The best Italian sausage you’ve ever eaten awaits with this recipe for making them yourself.
In Italy there are many many salsiccia and salame, and each region has its special log of meat. The most famous are Genoa salami, mortadella, cotechino, and soppressata. Interestingly, there is no bologna sausage in Italy, the local sausage in the town of Bologna is called mortadella. There is most definitely nothing called “Italian Sausage”.
But the term “Italian Sausage” has emerged in the US, and it has a specific flavor profile. It is a tube of coarsely ground pork sausage in natural pork casing, usually about 25% fat, with a distinctive flavor from fennel seed. It comes in three grades, sweet, mild, and hot. The main difference is the amount of hot pepper added, although a few of the sweet blends include basil, and the heat and other seasonings vary significantly from butcher to butcher. It is sold raw, not cured or smoked, and it can be bought in standard 6″ links, in coiled ropes, or loose like burger meat.
Spotlight on our favorite products
The Good-One Is A Superb Grill And A Superb Smoker All In One
The Good-One Open Range is dramatically different from a traditional offset smoker, placing the heat source behind and under the smokebox instead of off to the side. Click here to read our complete review.
– THIS IS NOT AN AD –
The origin of the recipe is uncertain, but Judy Witts Francini, a cookbook author, teacher, and culinary tour guide based in Italy, tells me that there is something similar in Sicily, which makes sense since Southern Italy is where most Italian-American immigrants originated.
Makes:Serve with: an IPA or pale ale.
- 2 1/2 pounds ground pork
- 1/2 pound pork fat
- 1 tablespoon whole fennel seeds
- 1/2 teaspoon ground fennel seed
- 2 tablespoons mild American paprika
- 2 1/2 teaspoons Morton Coarse Kosher Salt
- 1 1/2 teaspoons coarsely ground black pepper
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 1 teaspoon sweet red pepper flakes
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 cup ice water
- pork casings (about 4 feet)
These recipes were created in US Customary measurements and the conversion to metric is being done by calculations. They should be accurate, but it is possible there could be an error. If you find one, please let us know in the comments at the bottom of the page
- Prep. Before making sausage, please familiarize yourself with best practices as described in our article on The Science Of Sausage Making. Follow steps (1) through (16)
- Serve. You can then grill or smoke it, or store it in the fridge for about 5 days or in the freezer for about a month. Here are some tips on making Italian Sausage Sandwiches. Here is an awesome recipe for a stuffed Italian Sausage Meatloaf.
High quality websites are expensive to run. If you help us, we’ll pay you back bigtime with an ad-free experience and a lot of freebies!
Millions come to AmazingRibs.com every month for high quality tested recipes, tips on technique, science, mythbusting, product reviews, and inspiration. But it is expensive to run a website with more than 2,000 pages and we don’t have a big corporate partner to subsidize us.
Our most important source of sustenance is people who join our Pitmaster Club. But please don’t think of it as a donation. Members get MANY great benefits. We block all third-party ads, we give members free ebooks, magazines, interviews, webinars, more recipes, a monthly sweepstakes with prizes worth up to $2,000, discounts on products, and best of all a community of like-minded cooks free of flame wars. Click below to see all the benefits, take a free 30 day trial, and help keep this site alive.
Post comments and questions below
1) Please try the search box at the top of every page before you ask for help.
2) Try to post your question to the appropriate page.
3) Tell us everything we need to know to help such as the type of cooker and thermometer. Dial thermometers are often off by as much as 50°F so if you are not using a good digital thermometer we probably can’t help you with time and temp questions. Please read this article about thermometers.
4) If you are a member of the Pitmaster Club, your comments login is probably different.
5) Posts with links in them may not appear immediately.