What is the best Recurve Crossbow for hunting and target shooting in 2023? We reviewed the 10 best recurve crossbows available on the market. All the crossbows included in this article are among the best in terms of speed, power, accuracy, and price.
Table of Contents
10 Best Recurve Crossbows for Hunting and Sport Shooting
Discover the best recurve crossbows for hunting and sport shooting in the table below. The crossbows below have been carefully chosen based on speed, draw weight, accuracy, and price.
10 Best Recurve Crossbows
Draw weight (lbs.)
Arrow length (inches)
7. Excalibur Bulldog 440 - Editors Pick
What is a Recurve Crossbow?
A modern recurve crossbow is a simple yet powerful hunting tool. Its simplicity is what makes it a silent weapon perfect for hunting deer.
It has a slight curve away from the shooter at each end of the bow to ensure maximum tension on its single string. This is the most unique thing about it and it is why it is called recurve crossbow.
Probably the best thing about this modern crossbow is that it is much more silent than the alternative – the compound crossbow. It is more silent because it has no cables or cams that move when it is being shot.
The second best thing about it is that its simple design makes it easy to use and maintain.
There is only one thing you may not like about the recurve crossbow: its size. Recurve crossbows are less compact when compared to compound crossbows. Nevertheless, many archers consider them to be superior to compound crossbows because they make less noise.
The Best Recurve Crossbows in 2023
This section contains a comprehensive review of each of the crossbows highlighted in the table above.
This crossbow from CenterPoint is widely regarded as the easiest recurve crossbow to carry. It is quite easy to carry because it is extremely lightweight and it features an ergonomic design.
If you are not big and tall, you need a crossbow that is easy to carry. If you get a heavy one, you will have a painful and unexciting hunting experience. You will probably never dream about hunting again.
The feature we love the most about this CenterPoint crossbow is its lightweight adjustable stock – it makes it very easy to use.
We also love this crossbow’s fiberglass limb, which is extremely durable and at the same time very lightweight. Who wouldn’t like to go hunting with a fiberglass limb crossbow? Nobody.
Another feature we love is this crossbow’s scope. It enhances accuracy and makes reduces the likelihood of missing the target.
While there are so many things to love about this crossbow, we do not like its 11-inch long power stroke. This could have been a very lethal machine if its power stroke was longer. However, it is still very effective for most hunters.
When you buy this crossbow you get the bow, four 16-inch arrows, a scope, a removable quiver, and lube for maintenance.
The CenterPoint Tyro 4X is an amazing crossbow that is extremely easy to carry because it is lightweight and ergonomic. You should get it especially if you are a small-bodied hunter.
The Excalibur Micro MAG 340 Crossbow is made by the legendary Excalibur Company. This company is one of the most renowned crossbow manufacturing companies in the United States. It has been making crossbows and other hunting equipment for about four decades.
The MAG 340 crossbow is one of the best crossbows ever made by the company. Four things really stand out about it.
First, it is extremely easy to use. What makes it easy to use is its ergonomic design. Its special rifle-like design makes it easy to hold, draw, and fire. It is also lightweight making it perfect for both small and big-size hunters.
Second, it is really powerful. Its draw weight is 270 pounds and this is powerful enough to bring down small game.
Third, it comes with a powerful scope. The scope makes it quite accurate for hunting and sports. Your chances of not hitting a target when using this crossbow are very minimal.
Lastly, it is rapid. Its shot is 340 FPS. This makes the possibility of losing arrows almost impossible.
When you purchase this crossbow you will get the crossbow, a quiver, quill arrows, a powerful scope, and a rope cocking device.
The Excalibur Micro MAG 340 Crossbow is worth every penny in its price tag! You will receive one of the highest quality crossbows on the market if you decide to buy it. It is perfect for both small and big hunters.
This crossbow is perfect for beginners because it is extremely easy to handle and it is built strong. So if you have never used crossbows before, you should strongly consider this crossbow.
The moment you hold this bow, you will like it because it is quite lightweight and easy to position on the shoulder. In addition to being easy to handle, this crossbow is easy to operate. This is thanks to its cocking rope.
