How to Clean a Squirrel (Updated 09/13/2017)

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HunterGKS
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How to Clean a Squirrel (Updated 09/13/2017)

Post by HunterGKS » July 15th, 2015, 6:37 pm

Hope this helps anyone who isn’t sure how to clean a bushy tail. This isn’t the only way but it is the way that I have found is best for me.

1. Cut the hide at the base of the tail on the underside severing the tailbone. I cut the skin up the back & sides an inch or 2.

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2. Step on the tail, grab the hind legs & pull. The hide will peel off the body, front legs, & neck. The hide will still be attached at the head & front feet. DO NOT CUT THE FRONT FEET/HEAD OFF!!!!

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3. Separate a little of the hide attached to the hind legs.

4. Step on the hide that is attached to the head &, with a pair of pliers, grab the hide & pull it up over the hind legs to the feet.

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5. Cut off the rear feet, front feet, & head, making sure to remove little, hairy glands on the front legs.

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6. Starting at the pelvic bone, slice open the belly through the rib cage & neck being careful not to pierce any of the internal organs, especially the bladder.

7. Remove the entrails.

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8. Split the pelvic bone & remove any other internals.

9. Wash off the squirrel & remove all hair. Thanks to Duke0002 (Dale), I have started using a vegetable brush under running water, works great. After cleaning, cut up or keep whole. Depending on the size & or damage, I may split the front & rear quarters. I also split the rib cage so it fits in the pot better. I try to leave the tenderloins with the rear quarters.

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10. Soak in a brine solution for 2-3 days in the fridge.

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11. Rinse, pat dry, wrap, & freeze.
George

YOU KNOW YOU HAVE TO KEEP YOUR BODY STILL. YOUR HEART JUST HASN'T CAUGHT ON.

.17 = NITRO OF THE RIMFIRE WORLD


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redarrow
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Re: How to Clean a Squirrel

Post by redarrow » July 15th, 2015, 6:44 pm

Been a long time since I skint a squirrel.
Put you plans in the nail scarred hands.

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Re: How to Clean a Squirrel

Post by K9Doc » July 15th, 2015, 7:18 pm

My grand dad used to make me keep the
Heads!!! I still remember him using a big
Spoon to pop that skull and eat the brains!!!
He also NEVER EVER would fillet a Crappie.
Cut off head, gut it, spoon scaled it! Fried it
Whole and ate around the bones.
Dang I hated scaling crappie, but sure miss it now that he
Is gone.

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HunterGKS
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Re: How to Clean a Squirrel

Post by HunterGKS » July 15th, 2015, 7:18 pm

redarrow wrote:Been a long time since I skint a squirrel.
Bushies are my 2nd favorite game to hunt behind turkeys. I use them in a variety of dishes that got to NY fall & spring turkey camp. You need to get back out there & pop a few.
George

YOU KNOW YOU HAVE TO KEEP YOUR BODY STILL. YOUR HEART JUST HASN'T CAUGHT ON.

.17 = NITRO OF THE RIMFIRE WORLD


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vaturkey
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Re: How to Clean a Squirrel

Post by vaturkey » July 15th, 2015, 7:53 pm

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Please don't throw away those NADS ! Doug loves them ! :thumbup:

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Re: How to Clean a Squirrel

Post by Shooter » July 15th, 2015, 8:09 pm

Dang, I'm jealous. That sucker's got bigger nads than me!!!
That is pretty much how my Grandpa did it. I try my best, but always make a mess of it.
BTW, where are the bullet holes in that critter, or do you just "bark" em??

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Re: How to Clean a Squirrel

Post by HunterGKS » July 15th, 2015, 8:36 pm

vaturkey wrote:Image



Please don't throw away those NADS ! Doug loves them ! :thumbup:
I'll start saving em up & send a care package at the end of the season. Maybe even add a set of bucknutz!! :LMAO:
George

YOU KNOW YOU HAVE TO KEEP YOUR BODY STILL. YOUR HEART JUST HASN'T CAUGHT ON.

.17 = NITRO OF THE RIMFIRE WORLD


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HunterGKS
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Re: How to Clean a Squirrel

Post by HunterGKS » July 15th, 2015, 8:38 pm

Shooter wrote:Dang, I'm jealous. That sucker's got bigger nads than me!!!
That is pretty much how my Grandpa did it. I try my best, but always make a mess of it.
BTW, where are the bullet holes in that critter, or do you just "bark" em??
It does take some practice. If they are gut shot, it doesn't work real well.

