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To many, squirrels are just a wild animal that can sometimes cause havoc to farmers.

However, squirrels can actually be included in the survival food category.

Believe it or not, they’re pretty tasty when you’re hunting for something to eat in an emergency.

Let’s discuss how to skin a squirrel step by step.

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What You’ll Need

Skinning a squirrel can be an easy task with the right equipment.

Here’s what you’ll need to ease and accelerate the process.

  • A folding blade knife of medium size
  • A solid work surface. A rock or even a tree stump will be ideal
  • A pair of game shears
  • An ice cooler complete with sufficient ice
  • Several pairs of latex dressing gloves
  • Ziploc bags

How Do You Skin and Gut a Squirrel?

Step 1: Field Dressing / Break Down a Squirrel

Start by laying the squirrel belly own on your work surface. Use the hand you’re not making the cut with to lift the squirrel’s tail. Make a horizontal cut through the skin along the base of the tail and proceed along the tail until you access the skin at the opposite side. Be careful not to cut through the skin along the tail. Cut through either side until you get a flap of skin with the skin intact for between an inch or an inch and a half.

Step 2: Break the TailBone

Hold the squirrel with both of your hands and proceed to break the tailbone. You need to exercise caution while at it to ensure that you don’t rip the skin over the tail.

Step 3: Skinning

When you want to skin a squirrel, exercise caution to ensure no hair from the legs or any other body parts gets into contact with the meat. Should any hair fall on the carcass, hunting for and removing it can be a tough task. Often, the hair won’t completely come off and then you end up eating squirrel meat with hair – which isn’t a good idea.

  1. Place the squirrel on its back with its hind legs lifted. You should be able to see both the flap of skin and the tail lying along the ground.
  2. Now, step on the squirrel until the tailbone is well exposed. As you step on the tailbone, make sure to pull the hind legs straight. You will notice that the skin will separate from the body.
  3. Continue pulling until you remove the entire skin all through to the head.
  4. Place your fingers along with the armpits and drag the attached skin downward to the final joint.
  5. Use a pair of scissors to cut the head along the base of the neck.
  6. Proceed to cut the legs off at the first joint. At this point, your carcass is skinned.

Grab the rear feet of the skinned squirrel. Take note of the skin left on the rear legs. Using your fingers, hold the skin and drag it towards the feet along the uncovered edge. Continue pulling until you uncover the final joint. Use the pair of scissors once more to cut the feet off at the final joint. The squirrel is now completely skinned.

How to Skin Quickly

The process of skinning squirrels doesn’t take much time and shouldn’t feel complicated. However, you’ll need the right equipment to make the process easier and as seamless as possible.

The equipment you need includes; a pair of scissors, a sharp knife, a pair of game shears, and latex gloves. You’ll also need a worktop, which, in this case, can be a rock or a tree stump. Just watch the video below.

Video – Skin In One Minute

Video – New Way to Skin

Step 4: The Easiest Way to Gut a Squirrel

You should know how to gut a squirrel to proceed with the next step.

  1. First, pull apart the hips by making a cut along the central part of the squirrel between the legs.
  2. Press the carcass against the bone until the knife penetrates through the bone. For easy execution of this step, hold the squirrel on your palm and the right leg using your middle and ring fingers. Press the carcass against the hip using your pointer finger.
  3. Continue pressing down using your thumb. Toss the squirrel over and find the hole along the neck.
  4. Thrust one of the scissor’s jaws into the hole and start cutting. Cut through the rib cage until you can access the sternum. There will be slight resistance along this area which is also the diaphragm.
  5. Continue pushing until the scissors pop out. Cut out the belly flesh to where you separated the hips, and exercise caution while at it.
  6. Avoid cutting the guts. The bottom of your scissors should remain pressed against the belly skin always.
  7. Open the body and expose all the organs and innards.
  8. Open the rib cage, locate the diaphragm, and peel it away from the body cavity and the inner walls.
  9. To locate and remove the diaphragm easily, press the squirrel down from the head towards the end, hunting until you can feel it.
  10. Peel the veins and esophagus along the neck against the spine.
  11. Continue dragging down across the hips until you remove all the innards from the body.
  12. Use your thumb to scoop out the remaining innards from the area between the hips. If your squirrel was female, some of its ovaries could have remained behind. You want to remove these and any other things that would stop you from cooking squirrel.

Skin & Gut Video

Step 5: Cleaning Squirrels

Once you’ve removed any inedible things from the squirrel, you’ll need to clean the meat thoroughly.

  1. Use the flat setting of a water hose nozzle to spray and rinse your squirrel meat. This method is not only thorough, but it’s also one of the fastest ways of cleaning a squirrel. Spray until everything is cleaned and all the blood has been removed.
  2. Check for any stray hairs left and try to remove them as well.
  3. After this process is over, pack your meat and keep it in a cooler box, or cook it fresh.
  4. Discard the inedible parts such as the feet, skin, innards, and the head. Otherwise, the entire process to skin squirrels and clean them will not be complete.

Best Way To Clean Video

How to Cook a Squirrel

Can you eat squirrel meat if you have to? Definitely. Not many people are aware that squirrels can be eaten. And, there are several squirrel cooking methods that can give your meat some amazing flavor and taste.

For instance, you can pan fry your meat, bake, or oven fry it.

What’s the Best way to Fry a Squirrel?

There are several recipes on how to cook squirrel, but here’s a fried squirrel recipe that you may want to try if you’re hunting for one – especially if you’re looking for a simple method to fry your squirrel.

  1. Cut the squirrel to small frying chunk pieces. Make sure and rinse things well with water.
  2. Sprinkle them with pepper and salt before rolling in flour to ensure they are well coated. Remember, the pepper is optional. You can omit it if it’s not one of your favorite ingredients.
  3. Insert the chunks in a hot oil skillet and fry them until they turn golden brown.
  4. Remove the squirrel from the skillet and drain the oil.
  5. Insert water in another cooking pan before bringing it to a boil.
  6. Put in your squirrel chunks, turn the heat to low, cover the meat, and cook for around an hour.

What does Squirrel Taste Like – Is It Good to Eat?

Squirrels are also known as limb chicken. Squirrel meat is considered better compared to organic pork or even grass-fed beef. Many people wonder; what do squirrels taste like? Some squirrel eaters say that they have the same taste like chicken.

How to Skin a Squirrel for its Pelt?

If you’re interested more in saving the fur from the squirrel than eating it, here’s the best way to skin a squirrel for its pelt.

  1. Separate the squirrel from the tail towards the neck along the bottom.
  2. Cut the legs off to the separated area towards the middle. Once you get used to doing it, you’ll find that the process is quite easy. All you need is a small sharp knife.
  3. Once you separate the squirrel down to the middle and along the legs, cut the feet and the head off. You can also cut off the tail.
  4. After removing the head, you’ll only need to pull the skin off.

To become more familiar with the process, you can watch squirrel skinning videos online – like the one below.


Squirrel meat is delicious that it can come in handy to help you survive in the wilderness in the event of an emergency.

Not only should you be familiar with skinning it, but you should also know how to clean a squirrel, and eventually cook it.

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