Roasted bacon wrapped quail are first marinated in a flavorful liquid and then wrapped in bacon and baked to perfection. They are sure to be the star of your dinner table.
Do you have a bevy of quail to cook but you aren’t sure what to do with it? Marinate them in a delicious sweet and salty mix, wrap them in bacon and roast them to tasty perfection.
Serving everyone their own teeny tiny bird at dinner is just such a fun experience. Whether you raise quail like my parents, you hunt them or you just stumbled upon them at the market, it is time to turn them into a tasty entree.
This recipe is such a great way to take those quail to the next level. We served them with slow cooker smothered green beans that mimicked the marinade ingredients.
What does quail taste like?
Quail are such small little birds, so a large part of the appeal is that you can eat a whole quail on your own. It is kind of fun to have the whole thing.
But what do they taste like? Quail are all dark meat, including the breast meat.
They have a slightly gamey flavor, but it’s not too strong. The dark meat makes it a bit richer than chicken.
So quail lends itself well to stronger herbs and flavorings. Really flavorful marinades are also perfect.
The sweet and salty marinade in this recipe is a perfect way to impart more layers of taste. While it would be tasty on many kinds of meat, it is really good on slightly gamey proteins like this.
Preparing your quail
Mixing up the marinade is super simple. Soy sauce brings deep savory salty umami tastes.
You can use either honey or brown sugar to balance the salty with a little bit of sweet. A little garlic ties it all together.
Some people prefer to take the legs off the quail before roasting them. They are easy to overcook and barely have a couple of bites of meat on them anyway.
I like to leave them on. I don’t have a real reason other than possibly remembering how fun it was to get a whole cornish hen when I was younger.
Marinate your birds for several hours to all the flavors to penetrate. When you are ready, discard the marinade and break out the bacon.
Wrapping the quail breasts in bacon keeps them tender and moist. Plus it adds a bit of smokiness and all the goodness bacon brings to anything.
We roasted these quail, but you could grill them if you prefer. Just bring them to an internal temperature of at least 150 degrees Fahrenheit.
If you happen to have eggs too, check out my tips and tricks for quail eggs. There are several recipe ideas there as well!
Or try making lemon rosemary roasted quail. It is another great way to enjoy these little game birds.
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Roasted Bacon Wrapped Quail
- ¼ cup soy sauce
- 3 Tablespoons honey or brown sugar
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 2 Tablespoon avocado oil or any neutral cooking oil
- 5 quail
- 5 slices bacon
- Mix together soy sauce, honey, garlic and oil. Put quail in the marinade and refrigerate for 6-7 hours.
- Preheat oven to 325°F and grease a square baking dish.
- Remove quail from marinade and wrap one piece of bacon around each bird, fastening with a toothpick.
- Put wrapped quails in prepared baking dish and cover with foil. Bake for 35 minutes.
- Remove foil and increase oven temperature to 425°F and roast for about 10-15 more minutes or until the bacon is slightly browned and the quail reach an internal temperature of at least 150°F.
- Allow the meat to rest for 5-10 minutes before serving.