When you shoot this K Exclusive crossbow for the first time, you will love how fast it is. Because despite being an entry-level crossbow, this recurve crossbow is pretty sharp and accurate. It is ideal for hunting small game under 40 yards away. So if you are planning to hunt whitetail deer, turkey, or varmint, this crossbow will be perfect for you.
Newbie hunters or archers tend to destroy complex crossbows within weeks or months. This particular crossbow has a simple and durable design. It is very unlikely that you will experience any issues with it once you set it up.
The only thing you may not like about this crossbow is that it takes a bit of time to set it up. However, it comes with a manual that you can use for this purpose. This manual may not be so useful for you if you are a total greenhorn hunter. However, there are plenty of videos on YouTube that explain how to assemble crossbows. If you watch two or three of them you can quickly learn how to set up any crossbow.
If you decide to buy this crossbow, it will come with a powerful scope, a stringer, a slinger, and a quiver with 4 aluminum bolts.
The K Exclusive Avalanche Anaconda is a brilliant machine that works like a charm. It is perfect for those who want a quality hunting machine without having to break the bank.
This is the second recurve crossbow from Excalibur on our list of the best recurve crossbows for 2022. This means two things. First, it means Excalibur makes high-quality hunting equipment. Second, it means that this is one of the best recurve crossbows from Excalibur.
Excalibur is well known for making professional-level crossbows. So when you purchase this, you should know that you will be getting a high-quality crossbow.
The material used to make the stock of this crossbow is a special material that is both light and strong. It makes this crossbow easy to handle and durable. Despite its lightweight stock and design, this crossbow can handle difficult hunting conditions such as rain, dust, and snow. You just need to make sure it is well-maintained.
We really like the performance of this crossbow. Its draw weight is 200 pounds and its bolt speed is 305 FPS. What we are simply saying is that this crossbow can shoot lethal bolts/arrows. It is perfect for hunting both small and mid-size game. It can also handle large game such as moose and elk. The performance of this machine makes it perfect for target shooting.
The biggest downside of this crossbow is that it does not have an auto-safety feature. This feature is pretty common in modern crossbows.
This Excalibur crossbow comes with a cocking device, three aluminum bolts, and a scope.
The Excalibur Matrix GRZ 2 is one of the fiercest recurve crossbows currently on stock. It shoots arrows at high velocity and it is not so expensive. It is something both newbie and veteran hunters will love to have.
Whether you are a new or experienced hunter, you will love this crossbow. You will love it because it is a simple yet powerful crossbow.
The design of this crossbow is inspired by crossbows that were used a long time ago in ancient China. The Chinese armies from different kingdoms used to fight using crossbows similar to this one. The reason why this design was popular is that it made it easier for the archers to shoot faster.
So if you are looking for a fast recurve crossbow, you should strongly consider this one. It will enable you to shoot faster and this will certainly make you a better hunter. It will also make target shooting much more enjoyable.
When we were looking at this crossbow, we really loved its magazine. The magazine relies on gravity to work so you really do not have to do much to get this machine ready for the next shot.
You simply have to flip a lever.
One more thing we loved about this crossbow is its ergonomic design. The design makes it easy to handle for long hours without experiencing fatigue. It is also anti-slip textured for a better and more accurate grip.
The only thing we did not like about this crossbow is the fact that it has limited bolt options.
The EK Archery RX Adder Crossbow is relatively cheap and easy to purchase and use. There is nothing you will not love about it when you get it because it has everything a proper recurve crossbow should have.
Barnett is a renowned manufacturer of hunting tools and equipment. The company is loved by the American hunting community because it has been making quality and long-lasting hunting equipment for decades.
This particular hunting equipment is designed for people looking for a quality yet affordable hunting crossbow. It is designed to be powerful enough for hunting turkey and white-tailed deer.
Probably the thing you will love the most about this crossbow is how easy it is to assemble. Even individuals who have never seen a hunting crossbow before can assemble it to start hunting within moments.
