How Long and What Temp do You Smoke Summer Sausage?
In preparing summer sausage, one of the many questions you may have is: how long and what temp do you smoke summer sausage? Of course the answer to this, and other questions are going to differ based upon who you ask, how you smoke the sausage, whether it is over an electric smoker or other type of smoker, or whether you are using other cooking and preparation methods.
So in determining the answer to these questions, it is important to understand the preparation of the sausage. In using an electric smoker, these are a few tips to keep in mind for the perfect texture, internal temperature, and of course the desired taste and consistency in flavor when you are smoking on the grill.
Internal temperature for preparing sausage
Regardless of the chosen preparation and cook method, if you want to prepare summer sausage to the best flavor and temperature possible, it should reach an internal temperature of at least 160 degrees F prior to removing it from the grill and consuming it. Not only so you know the meat isn't raw, but this is also going to allow the flavor combination to penetrate the sausage, and for any rubs or seasoning to fully immerse into the meat you are cooking.
Oven preparation cooking option
If you are smoking summer sausage in the oven, you can simply set the temperature to 160 degrees F. It is a good idea to wrap the meat in aluminum foil or to prepare it over a water bath, in order to allow condensation to help the flavors penetrate into the meat as it is cooking.
As is the case with nearly any other meat you are going to prepare on an electric smoker, the longer you allow the sausage to sit in a dry rub or other flavor seasoning blend, the more it is going to penetrate as it is cooking on the electric smoker.
So if you are preparing it in advance, you should do so a few hours prior, 4 to 6 hours, in order to allow the flavors to blend into the meat prior to placing it on the grill.
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When you are ready to cook the meat, you should set the temperature to about 250 degrees F on the smoker. This is going to allow for a slower cook time, and it is also going to afford you the opportunity to add seasoning, add rub, or turn the sausage on the smoker as it is being cooked.
When placing the sausage on the rack, allow for at least .5 inches in between each; this will ensure they don't burn or get stuck together on the grill, and will afford you sufficient space for flipping or turning them when you are smoking them for several hours at a time.
The cook time is typically going to run from 3 to 4 hours with a temperature of 250 degrees F; if you wish to set it at 225 degrees, you can also allow the sausage to sit for between 4 to 6 hours if you have the time and patience to do so. At these temperatures, you are going to allow the sausage to cook until it reaches an internal temperature of about 160 degrees F.
There are many types, brands of thermometers in the market. You can use one of the best smoker thermometer to check temperature.
After cooking is complete
Once the sausage has reached the desired internal temperature, you are going to allow it to sit for several hours before serving. As is the case with other meat, the longer you allow it to sit, the longer the flavors are going to penetrate into the sausage, and the richer the flavor profile is going to be when you are finally ready to consume it.
If you have the space, hanging the sausage to cool for a couple of hours, is a good way to allow for cooling, and allow the flavor profile to blend together.
Of course preparation, seasoning, and flavor blends are going to differ for each individual who is preparing the summer sausage on a grill. But, as is true with any other cut of meat you are smoking, you want to give it as much time as possible, in order for the flavor to blend into the sausage, and to ensure it reaches the proper internal temperature for safe consumption as well.