Stop Sausages From Splitting
Cooking,  Sausages

Stop Sausages Splitting When Frying, Grilling & Baking

A common problem that many people face when cooking sausages is the fact that they keep on splitting and bursting open. When you are attempting to cook a nice meal, this can have a negative effect on the presentation of the dish.

So how do you stop your sausages from splitting open when cooking? The main reason sausages burst during cooking is due to being cooked from cold, on too high of a heat. When the heat is too high, the fat and liquid within the sausage begin to boil. This builds pressure inside the casing until it cannot contain it any longer, causing the sausage to split open.

Do not despair. We will now look at how to correctly cook your sausages to prevent the splitting from happening.

How To Cook Sausages To Prevent Them Splitting

  • Remove the sausages from the refrigerator 30 minutes before cooking
  • Turn your heat source (pan/oven/grill) to a low-medium heat
  • Allow the sausages to cook on this gentle heat
  • Turn the sausages occasionally for even cooking and browning
  • DO NOT poke or pierce the casings of the sausages
  • Remove from the heat when internal temperature reaches 160oF / 72oC

We will now look at each step in greater detail to explain why we do things this way.

Remove Sausages From Refrigerator 30 Minutes Before Cooking

When cooking any meat, it should be removed from the refrigerator about 30 minutes prior to cooking to allow it to come up to room temperature. Sausages are no exception.

The reason you want your meat at room temperature is that it will allow the meat cook more evenly.

When you cook meat that has come directly from the refrigerator, it will be much colder, and therefore will require longer cooking for the centre of the meat to get cooked.

This longer cooking time runs the risk of the outside of the meat that is exposed to the heat, getting overdone and drying out.

Allow Sausages To Reach Room Temperature Before Cooking!

Cook Sausages on a Low Heat Source

When cooking sausages, there is a temptation to have the heat on high. We’ve all seen images of sausages sizzling in a frying pan with the fat spitting everywhere. Well, this is a sure fire way of having your sausages split.

Good sausages are made with approximately 20% fat – this is where they get their great flavor.

Also quite a bit of liquid is required during the sausage making process, whether this be water, beer cider or some other flavored liquid that the recipe call for.

Now all of this fat and liquid is trapped inside the sausage casing and will not only help to cook the sausages, but will also help to keep the sausages moist and flavoful.

If you cook the sausages on a direct high heat, all that fat and liquid will begin to boil inside the casing and will produce steam pressure. The more that pressure builds, the more it will need a way to escape.

Eventually, the pressure will build to a point that the sausage casing cannot contain it any longer and so it will burst open to allow the pressure to be released.

As that pressure leaves the sausage through the burst casing, so does all that lovely flavor and moisture, leaving you with dry, tasteless, ugly looking sausages.

Cooking your sausages on the lower heat will take longer, but the results will be worth it!

Allow Your Sausages to Gently Brown

As your sausages cook on the medium heat, be sure to turn then occasionally and try to prevent them from touching or resting against each other.

By doing this, you are ensuring that all sides of the sausages are gently browned, and the sausages are evenly cooked.

Resist any urge to turn the heat up to high and have the patience to let the sausages brown in their own time. It will happen, and will give you the best chance of preventing them from splitting open.

Stop Sausages From Splitting
Try To Keep Sausages From Touching Each Other

DO NOT Poke or Prick Your Sausages With A Fork!

There are many cooks out there that will tell you that the best way to stop your sausages from splitting open is to prick them with a fork.

This is the worst advice possible, so PLEASE do not do this!

The reasoning behind this advice is that the holes created by the fork will allow the pressure to be released and therefore stop the sausages from splitting open. Sounds reasonable right?

Whilst this may be the case, poking holes in your sausages will also allow all of the fat and moisture to pour out of the sausages, leaving you with dry and tasteless offerings.

The very thing that makes sausages taste so good is all that fat and flavor contained within.

If you are going to let all that escape, then you may as well eat something else.

For Those Concerned about fat!

Some of you may be thinking that it would be a good thing to allow all that fat to escape from the sausage so that they are healthier to eat.

The fact remains that sausages will never be a ‘healthy’ meal option, and the amount of fat that will escape will not make it so. It will just leave you with a sub par meal!

Don’t Overcook Your Sausages

The final thing that can ruin your sausage eating experience is overcooking!

Allow your sausages to brown until they have reached an internal temperature of 160oF/72oC.

This temperature will ensure that any harmful bacteria that may have been present within the meat has been killed off, whilst the meat remains moist and succulent.

Use a digital instant read thermometer to allow you to know when the sausages are cooked up to temperature, but probe the sausages from the end of the sausage along the length, rather than poking the thermometer through the skin and causing the goodness to leak out through the hole you have just made!

Cooked Perfectly & Beautifully Presented Sausages

By following these simple steps, you should be able to cook your sausages without them bursting open. This will provide you with a much better eating experience and more presentable dish to serve.

This video Explains Some Sausages Cooking Mistakes People Make

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