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I made frozen sausages in 4 different appliances, and the best method was worth the extra effort


frozen sausages cooked in the microwave, air fryer, oven, and stove on a plate with a paper towelClockwise starting in the top left corner: microwave, air fryer, stove, and oven.

Andy Lynes

  • I cooked frozen sausages with my microwave, air fryer, oven, and stove.
  • I thought the air-fried sausages would be the best because that’s my go-to method, but I was wrong.
  • Even though it took the longest time, the stove made the juiciest sausages with the best skin.

Frozen sausages are great value and handy to have in the freezer for a last-minute meal.

My go-to method to cook them is my air fryer, but I wanted to see if I was missing out on a better or easier way.

Here’s how they cooked in my oven, microwave, stove, and air fryer.

I used the same brand of sausages for all the cooking methods.bag of frozen 20 thick pork sausagesI prefer pork sausages.

Andy Lynes

Ocado thick pork sausages have a good meat content (56% pork) for the price (about $4). They’re subtly flavored with white pepper and a few herbs, which makes them very versatile.

I’ve found that these sausages are as good on a sandwich as they are in a chili.

Of all the methods I used, the packaging only included instructions for pan-frying, so I searched online for recommendations for the other times and cooking temperatures.

I started with the stove since I knew it would take the longest.four sausage links cooking in a pan on the stoveMy induction stove can get pretty hot, so I started at medium-low heat.

Andy Lynes

The instructions on the packaging said to preheat a teaspoon of oil in a frying pan over medium heat.

I have an induction stove, so I went with a medium-low setting to prevent the skins from catching or burning before the sausages were ready.

I added them to the pan after about 30 seconds and turned the links every two minutes or so using tongs to ensure even browning. I also rested the sausages against each other to prevent them from rolling over.

After about 10 minutes, I turned the heat to medium and continued turning the sausages regularly.

After about 25 minutes, the sausages were evenly cooked.four cooked sausage links on a paper towelThe stove was the longest cooking method I tried.

Andy Lynes

After 25 minutes in the pan, the cooked sausages were juicy and had a good, even brown color.

When I removed them from the pan, I drained them on a paper towel, and the sausages weren’t greasy at all.

They looked really appetizing, and they tasted juicy and delicious.

I assumed the air fryer would be just as good as the stove but with less effort.four frozen sausage links arranged in an air fryerI tend to reach for my air fryer to cook frozen sausages.

Andy Lynes

Following instructions I found online, I preheated my air fryer for five minutes at 390 degrees Fahrenheit.

Although the recipe I found said it wasn’t necessary to use oil, based on previous experiences cooking meats in the air fryer, I tossed the sausages in a teaspoon of oil to encourage browning.

I ensured the sausages were spread out in the basket so they’d cook and brown evenly and set the cooking time to 15 minutes.

After five minutes, I turned the sausages using tongs. I checked again after 10 more minutes, and they were completely cooked through.

Air frying took nearly half the time, but the results were disappointing.four cooked sausage links in an air fryerMy sausages split and leaked in the air fryer.

Andy Lynes

During cooking, the sausages split open, which meant a lot of fat leaked out and they weren’t very juicy.

The skins were unevenly cooked and had become a bit tough — the texture and appearance weren’t nearly as appealing as the stove-cooked sausages.

It might be possible to get a better result by tweaking the temperature and cooking times, but I didn’t love these.

I didn’t like the idea of microwaving frozen sausages.four sausage links on a plate covered in plastic wrap in a microwaveI was a bit wary of cooking the meat in the microwave.

Andy Lynes

Following instructions I found online, I placed two layers of paper towels on a microwave-safe plate to absorb any fat from the sausages.

Then, I covered the plate with cling film and poked holes in using a fork to allow steam to escape.

Using my 800-watt microwave on full power, I cooked the sausages for three minutes. I then uncovered them, turned them over using tongs, recovered the plate, and cooked them for another three minutes.

I used a meat thermometer to ensure they reached the correct internal temperature of 160 F.

I will never microwave frozen sausages again. two sausage links covered in bits of paper towelThe skin of the sausage started curling away from the meat in the microwave.

Andy Lynes

Although the sausages were cooked through and safe to eat, they barely took on any color in the cooking process.

The skins also tore off the meat and curled up, making the sausages look deeply unappetizing.

Using the oven method was simple and easy.four frozen sausage links on a baking tray with oilThe oven was one of the simplest cooking methods.

Andy Lynes

Using instructions I found online, I preheated my oven to 390 F.

I put the sausages on a baking tray, sprinkled over 1 teaspoon of oil, and baked them for 25 minutes. About halfway through, I used tongs to turn the links.

The sausages just weren’t that great.four shriveled sausage links on a baking trayThe skin of the sausages wasn’t super appetizing.

Andy Lynes

As with the sausages cooked in the air fryer, these links split open in the oven, making them less juicy than they should have been. The oven heat also made the skins quite tough.

But overall, they were acceptable and tasty. Plus the method was very easy.

For the juiciest sausages, the stove is my top choice.frozen sausages cooked in the microwave, air fryer, oven, and stove on a plate with a paper towelClockwise starting in the top left corner: microwave, air fryer, stove, and oven.

Andy Lynes

Even though it took the most time and effort, the stove method produced the best sausages, by far.

I had to stand by the range for 25 minutes and give the sausages my full attention. But by carefully controlling the cooking process, I ended up with crisp, tender, and beautifully browned meat.

Both the oven and the air fryer produced acceptable results, and I might use them again if I’m in a real hurry. With some tweaking of cooking times and temperature, I think my results could probably be improved.

But I don’t think anything will ever improve a microwaved frozen sausage, so I won’t be trying that again.

Click to check out the other appliances we’ve put head-to-head so far.

Read the original article on Business Insider