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Grouse Saltimbocca

Grouse Saltimbocca

A white platter of prepared ruffed grouse saltimbocca with sage leaves

Sage, butter, and white wine bring the complex flavors of ruffed grouse to life in this traditional Italian recipe

Saltimbocca translates to “jumps in your mouth.”

My version is loosely based on Saltimbocca alla Romana. It is a Roman dish, traditionally made with veal. Italians always use top-quality ingredients; to me, the ruffed grouse is certainly top quality. The sage, butter, and white wine flavors are perfectly married in this dish. Along with the grouse, this dish will “jump in your mouth,” just as the name says.

This recipe can easily be made at your grouse camp and is perfect for anyone who likes to skin their birds, as it doesn’t require the breast to have skin on.

A white platter of prepared ruffed grouse saltimbocca with sage leaves

Ruffed Grouse Saltimbocca

An easy Italian dish that highlights the complex flavors of ruffed grouse
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Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes
Course Main Course
Cuisine Italian
Servings 4
Calories 287 kcal


  • 4 grouse breasts skinned and tenders removed
  • 10 sage leaves
  • 4 slices prosciutto
  • Olive oil
  • 4 tbsp unsalted butter
  • ½ cup dry white wine
  • Flour for dredging


  • Place the grouse breasts on a chopping board, leaving a little space between them. Cover them with clingfilm and gently pound them out using your fists or a rolling pin until they are about ¼” thick.
  • Season each breast with pepper. There’s no need for salt since the prosciutto is quite salty already.
  • Take a slice of prosciutto and press it onto each breast. Fold any excess onto itself and make sure it sticks to the breast.
  • Lightly dredge each piece in the flour and shake off the excess.
  • In a saucepan, heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil over medium-high heat. Once hot, add the 10 sage leaves and cook until crispy. Be careful not to burn them. Once they’re crispy, remove them from the pan and set them aside.
  • In the same pan, add 2 tablespoons of unsalted butter over medium-high heat. Add 2 breasts, prosciutto side down, and fry them for two minutes until the prosciutto is crispy. Then, turn them over and fry the breasts for another two minutes until golden brown. Set them aside on a plate and cover them with foil. Do the same with the other two, adding more butter if needed. Set them aside with the other 2 breasts on the covered plate.
  • Deglaze the pan with the wine, scraping up the brown bits in the pan. Then, reduce the sauce by half. Remove the pan from the heat and add the remaining butter one tablespoon at a time. Whisk until the butter is incorporated and has a glossy look. Break up some of the crispy sage leaves and add them in, too.
  • Place each grouse breast on a warm plate and pour sauce over each breast. Garnish with the remaining crispy sage leaves.
  • Serve with your choice of sides. I recommend roasted potatoes, sautéed greens like Swiss chard, and good crusty bread to help you mop up the sauce left on your plate.


Calories: 287kcalCarbohydrates: 1gProtein: 25gFat: 17gSaturated Fat: 9gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 5gTrans Fat: 0.5gCholesterol: 108mgSodium: 187mgPotassium: 459mgFiber: 0.01gSugar: 0.3gVitamin A: 387IUVitamin C: 1mgCalcium: 13mgIron: 1mg
Keyword Grouse, Ruffed Grouse
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