There’s no denying that sausage can be one of the best additions to some of our favorite meals — shout-out to breakfast sandwiches and spicy jambalaya!
But red meat can often be a nutritional nightmare. Sure, it brings protein to the table, but sausage can also be loaded with fat, salt, and nitrates.
One bun-size link of pork sausage contains 20.4 grams of fat and 610 milligrams of sodium. The same amount of chicken sausage provides 7.72 grams of fat and 541 milligrams of sodium. Chicken sausage definitely wins the healthy noms arm-wrestle if you’re on a controlled diet.
Flavorwise, chicken sausage isn’t worlds away from its close cousin, chorizo. But it’s simply a more nutritious mouthful. Plus, it works well in just about everything: omelets, pasta, stews — the list goes on.
We’ve got nine easy chicken sausage recipes to get you better acquainted with this better-for-you sausage variety.
For when you just wanna throw some stuff in a pan.
1. Chicken sausage, brussels sprouts, and spiralized sweet potato skillet
This healthy riff on spaghetti with brussels sprouts and sausage is an easy way to sneak colorful veggies into your weekday lunch. The natural sweetness of, well, sweet potatoes is the perfect pairing for chicken sausage.
This one is easy to meal-prep too — just don’t put the cheese on it until you’re ready to eat. Then warm it up just long enough to melt that mozzarella all over the top. Oh, yeah.
Spiralizing is a gift. Here are five options for turning vegetables into wibbly things that look and taste like noodles.
2. Breakfast skillet with sweet potatoes
We’re all about respecting breakfast for dinner on any given night. That way, every meal becomes the most important meal of the day. This recipe supplies something from almost every food group too.
Grab your sweet potatoes, peppers, cheddar cheese, spicy chicken sausage, apple cider vinegar, parsley, and eggs. Then, do a happy dance because this makes 6 servings in just 30 minutes.
If you’re prepping breakfast for a crowd, we’ve got just the recipes to satisfy even the most demanding, hungover palate.
3. Pasta skillet with chicken sausage, cheese, and spinach
A savory supper (with no extra dishes to wash/ignore) appears! You can even make a simplified version with just five basic ingredients: chicken sausage, pasta, marinara sauce, spinach, and cheese. It’s super effective.
But let’s not underestimate how much you’ll impress your dinner guests when they find out you made the marinara sauce from scratch.
And if you’ve made way too much marinara sauce, there are plenty of ways to use it up that don’t involve pasta.
For la vita bella, chicken sausage-style.
4. One-pot creamy orzo with chicken sausage
Need a new weeknight favorite for dinner in a hurry? Then you need this one-pot orzo recipe at all times.
It takes just 20 minutes and one pot to whip up this bad boy, and the ingredients are simple. If you’re hoping to cut some fat (and willing to sacrifice some creaminess), you can swap in whole milk for the heavy cream.
One-pot meals help you drastically cut down on cleaning time. We’ve got 53 of them that can save you time and dish soap.
5. Italian spaghetti squash boats with sausage
Spaghetti squash is anything but boring when it’s posing as low carb “noodles” doused in marinara sauce and cheese. Plus, it’s literally in the name — spaghetti squash spaghetti has to be good.
The blogger uses turkey sausage, but if you want a touch of sweetness like we do, use apple chicken sausage instead.
Zucchini is also a great candidate for spiralizing. We’ve got 12 zoodle recipes to blow your mind.
6. Creamy sausage tortellini soup
Cozying up to a big bowl of cheese tortellini soup sounds like the only logical way to ward off Sunday winter shivers.
Grab your softest sweater, chicken sausage, chicken broth, canned crushed tomatoes, cream cheese, spinach, and cheese tortellini and you can have yourself a warm home-cooked meal. (Avoid cooking and eating your softest sweater — you’ll need it for snuggles.)
After one bite, you’ll be reminded that the canned stuff just doesn’t cut it. Here are 19 other soup recipes to remind you of the same thing.
Your chicken sausage needs a kick sometimes. This’ll do it.
7. Sheet pan chicken sausage fajitas
When people tell you to “cook smarter,” they must be paying tribute to the savviness of sheet pan recipes. Everything roasts on a single sheet pan, which means less food to watch like a hawk and less cleanup.
This recipe will show you how well chicken sausage and Mexican food mingle. To get your sweet peppers, red onions, and chicken sausage oven-ready, add a quick homemade fajita seasoning.
While that’s firing up, ready the toasted flour tortillas (or corn tortillas if you’re gluten-free), cotija cheese, and fresh cilantro. Cue a fiesta in your face, all for minimal effort.
We love a good sheet pan cook-up. Here are 13 more options for whipping up without cleaning up.
8. Chicken sausage egg frittata
Here we find chicken sausage in its element — as breakfast food.
But we also find breakfast food in its element — waking you the heck up. Paprika, garlic, and Tabasco sauce make sure you know full well that you’re no longer asleep.
We love how easy a frittata is. You can serve it at room temperature, and it’ll still be just as delicious and hearty as when warmed.
Another subgenre of wake-up food is the Mexican breakfast, providing hefty flavors to start your day.
Still counts because it’s chicken sausage, though.
9. Tomato and white bean stew with chicken sausage
When winter is coming, you need something that can warm you up from the inside out to help you forget about the frost forming around your nostrils (frostrils?).
This tomato-based stew gives you a direct hit of warm comfort. Plus, you get a sizable helping of protein, thanks to the cannellini bean and chicken sausage combo.
If you’re all about that bean life, try these 29 sources of powerful plant protein.
Chicken sausage is no “sausage alternative” — it’s sausage in its own right. How dare you besmirch its good name!
You don’t necessarily have to cut out meat to protect your health. You can just switch up the type of meat you eat. Replacing heavily processed pork sausages is one way to do so.
If you avoid meat altogether, we found some veggie pasta alternatives so good that you won’t even notice the absence of meat.