Easy One Skillet Venison Grilled Tamale Pie

Get all the flavor of traditional tamales in this quick and easy cast iron skillet recipe

By author of Timber 2 Table Wild Game Recipes Print Recipe
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Traditional tamales are definitely delicious, but if you plan to make them from scratch, you better pack a lunch. You’re going to be in the kitchen for a while. Instead, have all that flavor in an easy recipe quick enough to make on a busy weeknight or a midday break between hunts.

Get all of the flavor of traditional tamales without all the work and time.

And this recipe cooks in a single cast iron skillet, meaning there won’t be a sink full of dirty dishes when you are finished. 

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For classic tamale flavor, use masa harina corn flour. You can find it in the baking section of most large supermarkets or in Mexican markets. Ground venison is the perfect meat for this dish. It browns quickly and packs a ton of flavor into the meat filling. For even more flavor, finish the pie on your Traeger Grill for a hint of smoke. If you don’t want to grill the pie, simply finish it in a 350 degree oven. 

Spread the dough over the filling and grill until golden brown and cooked through.


Meat Filling 

2 pounds ground venison

2 10-ounce cans original Ro-Tel tomatoes 

1 yellow onion, diced

½ cup tomato ketchup

1 4-ounce can roasted Hatch green chile peppers 

1 pound frozen yellow corn

1 teaspoon chili powder

1 teaspoon ground cumin

2 cups shredded Colby-jack cheese


Masa Dough topping

2 cups masa harina flour

1 ½ cup chicken broth

1 stick melted butter

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon salt

Cooking Instructions

Start by chopping a large yellow onion.

Dice the onion.

In a large cast iron skillet over medium-high heat, brown the ground venison and diced onion.

Brown the ground venison with the diced onion.

Once the meat is cooked through, add the remaining ingredients — except the cheese. Bring the mixture to a simmer and cook for 10-15 minutes. Remove the skillet from the heat. 

Add the tomatoes and corn to the browned venison.

While the meat filling cooks, in a large bowl blend the masa, baking powder, and salt. Pour in the butter and stir to blend. Slowly pour in the chicken stock, mixing as you go, until you get a smooth dough. Set the mixture aside.

Mix the masa dough topping.

Sprinkle the cheese mixture over the cooked meat filling. Spoon the masa topping over the cheese.

Top the venison filling with shredded cheese.

Use a wooden spoon to spread the topping evenly over the meat and cheese. Place the pie in a preheated 350-degree oven or on your Traeger Grill. Cook for 44-60 minutes or until the top is golden brown and cooked through. 




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