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Five pounds of Italian sausage (what to do with 5 lb. of ground Italian sausage)

Hi Hounds! I have five pounds of ground Italian sausage in the freezer. What can I do with that much sausage? And since it is frozen, I suppose I need to thaw and cook all at the same time.

Grateful for any suggestions! Thanks!

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  1. Meat sauce
    meatballs
    meatloaf
    lasagna and assorted other baked pasta dishes
    calzones
    pizza topping
    pizza rolls
    classic tuscan soup (Zuppa Toscana)
    assorted breakfast stratas/casseroles
    quiche
    stuffing for raviolis and tortellini

    1. Stuffed peppers. Actually made them this week and they were scrumptious! Used hot sausage that dear MIL bought, raw rice, a can of diced tomatoes with onion and garlic, chopped onion and topped with shredded mozzarella. 45 minutes at 350 degrees.

      1. Make it into sausage burgers and BBQ? It will be nice for meat sauce or even chili when the weather gets a little cooler; I would get a sharp cleaver and break it up into a few pieces, unless you are having a major party in the near future!

        1 Reply
        1. re: coll

          My thought too.
          Can't you hack off a bit at a time with a clever?

        2. I would thaw it, mix some into ground beef for a burger/meatball/ meat loaf mix, then cook up the rest into crumbles in 1 or 2 cup measures and freeze for later use. I use ground pork crumbles in soups, chili, egg rolls, and various Asian dishes a lot and it's nice to have it ready to go.

          1 Reply
          1. re: sedimental

            Defintely add some chop meat to meatballs, I made it out of all sausage not long ago and ended up throwing most away because on one would eat it!

          2. I frequently have ground beef & Italian sausage that I have frozen on hand because my supermarket only discounts the largest sized packs. I will use it to make tomato based meat sauce or chili although for chili I generally mix it with ground beef but I have made it with 50% or more Italian sausage. The chili spices just take over the flavor so don't worry about the fennel tasting weird. I make entrée chili and much hotter condiment chili that I freezer in small containers for when I'm having hot dogs or hamburgers.

            1. At this very moment I have a meat sauce cooking in the slow cooker. I did some freezer purging and this is my solution for long-frozen italian sausage, beef short ribs, and a mystery hunk of (??) pork. I suck at labeling. Anyway, the plan is to freeze it in smaller portions for weeknight dinners.

              2 Replies
              1. re: tcamp

                I'm doing freezer purging too on this rainy morning. I didn't want to go shopping so I pulled out 3 strip steaks, probably 8 ounces each that I'm defrosting/cooking in my sous vide cooker. I may turn these into fajitas or Stroganoff. I also found several packs of "mystery meat" that, after I pull the steaks from the cooker, will get cooked in there for dog food.

                1. re: zackly

                  It is a very satisfying activity!

              2. I'd thaw it just enough I could cut it into smaller pieces, then wrap and freeze the smaller packages. Minimal damage and minimal risk if there are still ice crystals in the meat.

                1. Start to thaw cut in half and refreeze the rest for another time. Make a scahatta.

                  1. Stuffed; Squid, Mushrooms, Zucchini Eggplant.....
                    Scotch Eggs(well not very Scottish)

                    2 Replies
                      1. re: hill food

                        Wow, that took me a moment.
                        Exactly, may be some Parmesan in the Breading as well.

                    1. You can cook it all off and freeze the cooked meat in smaller packages to add to many things like sauce, soup, pizza toppings, rolls, casseroles, etc.

                      1. Next time pack it in 1 lb packages before freezing. I'd get out the cleaver or a hacksaw with a clean blade and take off what you need.

                        1. I like to use it cooked with onion and mixed with bread crumbs, monterey jack and a little sour cream as a stuffing for baked zucchini. I would use a half pound for each large halved squash.

                          Or mix cooked crumbled squash with some chopped sauteed peppers and onions, chopped broccoli, bind with a white sauce and use it for a stuffing for shells or manicotti.

                          1. Oh, I just had a thought.
                            Do you have a local Butcher who would be willing to slice it on the Band Saw for you?

                            1. Zillions of ideas coming your way. I'm gonna suggest a few things. Next time you have that MUCH sausage or any other ground meat... repackage into more manageable portions before freezing. Some may GASP, but I would thaw IN FRIDGE, pull off thawed meat and repackage/freeze. I'd continue doing this until I was down to an amount I wanted to cook.

                              1. Just thinking ahead, but make sure to save some for Thanksgiving stuffing too!

                                1. Thank you so much, everyone! (I generally do not have 5 lb. of ground meat/sausage at one time - well - I've never had that much in one package before). I really appreciate all the ideas. Please keep 'em coming!