Head shots with a .17 HMR.
George

YOU KNOW YOU HAVE TO KEEP YOUR BODY STILL. YOUR HEART JUST HASN'T CAUGHT ON.

.17 = NITRO OF THE RIMFIRE WORLD


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Shooter
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Re: How to Clean a Squirrel

Post by Shooter » July 15th, 2015, 9:01 pm

What kind of squirrel is that anyway?? We have grey squirrels here in TN, with a few big fox squirrels. Our Grey's aren't near that hairy.
Wonder if our grey's have those same glands, cause I've never seen or heard of them before. :o

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Re: How to Clean a Squirrel

Post by Johndoe » July 15th, 2015, 10:02 pm

I always cut feet off first. Also if you clean with a bud you can keep hair off. Nothing more difficult than gettin hair off a bushy.
Also, they are great stuffed and baked.
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There are no numbers on any of my clocks below 8. Then all of a sudden, 2 days before turkey season they appear. Then right after the season they disappear.
What's up with that

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Re: How to Clean a Squirrel

Post by Bigspurs68 » July 16th, 2015, 12:02 am

Tail skinning is the way to go for sure. One other little tip..dunk em in water before you start, it helps to keep hairs from flying off and getting on the meat. Water helps with rabbits too.
Momma said "kill that turkey"

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Re: How to Clean a Squirrel

Post by HunterGKS » July 16th, 2015, 6:24 am

That's a fox. We also have PIA reds & grays. It's odd, but I have yet to kill a gray in the woods, they all seem to be citified. We also have some black grays in the little town just down the road from me.

I've heard of the water trick but don't usually have too much of a problem with hair so haven't tried it. If any hair does get on the carcass, I use a vegetable brush under running water which works great.
George

YOU KNOW YOU HAVE TO KEEP YOUR BODY STILL. YOUR HEART JUST HASN'T CAUGHT ON.

.17 = NITRO OF THE RIMFIRE WORLD


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Re: How to Clean a Squirrel

Post by Grumpy » July 16th, 2015, 9:15 am

I'll pass, rodents aren't on and never will be on my plate.
I was not his father but he was my son,,MAK IV, 10-15-1993 - 4-22-2007
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How to Clean a Squirrel

Post by drenalinld » July 16th, 2015, 10:24 am

Exactly how my grandad taught me. I have pliers and wire snips. Prefer to clean em at a creek. Dip em before and rinse after. Snip legs with snips. Grandpa cleaned em on a motel table. He was very flexible and would stand one one foot with the other foot on the tail on the table and pull the hide to the neck. I am not so flexible. Find a good rock or concrete block.

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Re: How to Clean a Squirrel

Post by HunterGKS » July 16th, 2015, 11:02 am

With my knees, there's no way I could get a foot on a table. I have a room that is set up as a butchering room with a stainless steel table, a fridge, smoker, butcher block, sink with hot & cold water, & a bunch of other stuff. It's a lot easier for me to just bring em home to clean. I do use pliers to pull the hind legs & a pair of very sharp butcher shears to cut off the feet & head. How do I know the shears are very sharp, you might ask?? Ask the tip of my left pointer finger. :roll:
George

YOU KNOW YOU HAVE TO KEEP YOUR BODY STILL. YOUR HEART JUST HASN'T CAUGHT ON.

.17 = NITRO OF THE RIMFIRE WORLD


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Re: How to Clean a Squirrel

Post by HunterGKS » July 16th, 2015, 11:12 am

Grumpy wrote:I'll pass, rodents aren't on and never will be on my plate.
Grumpster, You don't know whutcher missing. I guarantee I can cook any number of dishes with squirrel & you'd never know what you were eating. In fact, you'd be wanting more. :thumbup: The meals would be so good that, if you set a bowl of it on your head, your tongue would slap you sillier trying to get to it!! :lol:
George

YOU KNOW YOU HAVE TO KEEP YOUR BODY STILL. YOUR HEART JUST HASN'T CAUGHT ON.