The Barnet Blackcat has a 260 FPS bolt speed. This is quite impressive considering its price and it makes it perfect for hunting mid-size game. You shouldn’t bother using this crossbow to hunt big game or aim at things a long distance away. It will not be very effective.
It is important to note that this crossbow weighs less than five pounds. This makes it brilliant for hunting in places that require trekking or hiking. It is also worth noting that this Barnet crossbow is very safe to use as it has several safety features including a finger safety reminder and an anti-dry-fire mechanism.
The Barnett Blackcat Recurve Crossbow is a safe, accurate, and easy-to-use crossbow. It is exactly what you should get if you are a mid-size game or small game hunter.
This Excalibur crossbow is, hands down, one of the best high-end recurve crossbows currently available on the market. It is high-end its terms of both design and performance.
The design is pretty fancy and it looks like a new-age tactical weapon. Setting this crossbow against your shoulder, cocking it and will definitely make you feel like a badass.
What will also make you feel like a badass when you are operating this crossbow is the fact that it is one of the fastest recurve crossbows (if not the fastest). Recurve crossbows tend to have a lower speed than compound crossbows. However, this crossbow is different. It is extremely fast with a bolt speed of 440 FPS. You will love how easy and more accurate you will be when hunting with this high-performance crossbow.
You will also love how lightweight its perfect-size frame is. It is just 6.2 pounds in terms of weight. It is not one of the lightest recurve crossbows but it is also certainly not heavy. You will find it easy to carry even during extended multi-day hunting trips.
You will also certainly love this crossbow’s crank. It is a clever alternative to the conventional rope cocker on recurve crossbows. It makes cocking easier and less noisy. Any experienced hunter will prefer this crank cocking mechanism to the traditional recurve rope cocker.The only thing you may not like about this crossbow is its price. It is quite pricey.
We strongly recommend this crossbow from Excalibur. To us, it is the crème de la crème of recurve crossbows because of its design and its otherworldly 440 FPS bolt speed.
Capable of unbelievable accuracy, the Snake Eye Tactical Cobra Crossbow is a brilliant crossbow despite being relatively small in size. It is small in size courtesy of its pistol design rather than the most usual rifle design.
Unlike rifle design crossbows, pistol crossbows are great for hunting small game close range. This is because they are smaller and easier to use to pursue small game.
The draw weight of this particular crossbow is 80 pounds and its bolt speed is 165 FPS. You can use this crossbow to hunt rabbits, turkeys, and so on. The accuracy of this pistol recurve crossbow is up to 18 yards. What this means is that you can use this crossbow to hit anything 18 yards away.
The only issue with this crossbow is that it is not the easiest to aim. Of course, those who are used to the more regular-size rifle design recurve crossbows will find it difficult to aim using this pistol design crossbow. However, with a bit of practice, you will start hitting targets more regularly when using this crossbow.
The Snake Eye Tactical Cobra crossbow is perfect for anyone who is looking for a pistol design recurve crossbow. It is perfect for hunting mid-size game.
You will find it somewhat easy to hunt deer and other mid-size game using this Manticore crossbow. The reason why is that it comes with a 210 FPS bolt speed, which is pretty impressive considering its cheap price.
Your chances of missing a small size target when using this crossbow are very minimal even when they are fifty to sixty yards away.
This highly-rated crossbow is lightweight, reliable, safe, and extremely durable. While it is best used to hunt mid-size game, it is also powerful enough to hunt big game. When hunting big game a fair distance away, it has a sporting rifle scope that you can use to target wild game better.
One more thing worth noting about this crossbow is the fact that it is extremely durable. It has an aluminum barrel and a high-quality fiberglass stock. If you get it, you will most likely use it for a very long time before needing to buy a replacement.
The only bad thing about this crossbow is that it is somewhat noisy. However, to be fair, it is not noisy enough to spook animals more than 20 yards away.
The Manticore SAS 150lbs crossbow is the crossbow you should buy if you are looking for a crossbow that is cheap, safe, and reliable.
If you read the name of this crossbow without reading the last word above, you would think it is an assault rifle. If you look at it you will think it is some sort of assault rifle. And if you shoot it at wild game, you will definitely know that it can kill just like an assault rifle.
