From football season through New Year’s Eve, sausage balls have been a family favorite since I was a child. With just three ingredients, creating the best sausage ball recipe is not difficult… but it can be very messy.
Last year, I was in my mother’s kitchen as she was debating whether or not she wanted to make sausage balls, and I was confused. She told me that she didn’t like the time it took to mix by hand and shape all those little balls, and I understood because it is difficult on my arthritis.
But I have learned to adapt with three simple tips.
1) Use a stand mixer.
I use my KitchenAid to mix the sausage balls. The stand mixer is very strong and can break down the sausage easily. So, I dump all three ingredients into the mixing bowl, lock the mixer head in the down position, and turn the mixer on low (about level 3.)
Please note that I do not recommend using a hand mixer.
2) Use a small cookie scoop.
Instead of rolling each sausage ball out by hand, I use my cookie scoop. No more greasy, icky hands. Just even, uniform sausage balls.
And they are not tough when done as you might think. The sausage balls are tender but do not fall apart like those you form with your hands.
3) Drain on layers of paper toweling.
Instead of making a large pile of sausage balls when they come out of the oven, place a single layer over paper toweling. If you do not want to dirty multiple dishes, add another layer of paper toweling and then more sausage balls.
By having a single layer on the paper towels, more grease is absorbed from the sausage balls leaving a soft and almost grease-less texture.
More tips for the Best Sausage Balls
And, just in case you did not know these easy tips…
- Shred your own cheese. Prepackaged shredded cheese contains cellulose to prevent caking and it can also keep your sausage balls from sticking together.
- If you want a bigger kick in the… ummm… balls, use hot bulk pork sausage instead.
- To keep the clean-up simple, line your baking sheet with foil.
- Do not over-bake! Sausage balls should be tender, lightly browned of top, and golden on the bottom.