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Sweet Italian Sausage

Sweet Italian Sausage is so simple to make at home with a simple spice mix using pantry ingredients. The best homemade sausage for all of your favorite Italian meals.

Sweet Italian Sausage or mild Italian sausage is the best for making everything from homemade pizza to classic lasagna or this creamy Italian sausage pasta. It’s also perfect for quick appetizers like Sausage Pinwheels.

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Sweet Italian Sausage - cooked in a skillet

Sweet Italian Sausage ~ Homemade Sausage Recipe

We really enjoy grinding up our own sausage to have on hand for easy weeknight dinners with a simple blend of spices that makes the absolute best Italian pasta dinners.

Ingredients Needed for Sweet Italian Sausage Recipe

  • Pork Butt or Pork Shoulder
  • Brown Sugar
  • Kosher Salt
  • Black Pepper
  • Granulated Garlic
  • Onion Powder
  • Dried Thyme
  • Dried Oregano
  • Dried Basil
  • Smoked Paprika
  • Ground Fennel Seed
  • Ground Red Pepper

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Other Items Needed for Making Sausage

How to Make Sweet Italian Sausage

  • Place grinder parts in the freezer about 30 minutes before making sausage.
spices and herbs in a bowl for Italian sausage
  • Add brown sugar, salt, pepper, herbs and spices together in a bowl.
Italian seasonings for sausage
  • Mix to combine and set aside.
chunks of pork shoulder in a bowl for making sausage
  • Cut pork into 2 inch chunks.
grinding pork shoulder to make sausage
  • Grind with the coarse grinding plate of a Meat Grinder. If you don’t have a grinder, you can pick up ground pork from your grocery store or ask the butcher to grind a pork shoulder for you.
ground pork and Italian sausage spices in a bowl
  • Add spice mixture to ground pork mix well.
making ground sweet Italian sausage
  • Run the pork mixture back through the grinder one more time.
vacuum sealed package of Italian Sausage
  • Divide into one pound packages and place in a freezer bag or use a Vacuum Sealer.
  • Label packages with date and contents.
  • Freeze sausage up to 3 months.
  • Thaw sausage in refrigerator before cooking.

How to Cook Italian Sausage

frying sausage in a skillet
  • Add sausage to a skillet and cook over medium heat, breaking up into crumbles until well browned.

Recipes for Sweet Italian Sausage

  • Sausage and Pepper Rice is one of my go- to meals for busy weeknights. The entire family loves it and it is so easy to make!
  • Air Fryer Mini Pizzas are super quick and easy. Our favorite version has sausage and pepperoni and cook in just 4 minutes.
  • Tuscan Sausage and Potato Soup is a crazy-delicious meal that is quick and easy with tons of flavors. One of my most requested recipes.
browned Italian sausage in a skillet

Homemade Sweet Italian Sausage is easy to make and great to have on hand for tasty weeknight dinners that the entire family will love. 

If you love this recipe as much as we do, please leave a comment and a five star review. Help us share on Pinterest, Instagram and Facebook!

Browned Sweet Italian Sausage in a skillet
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4.53 from 17 votes

Sweet Italian Sausage

Sweet Italian Sausage is so simple to make at home with a simple spice mix using pantry ingredients. The best homemade sausage for all of your favorite Italian meals.
Prep Time20 minutes
Cook Time10 minutes
Total Time30 minutes
Course: Pork
Cuisine: Italian
Keyword: homemade Italian Sausage, homemade sausage
Servings: 4 pounds
Calories: 340kcal
Author: Milisa


  • 4 pounds pork shoulder
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon oregano
  • 1 tablespoon 1 teaspoon thyme
  • 1 tablespoon smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon ground fennel seed
  • 1/4 teaspoons ground red pepper


  • Freeze grinder parts for about 30 minutes before starting.
  • In a bowl, combine brown sugar, salt, pepper, garlic, onion, basil, oregano, thyme, smoked paprika, ground red pepper and ground fennel. Set aside.
  • Cut pork into 2 inch cubes.
  • Assemble grinder using the coarse grind plate.
  • Grind pork into a bowl.
  • Mix ground pork and spices together with your hands or a wooden spoon.
  • Run pork mixture through the grinder once more.
  • Divide pork into one pound packages using freezer bags or vacuum seal for the best results.
  • Label packages with contents and date.
  • Freeze up to 3 months.
  • To cook sausage: fry in a skillet over medium heat, breaking up into crumbles until well browned.


Cooked Sweet Italian Sausage makes a great topping for pizza or as an addition to casseroles and pasta dishes.
If you don't have a meat grinder, start with ground pork and mix in the spices to make homemade sweet Italian sausage.


Serving: 1g | Calories: 340kcal | Carbohydrates: 2g | Protein: 27g | Fat: 24g | Saturated Fat: 9g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 13g | Cholesterol: 102mg | Sodium: 210mg | Sugar: 1g

One Comment

  1. This recipe was super easy and super delicious! I even used this in a stuffed pepper recipe, and it was so good!

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