Thinking of making sausage

Discussion in 'Sausage' started by show me smoke, Feb 10, 2014.

  1. I have no experience in making sausage...and I want to know how much stuff one needs to start...and what is the start up cost of making sausage?   I have read some pretty bad reviews on  the manual sausage horn  type of stuffer..which are cheaper to buy.  I mainly want to make the sausage for bbq contests.  Would i be better off to find sausage that a local meat shop makes and save my money.
  2. chef jimmyj

    chef jimmyj Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Group Lead OTBS Member

    Making sausage is fun and you know what you are eating. A grinder, stuffer, casing and the basic ingredients can be had for <$300. Search out the Kitchener #12 Electric Grinder and a Kitchener or Grizzly 5Lb Stuffer, they are a good start and at about $99 each will handle 25 to 50 Lbs at a time and last several years. Check with your local butcher for Hanks of Casing, the Home Packs suck, or Sryacuse Casing...JJ
  3. boykjo

    boykjo Sausage maker Staff Member Moderator Group Lead OTBS Member

  4. I use my Kithen Aid mixer with the grinder attachment. Works like a charm. I also use a 5# Gander Mountain suffer and again works well. My favorite book on making sausage is by Rytek Kutas. Here is the link

    I have about four books on sausage and this one is by far the best.

  5. darwin101

    darwin101 Meat Mopper

    Gander mountain has a few required items on sale (small grinders & stuffer). A 5# sausage stuffer is good to have, larger is nicer to have.  Ask your butcher if he will grind meat for you, then you won't need a grinder right away.  I get my casing from a local grocery store when I need them.  It all can be done slowly until you figure out how much you want to get into.  Lots of good recipes on the net and in books as previously stated.
  6. smokin phil

    smokin phil Smoking Fanatic

    If I may inquire, how good does the KitchenAid setup work? We have actually 2 KitchenAid mixers and the grinder attachment. I was wanting to use it as a stuffer as well. I'd like to try making my own sausages, but don't really want to invest $100's just yet. I realize there is a better way to do it, but for an investment of only $15 (price of the stuffing tube add-ons for the stuffer) I'd have (pretty much) everything I need to start. I have far more time than money. I realize it may be slower, but that's not a problem at this point. I'm not talking about running 50lb batches at first. Just wanna dip my toe in the pool and see how it goes. Any info along these lines would be much appreciated!
  7. foamheart

    foamheart Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    My first sausage I made I only used one tool.

    It grinds, it stuffs, it doesn't slice or dice though. You can probably get one at a pawn shop or ebay for less than 30 dollars. We been using this one as long as I can remember, I think it was my great grandmothers. LOL

    Electric grinders are nice, but buy a quality one you can get parts for. Small low powered grinders are frustrating.

    The stuffer is the first thing I wanted having the above. Once you've made sausage with the above you'll realize a good stuffer is a necessity and don't do as I did. That little curved stuffing horn thingie, unless you have arms like the Hulk, and a 3 foot cheater pipe, opt for the hand crank. 5lber is a great start. It can do it all where the bigger more expensive can not always say that.

    Remember the butcher can always grind for you at a price until you can get to a deceit grinder. Besides then he has to clean up....

    My opinion is small 5lb batches are the best till I get good enough for a bigger stuffer. Its enough to experiment while not being too much incase you don't like it to easily give away. LOL Besides 5 lbs is no work to do, its fun, easily cleanable, easily workable, and easiest to learn on.

    When I get as good as some of the guys here, I may buy a bigger set up, till them I am still learning and having fun. Butts go on sale, a pair a butts makes enough Andouille, boudin, and breakfast links for about 2 or 3 months. Its fun and not enough to make it work to solo.

    That's where I am at. Just thought I'd share.
  8. chezey

    chezey Fire Starter

    I have a KitchenAid with the grinder attachment. Works good for grinding small batches if the meat is chilled very well or partially frozen. Have never used it to stuff with but it can be done. I would try it to see if you like it at minimal cost. It will not stuff as easy or as fast as a regular stuffer but you will get the basics without going broke. Once you make your own sausage you will be hooked.
  9. mchar69

    mchar69 Smoke Blower

    You just need the spacer and the tubes.  Remove the grinder while stuffing.

    Then some hog casings which you will get from a local butcher or

    Then decide which sausage to make.

    Sheep caings I've never done.  Good luck.
  10. mchar69

    mchar69 Smoke Blower

    remove the grinder blade before stuffing - use the plastic spacer instead -sorry.

    You can make 20 pounds in an afternoon.. Yummy.
  11. jckdanls 07

    jckdanls 07 Master of the Pit Group Lead OTBS Member

    I would go get you an untrimmed boston butt... put the grinder attachment on... grind up the butt and then make some fresh breakfast sausage... no stuffing required... here's a link to Pops world famous breakfast sausage'''

    try it like it is... and adjust to taste next time... I found it to be a little salty for the Mrs and I ....
  12. I made the sausage below with the KitchenAid setup and it is not too bad to get you started. I quickly realized that if I am going to do this more I need better equipment. It grinds better than it stuffs and the meat needs to be almost frozen for grinding. It really is a two person job when it comes to stuffing though. It is lots more difficult to force the ground meat into the unit during stuffing, that's why it's really a two person job. Be careful not to inadvertently throw away the little plastic retainer that holds in the auger when the cutting blade is not installed (during the stuffing process). I mistakenly threw it away during cleanup and had to go dumpster-diving to retrieve it. I get my casings from the local "organic" market as they make their own sausages for sale.


    Good luck!

  13. The Kitchen Aid works well with the grinder attachment, however the stuffer tube option is not good. You need a stuffer so you can fill it with the sausage meat. The Kitchen Aid does not have a way or reservoir to fill so you are continuously filling it while stuffing. You can buy a good unit at Gander Mountain (#5 pound is all you need) for about $70 on sale. A mixer is not necessary though. I use mine about half the time and mix by hand the balance. I would seriously consider a stuffer....[​IMG]
  14. chef jimmyj

    chef jimmyj Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Group Lead OTBS Member

    I have ground up to 10#'s with the Kitchen Aid and it works fairly well....BUT...If you try Stuffing with the KA you will find it to be a Nightmare! Even with a second set of hands feeding it, you get air pockets and an inconsistent fill. The air causes the sausage to self destruct when you try to cook it and the uneven fill wastes casing which can be expensive. At a minimum get a 5# Stuffer. the small investment will make for a MUCH more enjoyable experience and A LOT less Cursing...JJ
  15. mdboatbum

    mdboatbum Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    It's all been said. The main thing is to cut your meat into strips that will fit down the throat of the grinder then par freeze it. It'll be a joy to grind that way. If you don't, it'll be MUCH slower and you'll have to unwind connective tissue off the shaft/blade a few times for a 5lb batch. the best thing about the KA stuffer is that it quickly convinces you that you need a stand alone stuffer. Grinder=good. Stuffer=beyond bad.
  16. dutch

    dutch Smoking Guru Staff Member Administrator Group Lead OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I used to use the KitchenAid for grinding and stuffing. The trick that I learned in using the stuffer is that the sausage as to be finger numbing cold and fairly moist- I would add up to a 1/4 cup of ice cold water to a 5 lb batch. The old timer that taught me that said the the extra bit of water helps the meat slip through the plastic stuffing horns. The casing filled pretty evenly and I never experienced any blowout with the casing.- YMMV

    Since then, Ma and the kids gave me a dedicated 5 lb. stuffer and I later bought a dedicated grinder.
  17. Thanks Dutch. I'll give that a try as I have yet to get a dedicated stuffer. That is on the list of things to buy.[​IMG]  

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