Southern Culinary Arts: Grilled Rabbit

culinary arts - bbq cooking

Welcome to my online cooking school and online cooking classes! Today's culinary art is about BBQ cooking - grilled rabbit.

Here’s a wild game recipe that I really like! Well, at least there’s one piece of the rabbit I like – the loin. I’m not crazy about fried rabbit or stewed rabbit, but grilled or barbecued rabbit is very good. I know folks always say some unusual meat tastes like chicken, but this really does! The loins are very lean white meat with a mild flavor. They don’t taste “gamey” at all.

Wild rabbits have to be handled carefully because they sometimes carry Tularemia. Handling an infected rabbit can transmit the disease to humans, as can inhaling the bacteria while skinning. For this reason, some hunters take the precaution of wearing a face mask while dressing rabbits. If the rabbit’s liver has any spots on it, discard the entire carcass.

Rabbits sometimes have warbles – botfly larvae. Ususally, by the time hunting season rolls around, the warbles are gone. It is possible to find them occasionally in a very few early-season rabbits, especially if the weather has been unusually warm for autumn. Warbles live outside the meat and don’t penetrate it, and they pose no threat to man. Anyway, cooking will kill any warbles present. Don’t freak out about this – hogs and cows get them, too!

Rabbits should be cleaned quickly after killing. A .22 rifle is the best and safest method. Shot from shotgun shells leave numerous holes for invading bacteria. Besides, hunting rabbits with a rifle is much more sporting. If you rupture the intestines while cleaning, discard the carcass – the meat might be contaminated.

After your rabbits have been cleaned and skinned, wash them well. Be sure no bits of fur are stuck to the meat. Cut each rabbit in three sections: across the back, just behind the front legs, and across the back, just in front of the hind legs. Spread the leg sections out flat. Now you have three pieces from each rabbit – the front section, the back section, and the loin. Rinse them again in clean water, place them in a stock pot, and thoroughly wash your hands.

Parboil the rabbits for 15 minutes. Remove from pot and allow to cool for 15 minutes, then place in a deep container. Here’s the rest of the recipe:

Holle’s Grilled Rabbit

What you’ll need:

2 tablespoons oil

2 tablespoons soy sauce

One cup apple juice

¼ cup apple cider vinegar

1 tablespoon minced garlic

1 tablespoon diced celery

1 tablespoon diced bell pepper

1 tablespoon diced onion

Salt and pepper

Mix all ingredients together and pour over rabbit pieces. Marinate for several hours, re-arranging occasionally.

Remove meat from marinade and grill over hot coals, basting with oil, melted butter, or barbecue sauce.

Turn pieces frequently to ensure even cooking and browning.

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Lean to grill rabbit in my online cooking school!
Lean to grill rabbit in my online cooking school!

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Comments 28 comments

Ten Blogger profile image

Ten Blogger 6 years ago

Wow.. looks yum ! . Nice picture too ..


Hello, hello, profile image

Hello, hello, 6 years ago from London, UK

Can I come? Thank you for a great recipe.


P Morgan profile image

P Morgan 6 years ago

OK, so tastes like chicken :) Just kdding, where's my plate, please!


Putz Ballard profile image

Putz Ballard 6 years ago

Habee, been a long time since I ate rabbit. Lat time was snow shoe hare when I was stationed in Alaska. Two soul brothers cooked them and man were they ever tasty.


zzron profile image

zzron 6 years ago from Houston, TX.

This sounds good, can't wait to try it.


Cay profile image

Cay 6 years ago from America.

That looks so good!


Veronica Allen profile image

Veronica Allen 6 years ago from Georgia

I really like how you provide those little extra details, such as the fact that you have to handle wild rabbits with care since they can carry Tularemia - as well as what to look out for in case they do carry it and how to proceed from there.


Ann Nonymous profile image

Ann Nonymous 6 years ago from Virginia

You know what, Habee... I love that you don't just throw a recipe at us and walk out of the kitchen, uh, walk away from the grill. I enjoy reading your writing and when you post something like this it's nice to have a story behind the title! Good job!


Mama Sez profile image

Mama Sez 6 years ago from Canada

Hey Habee, I believe this is really yummy. The first and last time I ate rabbit was 2 decades ago. My parents tricked me and said it's chicken adobo and only revealed the truth after I'm done eating. I have to say it was really tasty but I never ate rabbit meat again because they say rabbits also cry :( I need to overcome this feeling first before I can join you in that rabbit BBQ party.


Mama Sez profile image

Mama Sez 6 years ago from Canada

Hey Habee, I believe this is really yummy. The first and last time I ate rabbit was 2 decades ago. My parents tricked me and said it's chicken adobo and only revealed the truth after I'm done eating. I have to say it was really tasty but I never ate rabbit meat again because they say rabbits also cry :( I need to overcome this feeling first before I can join you in that rabbit BBQ party.


Angela Blair profile image

Angela Blair 6 years ago from Central Texas

Wow -- never thought about grilling rabbit - Duh, how dumb I am. Great idea and thanks for the recipe. Best, Sis


Duchess OBlunt 6 years ago

Always on the lookout for wild game recipes. Thank you, I shall add this one to my growing collection.


habee profile image

habee 6 years ago from Georgia Author

Thanks for visiting, Ten!


habee profile image

habee 6 years ago from Georgia Author

HH, I told you that you're always welcome at my house and at my table!


habee profile image

habee 6 years ago from Georgia Author

P Morgan, it really does taste like chicken!


habee profile image

habee 6 years ago from Georgia Author

They are pretty tasty, Robert!


habee profile image

habee 6 years ago from Georgia Author

Ron, I bet the rabbits in Texas are huge! lol


habee profile image

habee 6 years ago from Georgia Author

Thanks for reading, Cay!


habee profile image

habee 6 years ago from Georgia Author

Thanks, Veronica. I don't want anyone getting sick because of me!


habee profile image

habee 6 years ago from Georgia Author

Thanks, Ann! What a nice comment!


habee profile image

habee 6 years ago from Georgia Author

Mama sez, rabbits actually scream when they're in pain. I heard one once when some dogs caught it. It was terrible.


habee profile image

habee 6 years ago from Georgia Author

Thanks, Sis. That's the only way I'll eat them.


habee profile image

habee 6 years ago from Georgia Author

Hope you enjoy it, Duchess!


akirchner profile image

akirchner 6 years ago from Central Oregon

I won't be trying this recipe but still great info! I don't have a Betty Crocker for Rabbit Cookbook although maybe I should look into it - har har. Great information as always! I did finally eat venison and elk - even buffalo so think I'm making progress - just not quite to rabbit yet....


nancy_30 profile image

nancy_30 6 years ago from Georgia

Great hub Habee. My dad caught a wild baby rabbit last year in my garden. He decided to keep it. It still isn't tame enough to hold and probably never will be. I don't think he would appreciate if I tried to eat it. I guess I'll have to go hunt my own. As for warbles, I hate those things. One got in my sister's cat last year. Her husband tried and tried to get it out. He finally put vaseline on the hole and bandaged it up. The warble finally suffocated and he was able to get it out.


habee profile image

habee 6 years ago from Georgia Author

Audrey, you no lika da bunny? I haven't eaten it years, myself!


habee profile image

habee 6 years ago from Georgia Author

I don't eat pets, Nancy. If it has a name, Holle doesn't eat it! lol


Jack Burton profile image

Jack Burton 2 years ago from The Midwest

Almost every dedicated shotgun hunter has cracked a tooth or two on a shotgun pellet that was overlooked in the cleaning and then cooked with the rabbit. Crunch down on one of those hard enough and you will lose a molar for sure.

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