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How do you know if sausage is cured?

post #1 of 4
Thread Starter 

Hello Everyone,

   I was looking to smoke some Italian sausage today but dont have time to run to the meat store. My question is how do I know if the sausage from the supermarket is cured? also it's the thicker sausage approx. how long, at what temp and at what internal temp should I be going for..  Thanks Gus

post #2 of 4

Most all fresh Italian sausages made for spaghetti or for general cooking are just fresh sausages and not made with any cure; and you can smoke them as long as you have your temp at 225° in your smoker and you get them from 40° to a minimum of 140° within 4 hours, and that should be very easy to accomplish.  You want to cook them to a minimum of 155° - 160° for them to be done, or finish them on the grill or in a pan to that temp.


Also, if it's fresh meat, if it has cure in it the color will be a heavy gray, not pink like fresh meat.  Fresh polish sausages that you purchase at Easter is a good example, it almost looks spoiled; it has cure in it so it can be smoked long and slow.  Anything with cure in it turns that color quickly; it is so surprising at first that it will become uniformly pink all the way though like ham!  It goes from gray to pink!  


Fresh sausage, on the other hand, is the reverse - it turns from fresh pink to cooked gray throughout - any pink left in the center, it's not cooked all the way through!

post #3 of 4

It would be on the package.    Fully cooked sausage just needs to be warmed.   If nitrites where used you can cook it at a lower temp for a longer period of time.   If the sausage comes out of the fresh meat counter don't bet on it being cured and you should probably cook it at a higher temperature for a shorter period of time.


I don't feel comfortable giving times and temps without knowing what you have.

post #4 of 4
Thread Starter 

Thanks, I'll have too keep a close eye on it.......  

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