch, watching Lifetime.

That makes me sound really lazy, but I promise I’m not. I love cooking. But some days I love not cooking too, and those are the days this venison bourguignon will be on my menu. The venison meat adds a unique variety to this dish, and the rich ingredients and flavor-packed broth taste like you spent all day making it. Funny thing is, you did — just with a little help from the slow cooker.

Crock pot venison bourguignon

Slow cooker venison bourguignon recipe

This amazing venison bourguignon revamps this classic French dish with an exciting new meat. If you can’t find venison, then use beef or pork.

Serves 6

Prep time: 20 minutes | Cook time: 6-8 hours | Total time: 6 hours 20 minutes-8 hours 20 minutes


  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 pounds venison stew meat, cut into cubes
  • 1 large yellow onion, diced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 3 celery stalks, chopped
  • 1 carrot, chopped
  • 1-1/2 cups mushrooms, sliced
  • 2 russet potatoes, chopped
  • 2 cups chopped butternut squash
  • 2 cups red wine
  • 1 cup beef broth
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1 tablespoon chopped parsley
  • 1 bay leaf
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • Fresh chopped herbs


  1. In a large skillet over medium heat, heat the olive oil. Liberally salt and pepper the venison. Add the meat to the pan in batches, being sure to not crowd the pan. Let cook for about 1 to 3 minutes on each side or until browned. Let the meat pull away from the pan naturally — don’t move it around too much while it cooks. Repeat until all the meat has been browned.
  2. Reserve the juices in the pan, and add in the onions and garlic. Cook until the onions start to caramelize, about 6 minutes. Remove from heat.
  3. Transfer the meat to the basin of your slow cooker. Add the onions, garlic, celery, carrots, mushrooms, squash, potatoes, red wine, beef broth, tomato paste, parsley and bay leaf, and then add salt and pepper, to taste.
  4. Cover the basin of the slow cooker, and cook on low for 6 to 8 hours or until the vegetables are soft and the meat is tender.
  5. Serve topped with fresh herbs.

More slow cooker stew recipes

Slow cooker recipes for fall
Tonight’s dinner: Crock-Pot beef stew
Sunday Dinner: Crock-Pot chicken and dumplings

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