It’s a funny thing when hunters spend all this time and effort to take down a wild animal and then complain that the meat tastes too gamey. That’s like someone eating fish and complaining it tastes too fishy. You hear that too and it’s equally ridiculous.

But it’s true there are several things you can do prevent game meat from tasting too gamey. Everything from how you field dress the animal to how you cook it can affect how gamey your meat tastes. Here are five ways to treat your meat so it’s fresh and delicious.

Field dress quickly

The number one rule when you kill an animal is to cool down the meat as quickly as possible. This involves removing the skin and internal organs without wasting time. Nowadays hunters like to get a good picture of their animal to share with their buddies on Facebook. You might want to hasten this process in the name of fresh meat.

Don’t waste time

Once you have the animal to your pickup truck, you want to get to a freezer or hung up to smoke as soon as you can. Often hunters will simply throw the animal in the back of their truck and then drive around the rest of the afternoon looking for another animal for their friend’s tag. If you’re doing this in August or September, the warm temperatures could quickly spoil the meat. Take what you can get and preserve it well while you can still can. You’ll be thankful at the dinner table.

Avoid wive’s tales

It used to be that hunters would cut out a deer’s tarsal gland, located on the inside of their hind legs. But more hunters have realized that this smelly scent organ can seriously taint your meat. It can be a good resource in attracting other deer, but if you don’t have, skip removing the tarsal gland and you’ll protect your meat.

Shoot younger animals

Often times the biggest animals are the least tender. So while you might make the record books, you might not exactly be singing that animal’s praises at the dinner table. The next time you have the option, you might want to shoot a younger animal for its tender meat.

Do not overcook it

Overcooking meat is probably the number one reason it tastes gamey. The term gamey is often confused with tough or over done. For some reason, people get nervous eating game meat and tend to overcook. Resist this temptation and keep steaks at medium rare. Another great way to avoid gaminess in the kitchen is to make a stew or utilize sauces. You’ll enjoy every bite.