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When it comes to grilling meats, some people shy away from sausage because they are afraid of the health risks associated with eating the meat under-cooked. The process isn’t as difficult as it may first appear, however, especially with the use of a meat thermometer.
We have broken down the process of grilling sausage into a step-by-step guide and put together all of the information you need to know about the process, including the safest temp for grilling sausage, the symptoms of eating under-cooked sausage, and how to use a ThermoPro Food Thermometer accurately.
Step-by-Step Guide for Grilling Sausage
- Lightly brush sausages and grill plate with oil to prevent sticking.
- Heat the grill to medium heat.
- Place sausages on the grill and cook until the internal temperature reaches 160-165 degrees (depending on the type of meat in the sausage). Flip once, halfway through cooking. Sausages should cook for about 20 minutes.
- Watch sausages as they cook to make sure they are not dripping too much fat. This is a sign that the grill temperature should be turned down.
- Remove sausages from the grill but do not immediately cut them open, or the meat will lose its juiciness and flavor. Allow them to rest and check the internal temperature before cutting and eating.
Symptoms of Eating Under-Cooked Sausage
Be Aware of the Texture of Sausage in Your Mouth
Before any health issues happen as a result of eating under-cooked sausage, you should be able to feel a difference in the sausage’s texture as you eat it. If your temp for grilling sausage was too low, then you will likely notice that the meat feels slimy and soft in your mouth. If this happens, do not eat the sausage and proceed to cook the meat further. Fully cooked sausages should be juicy, but never slimy, and they are firm to bite into.
Consuming under-cooked sausage can cause stomach issues such as cramping, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea – much like any other type of food poisoning. While these issues will pass on their own in most situations, the symptoms may sometimes be a warning that the under-cooked sausage contained a harmful parasite, worm, bacteria, or virus that may cause a more severe health issue if left untreated.
Muscle Pain, Weakness, and Sweating
In the more severe cases, you may notice yourself begin to feel feverish after eating under-cooked sausage. Some people experience cold sweats, full-body aches, sore muscles, fatigue, and overall weakness that sets in after the stomach issues. If this happens please seek medical assistance.
Knowing and abiding by a sausage grilling safe temp is extremely important. Without doing so, you risk consuming worms, bacteria, and viruses that will make you ill or – at the very least – give you an uncomfortable couple days of food poisoning.
How to Test the Doneness of Sausages Without Using a Probe Thermometer
Use a Cake Tester or a Knife
Cake testers are very thin and made of metal. To test the doneness of your sausage with this method, simply insert the cake tester or knife into the sausage and hold it there for about 10 seconds. Remove it, and hold it to your lip or tongue. Imagine how hot you would expect a cooked sausage to feel, and determine if the cake tester or knife feels hot enough. If the metal is not hot, the sausage is likely under-cooked.
Check Firmness by Touch
The doneness of sausage can also be tested by touch. This method requires some trial and error and will likely cause you to ruin a few sausages as you learn. Feel how firm the sausage is between your fingers. It should bounce back when you press it. Now cut the sausage open, determine how cooked it is, and associate the level of doneness with the firmness you just felt. Eventually, you will understand exactly how firm a perfectly cooked sausage should feel.
Of course, these methods are not as dependable and accurate as using a meat thermometer. Inaccurately measuring the doneness of your sausage can lead to eating under-cooked meat, drying your sausage out, or ruining your sausages altogether.
The Most Accurate Way to Check Internal Sausage Temp
While the methods mentioned above can work decently in a pinch, the most accurate way to determine if the sausage is cooked perfectly is to use a digital food thermometer. With the ThermoPro Food Thermometer, you will be able to compare the safe temp for grilling sausage to the precise internal temp of the sausage you’re cooking. Here’s how to do it:
- When sausages are firm you suspect they are nearly done, insert the needle tip of the ThermoPro Food Thermometer into one end of the sausage.
- Within seconds, a temperature reading should appear. Sausages should be cooked between 160-160 degrees, depending on the type of meat.
- If the temperature is below this number, continue cooking sausages.
- When measuring temperature for a second time, we suggest inserting the thermometer tip into the same hole that was previously used, to reduce the areas where fat and juice can escape.
Cooking sausages don’t have to be as complicated or overwhelming as you may have originally thought. With the proper tools and technique, you can cook the perfect sausage every single time. Here are some great thermometer choices for you!