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10 Ground Bison Recipes That Beat Chicken Any Day

When you first learn about tracking calories and macros, you quickly realize the beauty that is chicken.

It’s basically pure protein and can be cooked a million different ways, and so, inevitably, you start eating a lot of it.

And then, one day, it loses its luster.

Not to worry, though, because you can move on to other lean meats like 93/7 ground beef and pork chops.

And then, eventually, they get old, too.

Where to go next, you wonder? Fancier and more exotic recipes? Suck it up and look at your food more as a source of fuel rather than enjoyment?

Well, this is where ground bison can help.

It has a similar texture to ground beef, more flavor than chicken, and less fat than most other red meats.

As you’ll see with these recipes, it’s also just as versatile as any of your other lean meat staples and goes well with just about any type of dish.

Want a perfect summer meal that will impress your friends? Try the Bison & Mushroom Stuffed Peppers.

If you want a simple meal that will feed your whole family, make the Savory Slow Cooker Bison & Vegetable Stew.

And if you want to combine meat from the American frontier with classic Italian cuisine, try the Bison Bolognese.

Enjoy!

Slow Cooker Sweet Potato Bison Chili

Picture courtesy of Whole30

This is a simple chili with bold flavors and high nutrient density. It uses ground bison instead of beef for similar flavor, yet less saturated fat. And this chili without beans has sweet potatoes for the starch, which adds vitamin A, complex carbs, and more. 

Serves 8

Ingredients

2 lbs. ground bison

1 large yellow onion, diced

8 cloves garlic, minced

1 small can (4 oz.) diced green chilies

1 large sweet potato, peeled and cut into 1/2” cubes (about 3 cups)

2 large cans (28 oz. each) fire-roasted diced tomatoes, undrained

2 cups beef broth

2 Tbsp. chili powder

1 Tbsp. ground cumin

1/2 tsp. ground chipotle

2 tsp. sea salt

1/2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper

Nutrition Facts (per Serving)

Calories: 333

Protein: 26 grams

Carbs: 28 grams

Fat: 13 grams

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Smoky Bison Stuffed Spaghetti Squash

Picture courtesy of Healing Gourmet

Instead of plain spaghetti and meatballs, upgrade to this flavorful version made with squash and ground bison. It’s low in carbs and in fat, so you know what that means: mostly protein. And you’ll also get the nutritional benefits of spaghetti squash, including fiber, potassium, and vitamin B6.

Serves 4

Ingredients

1 small spaghetti squash (about 2 lbs.)

1 lb. ground bison

1 Tbsp. virgin coconut oil

2 cloves garlic, minced

1/2 tsp. sea salt

1/2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper

2 cups spinach, chopped

1 Tbsp. fresh rosemary, minced

2 tsp. smoked paprika

2 Tbsp. tomato paste

1 tsp. fennel seeds

Nutrition Facts (per Serving)

Calories: 312

Protein: 23 grams

Carbs: 20 grams

Fat: 16 grams

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Bison One-Pot Dinner

Picture courtesy of Stetted

The trick to making this recipe convenient is using frozen pre-cooked grains. If you can’t find a blend of quinoa, couscous, and rice, you can use anything  you have on hand. Bison would also taste great with brown rice, or if you want more fiber and protein, try barley.

Serves 4

Ingredients

1 lb. ground bison

1/2 cup diced onion

2 cloves garlic, minced

1/2 tsp. salt

1/4 tsp. freshly ground black pepper

1/2 tsp. ground cumin (or more to taste)

1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper

2 Tbsp. tomato paste

1 cup quinoa (or rice)

2 cups chicken stock (more as needed)

4 cups packed torn greens

Balsamic vinegar (optional)

Nutrition Facts (per Serving)

Calories: 447

Protein: 36 grams

Carbs: 38 grams

Fat: 20 grams

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Spicy Green Bean & Tofu Stir Fry with Ground Bison

Picture courtesy of Food and Wine

Stir fry isn’t just for chicken and pork. This one uses ground bison for over 25 grams of protein, plus it has less saturated fat than beef. And that’s great in a stir fry since you can’t fry something without oil, which already adds enough fat per serving. Bison also has micronutrients like zinc, niacin, iron, and vitamin B6.

Serves 4

Ingredients

1/2 lb. ground bison

2 large cloves garlic, minced

1 Tbsp. minced fresh ginger

3 Tbsp. soy sauce

1 Tbsp. cornstarch

1 tsp. sugar

Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

2 Tbsp. canola oil

1 lb. green beans

1 block (12 oz.) silken firm tofu, cut into 1” cubes

1 cup low-sodium beef broth (or chicken broth)

1 1/2 tsp. Chinese chile garlic sauce

2 scallions, thinly sliced

Nutrition Facts (per Serving)

Calories: 312

Protein: 26 grams

Carbs: 12 grams

Fat: 18 grams

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Bison & Mushroom Stuffed Peppers

Picture courtesy of The Lemon Bowl

Stuffed bell peppers are a simple recipe for a well-balanced meal. You can fill them with your favorite meat, grains, and cheese. This one uses ground bison for rich, savory flavor and balances that with low-calorie mushrooms. It also has farro as the whole grain and a touch of Parmesan cheese.

