Mouthwatering Grilling Recipes for Memorial Day

Mouthwatering Grilling Recipes for Memorial Day

In many ways, our Memorial Day celebrations capture the heart of all things Americana. There's meat on the grill, family and friends in the backyard, suds in the cooler and well-deserved tributes to the men and women who've died protecting our nation.

To help you get your weekend celebrations off to a rocking start, we've compiled a few great, mouthwatering grilling recipes you and your family will love. So crack open a cold one, invite the whole crew over, and fire up the grill.

Green Bean Stuffed Wild Boar


1 1/2 pound wild boar backstrap

2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon chopped parsley
1 teaspoon lemon zest

Green Bean Stuffing:
1 teaspoon olive oil
1/4 cup thinly sliced onion
2 cloves slivered garlic
3/4 cup sliced mushrooms
3/4 cup fresh green beans, French sliced
1/3 cup dried cherries
1 tablespoon spicy mustard
Salt & fresh ground pepper to taste

1 tablespoon spicy mustard
1 tablespoon honey

Plank Cooking Wild Game on the Grill

Plank Cooking Options:

Grill (Direct Heat):
Use the lowest setting on a gas grill or low charcoal heat. Place plank with food directly over the heat source. Cook with the lid closed. Plank should reach heavy smoke in 10 to 15 minutes. When plank begins to smoke, check often — use spray bottle filled with water to extinguish any flame on the plank. This approach promotes a heavy smoke flavor.

Grill (Indirect Heat):
Use a medium setting on a gas grill. If using charcoal, pile coals to one side. Place plank opposite the heat source. Cook with lid closed. Plank should begin to smoke after 15 to 20 minutes. The plank should not catch fire using this method. Cooking time increases due to the lower temperature. This method promotes a light smoke flavor.

Preheat oven and board to 350º. Place plank with food, directly on oven rack. Position a foil lined baking sheet on the rack below the plank to catch any drippings. This method infuses a light smoke essence into food. Planks can be cleaned and reused.

Words Of Caution

-Never leave planks unattended on the grill or wherever being cooked.
-Avoid repeatedly opening the grill cover as this can cause flare-ups and lost heat.
-Be careful not to inhale smoke or allow it to billow into the eyes.
-Use a large metal spatula to move planks around and off the grill.
-Do not to bring a burning or smoldering plank inside the house.

From the book, Grill It! Plank It! Wrap It! Smoke It!, by Tiffany Haugen.

Tips for Grilling Game

For years, I kept my game off the grill. Trying to cook an elk steak the way I grew up grilling a beef t-bone just never worked for me. While writing, "Cooking Big Game," I knew I needed to get some fool proof grilling recipes going to add to the book.

After a little experimentation, my fear of grilling game directly on the grates disappeared. There are really just a few guidelines to follow when grilling lean game meats such as elk, deer, antelope and turkey.

Grilling Tips:

1. Slice meat thinly (1/4-inch to 1/2-inch) across the grain if grilling backstrap or tenderloin. Pound and/or tenderize other meat cuts into steak size.

2. Marinate in an oil based marinade. Try olive oil as it is a healthier oil.

3. Keep salt to a minimum as it can make meat tough. Try a sprinkling of sea salt while meat is grilling.

4. Keep grates well lubricated. Use an oil soaked paper towel held by tongs to wipe grates down right before placing the meat on them.

Wild Game Marinade

From deer and elk to bear and boar, this sweet and tangy marinade will tame any wild game. We've even used it on upland birds and waterfowl. Just keep in mind cook time when grilling and don't let your game overcook and dry out.


1-2 pounds venison steaks
1/4 cup real maple syrup
1/4 soy sauce
1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
1/4 cup cider vinegar
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup olive oil
3-6 cloves garlic, crushed
3 rosemary sprigs (2-inch)

Plank Cooking Wild Game on the Grill

While Cedar Planked Salmon is popular throughout the nation, not as many folks have put wild game on a plank. Once I started plank cooking, the grill started staying out year-round and everything went on it.

Because planks help keep the moisture in fish and game meat, they take care of the problem of lean meat drying out and either tasting like shoe leather or falling through the grill. Planks also keep the grill clean and make a great serving platter/cutting board. If you haven't tried this easy method on the grill, get a fillet of fish, venison backstrap or pork loin out of the freezer and give it a go.

Planks can be purchased 'œready-to-use' or untreated wood can be bought at a lumber yard and planks can be cut to desired size. Any non-resinous wood can be plank cooked upon; cedar, alder, oak, maple, cherry, apple, pecan and hickory are a some of the more common wood types.

Wild Turkey & Bacon Skewers

Appetizers are a great way to introduce people to the amazing flavors of wild game. Try this with wild turkey, pheasant, quail or grouse. Bacon helps to keep the meat moist during grilling and pairs well with the sweet pineapple and fresh basil.


1 pound wild turkey breast
6 slices bacon
18 pineapple chunks
18 fresh basil leaves
1 tablespoon bacon grease
3 tablespoons BBQ, Teriyaki Sauce or flavored mustard
6 wooden skewers (soak 10 minutes in water before using)

Tips for Grilling Game

5. Let meat reach room temperature before grilling. Cold meat sticks to even a well lubricated grill and will contract and be tough.

6. Grill hot and fast. Get grill temperature to at least 400º grill first side only until grill marks appear and then turn meat with tongs. By the time the last of the meat is flipped, the first ones you flipped will be done.

Do not overcook. It is safe to eat most red meat rare with bear, boar and cougar being the exception.

From the book, Cooking Big Game, by Scott & Tiffany Haugen.

