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Korean BBQ Style Venison Backstrap Medallions

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Korean BBQ style venison backstrap is our absolute favorite way to enjoy venison. You can also use the marinade on steaks or thinly sliced beef for a more traditional take on this bul kogi style goodness. 

Dinner plate with grilled bul kogi style backstrap, broccoli and rice.

If you are looking for a great way to give your venison or beef an out of this world flavor, you are in the right place.  This bulgogi style marinade is by far our family’s favorite flavor when grilling either. 

Just let the soak up the sweet and savory goodness and grill it to perfection.  We enjoy it cooked medium rare.

That way it is super tender and really flavorful.  Everyone who has it falls in love!

This recipe has been an absolute favorite in our family for decades.  We originally got the marinade recipe from my Great-Aunt Nancy.  

If I remember correctly it was when I was in the eighth grade.  So it was (ahem) a few years ago.  

We went to visit them in Virginia and she marinated thin strips of steak in this and cooked them on the grill.  It was delicious and unlike anything we had tasted before, being small town Midwesterners after all.

So of course we asked for the recipe.  It was my job to jot it down.  I still have the recipe written in my grade school handwriting!

Early on, MiMi and Pops would make it with thin strips of beef, much like Nancy did.  It was a hit every time.   

Then pops marinated a venison backstrap in it. Oh my!  It has been a family favorite ever since! 

Grilled venison backstrap with bul kogi marinade on plate with broccoli and rice.

How We Have Adapted the Recipe

Rather than slicing the backstrap thin like a more traditional bulgogi, pops cuts his deer loins into larger medallion type cuts and soaks them in the marinade.  That way he can grill them to a medium-rare type doneness.     

That is the best way to have deer loin in our book!  Everyone in the family loves it, and if he makes it for extended family it is gone in a snap.  I have never seen somebody try it and not like it. 

Inside of medium rare backstrap medallion showing glossy marinade and toasted sesame seeds on the outside.

The Korean BBQ marinade gives the venison great flavor and a bit of sheen when you grill them up. Leaving the cuts of backstrap a little bit thicker allows you to get a nice medium rare cook that is tender and reminiscent of eating a nice steak.

You can garnish the grilled meat with a few toasted sesame seeds if you want, or serve them as is. If you are a fan of teriyaki this bulgogi flavor is going to be a hit as well.

Of course this marinade is still very tasty on beef, so if you don’t have venison don’t feel like you can’t enjoy it.  This recipe is still a good one for anyone’s arsenal. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Do I need to soak the backstrap in milk before marinating it?

No. We never soak venison backstraps in milk before using this marinade. The bulgogi style marinade is so flavorful and the backstrap stays nice and tender if it is grilled somewhere in the medium rare to medium range.

What internal temperature should venison backstrap be cooked to?

Because the venison backstrap is so lean, you don’t want to overcook it. It can be pulled with it reaches 130-135F for medium-rare or 135-140F for medium. Grilling it to these temperatures will keep it tender and juicy.

More Recipes You May Like

For another great venison dinner, check out my recipe for backstrap and broccoli. I included instructions for making it either in the slow cooker or instant pot. 

While you have the grill fired up, you might as well make some of Pops’ stuffed jalapenos as well.  Then your whole meal can be inspired by him! 

Or put some baked rice with mushrooms in the oven and you’ll have a great side dish to serve with your backstrap. Five spice roasted veggies would be another wonderful option.

If you have a freezer full of ground venison, you can check out my collection of favorite ground venison recipes. Or let me know your favorite ways to use venison in the comment below. We are always looking for new ideas to try!

Dinner plate with grilled bul kogi style backstrap, broccoli and rice.

Bul Kogi Backstrap

Servings: 6 Servings
Author: Carlee
This Korean BBQ style venison backstrap is our absolute favorite way to enjoy venison. You can also use the marinade on steaks or thinly sliced beef for a more traditional take. 
4.89 from 18 ratings
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Additional Time 2 hours
Total Time 2 hours 20 minutes


  • ½ cup soy sauce
  • 3 Tablespoons sugar
  • 1 Tablespoons light brown sugar
  • ¼ cup vegetable oil
  • 1 Tablespoon sesame oil
  • ¼ teaspoon ground ginger
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 Tablespoon toasted sesame seeds optional
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • 3 pounds venison backstrap sirloin tip or round roast


  • Cut backstrap into medallions about an inch to an inch and half thick. Place in a large plastic zipper bag.
    3 pounds venison backstrap
  • Combine the marinade ingredients together and pour over meat. Seal the bag and refrigerate for several hours.
    ½ cup soy sauce, 3 Tablespoons sugar, 1 Tablespoons light brown sugar, ¼ cup vegetable oil, 1 Tablespoon sesame oil, ¼ teaspoon ground ginger, ½ teaspoon garlic powder, 1 Tablespoon toasted sesame seeds, ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • Grill to your liking. We find medium rare gives a super tender result.



Serving: 1servingCalories: 569kcalCarbohydrates: 10gProtein: 79gFat: 22gSaturated Fat: 6gPolyunsaturated Fat: 14gCholesterol: 209mgSodium: 1312mgSugar: 8g

Nutritional Disclaimer

“Cooking With Carlee” is not a dietitian or nutritionist, and any nutritional information shared is an estimate. If calorie count and other nutritional values are important to you, we recommend running the ingredients through whichever online nutritional calculator you prefer. Calories and other nutritional values can vary quite a bit depending on which brands were used.

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4.89 from 18 votes (17 ratings without comment)
Recipe Rating


Wednesday 24th of April 2024

This is great i love just how good this turns out every time. I have already made multiple times.


Saturday 11th of June 2016

Oooooh! This sounds fabulous! I've never had venison so I will use beef, but I can't wait to try it.


Sunday 12th of June 2016

It is super good with beef too! We love it both ways!

Cindy Lou

Monday 28th of December 2015

Thank you!


Tuesday 29th of December 2015

You're welcome!


Tuesday 7th of July 2015

Sounds delicious! I'm not a fan of venison, so I'll be trying this on beef, instead ;) Thanks so much for sharing it with us at Talented Tuesdays!


Tuesday 7th of July 2015

It is wonderful either way!


Tuesday 7th of July 2015

Looks delicious!


Tuesday 7th of July 2015

Thank you so much, see you soon!