.17 = NITRO OF THE RIMFIRE WORLD


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Re: How to Clean a Squirrel

Post by hookspur » July 16th, 2015, 11:42 am

I'll second the water trick....I always put my squirrels in a 5-gallon bucket and fill with water before cleaning them in generally the same manner as you do. It gives FAR better results, with very little hair on the meat!

There are danged-few better eats than fried squirrel and gravy over mashed 'tators, with a cucumber salad, tomatoes, and sweet corn fresh from the garden!!! Man, my tongue's fixin' to slap my brains out, just thinking about our August 15th opening day!

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Re: How to Clean a Squirrel

Post by HunterGKS » July 16th, 2015, 12:48 pm

OK. I may try the water trick this fall. We don't open until 09/01.

Years ago, when we had WV camp #2, our friends, where we put camp #3, had us over for supper many nights. A lot of the meals were fried squirrels. Clint was a really good cook except when it came to squirrels, not so good. We had to eat them as it would have been rude to not & we didn't want to offend him. Turned me off from fried squirrels for good. Now squirrel chowder, cacciatore, jambalaya, stew, et all are really good.

That's Clint on the right & his brother next to him in my signature pic. Both have since passed & I really miss hearing their stories of growing up in the coal mines of WV. Part of the Hatfield & McCoy feud took place fairly close to where we were.

Another squirrel story. Years ago when we lived on LI & I was maybe 5-6, we had baked "chicken" for Sunday dinner. Dad served it already carved & I loved it. I asked if there was anymore & he said: "Yes, in the oven, I'll get it." Before he could get up, I had the oven door open & Yelled: "That's not chicken!! What is that??" Squirrel. It was years before I could look at a squirrel let alone eat 1. Try & stop me now. :cheers:
George

YOU KNOW YOU HAVE TO KEEP YOUR BODY STILL. YOUR HEART JUST HASN'T CAUGHT ON.

.17 = NITRO OF THE RIMFIRE WORLD


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Re: How to Clean a Squirrel

Post by hookspur » July 16th, 2015, 2:47 pm

When I was about 8 or 9 years old my Mom and sisters went away for a few days, so it was just me and Dad to fend for ourselves. I decided to make a squirrel casserole for dinner. I got out Mom's Betty Crocker Cookbook and set to work, but we didn't have everything the recipe called for. Since we lived 15 miles from town, I had to "improvise."

Well, the finished product came out of the oven looking like it should've been on the cover of that cookbook....even the buttered breadcrumbs on top were perfectly browned, and it was BEAUTIFUL to look at! I was proud as a peacock for my imagination at dreaming up such a dish and cooking it just right.

Then, Dad took the first bite and almost threw it back up onto his plate.

"What the #@*& did you put in this casserole," he asked? When I tried a taste, I almost barfed, too.

The recipe had called for sour cream, but we didn't have any in the refrigerator. In fact, the only milk product I could find in the whole house was a can of Borden's Sweetened Condensed Milk, so that is what I had used instead of sour cream. The casserole was so ungawdly sweet that even our Chesapeake Bay Retrievers wouldn't eat it, and I'd seen them devour maggot-filled baby diapers!

Needless to say, my recipe for "Candied Squirrel Casserole" never became one to be handed down from generation to generation, but the whole family still talks about it a lot! :roll:
Last edited by hookspur on July 16th, 2015, 5:55 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: How to Clean a Squirrel

Post by HunterGKS » July 16th, 2015, 4:16 pm

Now that rite thar is phuny!! I dunt care woo yar!!!! :toothy7: :thumbup:
George

YOU KNOW YOU HAVE TO KEEP YOUR BODY STILL. YOUR HEART JUST HASN'T CAUGHT ON.

.17 = NITRO OF THE RIMFIRE WORLD


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Re: How to Clean a Squirrel

Post by Turkinator » July 17th, 2015, 4:02 pm

same way we skin them only we save the heads. roll in seasoned flour brown on all sides layer them in a deep baking dish add 2 cans rotel and cajun seasoning seal with foil and bake at 300 degrees for 2 to 3 hrs. even old fox squirrels come out tender. PS it also works with young groundhogs

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Re: How to Clean a Squirrel

Post by HuntnMa » July 19th, 2015, 7:25 am

A friend of mine marinates them in Italian dressing and grills them...I tried it and I haven't had a fried squirrel since... I marinate mine in low fat Italian for at least 24 hours and up to 72....so good.
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