The cycle continues…breed rabbit…raise rabbit…butcher rabbit.
Raising rabbits for meat is one of the easiest and most cost effect ways to provide healthy lean meat for our family. We raise New Zealand Whites and grow three litters a year. Butchering day is often hard, but just knowing where our food comes from makes it all worth it.
The great thing about raising rabbits is they don’t take a lot of space, they eat very little and their manure is a great fertilizer. Even if you live in a suburb, you can raise rabbit for your family in your own backyard.
Here are a few reasons why we have found they make a great addition to our homestead.
- Rabbits make very little noise and can be raised in suburban areas.
- Does make great mothers and require very little interaction for you.
- It takes less than 15 minutes to butcher and dress out a rabbit.
- They eat very little, so the cost is minimal. Water, rabbit pellets, clover or timothy hay and a few root vegetable treats are all they need to thrive.
- They can be kept in cages that are 24″x30″, and are often stackable to utilize small spaces. Trays can be purchased to place under the cages to catch waste. This waste can be put directly in your gardens and sprinkled around plants for an instant natural fertilizer. Rabbit manure does not need to cure and will not burn your plants.
- Rabbit meat is healthy. It is low in cholesterol and is low in fat. The flavor is mild and is similar to chicken.
If you are looking for a simple and cost effective way to start raising your own meat I would highly recommend rabbits.
One of our favorite ways to eat rabbit is this yummy “Farm Fresh Fried Rabbit” recipe I pull out a few times a year!
- 1 freshly butchered young rabbit cut into pieces
- 2 cups milk
- 1 teaspoon minced garlic
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- 1 teaspoon ground red pepper
- 2 cups flour
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- Place rabbit pieces in a gallon size zip-lock bag. Add milk, garlic, oregano, thyme, paprika, and red pepper to the bag. Marinate overnight or at least 6 hours.
- Drain rabbit from the milk mixture and set aside.
- In another zip-lock bag add flour, salt, pepper, and garlic powder.
- Heat 2-3 cups of oil in large cast iron skillet to 350 degrees.
- Toss rabbit pieces in flour mixture and shake in bag until will coated.
- Add rabbit to hot oil and fry for 15 minutes on each side until golden brown.
- When done drain on brown paper for 5 minutes before serving..
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