This Venison Stuffed Pumpkin is so delicious and will absolutely be a fall favorite!
Tis pumpkin season guys!
But you might be looking at this recipe thinking why? And my response is why not? When fall comes around, people typically associate pumpkin flavor with pumpkin spice. Therefore, this recipe might sound strange. However, pumpkin by itself when cooked is like any other winter squash. If you have ever had squash casserole, this is basically that, but with meat. AND It is freaking delicious!
This recipe came about because my work had a fall festival where there was a station that the kids could decorate small pumpkins (~2.5lbs) at. We overestimated how many children would show up and had a TON of leftover pumpkins. Rather than just use them as decorations, I brought 3 home and decided to come up with something. My mom had done a similar recipe when I was younger in one large pumpkin, but it was bland (no offense mom). I knew the idea was good but wanted to *spice* things up. Knowing that pumpkin was squashy, I decided to go the squash casserole route. My husband’s aunt makes the most delicious squash casserole using stuffing. While this isn’t her recipe, because it is clearly not squash, I took the general idea of using stuffing and got to work.
This recipe is super easy. All it requires is cooking the meat and onions with the seasonings and then mixing that with cornbread stuffing mix, cream of mushroom soup, and some broth. The hardest part is cutting your pumpkin(s) open and scooping all the seeds and guts out.
I personally decided to use axis, but this recipe would be great with a plethora of ground game besides venison. I would love to try this with ground sausage too! Just the thought of that is making my mouth water!
Not only is the recipe so good (I even went back to work and grabbed three more pumpkins to make it again), but it is fun. You literally get to eat out of a pumpkin. Your kids will love it! Plus, if you don’t carve your pumpkins, they last awhile. So, once you are done using them as décor, rather than throwing them away, you can make this!!
Venison Stuffed Pumpkin
- 1 lb ground venison I used axis
- 3 ~2.5lb pumpkins or one large one
- 2 T olive oil
- 1 onion diced
- 1/2 tsp ground sage
- 2 T brown sugar
- 2 T minced garlic
- 1/2 tsp salt or to taste
- 1/2 tsp pepper
- 1 tsp thyme dried
- 2 T soy sauce
- 1 pkg cornbread stuffing
- 1 can cream of mushroom soup
- 1 C beef broth more or less (depends on how dry it looks)*
- Preheat oven to 350°F.
- Heat olive oil in a pan over medium-high heat.
- Once hot, add onions and cook until browned.
- Once browned, add meat, soy sauce, thyme, pepper, salt, garlic, brown sugar, and sage.
- Cook until meat is brown or fully cooked.
- Drain any excess moisture.
- Cut tops off of your pumpkin(s) and remove ALL guts and seeds. You will need to scrape the sides to fully do this.
- In a bowl, mix meat, cornbread stuffing, and cream of mushroom soup. Don't mash it, but make sure it is mixed well.
- If the mixture is too dry, add beef broth.* I added 1C.
- Fill pumpkins to the top. The fuller the pumpkin the better!
- Place the top back on the pumpkins so the mixture is covered.
- Place pumpkins on a baking sheet.
- Bake for 1 hour.
- Remove tops, fluff the mixture and serve in the pumpkin or remove the filling and serve on plates. Make sure to get some of the pumpkin in it when you eat it! It's delicious! Enjoy!