Preparing Rabbit

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    4. Smoking meat:

    Example of a seasoning mixture

    *Persons sensitive to MSG should omit this ingredient

    Mix thoroughly, let stand in a covered jar at refrigerated temperature for several days before using.
    Cold-smoke for 1 to 2 hours at 75-85° F.

    Cooking procedures -
    Roast in a 225-250° F oven to an internal temperature of 160° F. Because some meat contains little fat, one may need to baste with vegetable oil, butter, or cover with bacon strips.

    More Recipes...
    Wild rabbit is a very versatile meat and if properly handled in the field it should be a welcome addition to the menu. Most people find the flavor of wild rabbit to be quite pleasant.


Mature domestic rabbit and most wild rabbit tend to lack tenderness, therefore one should pre-cook it, regardless of the recipe. This should be done at low to medium heat while covered with water. Don't over-cook! When the flesh can be easily pierced with a fork, it's time to stop pre-cooking and move on to your favorite recipe.

As a general rule, wild or domestic rabbit may be used in any recipe which calls for "skinless chicken." While rabbit does not "taste just like chicken," it does make a delicious and healthy substitute. For example, a popular "healthy" dish is "chicken & rice." Rabbit & rice can be prepared in exactly the same way, simply by substituting rabbit for all or part of the chicken that the recipe calls for. Another favorite is Rabbit Tetrazzini.

Most households have a favorite Fried Chicken recipe that can be put to good use with rabbit. A good one is listed below.

2 or 3dressed, cleaned & cut wild rabbits
3chicken bouillon cubes
2large or med. eggs
1/2 cupwhole milk
3/4 cupshortening
1 cup*Big Spring Mill® Seasoned flour
* Big Spring Mill Inc. Elliston, Va. 540-268-2267

Place rabbit & bouillon cubes in a kettle of accommodating size and cover with water. Place over high heat until water boils, reduce heat, cover and simmer until precooked (normally 15 to 35 min.). Remove from heat, drain and cool thoroughly (save the broth and use it later to make an excellent gravy or white sauce).

Preheat skillet and melt shortening. Break eggs into a shallow bowl and add milk. Stir with wire whisk, fork or mixer until well blended. Dip each meat piece into the egg/milk mixture, and then coat thoroughly with seasoned flour. Place coated rabbit pieces in melted shortening and cook until golden brown over medium heat. For a real Sunday "Preacher-Pleaser," serve with gravy, potatoes, hot biscuits and fresh garden vegetables.

For someone cooking rabbit for the first time or for anyone trying to stretch one rabbit into a meal for the whole family, use the following inexpensive and very simple recipe.

1dressed, cleaned and cut wild rabbit
1can vegetable soup
2chicken bouillon cubes
pinchblack pepper

Place rabbit, bouillon and pepper in a kettle of accommodating size and cover with at least 1 quart of water. Bring contents to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat, cover and simmer until meat is tender (normally 20 to 40 min.). Remove from heat and drain rabbit pieces through colander, returning broth to the original container. When the rabbit has cooled well enough to handle, separate the meat from the bone by hand (easily accomplished if rabbit is thoroughly cooked). Discard bones and place the meat back into the broth that it was cooked in. Add the entire can of soup (do not add more water) and reheat to a boil over medium heat, stirring occasionally.
Serve as a soup, with cheese & crackers or ...
Thicken by slowly adding, while stirring, a thorough mixture of 3 to 5 tbs of flour and a 1/2 cup of cold milk into the boiling soup. Served over rice or egg noodles.


Excerpts from Butchering, Processing and Preservation of Meat. 1955. Frank G. Ashbrook, Van Nostrand Reinhold Co. p. 122-123

The Meat We Eat. 1985. John Romans, W. J. Costello, K. W. Jones, C. W. Carlson and P. T. Ziegler. The Interstate Printers and Publishers, Inc. p. 230-233.

Home Book of Smoke-Cooking Meat, Fish & Game. 1988. Jack Sleight and Raymond Hull, Stackpole Books. p. 102.


Commercial products are named in this publication for informational purposes only. The Cooking Inn does not endorse these products and does not intend discrimination against other products which also may be suitable.

Information provided by Virginia Tech & Virginia Cooperative Extension, graphics have been modified from what was available from Virginia Tech.

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