I have a small 1.3-pound brown bear roast and don't know what to do with it. It looks pretty lean thru the plastic wrapper. I am certain it was handled and prepared well, though have no more info. I tried a marinade on 2 small steaks and have 2 more left. It was pretty good overall, though the (connective tissue?) was stringy.

Would chunks in the crock pot be best? Any advice appreciated.

  • 4
    I love this question and don't want to see it closed. Since we don't allow recipe requests here, I am editing your question to eliminate that possibility. Thank you for the fun question, and welcome to Seasoned Advice!
    – Jolenealaska
    Commented Dec 17, 2015 at 22:48

3 Answers 3


Like any meat, the best cooking method for bear depends a lot upon the cut of meat. Brown bear, even if taken in the early spring (before they start eating salmon), is pretty strongly flavored. A lot of hunters in Alaska don't even eat brown bears that they take, preferring to use them for taxidermy purposes only. (BTW, I don't like that, I firmly believe that hunters should eat what they kill, but that's beside the point)

Considering the gaminess of brown bear, that your cut appears lean, and that you're not entirely sure what cut it is; I recommend that you make sausage. Trim away any noticeable pockets of fat since bear fat is not particularly pleasant. Grind the roast with about 25% fat by weight. Since pork is the closest easily available fat to bear, I would go with that if you can. You can use a meat grinder, if you have one available, or food processor. If you don't have either of those, you can also use a knife. Just pound it as you mince it as finely as possible. From there, you can use any recipe for pork sausage that appeals to you, just increase spice a bit to compensate for the strength of bear meat flavor. You don't need to stuff sausage casings or anything like that unless you care to. Smoking or any other specialty technique is also entirely optional.

The one thing that isn't optional is that bear meat should be cooked to a minimum of 160°F (71°C) because many bears carry trichinosis.

Quit looking at my avatar!


Lean, gamey meat benefits from braising - it will result in a somewhat more tender dish, taking some of the unpleasant intensity from the game and imparting pleasant complimentary flavors.

With game as strong-tasting as bear, a braising liquid with a similarly strong base component would be ideal. Try braising recipes that include red wine as the primary ingredient, with fresh herbs and aromatics more on the intense side of the spectrum.

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    Juniper berries go very well with strong flavoured meat like venison and hare - it might have the strength to go with bear
    – user23614
    Commented Dec 18, 2015 at 16:15

This could be the perfect instance to cook the roast sous vide which would tenderize the connective tissue without drying out the meat. It works wonders on the toughest cuts of beef.

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