 

Serves 4

Ingredients

4 red peppers, halved, seeds removed

1 medium onion, diced

1 carrot, diced

3 cloves garlic, grated

20 oz. ground bison

2 cups sliced mushrooms

2 Tbsp. dried oregano

1 Tbsp. dried thyme

1 Tbsp. Worcestershire sauce

1 Tbsp. whole-grain mustard

1 tsp. salt

1/2 tsp. chili flakes

2 Tbsp. tomato sauce

1 can (14 oz.) low-sodium tomato sauce

1 cup cooked farro (or brown rice)

1/2 cup (about 2 oz.) shredded Parmesan

Fresh parsley, minced (optional garnish)

Nutrition Facts (per Serving)

Calories: 347

Protein: 41 grams

Carbs: 39 grams

Fat: 7 grams

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Spicy Meatloaf with Collards

Picture courtesy of EatingWell

The best meatloaf is made with a mixture, and in this case, it’s ground bison and pork. That means this classic dinner has tons of flavor. And while bison can dry out more easily than beef because it’s leaner, the pork will balance it out and keep this meatloaf tender and juicy. To make it even healthier, you can use whole oats instead of breadcrumbs to add complex carbs and fiber.

Serves 8

Ingredients

1 1/2 lbs. collard greens (about 2 bunches)

2 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil

1 cup diced onion

3 cloves garlic, minced

1 tsp. salt, divided

1 Tbsp. hot sauce (or more to taste)

1 Tbsp. Worcestershire sauce

1/2 tsp. ground cumin

1/2 tsp. smoked paprika

1/2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper

1 1/2 cups coarse fresh breadcrumbs

1/2 cup reduced-fat milk

1 lb. 90% lean ground bison (or beef)

1 lb. 90% lean ground pork

2 large eggs, lightly beaten

3/4 cup ketchup, divided

Nutrition Facts (per Serving)

Calories: 317

Protein: 27 grams

Carbs: 17 grams

Fat: 16 grams

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Savory Slow Cooker Bison & Vegetable Stew

Picture courtesy of Muscle and Fitness

If you love a hearty stew, but need a low-fat dinner, try using bison instead of ground beef. Since bison is lower in saturated fat, it cooks more like ground turkey – meaning it can easily dry out if you aren’t careful. That usually means adding ingredients like fresh veggies to the mix. And when you cook it in a Crock Pot, the result will always be tender and juicy.

Serves 6

Ingredients

1 lb. ground buffalo meat

1 onion, chopped

2 cloves garlic, minced

2 stalks celery, chopped

1 large carrot, chopped

3 tomatoes, chopped (or 1 can stewed tomatoes)

2 bay leaves

1 Tbsp. paprika

1 tsp. freshly ground black pepper

1 cup red wine

1 can (14 oz.) low-sodium beef broth

Nonstick cooking spray

Nutrition Facts (per Serving)

Calories: 220

Protein: 18 grams

Carbs: 8 grams

Fat: 8 grams

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Keto Bison Meatballs

Picture courtesy of Fit Men Cook

Keto is a serious diet build around high-fat, low-carb dieting. But in the case of this awesome meatball recipe, keto is also a good excuse to wrap juicy bison in bacon. No matter what meal plan you’re following, you’ll want to try one of these keto meatballs.

Serves 8

Ingredients

1 lb. 85% ground bison

8 slices bacon

1 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil

1/2 cup diced red onion

1 large egg

1 red bell pepper, diced

1/4 cup almond flour

1/3 cup chopped fresh cilantro

1 Tbsp. smoked paprika

1 Tbsp. dried thyme

Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Nutrition Facts (per Serving)

Calories: 214

Protein: 15 grams

Carbs: 4 grams

Fat: 15 grams

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Bison Shepherd’s Pie

Picture courtesy of Tessemae’s

The original shepherd’s pie is made with ground lamb, but any flavorful ground meat will work. Beef is the usual substitute, but ground bison tastes even better. If you want to make a low-fat shepherd’s pie, use Greek yogurt in the mashed potatoes instead of butter and dressing. And you can lower the calories and carbs too by replacing those potatoes with cauliflower.

Serves 4

Ingredients

Scallion Mashed Potatoes:

1 1/2 lbs. Yukon potatoes, diced into 1” pieces

Coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

1/4 cup green goddess dressing (or zesty ranch)

1 bunch scallions, chopped

1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley

1 Tbsp. butter (optional)

1/2 cup lite coconut milk (or half and half)

Filling:

2 Tbsp. butter

1 lb. ground bison

1 small yellow onion, diced

2 medium carrots, thinly sliced

1/4 cup BBQ sauce

1 cup chicken broth

1/2 cup frozen peas

Nutrition Facts (per Serving)

Calories: 649

Protein: 28 grams

Carbs: 48 grams

Fat: 37 grams

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Bison Bolognese

Picture courtesy of Healthy Seasonal Recipes

If you love richly flavored marinara, loaded with meat, then ground turkey might not cut it. Luckily you can satisfy your pasta cravings with only 5 grams of fat per serving. The secret is using extra-lean ground bison instead of beef. It has a bolder flavor, yet less saturated fat per serving.

Serves 6

Ingredients

12 oz. whole-wheat rotini (or macaroni)

6 cloves garlic, crushed

2 carrots, peeled and cut into 1 1/2” chunks

2 stalks celery, cut into 1 1/2” chunks

2 medium onions, peeled and cut into eighths

2 tsp. extra-virgin olive oil

1 lb. ground bison (or lean ground beef)

2 tsp. Italian seasoning

1 tsp. salt

1/2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper

1/2 cup dry red wine

1 large can (28 oz.) crushed tomatoes, preferably fire-roasted

Chopped fresh parsley, for garnish

Nutrition Facts (per Serving)

Calories: 330

Protein: 20 grams

Carbs: 49 grams

Fat: 5 grams

GET THE RECIPE

What do you think of these ground bison recipes? Have anything else to share? Let me know in the comments below!

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