Wednesday, March 16, 2011

My First Attempt At Stuffed Sausage

I’ve made sausage a fewl times but always as bulk and never stuffed into casings. Several folks on the forums and blogs I read are real sausage makers and I drool every time I see it. Awhile back, I bought a grinder attachment for the Kitchen Aid mixer that allows me to grind small meat batches myself. I’d still been debating about buying a good stuffer but was reluctant to buy one until I knew I wanted to do this, then I saw Mister Meatball using a stuffer attachment for his mixer to do it.

So I decided for the $15 cost of the stuffer attachment, I could take the plunge and give it a try knowing it would be more difficult as the auger feed must be kept full to avoid air pockets. I figured this would allow me to give it a try, see if I enjoy doing it and see if I like the product, knowing I can get better equipment later.

I like the Czech sausage I’ve made in the past, and the folks I get the spices from, stuff theirs and I assume since they add curing salt, they also smoke it. So for this batch, I used 4½ # each of venison and ground pork – since the venison was already ground, I just bought some ground pork from the local market. It’s the meat they make their breakfast sausage from and is fattier than just a ground pork butt. I’m not a meat expert but I believe I can tell the venison from the pork.

I mixed the meat then added half the spices, curing salt, and cold water.

Mixed again, added the remaining ingredients and mixed once more.

I then covered it and stuck in the fridge overnight to chill and have the flavors marry up well.

For the breakfast sausage, I had 3 ½ # of meat left and used the same spices as they use where I bought the meat.
I bought my natural hog casings from Your Sausage Source , put them in water and soaked overnight in the fridge. When ready to stuff, I flushed in cold water. Mister Meatball has a good pictorial step-by-step on his blog but here's my set up ready to go.

The first casing went well, except note the first few inches on the inside weren't full - I squeezed it to fix.

And the third and fourth casings went well, but we managed to let air get in during the second casing and that’s it on the right – it was breakfast the next day.

We decided to put a little of the breakfast sausage in the casing and that's it lower right.

Then it was time to link it and I made them big after discovering I had the casings stuffed full and they could blow out easily.

This is the full batch.
This was a real learning process and I found that it’s not difficult, but the kitchen aid stuffer makes it a slow two person process. I learned that if you get them too full, it’s hard to make the links without a blowout, and I learned the cooler the meat the better with this stuffer. Finally I learned that the clean up is the same, so make a big batch.  A positive - sausage making is like BBQing, you can eat the mistakes.  Tune back in for my first attempt at the smoking process.
Thanks for stopping by Almost Heaven South.


  1. So cool! I was wondering whether getting the mixer attachment is worth it, but I can't really imagine stuffing by hand anyway.

  2. What a great job for first time sausage-ing. I found myself reading faster and fast, in anticipation of the end result. It seems that the little $15 tool worked good, are you thinking about buying bigger and better?

  3. Quite a process. Good for you for trying sausage. Knowing your dedication to the grill, I am sure you will become an expert on this too.

  4. Wow, I am impressed Larry! Despite the blow outs, despite the air.. they look fantastic! I can't wait for the smoking!!!!

  5. Looks real good for the first time and using the grinder as a stuffer. Couple tips: If grinding your own meat mix the spices with the cubed meat before grinding. Don't let the seasoned ground meat sit overnight, stuff immediatelty. The salt acts as a binding agent and will make stuffing more difficult. Anybody can season and grind meat. The art is in the stuffing.

  6. Wow! I've never thought to make my own sausages... nicely done!!!

  7. Great job Larry; the pork and venison together would make a great tasting sausage. I'm anxious to read about how the smoking turns out.

  8. I love sausage, Larry, as long as it's not too spicy. I used to eat alot of spicy things --but haven't been able too as I've gotten older.... Ha....

    Hope the smoking went well.

  9. I'm dying to hear how they taste - they look beautiful!

  10. Stuffed sausage is something I've always wanted to make too.

  11. Sorry, just saw this post today.

    Very nice work. Glad it worked out.

  12. I need to get that attachment now. Where did you get your casings, did you have to order or were you able to find them locally?


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