Sausages have now become the new bacon. The proof is the noticeable proliferation of the best smoked sausage brands and also artisanal sausage restaurants. Did you know that Germany offers over 1,200 varieties of sausages? But that doesn’t mean they’re not as popular in America, Asia, and the rest of Europe as well.
So let’s venture into the smoked-style sausage territory to find out how healthy they can be and what flavors stand out the most.
Table of Contents
- Review of the Best Smoked Sausage Brands
- 1. Duke’s Hatch Green Chile Smoked Shorty Sausages
- 2. Cattleman’s Cut Old Fashioned Smoked Sausages
- 3. Duke’s Original Recipe Smoked Shorty Sausages
- 4. Tillamook Country Smoker Original Smoked Sausages
- 5. Old Wisconsin Premium Summer Sausage
- 6. Conecuh Hickory Smoked Sausage
- 7. Hillshire Farm Smoked Sausage
- 8. Farmer John Hot Louisiana Brand Smoked Sausage
- 9. Bende Original Hungarian Brand Smoked Sausage
- 10. Prairie Belt Smoked Sausage
- How to Make Smoked Sausages at Home
- Frequently Asked Questions
Review of the Best Smoked Sausage Brands
1. Duke’s Hatch Green Chile Smoked Shorty Sausages
First of all, these are keto-friendly and sugar-free. Secondly, the sausages contain an optimal level of heat. So it’s not like you’ve just had lard, meaning they don’t burn off the lips. These aren’t overly spiced, rather they consist of lean dried pork that’s pleasantly spiced, minus the chemicals of course.
The cost, however, is a bit much. But then better taste and quality always come at a price.
2. Cattleman’s Cut Old Fashioned Smoked Sausages
These might as well be known as the most flavorful beef sticks ever made. The smoked sausages are soft, which means easy to chew in case you have dental issues. And the flavor is deeply delicious with a touch of spices.
The sausages are also very commonly used as a great source of protein for when you decide to go camping, hiking, etc.
3. Duke’s Original Recipe Smoked Shorty Sausages
Yet another recipe by Duke’s, but this one’s the original version. Are these the real deal though? Oh yes, the smoked sausages are everything packaged smoked sausages are supposed to taste like. Not overloaded with fillers and a whole list of garbage with very little meat, the original recipe here has a flavor that doesn’t disappoint.
The sausages are utterly fresh and delicious. And also quite nutritious given the high amount of protein and very low levels of sugar in each serving.
4. Tillamook Country Smoker Original Smoked Sausages
These smoked sausages do not contain sugar and a high-carb content, hence keto-friendly. At the same time, the brand has not added any nitrites or nitrates, which means a healthier choice indeed. The perfect snack for those dealing with diabetes we must say. And bonus points for the smoked flavor not being overly salted.
We know that Tillamook Country Smoker products have a higher price tag. But then the brand owns pretty much the whole market in this category, so they’re free to charge how much ever they want.
5. Old Wisconsin Premium Summer Sausage
These are high-quality beef sausages slowly smoked using hardwood fire. And they’re seasoned with the perfect blend of spices. On top of that, the food is free of gluten and MSG.
The texture does seem slightly mushy, but then place the sausages in the refrigerator to firm them up a bit. Also, the diameter and length are of a decent size considering the cost. And the fact that it’s ALL BEEF makes it all the more enticing to buy.
6. Conecuh Hickory Smoked Sausage
You will love these smoked sausages by Conecuh because they’re just the easiest to cook up. You can have a few pieces with your waffles in the morning, buns for lunch, and even for dinner where you prepare them in rich tomato sauce and cajun seasonings.
Your taste buds are sure to appreciate the delicious flavor, especially with Southern-style meals.
7. Hillshire Farm Smoked Sausage
For a bundle of well-seasoned smoked sausages, look no further than Hillshire Farm. These sausages are great with casseroles and soups. They’re handcrafted using the finest meat cuts and natural spices.
And the best part is that the sausages are fully cooked, which means they’ll be ready to eat only in a few minutes.
8. Farmer John Hot Louisiana Brand Smoked Sausage
If your diet is mostly or completely gluten-free, it’s likely that you’re looking for smoked sausages like these. They also contain no trans fat and MSG.
You can devour them sliced or whole, that’s up to you. Just cook the sausages on medium heat for turning up the flavor of the spices. More importantly, the use of hardwood for creating the classic, natural smoky flavor gives you the authentic pork sausage taste.
