Italian Sausage is full of flavor and great in all kinds of recipes from pasta to stuffed peppers.

A simple mixture of ground pork and flavorful seasonings, this sausage is a little sweet, and a little spicy!

Homemade Italian Sausage in the pan cooked

What is Italian Sausage?

A traditional Italian sausage can be made with different types of meat or seasonings and it usually has a high percentage of fat.

In North America, a typical grocery store Italian sausage is usually pork and has fennel among other seasonings.

As we mainly use this sausage mixture for cooking and adding to other recipes like lasagna, I opt for ground pork. It has great flavor and some fat but not as much as a traditional Italian sausage link.

seasonings and meat to make Homemade Italian Sausage


GROUND MEAT We start with fresh ground pork as we love the flavor, but beef, turkey, or chicken work. Your local butcher can often offer nice mixtures for sausage too.

SEASONINGS The secret is in all the seasonings (most of which are found in homemade Italian seasoning). Add extra chili flakes if you’d like more heat.

FENNEL Fennel seeds are really important in this recipe to give the sausage its signature flavor. You can use either whole or ground fennel (I use whole because it’s usually what I have on hand).


Mix the seasonings with the meat and be sure to let it rest in the fridge. This allows the flavors to blend.

process of mixing ingredients to make Homemade Italian Sausage

How to Make Homemade Italian Sausage

Keep in mind this is intended to be used as bulk Italian sausage in recipes (it doesn’t have enough fat to create great Italian sausage links). It can be used to make sausage patties if desired.

  1. Mix all of the ingredients thoroughly in a large bowl (using your hands works best)!
  2. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 4 hours or overnight.
  3. Cook in a skillet over medium heat. Drain any fat and use in recipes or add to pasta sauce.


  • Raw pork can be kept in the fridge for 2 days or frozen for 2 months (more food safety info here).
  • Keep in freezer bags with the date labeled on the outside.
  • Cooked Italian sausage will keep about 2 months in the freezer and uncooked sausage will keep about 3 months.

Italian Sausage Recipes

Did you make this Italian Sausage? Be sure to leave a rating and a comment below! 

cooked Homemade Italian Sausage in a pan
5 from 91 votes↑ Click stars to rate now!
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Homemade Italian Sausage

Italian Sausage is perfectly seasoned & so flavorful. Toss into soups, stews, or pasta sauce for a delicious addition!
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Refrigeration Time 4 hours
Total Time 4 hours 15 minutes
Servings 4 servings
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  • 1 pound ground pork or beef or turkey
  • 1 teaspoons dried parsley
  • 1 teaspoons paprika
  • ½ teaspoon Kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon dried oregano
  • ½ teaspoon fennel seeds or ½ teaspoon ground fennel
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ¼ teaspoon dried rosemary crushed
  • teaspoon black pepper
  • teaspoon dried thyme
  • teaspoon red pepper flakes or to taste


  • Combine all ingredients in a large bowl and mix well.
  • Cover & refrigerate at least 4 hours or up to 24 hours.
  • Cook in a skillet until no pink remains.


Fennel seeds to give the sausage its signature flavor. You can use either whole or ground fennel (I use whole because it's usually what I have on hand)
This recipe can be doubled and half of the uncooked mixture can be frozen for future use.
Sausage can be formed into patties before cooking. Cook over medium heat about 4-5 minutes per side or until cooked through.
Optional add-ins
1-2 teaspoons brown sugar
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/8 teaspoon smoked paprika
Nutritional information includes ground pork, information may vary with beef or turkey.
5 from 91 votes

Nutrition Information

Serving: 0.25of recipe | Calories: 303 | Carbohydrates: 1g | Protein: 19g | Fat: 24g | Saturated Fat: 9g | Cholesterol: 82mg | Sodium: 356mg | Potassium: 337mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 265IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 23mg | Iron: 1mg

Nutrition information provided is an estimate and will vary based on cooking methods and brands of ingredients used.

Course Pork
Cuisine American, Italian
cooked Homemade Italian Sausage with writing
cooked Homemade Italian Sausage in a pan with a title
cooked Homemade Italian Sausage with a title
Homemade Italian Sausage in the pan and a plate of seasoning with a title


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Holly is a wine and cheese lover, recipe creator, shopping enthusiast and self appointed foodie. Her greatest passion is creating in the kitchen and making deliciously comforting recipes for the everyday home cook!
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Recipe Rating


  1. It is nearly impossible to get Italian sausage around here! I made this last night, and it was delicious! Had to substitute for both Fennel and Rosemary, since I’m out of both and my car is in the shop. Will definitely be using this recipe again, I’m anxious to taste it with the correct ingredients. Also plan to up the red pepper flakes5 stars

  2. I never knew how EASY making your own Italian sausage was! Clean ingredients, better tasting! I’ll never go back to the store bought brands!5 stars

    1. Hi Teresa, we don’t add Italian seasoning into this recipe, just a mixture of the spices listed in the recipe. It is a similar combination of spices so you could use Italian seasoning instead if you’d like!

  3. This was perfect! I needed Italian-flavored turkey sausage, but all I had was a package of ground turkey. I used all the herbs in this recipe and even though it didn’t sit in the fridge for four hours, maybe 40 minutes, it gave the flavor I hoped for! I am keeping this one in my permanent files. Thanks so much!!5 stars

  4. This Italian sausage is fantastic! I’ve made others in the past but this is my new go-to because of its simplicity and flavor. 5 stars

      1. This is a good recipe. However, I would not suggest using beef. Beef would not taste like Italian sausage at all. Turkey would be okay because of the similar flavor profile. Chicken might work if it was legs and thighs only. Stick with pork for best results.5 stars

  5. We love this recipe! I grind my own pork and use this recipe for dago sandwiches and anything recipe that calls for Italian sausage. We haven’t tried stuffing it into a casing, but may have to one of these days.5 stars

  6. I have a batch of your Italian Seasoning from the last time I made this. Since the seasoning mix in the Italian Sausage recipe is similar, can you save me the math and tell me how much of the Italian Seasoning (+1/2 teaspoon of fennel) to add to a pound of ground pork or turkey to make Italian Sausage?5 stars