When you're famished, and that smoked turkey sausage is already calling for you, you may want to eat it directly without cooking. But can you? Is it even safe for you to do so? We won't let your stomach continue grumbling because of these questions. So we searched the internet for answers!
There are two types of smoked turkey sausages: hot-smoked and cold-smoked. Knowing which one of these you have will answer your question. Hot smoking exposes the turkey sausage to a high temperature, cooking the meat so you can consume it immediately.
But cold smoking only infuses the turkey sausages with flavor. So, it would help if you cooked them first. But, if the smoked turkey is cured, you can immediately eat it because curing kills all the bacteria.
Do you need more details on why hot-smoked turkey sausages do not require cooking while cold-smoked turkey sausages do? We share more on this below. Also, if you want to cook them or add a different flavor, we've got a guide and recipes. With that said, let's dive right in!
Should You Cook Smoked Turkey Sausages?
You may lack time to cook your smoked turkey sausage when you're in a hurry. Hot-smoked turkey sausages are ready for immediate consumption as they are fully cooked at 140° F to 180° F.
The bacteria in the meat that may harm you die at the high temperature, so you shouldn't have any problems if you choose not to cook it.
On the other hand, you cannot readily eat cold-smoked turkey sausages because smoke only infuses them with flavor and nothing more. In cold smoking, the turkey sausage is subjected to temperatures below 85° F, which isn't enough heat to cook the sausages thoroughly.
However, if the cold-smoked sausage has been cured by curing salts such as sodium nitrate or sodium nitrite, you can consume it without cooking. The meat is protected and preserved through curing as it kills all the bacteria that may grow during storage.
Aside from these, the smoked turkey sausages that you buy in stores may have labels with instructions on how to prepare them. So, check for labels that say "Uncooked," "Cook before eating," "Cook and serve," or anything like these.
How To Cook Smoked Turkey Sausage
Whether hot-smoked or cold-smoked, you may also want to serve your turkey sausage hot. If this is the case, then we've got just the right guide for you here:
A microwave is best if you don't have time but want to serve your smoked turkey sausage hot.
Follow these steps:
- Wrap each of your sausages in a paper towel. Then, put them on a microwaveable plate.
- Set your microwave to high heat for 3 1/4 minutes or 1 1/2 minutes if you only have one sausage. Place your smoked turkey sausage inside the microwave and wait for it to brown.
- If the turkey sausage hasn't completely browned after, set your microwave in 20-second intervals and place it back in. Serve it when ready.
Click here to see this microwave on Amazon.
You can bring out the flavors and juices of the turkey smoked sausage by grilling.
Here's what you need to do:
- Let your grill cool down to medium heat after you first light it. It will take approximately ten minutes to do this. Hold your hand above the grill to check for the temperature. The temperature should be between 325°F to 375°F.
- Grill your sausages. Make sure to put them near the center of the grill and not directly to the center. Leave a space between them, so the heat is properly spread. Grilling will take eight to ten minutes or more, depending on what type of smoked turkey sausage you have.
- Cool down the sausages for several minutes before removing them from the grill.
Check out this grill on Amazon here.
If you want to use your stove, you can choose to slice your smoked turkey sausage.
Then, do the following:
- Preheat your pan to medium heat. Then, drizzle vegetable oil, water, or cooking spray, depending on your preference, and cook turkey sausage.
- Wait for the sausage to turn brown. Once the smoked turkey sausages have a uniform color, you can get them out of the skillet.
- Get your paper towel to dry any excess oil on your turkey sausage.
Tap here to see this stove on Amazon.
Smoked Turkey Sausage Recipe Ideas
Does smoked turkey sausage seem too bland or plain for you? If yes, all it may need is a little tweak and some flavor additions, so check out these recipes.
Smoked Turkey Sausage Pasta Skillet
A smoked turkey pasta skillet is not only filling but also delicious.
Follow this guide for a delicious smoked turkey sausage meal:
- Slice your smoked turkey sausages into bite-sized pieces.
- Get your skillet and spray it with cooking spray. Then, place it over medium-high heat.
- Cook your sausage for three to five minutes or until it has browned lightly.
- Put your sliced bell pepper.
- After two minutes, put your undrained tomatoes, tomato sauce, water, and pasta. Stir them and wait for them to boil.
- Reduce the heat once the mixture has boiled and cooked for 15 minutes or more until the pasta is tender. Then, serve with a sprinkle of Parmesan cheese.
Check out this skillet on Amazon here.
Baked Smoked Turkey Sausage Chili Cheese Dogs
This recipe is yummy and kid-friendly. And it doesn't take too much time to make.
Here's how to make it:
- Set your oven to 375°F to preheat.
- Get your baking pan and lightly grease it with olive oil.
- Slice your smoked turkey sausage down the middle, but ensure not to cut all the way.
- Cut your cheese into half and place it where you've sliced your sausage. Afterward, place them inside hotdog rolls in your baking pan.
- Sprinkle chili, cheese, and onion on your sausage and get it into your oven. Bake your chili dogs for 15 to 20 minutes. However, if you want the bread to be toasted or if the cheese still hasn't melted thoroughly, add a few more minutes, then serve.
Check out this baking pan on Amazon.
Smoked Turkey Sausage Soup
If you want a bowl of soup for cold weather, then a smoked turkey sausage soup is just for you. It is filling and will also help to warm you.
Here are the steps to make it:
- Using a deep stock pot, drizzle some olive oil over medium heat.
- Place your diced onion and wait for it to become translucent, then add your sliced sausage.
- Pour some chicken stock and stir to mix and combine all the ingredients. Put some cubed sweet potato, oregano, rosemary, and garlic. Continue stirring until the soup boils.
- Reduce heat and let the soup boil for about 15 minutes. You can also slow boil it for longer to make it more flavorful.
- Five minutes before serving, put some fresh spinach and let it wilt down the soup. Then, put some salt and pepper to season.
How To Store Smoked Turkey Sausage
Properly storing a smoked turkey sausage will let it last longer. If you have some leftover smoked sausage you haven't cooked or eaten yet, keep them by doing these:
- Place your opened smoked turkey sausage into a freezer-safe plastic container. Then, make the container's seal airtight by pressing a lid. It will help prevent the smoked sausage from drying out.
- Write down the date on a masking or freezer tape to track when the sausage gets spoiled. Press it down to your smoked sausage container.
- Store the sausage inside your refrigerator for up to one week. You can also store it inside the freezer at 0°F for one to two months.
See this freezer-safe plastic container on Amazon.
To Wrap Up
The type of smoked turkey sausages you have determines whether you should cook it or it is ready to eat. Hot-smoked turkey sausages do not require cooking, but you need to cook cold-smoked turkey sausages. The difference in their treatment arises due to the differences in their preparation.
You can also look for different labels on store-bought smoked turkey sandwiches because they typically tell you if you need to cook the food or not.
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