How to cook sausages: in the oven, the healthier way

If you know how to cook sausages in the oven then you have a seriously hearty and fairly healthy meal on the menu. Say hello to the easiest way to cook the ultimate comfort food...

how to cook sausages
(Image credit: Getty images)

If you're wondering why bangers and mash isn't as easy as to cook as you'd imagined, we have some news for you. Oven-baked bangers are far easier to get right and a far healthier option too. 

Knowing how to cook sausages in the oven is a must. It's simply a fail-safe way to completely cook your sausages through, with minimal/no added fat, zero faff, yet maximum taste. Forget repeat frying, oil spitting and splashes on clothes or around your hob, cooking sausages in the oven is a no-brainer and we've put together the easiest eight-step method to follow – and one dead-easy sausage recipe you can make on the hob or in the oven. 

Just keep scrolling to learn how to cook sausages in the oven...then for more delicious food advice and recipes, see our dedicated hub page.

1. Check what the packaging says

Always the safest option: if the manufacturer suggests a set time and a set oven temperature, follow that. Just ensure you've noted the difference between the temperatures required for a fan oven and one that doesn't have a fan: cook yours on too high a fan temperature and the sausages will burn and dry out. Remember, too, to allow for oven heating time before you put them in – they need to go in a hot oven.

2. Prick the sausages or not before they go in the oven?

If you want to reduce the fat content of the sausages, prick them before you put them in the oven. The fat, however, does provide lots of flavour, so this is a question of taste over health. Quick poll of the office: we tend not to prick the sausages, but then we don't eat sausages every night. 

3. How long do you cook sausages in the oven? 

Thick sausages need around 20 to 25 minutes in an oven set at around 180ºC; thinner sausages may cook in the same oven in 15 minutes.

Our advice? Pop them on baking paper – they stick easily to foil and baking trays and might tear when you lift them on to the plate.

4. How to tell if sausages are cooked properly

Even if you've followed our instructions, you should always check your sausages are cooked through – eating uncooked sausage meat is likely to result in food poisoning. You'll know your sausages are cooked through properly when the outsides are a lovely golden brown (not too brown or the exteriors go hard and dry), and the insides are a pale brown – there should be no signs of pink meat or bloody juices. If there is, put them back into the oven for another five minutes (then check again).

5. How to cook sausages in the oven from frozen

Believe it or not, it is safe to cook frozen sausages in the oven – but it's vital to ensure they cook through properly. Check the packaging before you do this – some brands might warn you not to and you should heed the instruction. Otherwise, pop them on a tray and cook according to the manufacturer's instructions – usually 10 minutes longer than cooking chilled sausages. Turn them occasionally to ensure they're evenly cooked. Always do the 'is this cooked through?' test before serving up.

6. How to cook sausages in the oven even more healthily

You may not want to prick your sausages but you can cut down on fat by placing them on a rack that sits up above your baking tray. That way, the fat that escapes the sausages during cooking drips down into the tray and the sausages don't sit in it (and transfer it to your plate.

7. How to serve sausages cooked in the oven

We love them with a buttery mashed potato, green veg and onion gravy. Can't beat it.

8. Or... chop up sausages and oven cook them in a sauce

Want to make a quick veggie-rich stew the kids will love? You can't go wrong with oven cooking your sausages, making a sauce in the oven, on the hob or in a slow cooker, then dropping chopped sausage into the sauce. Makes them go further, too. Serve with mash or pasta. Yum. 

9. Or...make a sausage stew

If you're always a bit nervous about sausages being cooked properly, then a sausage stew is the way to go. All you really need is some chopped root vegetables of your choice, tinned tomato, and stock (vegetable or chicken, according to taste). Quickly fry the sausages in some oil and onion to seal their skins, add the veggies and cover with the tomato and stock. Simmer for 45 minutes – or bake in the oven in a ceramic casserole. You can't go wrong with this one on a cold winter's night. 

Leftover sausage recipes

We doubt you'll have leftovers BUT if you do, think along the lines of Toad in the Hole, easy traybakes, jazzy baked beans and the likes.

Lucy Searle

Lucy is Global Editor-in-Chief of Homes & Gardens having worked on numerous interiors and property titles. She was founding Editor of Channel 4’s 4Homes magazine, was Associate Editor at Ideal Home, before becoming Editor-in-Chief of in 2018 then moving to Homes & Gardens in 2021. She has also written for Huffington Post, AOL, UKTV, MSN, House Beautiful, Good Homes, and many women’s titles. Find her writing about everything from buying and selling property, self build, DIY, design and consumer issues to gardening.