Do You Take The Casing Off Sausage Before Cooking

Do You Take The Casing Off Sausage Before Cooking? Resolved

Last Updated on July 22, 2023 by Shari Mason

Sausage is a versatile and flavorful food used in various dishes, from breakfast scrambles to hearty stews. 

When cooking sausage, one of the most common questions is whether or not you should take the casing off sausage before cooking. 

Let’s explore the answer to this question. Read on.

Should You Take The Casing Off The Sausage Before Cooking?

sausages on top of a wooden board

For the most part, sausage casings are typically edible, so you don’t need to take the casing off before cooking. 

It is better to leave the casing on while cooking as it helps to keep the sausage moist and juicy. 

However, it is easy to do if you want to remove the casing before cooking.

Start at one end of the sausage and peel back the casing. You can use a sharp knife to make the job easier and cut the sausage into smaller pieces if desired. 

Once the casing has been removed, you can cook the sausage according to the recipe.

If the sausage is made with a natural casing, it is generally more flavorful and may be worth leaving on. 

However, if the sausage is made with a synthetic casing, it may provide less flavor and can be tough and chewy, making it a good idea to remove it before cooking. 

Read: How Long Are Johnsonville Brats Good For In The Fridge?

What Is The Purpose Of Sausage Casing?

The purpose of sausage casing is to provide a barrier between the meat mixture and the environment, help the sausage hold its shape during cooking, and enhance the flavor and texture of the finished product. 

The casing is the outer layer of the sausage, made from either natural or synthetic materials, that holds the meat mixture together.

Natural casings are typically made from animal intestines and can provide a distinct flavor and texture to the sausage. 

Synthetic casings are made from materials like cellulose and are often used for their uniformity and ease of use. 

Read: How To Tell If Sausage Is Cooked?

How To Cook Sausage Out Of Casing

To cook sausage out of the casing, start by heating a skillet or pan over medium-high heat. Once the pan is hot, add the sausage and break it up with a spoon or spatula. 

Cook for about 5 minutes, stirring and breaking up the sausage to ensure it cooks evenly. 

Once the sausage is cooked and browned, please remove it from the heat and serve. But can you eat Vienna sausage from the can?

How To Tell If Sausage Casing Is Edible

The first step in determining if a sausage casing is edible is to inspect it closely. Check for any discoloration or damage to the casing, indicating that the casing has gone bad. 

If the casing looks good, you can proceed with the next step. The next step is to smell the casing. If the casing has an unpleasant odor, it is unsafe to eat. 

There are two things nobody should ever have to watch being made, sausage and laws.”

~ Mark Twain, American Writer

Fresh sausages [1] should have a mild, pleasant smell. If the casing smells off, then it is best to discard it and purchase a new one. 

You can also pinch the casing with your fingers to check for any soft or spongy texture, indicating that the casing is not edible.

Read: Is Pork Sausage The Same As Ground Pork?

Why Should You Remove Sausage Casing?

hand removing sausage casing

There are some sausage casings, such as cellulose casings that aren’t edible. Hence, they should be removed.

Removing sausage casing is important to ensure that the sausage is cooked properly and evenly. Sausage casing can prevent the sausage from being cooked, leaving the inside raw. 

Removing the casing also allows more flavor to be absorbed into the sausage, making it easier to cut the sausage into smaller pieces for recipes or serving. 

Additionally, removing the casing can help reduce the fat content of the sausage, as the casing often holds a lot of the fat from the sausage.

Tips On How To Cook The Perfect Sausage

  1. Start by heating a skillet over medium heat and adding a tablespoon of oil. 
  2. Add the sausage to the skillet and cook for about 7 minutes, flipping them to ensure even cooking. 
  3. If the sausage looks dry, add a tablespoon of water to the pan. 
  4. Once cooked through (internal temperature should be 165°F), remove the sausages from the skillet. 
  5. Let the sausages rest for a few minutes before serving. 
  6. Serve the sausages with your favorite side dishes and enjoy.


Can you eat sausage casing?

Yes, most sausage casings are edible [2]. However, some people may find them to be tough and chewy.

Is Johnsonville sausage casing edible?

Yes. Johnsonville sausage casings come in synthetic and natural varieties that are edible. However, casings made of cellulose are intended to be removed before the sausage is eaten.

Do you remove the casing from the breakfast sausage?

Removing the casing from breakfast sausage before cooking is unnecessary, although some people prefer to do so.

What happens if you eat plastic sausage casing?

A plastic sausage casing can be a choking hazard and when ingested, cause digestive problems such as nausea, vomiting, and abdominal pain.

Do you leave casing on sausage when grilling?

Generally, it’s best to keep sausage casing on when grilling to keep the sausage intact.

Should you squeeze the sausage out of its casing?

No, you shouldn’t squeeze the sausage out of the casing as you might leave some meat behind. The best way to do it is to cut in the middle and just unravel it.

In Conclusion

Whether you take the casing off the sausage before cooking depends on your preference, the type of sausage, and the cooking method. 

If you don’t want to eat the casing, you should take it off before cooking. If you want to keep the casing on, you should make sure the sausage is cooked enough so that the casing is safe to eat. 

Ultimately, it is up to you to decide whether to take the casing off the sausage before cooking.


Shari Mason

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