Plank Cooking Wild Game on the Grill

Using a favorite marinade or BBQ rub, prepare fish or game according to your taste preference. Additional flavors can be added by placing a bed of sliced citrus under fish or sliced onions under game meat. Just follow the guidelines below, cooking fish to a temperature of 135º to 140º and game to 145º to 155º.

Plank Preparation:

Step 1: Soak plank in water or other liquid, minimum 1 hour, maximum 24 hours.

Step 2: Preheat plank on grill at medium heat 2-3 minutes, or in a 350º oven 5 minutes.

Step 3: Brush a light coating of olive oil onto cooking side of board if desired to prevent food sticking.

Green Bean Stuffed Wild Boar


Butterfly pork by making long, shallow slices with the grain, unrolling the loin with each slice. In a shallow pan or sealable plastic bag, mix marinade ingredients. Marinate pork 1 to 12 hours.

In a medium skillet, sauté onions in olive oil on medium heat until soft. Add garlic and mushrooms continuing to sauté 2 minutes. Add green beans, continuing to saute 1 to 2 minutes. Salt and pepper to taste. Remove from heat and mix in dried cherries and mustard. Set aside to cool.

Lay 4 pieces of 8-inch long kitchen twine on a flat surface. Remove pork from marinade and place over kitchen twine. Strain parsley and lemon zest from marinade and spread on pork loin. Place stuffing mixture on top of pork in an even layer. Roll pork over filling and secure with kitchen twine. In a small dish, mix mustard with honey for glazing.

Place rolled and tied pork in a grilling pan, pre-soaked wood plank or directly on a medium grill (350º-375º). Cook 20 minutes and brush on glaze. Cook an additional 15 minutes or until pork reaches an internal temperature of 155º. Let pork rest 5 to 10 minutes, remove kitchen twine and cut into desired serving portions.

Wild Game Marinade


Mix all ingredients in a sealable container or plastic bag. Add sliced game and let marinate 2 to 24 hours in the refrigerator. Bring meat to room temperature before grilling (approx. 30 minutes).

Cook on a well-lubricated, hot grill. Steaks should only take 1 to 2 minutes per side depending on thickness. Grilled venison is best served rare or medium-rare.

When the pigs are running and fresh green beans are overflowing in the garden, take the time to put this fresh, flavorful combination on the table. It will be worth your efforts.

From the book, "Cooking Big Game," by Scott & Tiffany Haugen.

Wild Turkey & Bacon Skewers


In a large skillet, partially cook bacon (beginning to brown but still flexible). Cool bacon on a paper towel and reserve 1 tablespoon of bacon grease. Cut turkey into 18 bite-sized chunks. In a medium saucepan, sauté turkey in bacon grease on medium-high heat 2 minutes. Add sauce and continue to sauté 2 minutes.

When turkey has cooled enough to handle it is time to assemble the skewers. Start at the top of the skewer with a bacon slice then add turkey, basil leaf and pineapple. Wrap the slice of bacon over the pineapple and move items down an inch or so. Repeat, intertwining the bacon around the other ingredients.

Place skewers on a hot grill or griddle until bacon crisps and turkey begins to brown, rotate skewers until all sides hit heat.

From the book, Cooking Game Birds, by Scott & Tiffany Haugen.

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Recommended Articles

See More Recommendations

Popular Videos

Lure Lock Tackle Cases: No-Spill, No-Scent

Lure Lock Tackle Cases: No-Spill, No-Scent

Glenn Walker talks us through the soy-based technology that makes Lure Lock cases spill-proof and scent-proof. With Game & Fish Editorial Director Adam Heggenstaller at ICAST 2019 in Orlando.

Costa and Captains for Clean Water

Costa and Captains for Clean Water

With the company's heavy involvement in initiatives like Kick the Plastic and Captains for Clean Water campaigns, Costa's Amanda Sabin tells OSG's Lynn Burkhead all about the sunglass maker's unwavering commitment to help the freshwater and saltwater environment.


Mustad's New Tungsten Weights

Long known as one of the world's premiere hook makers, Mustad's Reid McKinstry shows OSG's Lynn Burkhead that the company is now one of the leaders in making tungsten terminal tackle products for anglers.

New Optimum and Optimum TS Downriggers from Canon

New Optimum and Optimum TS Downriggers from Canon

From rugged reliability to smooth integration of cutting edge technology across several different platforms, OSG's Lynn Burkhead learns that there's much to like about the new Optimum and Optimum TS downriggers from Canon.

See More Popular Videos

Trending Articles

While wildly popular amongst anglers around the world, the IGFA World Record book shows the biggest pike come from Europe. Records

Top 10 Biggest Pike World Records of All Time

Jack Vitek - August 19, 2015

While wildly popular amongst anglers around the world, the IGFA World Record book shows the...

 A 7 pound giant taken on a jig during the pre-spawn transistion in the Midwest.

Although the art Bass

4 Tips When Jig Fishing For Bass

Chris Schneider - August 25, 2015

A 7 pound giant taken on a jig during the pre-spawn transistion in the Midwest. Although...

The colder waters of early spring are prime times to use bait rigs for stripers. Other Freshwater

3 Deadly Bait Rigs For Stripers

J.B. Kasper - April 21, 2005

The colder waters of early spring are prime times to use bait rigs for stripers.

If you haven't looked at the smaller urban lakes in your area, you are missing out on some great bass pond fishing. Bass

Bass Pond Fishing: Catch Lunkers at Small Lakes Near You

Dan Anderson

If you haven't looked at the smaller urban lakes in your area, you are missing out on some...

See More Trending Articles

GET THE MAGAZINE Subscribe & Save

Digital Now Included!


Give a Gift   |   Subscriber Services


GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.