Whether you’re firing up the grill for a summertime cookout, or simply looking for a quick and easy dinner option, grilling sausage links can be a delicious and satisfying choice. With a few simple techniques and some insider tips, you can learn how to grill sausage links perfectly every time.
Choosing the Right Sausage Links
Before you can start grilling, you’ll need to choose the right type of sausage links for your taste preferences. Here are a few things to keep in mind:
There are many different types of sausage available, from classic pork sausage to spicy andouille or chicken sausage with sundried tomatoes. You’ll want to choose a type of sausage that you enjoy eating and that will work well on the grill.
Pay attention to the size of the sausage links you are buying and whether they are pre-cooked or raw. Smaller links will be easier to handle on the grill, while larger links may need to be cut in half for even cooking. If the sausage links are pre-cooked, be sure not to overcook them on the grill.
Some sausage links come in natural casings while others are made with synthetic casings. If you’re not sure which type of casing your sausage has, ask the butcher or check the label. Natural casings can give the sausage a firmer texture and a slightly crispier skin, while synthetic casings may be easier to remove and offer a smoother texture.
Preparing the Grill
Before firing up your grill, it’s important to properly prepare it to ensure even cooking and to prevent sticking. Follow these steps:
Clean the Grill Grates
Using a grill brush, scrub the grill grates to remove any leftover food or debris from previous grilling sessions. This will not only prevent sticking, but it will also help to keep the grill grates from rusting.
Oil the Grates
Using tongs and a small piece of cloth or paper towel, lightly oil the grill grates with vegetable oil. This will also help to prevent sticking and ensure a crispy skin on your sausage links.
Preheat the Grill
Preheat your grill to a medium-high heat. This will ensure that the sausage links cook evenly and won’t brown too quickly on the outside while the inside remains undercooked.
Cooking the Sausage Links
Now that your grill is properly prepared, it’s time to cook your sausage links to perfection. Follow these steps:
Place the Sausage Links on the Grill
Using tongs, place the sausage links directly on the oiled grill grates. If you have smaller links, you may want to use a grill basket or skewers to make them easier to handle on the grill.
Cook Until Browned
Allow the sausage links to cook for approximately 10-12 minutes or until they are browned on all sides. Be sure to turn them frequently with tongs to ensure even cooking.
Check the Internal Temperature
Using a meat thermometer, check the internal temperature of the sausage links to ensure they are fully cooked. The United States Department of Agriculture recommends cooking all types of sausages to an internal temperature of 165°F for safety reasons.
Rest Before Serving
Once the sausage links are fully cooked, remove them from the grill with tongs and let them rest for a few minutes before serving. This will allow the juices to redistribute throughout the sausage links, ensuring a juicy and flavorful final product.
Tips for Perfectly Grilled Sausage Links
Follow these insider tips to take your grilled sausage links to the next level:
- Prick the Sausage Links: Pricking the sausage links with a fork or small knife before grilling can release some of the fats and juices, preventing them from exploding or bursting open on the grill.
- Flavor Your Sausage Links: If you’re looking to add some extra flavor to your sausage links, try marinating them for a few hours before grilling or adding some spices or mustard to the outside before cooking.
- Use a Thermometer: A meat thermometer is the best way to ensure that your sausage links are fully cooked but not overdone. Be sure to insert the thermometer into the thickest part of the sausage link for an accurate reading.
- Pair with the Perfect Side Dishes: Grilled sausage links pair well with a variety of side dishes, such as potato salad, coleslaw, baked beans, or grilled vegetables. Get creative and try out new side dishes to find your perfect pairing!
Cleaning up the Grill
Once you’re done grilling, it’s important to properly clean up your grill to ensure it lasts for many summers to come. Here’s how:
Brush the Grill Grates Again
Using a grill brush, scrub the grill grates one last time to remove any leftover food or debris.
Clean the Grill Exterior
Using soap and water, wipe down the exterior of the grill to remove any grease, food, or debris that may have splattered during grilling.
Store the Grill Properly
Once the grill is clean and dry, store it in a dry place with the propane tank removed. This will help prevent rust and other damage during storage.
Grilling sausage links can be a delicious and satisfying way to enjoy a summertime meal or an easy dinner option. With the right type of sausage links, proper preparation, and some insider tips, you can grill sausage links perfectly every time. Be sure to follow our tips to take your grilled sausage links to the next level!
Frequently Asked Questions
- How long does it take to grill sausage links? It takes approximately 10-12 minutes to grill sausage links, or until they are browned on all sides and have an internal temperature of 165°F.
- What type of sausage links are best for grilling? Choose a type of sausage that you enjoy eating and that will hold up well on the grill, such as pork sausage, chicken sausage, or andouille sausage.
- Do I need to oil the grill grates? Yes, it’s important to oil the grill grates before grilling to prevent sticking and ensure a crispy skin on your sausage links.
- What temperature should I grill sausage links? Preheat your grill to a medium-high heat before cooking sausage links to ensure even cooking and prevent browning too quickly on the outside while the inside remains undercooked.
- Can I grill pre-cooked sausage links? Yes, you can grill pre-cooked sausage links, but be sure not to overcook them on the grill or they may become dry.