American Hunter | Recipe: Popcorn Rabbit

Jackrabbits, cottontails, and rabbits are excellent table dishes. These animals are petite-looking, but have large muscles that can be easily removed from the bone. A little work to remove silver skin and larger tendons makes for tender, aromatic bites.

Anyone familiar with fast food has heard of the bite-sized nuggets, often referred to as “popcorn chicken.” The crispy, coated nuggets are a teaser for a larger meal and are easy to prepare with rabbits or bunnies.

If you’re at a hunting camp and have a rabbit or two, try making popcorn rabbits first. The entire hunting crew will likely be looking for mischievous rabbits the next day. Consider this recipe for those days when you want to pack a rabbit or two and eat them fresh. It may not be enough for a full meal, but in the starter round everyone hops onto the serving plate.

Salt the meat overnight and prepare the next day for tender results.

Ingredients for brine
• • 2 rabbits or hares, boneless and cut into bite-sized pieces
• • 4 cups of cold water
• • 1 teaspoon Himalayan sea salt (smoked or with herbs is even better)
• • 1 clove of garlic, crushed
• • 1 tbsp lemon juice

1. Combine all ingredients in a sealable bag or plastic container, shake or stir to dissolve the salt – put in the refrigerator overnight or at least two hours.

Popcorn Ingredients
• • 1 cup of flour, ⅔ reserved
• • 1 tbsp corn starch
• • 1 teaspoon of Himalayan sea salt
• • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
• • ½ teaspoon black pepper
• • ½ teaspoon smoked paprika
• • 2 eggs
• • butter
• • oil


1. Remove the rabbit pieces from the saline solution and rinse them with cold water. Then pat dry with a paper towel. Put ⅓ cup of flour in a sealable plastic bag and add the rabbit pieces. Shake well to thoroughly coat all parts.

2. Beat the two eggs in a shallow bowl.

3rd Combine ⅔ cup of flour, cornstarch, himilayan sea salt, garlic powder, pepper, and smoked paprika in a bag. Dip the rabbit pieces in the egg and add them to the flour mixture – shake well to coat. Make the rabbit in small amounts to prevent them from sticking together.

4th In a Camp Chef cast iron pan over medium heat, add butter and oil. When the butter begins to brown on the edge of the pan, place coated pieces of rabbit inside and keep them apart. Cook for 2 to 3 minutes until everything is nicely browned, turn and cook for another 2 minutes.

5. Serve with Bearded Butcher barbecue sauce or your favorite dipping sauce, or eat as is.

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