9. Bende Original Hungarian Brand Smoked Sausage
If you were born and bred in Hungary, then nothing short of the real deal works, right? In that context, how about trying these Original Hungarian Smoked Sausage? Just one whiff of the sausages after you tear open the packaging is enough to convince a genuine sausage eater.
These aren’t unnecessarily extra spicy. The variety is mild, the taste is authentic, and you can cut them up into slices and add them to soups as well.
10. Prairie Belt Smoked Sausage
We saved the most and oldest of the lot for the last. Prairie Belt Smoked Sausages, from the beginning up until now, have never faltered in terms of quality.
Ask anyone who has grown up in Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, or Alabama, and they’ll tell you how extraordinary the taste is when these smoked sausages are smashed over buttered grits or devoured at the side of scrambled eggs or toast.
How to Make Smoked Sausages at Home
Just follow the simple instructions below for producing the most delicious smoky flavor…
Adjust the Heat Settings of Your Smoker
The temperature on the smoker, no matter its make or model, should be 250 degrees Fahrenheit. But what if you own the charcoal smoker? Soft lump charcoal with the help of the chimney starter. And if they turn light gray and start to ash, pour them into the stove gas room.
Once the temperature becomes steady at 250 degrees Fahrenheit, bring on the wood to get all that smoke rolling.
And in the case of an electric or gasoline smoker, the thermostat should be placed at 250 degrees Fahrenheit. Then add on your choice of wood chips.
Get the Gasoline Moving
The temperature should become steady at 250 degrees Fahrenheit. Once that happens, place the wood around the burning coals for the smoke. Wood is in the form of logs or chunks depending on the size of the fuel space.
When using gas or electric, load the wood into the timber chip room. The heating system, at this point, is responsible for initiating the smoking action.
But be sure to follow the instructions provided by the manufacturer of the wood chips. Because this may involve soaking them 30 minutes beforehand. Also, keep in mind that engineered wooden chips smolder and survive for a longer time. But only dry chips give you a cleaner smoke as well as combustion.
Place and Cook the Sausages
The proper placement technique is keeping them separated and flat over that cooking grate. The space between links should be 2 inches at least for consistency in airflow and smoke. Many people hang the hyperlinks using butcher twine.
Poke the sausages with the probe and keep a check on the temperature. So you don’t end up placing too many hyperlinks and letting all the delicious juices run out.
Once the sausages are cooking at a consistently 250-degree Fahrenheit temperature, forget about them for at least 3-4 hours. The internal temperature of the sausages should reach 165 degrees Fahrenheit.
Then reverse them during the mid-point of the cooking process. But, to be honest, it’s not really needed. What flipping actually does is add grate marks. However, that doesn’t influence the flavor or taste of your smoked sausages.
Once again, once the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees Fahrenheit, it’s time to serve them. But before serving, let the sausages cool down a bit unless you prefer devouring them succulent and plump.
Frequently Asked Questions
What Is Smoked Sausage Called?
Smoked sausage, partially and fully, is also called Kielbasa in the United States of America. This is known as Polish sausage as well. And it’s mainly made of pork in a horseshoe shape.
How long do sausages take to smoke?
The smoker is set to a temperature of 250 degrees Fahrenheit. And typically, sausages take 1.5 to 2 hours to reach an internal temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit. That’s when you know they’re done and ready to serve.
Can you eat raw smoked sausages?
More often than not, smoked sausages are fully cooked, which means you can eat them. But then it’s always a better decision to cook these sausages since it kills germs if there any. Maybe just refer to the instructions printed on the packaging.
Most store-bought sausages are good to eat without cooking. Even so, they taste better when cooked.
Are smoked sausages healthy?
Smoked sausages consist of meat in the form of beef, turkey, chicken, and pork, along with spices and herbs. The meal contains thiamin, niacin, Vitamin D, Vitamin B6, zinc, phosphorous, calcium, and magnesium.
So can you eat them every day? No, because it is processed meat after all, which, when consumed on a daily basis, increases your chances of developing heart diseases.
How long should you cook smoked sausages?
For cooking them indoors, pan-fry smoked sausages on moderate-level heat for 6-10 minutes. As for oven baking, 20 minutes at a temperature of 400 degrees Fahrenheit is simply perfect.
While choosing, don’t forget that it’s a priority to buy sausages that contain at least 85 to 90 percent meat. With less sodium, carbs, and saturated fat per serving.
As for the top brands, the list includes Duke’s, Prairie Belt, Hillshire Farm, and lots more. You can just refer to our reviews section. There are all kinds of varieties as far as the type of meat, spices, and herbs are concerned.