The M48 is one of the best recurve crossbows ever made. It is a crossbow with an adjustable buttstock, a textured TPR grip, and a bolt speed of 185 FPS. It is definitely one of the most badass-looking crossbows on the market.
Like many similar design crossbows, this crossbow comes with a fiberoptic-body front sight. This sight makes this crossbow extremely easy to use.
Lastly, like assault rifles, this crossbow comes with a picatinny rail on which you can attach various accessories.
The only downside to this crossbow is its high price.
The M48 Hell Hawk Recurve Crossbow is a truly badass crossbow. It looks tough and it works really well. Get it if all you want is fierce-looking crossbow that is able to do the job.
Our selection - the best recurve crossbow
We have listed and given details about the best recurve crossbows on the market in the section above. However, we did not state our choice for the best recurve crossbow. In our humble opinion, the best recurve crossbow is the number 7 recurve crossbow – the Excalibur Matrix Bulldog 440 Crossbow.
The crossbow is the very best recurve crossbow in our opinion because of three things.
First, it looks absolutely badass. You will it difficult to find a recurve crossbow that looks better than this one. So if you are looking for a recurve crossbow that will give you maximum respect especially among veteran hunters, this is it.
Second, it is absolutely powerful. Generally, recurve crossbows are not powerful. But this one is different. It has a 440 FPS bolt speed. It is one of the most powerful crossbows currently available in the USA. It is pretty effective against big game even a fair distance away.
Lastly, it is very well-made. This is one of those hunting equipment you buy once and use forever. You will most likely never need to buy another crossbow when you purchase this one. The reason why is that it is so well-made and works well even in difficult weather conditions (e.g. snow, dust, or slow rain). You may need to change a part or two over time but you will most likely never need to send it somewhere for repair.
We hope the information we’ve provided above is sufficient to help you choose a recurve crossbow. If you still need some help to choose a recurve crossbow, the sections below will most likely provide you with the information you need to make a decision.
Recurve Crossbow Buying Guide
Recurve crossbows are very popular in the American hunting community. This is because they have a simple design that makes them easier to handle, operate, and maintain when compared to other crossbows. In this section, we will look at the important things to consider when buying a recurve crossbow.
The easiest way to know a high-quality recurve crossbow is to look at the price. A high price is always a good indicator of a superior quality recurve crossbow. Of course, this does not imply that affordable high-quality recurve crossbows do not exist. They do exist but the best ones tend to be expensive. They usually cost more than $200.
Deluxe recurve crossbows that look good and perform like magic usually cost more than $700. Some even cost over $1,000. One thousand bucks might look like a lot of money to pay for a crossbow but if you want real good quality, you’ve got to pay for it.
Anything that tends to be high-quality usually has a solid warranty to back it. For example, the best quality laptops tend to have a solid warranty. The case is the same with recurve crossbows. The best quality recurve crossbows are usually backed by a solid warranty.
3. Size and weight
The best recurve crossbows are those that are lightweight and shaped like an assault rifle at the back. Since recurve crossbows are not as compact as compound crossbows, they need a lightweight design and true assault rifle frame for easy balancing, targeting, and shooting. So when purchasing a recurve crossbow make sure it is lightweight and looks as much like a rifle as possible.
4. Draw weight
When looking at the specs of a recurve crossbow, one of the most important ones to consider is the draw weight (the pull required to cock the crossbow). It is measured in pounds. Generally, the higher the draw weight, the higher the velocity of the arrow or bolt and the more lethal it will be.
If you want a recurve crossbow to use to take down mid-size game such as deer, you need to get one with a draw weight of at least 150 pounds. Anything with a lower draw weight will probably just injure the game and not kill it.
5. Cocking aid
As stated above, you need a recurve crossbow with a draw weight of at least 150 pounds to be able to take down mid-sized game quickly and humanely. If you’ve ever seen someone cocking a crossbow before, you will know that one typically needs plenty of strength to cock a high-performance crossbow.
