Wildgame Gyozas

Nick Otto
Nick Otto

Wildgame Gyozas

My wife’s grandfather was stationed over in Japan during the time of the Vietnam war. He was a mechanic and prepped vehicles for their deployment. During his deployment, he befriended a Japanese family who shared their favorite dumpling recipe, the gyoza. A fried or steamed bundle of goodness that could be dunked into any dipping sauce.

I’m calling this a wild game recipe, for the simple fact that you can use any kind of ground meat. Elk, pronghorn, boar, or bird can be used as the meat base. I just used what I had, 80/20 whitetail grind with pork backfat. Also, Iwas only able to find dried shiitakes that I reconstituted with a dry red wine. To reconstitute, put the mushrooms in a saucepan, pour a cup of wine, and just warm on very low heat for 20 minutes.

Wonton wrapping is a bit of a time suck. It can be as easy as folding the wonton in half, making triangles, but I found going with a multi fold dumpling gives a better seal and fry. I use a small scoop to measure the filling, staying consistent in size helps with the folding. It might take some playing around on your part to get the right amount of filling.

Once made, they are ready for the pan and oil, or dumplings can be placed on a cookie sheet with parchment paper to freeze for later.


Cooking the dumplings can happen two ways; fried or steamed.

Wildgame Gyoza

Yield: ~50

Prep: 15 minutes

Assemble: 45 minutes

Cook: 10 minutes


1lb Ground Venison

1pkg of Wontons

2 C Bok Choy

½ C Green Onion

1 C Shitakie Mushrooms

2-3 Garlic Cloves

1 tsp Ginger Root Grated

2 Tbs Soy Sauce (optional)

2 Tbs Sesame Oil (optional)

2 Tbs Rice Wine (optional)


  • Finely chop; bok choy, green onion, mushrooms, and garlic clove. Add to ground venison in a large mixing bowl.
  • Add grated ginger, soy sauce, rice wine, and sesame oil into the mixMix thoroughly, hands work best.
  • Place a teaspoon scoop of filling into the center of a wonton. Wet the edges with your finger and fold.
  • Set folded dumplings on cookie sheet.
  • To steam; heat a couple teaspoons of oil in a pan, place dumplings in the pan leaving room around them. At this point, frying the bottom. Pour a ½ cup of water in the pan and cover for ~3 minutes.
  • To fry; heat oil to 400°, submerge several dumplings. The dumplings are done when floating and golden, put on a wire rack to cool.
  • Serve with sticky rice and dipping sauces. Orange dipping sauce is a favorite.