Safe Sausage-Making Spices and Seasonings


spices for sausage

When casing your own sausage, you may be limited to the type of ingredients you can use, but there’s still a wide range of spices and seasonings that are always okay to use.  Below is a list of spices for sausage making.

Most common spices for sausages

Feel free to experiment and invent your own special blend of seasonings and name it whatever you want. Take it to the next level: print your own label and tape it to an empty bottle… Okay, so maybe that’s a bit too geeky – well, they don’t call us the #MeatGeeks for no reason ;).

  • Allspice 
  •  Bay Leaves
  • Cayenne
  • Chile Peppers
  • Chili Powder
  • Cumin
  • Fennel
  • Ginger
  • Mace
  • Paprika
  • Sage
  • Salt
  • Thyme

I always recommend using whole spices for things like pepper, bay leaves, and other pickling-type spices. Try and avoid finely ground spices – their flavors get “lost in the mix”, and they will not be as prominent as a standard-ground spice.

When using onion or garlic, I recommend fresh-chopped. Also, you will usually want to avoid mincing your garlic or onion – I recommend a coarse consistency.

So what about the salt?

What kind of salt should I be using?

Good question. Salt is a spice that comes in endless varieties, so which is best? Better yet, let’s start with what not to use: don’t use an iodized salt. Salt is an important part of most sausages, so don’t skimp here. Use a high-quality salt. The salt is responsible for preserving your sausage, help with holding it together, and flavoring it. With all that considered, I recommend a canning or purified salt. I also like using kosher salt for cooking.

I don’t want to skimp on the quality of my salt, how do I know if my salt is good enough?

Try this, take a cup of water and put a teaspoon of salt into it. As the salt began dissolving did the water turn cloudy? Not good. Clear, and you’re in the clear; not clear and well, not clear. If your water turned cloudy then it’s likely that your salt has a high level of “heavy metals”. 

Note: try not to alter the amount of salt that a recipe calls for, as salt is also used as a preservative.