However, a good number of modern recurve crossbows come with a cocking aid or device that makes it easier to set them in the firing position. So when looking at a high-performance recurve crossbow, you should check if it has a cocking aid.
The best recurve crossbows are those that shoot at high velocity. Generally, crossbows with a high draw weight tend to shoot arrows at a high velocity of speed. And the higher the speed of an arrow the more accurate it will be.
So when buying a crossbow, you should make sure you look at its velocity especially if you want something fast and accurate. The best recurve crossbows have a velocity of at least 200 FPS (feet per second).
It is important to check if a crossbow is noisy especially if you are buying it for hunting in the wilderness. Things can get pretty silent in the wilderness meaning any small noise can quickly spook game and alert them to your presence before you shoot.
So when buying a crossbow for hunting, make sure it is as silent as possible. If you have plenty of money to spare, go for a Barnett or Excalibur recurve crossbows. These crossbows tend to feature noise suppression technology.
The best recurve crossbows are those that have a powerful scope on top of them. While expert crossbow hunters can hit targets regularly without the aid of a scope, newbie and mid-level hunters usually need a scope to hit targets regularly. Therefore, when looking at a crossbow you want to buy, make sure it has scope.
Some crossbows do not come with a scope but feature a picatinny rail on which you can attach a sport rifle scope.
A trigger can be lightweight and sensitive or heavy and with a bit of creep. So depending on what you prefer, you should get a crossbow that has the right kind of trigger. The best recurve crossbows are those that have a somewhat heavy trigger. This is because they tend to be easier to use as they do not shoot arrows at the slightest touch.
However, of all the things you need to consider, this probably needs to be the one you consider the least. This is because whatever type of trigger you get, you will get used to it with enough practice.
The best recurve crossbows are those that come with all the accessories. The most important accessories to look out for when buying a recurve crossbow include a quiver, a cocking aid, a scope, and arrows. Most crossbows usually come with less than five arrows.
So if you are the type of person who is not going to be arsed about finding arrows you have shot over a long distance, you should get extra arrows when buying a crossbow.
How to Take Care of a Recurve Crossbow
Recurve crossbows need proper maintenance to perform well and last long. The number one thing you need to do after buying a recurve crossbow is to check the owner’s manual. The manual will provide you with all the information you need to assemble the crossbow and get it in working condition. It will also definitely have the information you need to take care of the crossbow.
There are several things you need to do to take good care of your crossbow. Probably the most important thing is to wax the string of your crossbow at least once 6 months or once every 3 months if the crossbow is frequently used in extreme weather conditions such as rain or snow. The manual should contain information on how frequently to wax the string.
The second most important thing you need to take good care of your recurve crossbow is to lubricate its rail regularly. You should do this by applying the right lube every time the rail looks dry. It should always have a slight sheen to ensure zero friction when you pull the trigger.
You also need to lubricate other moving parts of the crossbow such as the trigger box.
Other things you need to do to take care of your crossbow include removing dirt and dust from places where they may be trapped e.g. the connection points, grooves, and nooks of your crossbow. Doing this will ensure your crossbow is always clean and ready for action.
Of course, cleaning the lens of the scope is something you also need to do to take good care of your crossbow.
Lastly, you need to always store your crossbow in its case to protect it from dust and destructive insects when you are not using it.
You now know everything important you need to know about recurve crossbows. You know the best recurve crossbows in 2022, you know where to buy them, and you know what to consider when choosing one for yourself.
Recurve crossbows are silent, powerful, fun, and effective. You can use them to hunt small game, mid-sized game, or large game. When selecting a recurve crossbow for hunting, just make sure it has the right speed to take down the type of game you want to hunt.
Also, make sure that the crossbow is at least lightweight and balanced. A crossbow that is not lightweight or balanced will not be fun to use. And there is absolutely no reason to go hunting if you won’t experience fun doing it.
We hope our list had what you were looking for. As stated, we believe the Excalibur Matrix Bulldog 440 Crossbow is the best recurve crossbow currently available on the market. It is well-balanced and designed to satisfy even the harshest crossbow critics.
Are you not specifically looking for a recurve crossbow? Then you should also check out our other crossbow review post.