We’ve all been there: you come home after a long day of work and are craving some delicious grilled sausage.
But you realize you forgot to put them in the fridge to defrost last night and they’re still completely frozen.
Will you have to settle for another choice for dinner, or can you still grill the sausages even though they’re frozen?
You can still grill your sausages even if they’re frozen solid.
The important thing is to make sure the middle of the sausages reaches 160 degrees Fahrenheit before you serve them.
To cook the sausages all the way through without burning the outside, warm them up on a cooler section of the grill before placing them over flames.
This way, they will defrost a bit before being placed over heat.
Keep reading to learn more about how to cook your sausages from frozen.
Can You Grill Frozen Sausage?
While you can grill any sausages from frozen, there are a couple of things to keep in mind.
If you purchased already-frozen sausages from the store, they’ll be ready to go straight onto the grill after coming out of the freezer.
These pre-frozen sausages are flash-frozen to keep them from sticking together, making it easy to grab individual sausages to toss on the grill.
If you purchased thawed sausages and stuck them straight into the freezer, however, they are probably all stuck together.
The moisture in the sausages causes them to stick to one another if they aren’t flash frozen first.
Flash freezing is a simple process that will keep your sausages ready to grill at any time. Here are the steps:
- Remove the sausages from their packaging.
- Place them on a baking sheet in a way that keeps them from touching one another.
- Pop the baking sheet in the freezer for a couple of hours.
- Once the sausages have finished freezing, you can place them all together in a freezer bag and put them back in the freezer. By freezing them separately, they won’t stick together in the bag.
If your sausages haven’t been flash frozen, you’ll need to thaw them before placing them on the grill.
This will make it easier to separate them from one another for easy handling.
Tips For Grilling Frozen Sausage
You can grill frozen sausages just like you would thawed sausages, though they will take longer to reach the correct temperature.
According to the University of Wisconsin Extension, the sausage must be cooked to an internal temperature of 160 degrees Fahrenheit to be considered safe.
However, to get the most out of your sausage-grilling experience and make sure your sausages cook all the way through without burning the outside, there is a specific method you can follow.
First, it’s important to preheat your grill while leaving at least one burner off.
Heating one area while keeping another cool will allow you to thaw the sausages a bit before tossing them on the heat of the grill.
Once your chosen burners have preheated the grill to about 400 degrees Fahrenheit, it’s time to place the sausages in the cooler section.
Allow your sausages to rest on the warm grates for 5-10 minutes, then turn them over and let them sit a few more minutes.
After 10-15 minutes, your sausages will be sufficiently thawed.
At this point, you can transfer the sausages to the burners that are turned on. It should only take a few minutes to cook them all the way through.
Be sure to use an instant-read thermometer to gauge the temperature of the sausages, removing them once they reach 160 degrees Fahrenheit.
Of course, you can also toss your frozen sausages on the hot grill right away and they will eventually reach a safe temperature.
However, if you’re cooking your sausages at a high temperature directly from frozen, the outsides are likely to burn before the insides reach the appropriate temperature.
To prevent this, you can also just cook your frozen sausages at about 200 degrees on the grill until they are thawed.
After that, you can turn up the heat and finish the grilling process.
The most important thing to remember is that thawing your sausages somewhat will make the grilling process go as smoothly as possible.
A Note On Temperatures And Food Safety
Many people don’t like to cook their meat to the temperature recommended by health officials because the meat can become tough and dry.
While this is understandable—and you can often safely eat beef that is cooked to slightly below the recommended temperature—it’s important to emphasize the necessity of cooking meat thoroughly, especially meats such as chicken and pork.
According to the Cleveland Clinic, eating undercooked meat (especially pork) can lead to trichinosis.
Trichinosis is an uncomfortable illness caused by the larvae of roundworms living in meat.
Symptoms range from nausea and diarrhea to difficulty balancing and inflammation of the brain.
Permanent complications from trichinosis, such as an irregular heartbeat and seizures, are not entirely uncommon.
Sausage can include meat from any type of animal.
However, most commercially-sold sausage includes pork.
Because of this, it’s especially susceptible to trichinosis.
Trichinosis, and other food-borne diseases, are easy to prevent.
By cooking your meat to the recommended temperature, you’ll kill any bacteria and illness.
Like many foods, it’s perfectly safe to cook frozen sausages.
You don’t need to worry about them not tasting as good as if they were cooked fresh.
The grill will cook out all of the excess moisture, creating the perfect texture and flavor for your meal.
However, there are a few things you can do to make sure your sausages are cooked to perfection.
Instead, you can simply let the sausages thaw a bit on the grates of your grill as it is preheating.
This is much quicker and requires less effort.
With partially-thawed sausages, you’ll be able to cook them evenly quickly.
Whether you’re cooking them for your family or some guests at a BBQ, the sausages are sure to impress.