As a hunter in the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains in Kentucky, we are absolutely covered up in raccoons. Even though I enjoy the hunt, all of my experiences coon hunting have been going with other people who grew up doing it and have well trained dogs (if you've never seen or heard it, it's awesome to watch a hound work and tree a coon). A good friend of mine named Zack James grew up as a really big coon hunter with his dad and their walker coon hounds. When we were younger, my cousin and I used to tag along with him and chase coons through the crop fields along the Ohio River. For those of you who are coon hunters or interested in becoming a coon hunter, I'm here to tell you that (when prepared the right way) raccoon can be a very delicious meat.
Every fall we head to Lewis County, KY and spend time at my dad's hunting cabin during our whitetail firearm season. We all unplug from our work and responsibilities and spend a few days together chasing whitetails, sitting around the campfire, and swapping old stories over an ice cold beer. For this year's hunting camp, we decided to try something new and worked up a raccoon recipe to enjoy as a celebratory lunch after my cousin killed a nice 8 point with his 30-30 Marlin. It was a quick and delicious meal that was enjoyed by everyone in camp except for my dad and uncle who both said "hell no, I ain't eatin' that." Trust me, they missed out.
1. You'll want to trim most of the fat from the carcass and remove the scent gland from each arm and leg to prepare it for cooking. These will look like small marbles just above the knee joints.
2. Once you've taken all of the possible meat from the animal (will consist of the legs, rib cage, and spine), now it's time to submerge the pieces in white vinegar for about 15 minutes. This will help with tenderizing and giving you a better flavor!
3. You can cook your raccoon meat in a boiling pot or a crock pot. We used a crock pot for our recipe!
4. I like to remove the meat from the stock with a strainer. Once you've pulled the meat and removed any bones, place the meat in a large container. Now, it's time to add your onion powder, garlic powder, cayenne pepper, seasoning salt, and pepper. Mix all of these together thoroughly until your seasonings are evenly distributed through the pulled meat.
5. Now, it's time to mix in your favorite BBQ sauce into the equation!! Mix your desired amount of BBQ sauce into the meat and if you want it make your BBQ thinner, add your desired amount of the cooked chicken broth into your container while mixing. For this recipe, I used Sweet Baby Rays Honey BBQ Sauce and 1/4 cup of stock in the mixture!
THROW ON A BUN AND ENJOY!!!
Eat and Enjoy!!
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