Eastern Europe meets America in this sausage-y take on the corn dog recipe using bratwurst or kielbasa sausages covered in a beer-cornmeal batter. Don’t forget to serve these with plenty of ice-cold brewskis and some spicy, grainy mustard for dipping. For a truly homemade sausage corn dog, make your own bratwurst, too.

Special equipment: You will need a deep-frying/candy thermometer and a short, narrow container or drinking glass for this recipe.

What to buy: Make sure to buy 100 percent wood toothpicks—cocktail toothpicks with plastic frills or paper decorations will melt or burn in the hot oil.

Game plan: The fried corn dogs can be frozen for up to 2 weeks. To reheat, place them on a baking sheet and bake in a 350°F oven for 20 minutes or until heated through.

This recipe was featured as part of our Make Your Own Corn Dogs project. See tips on deep-frying if you’re a beginner.

  • Yield: About 24 pieces
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Total: 45 mins

Ingredients (12)

  • 2 quarts vegetable oil, for frying
  • 48 wooden toothpicks
  • 1 1/2 pounds cooked kielbasa or bratwurst sausages, cut crosswise into 24 pieces
  • 1 cup fine- or medium-ground yellow cornmeal
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine salt
  • 1 cup cold beer (any type of beer will work)
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • Whole-Grain Dijon Mustard, for dipping


  1. Heat the oven to 250°F and arrange a rack in the middle. Set a wire rack over a baking sheet; set aside.
  2. Pour the oil into a Dutch oven or a large, heavy-bottomed pot. Heat over medium-high heat until it reaches 350°F on a deep-frying/candy thermometer.
  3. Meanwhile, insert 2 toothpicks into the cut side of each piece of sausage, leaving about 1 1/4 inches of the toothpicks exposed on one side; set aside.
  4. When the oil is almost ready (about 300°F), whisk the cornmeal, flour, baking powder, and salt together in a medium bowl. Whisk the beer, eggs, honey, and sugar together in a large bowl until combined and the sugar has dissolved. Add the cornmeal mixture to the beer mixture and stir with a rubber spatula until just combined. Pour some of the batter into a short, narrow container or drinking glass, leaving 1 inch of room at the top.
  5. When the oil is ready, evenly dip a sausage piece into the glass of batter by holding the toothpicks and rotating the sausage as needed until it’s completely covered with batter. Immediately place it in the hot oil. Repeat with 4 more sausage pieces. Fry, turning occasionally, until light golden brown all over, about 2 minutes. Using tongs, transfer the sausage dogs to the wire rack on the baking sheet and place in the oven.
  6. Repeat with the remaining sausage pieces, working with 4 or 5 at a time, refilling the glass with batter as needed, and letting the oil return to 350°F between batches. (When you reach the last few sausage pieces, you may need to tilt the glass sideways while rotating the sausages to evenly coat them with batter.) Serve immediately with mustard for dipping.