sausage glossary

Take your knowledge of sausage making to a new level by learning the lingo. This sausage glossary has all the commonly used buzz-words used in meat processing as well as a huge selection of sausage types.


A meat grinder component that is shaped like a corkscrew. It is designed to assist with moving the meat  through the grinder.

Bacon Hanger

A tool that looks like the end of a rake. It is used to hang pork bellies, jerky, ribs and other meat during smoking. The number of prongs on the hanger can vary from a few through to 14 or more.


An alternative name for sausages. The term “bangers” came from England during WW2. Due to meat shortages, their sausages contained low quantities of meat combined with other filler ingredients like cereal. This caused the sausages to explode which is where the term “bangers” comes from.

Barrel Brush

A very handy brush used for cleaning the barrel of a jerky maker. This brush is commonly made of nylon bristles with a steel handle around 1′ long.

Barrel Stomper

Remember those Western movies where they pack the gunpowder into the rifles? A barrel stomper serves a similar purpose. It helps to pack meat into a jerky gun or cannon to remove unwanted air pockets.

Beef, Chipped

Dried beef rounds that have been cured and thinly sliced, then packaged in jars or vacuum sealed. Some manufacturers add flavors during smoking. AKA dried beef.

Beef, Sliced

Non-dehydrated boneless beef usually packaged in vacuum bags. The beef has usually been smoked or cooked before packaging.

Beef Loaf, Jellied

Processed shredded beef that has been cooked and encased in gelatin.


A cured sausage originating from Bavaria. This meat tends to be a dark red color with garlic flavor notes. It is commonly eaten as a snack with beer, hence the name “bierwurst”.

Berliner-Style Sausage

An cured, lean pork sausage that may also include small quantities of beef. The meat tends to be ground coarsely and no spices are used. The sausage is firstly smoked then cooked for around 6 hours.

Blood Sausage

A sausage that’s made by cooking meat then ground and commonly combined with salt, pepper, allspice and cloves.  As the seasoning are added, blood and pork fat is incorporated. The meat is then stuffed into casings and further cooked then added to cool water.

Blood Tongue

A dark purple German sausage pork fat, cured beef tongue and blood. Other ingredients can be added such as suet and bread crumbs. AKA Zungenwurst.


See blood sausage.


A sausage often made with veal and pork and seasoned with salt, pepper, paprika, chives and parsley. This is a thick German sausage that requires cooking and is traditionally served with sauerkraut and mustard.


A sausage made of pork that is finely ground with pork fat cubes added. This sausage originated in Bologna, Italy and is referred to as baloney in some countries. Bologna is produced as a slice or roll and is ready to eat when purchased.


A Dutch sausage made from pork that’s ground finely and sometimes supplemented with other ingredients such as pork fat. This sausage is comparable to Bologna.


A potentially life threatening illness caused by bacterium growing certain types food such as meat. The bacterium thrives when the food is stored at incorrect temperatures.


A hugely popular fresh pork sausage, originating from Germany, that has plenty of flavor thanks to heavy seasoning. Brats often have veal included in the mix.


In the U.S. this sausage is made from liver that is usually smoked. Braunschweiger originated in Germany and has many different versions depending on the region.


An Italian cold cut made from seasoned pork shoulder butt with the addition of peppers, sugar and paprika.


A smoked pork sausage commonly made in Switzerland and Germany. This sausage can vary significantly depending on the region. AKA summer sausage.

Cervelat, Farmer

A large cured/dried sausage that contains similar quantities of rough, coarsely chopped beef and pork.

Cervelat, Goettinger

A lovely tasting spiced sausage made from beef and pork sausage. It is a dried sausage.

Cervelat, Landjaeger

A Swiss sausage that’s made of pork and beef. It is unique looking as it’s black in appearance due to the smoking process.

Cervelat, Thuringer

A unique, zesty flavored sausage originating from Thuringer, Germany. It is made from finely ground pork, beef or veal. Common seasonings include garlic, marjoram, caraway, salt and pepper. Thuringer is different from many other sausages due to its low fat content of 25%.

Collagen Casings

A cylinder shaped “sheath” used by sausage makers to stuff sausage meat into. Collagen casings are made from refined beef hide and can be edible and non-edible.

Collagen Rounds

Special non-edible casings that bend as they’re stuffed to create a rounded, ring shape. Perfect for making liver sausage or bologna.


A spicy, smoked sausage commonly made from coarsely cut pork and paprika. Popular worldwide, but originated from Spain and later Portugal and Mexico.

Cotton Twine

A popular choice for tieing casings prior to smoking or drying.


A preservation and flavoring process where curing salts are added to the meat prior to stuffing the sausage into casings. These additional ingredients draw moisture out the meat causing the sausages to reduce in size and harden. Curing meat helps prevent the growth of unwanted bacteria such as botulism.


An appliance that is used to reduce the water content in meat to extend the shelf life and lock in flavor. A dehydrator can be used to make popular meat snacks like beef jerky.

Deviled Ham

A canned product that contains finely ground ham and spices such as pepper or mustard.


An excellent accompaniment to a meat smoker, it allows the heat and smoke to evenly distribute during the smoking process.

Encapsulated Citric Acid (ECA)

A ingredient that can be added to sausage meat after it has been ground to add flavor and speed up the drying process. A popular use for ECA is to make shelf stable sausage.

Fibrous Casings

A strong sausage casing made from viscose that’s impregnated in filament paper. Fibrous casings are non-edible.

Foot Switch

A device that attaches to motorized meat processing tools such as a meat grinder. The food switch allows the user to control the machine whilst using their hands for other purposes. It is a very useful tool to have when processing meat without any help.


A very popular cured, smoked sausage often referred to as a hot dog or wiener. Frankfurters usually consists of pork and beef with seasonings like salt, pepper, sugar, garlic, coriander and nutmeg.

Fresh Sausage

A sausage that hasn’t been cured or smoked and needs to be cooked within a few days of producing if stored in the fridge.


A highly spiced dry sausage made from coarsely chopped cured pork and a lesser quantity of cured lean beef.


A coat hanger shaped device used to hang animals during meat processing. Gambrels can range from simple hooks through to elaborate stands with winches to lift deer and other larger beasts.


An essential tool used to grind meat. Meat grinders range from small manual devices through to very large, electrical machines that easily process large quantities of meat.

Grinder Knife

A component of the meat grinder that works with the grinder plate to cut the meat.

Grinder Plate

A component of the grinder that assists with the meat grinding. The plates come with different sized holes which allows the user to process fine through to coarse ground meat.

Grinder Plate – Coarse

A plate with large holes that allows the user to produce coarsely ground meat.

Grinder Plate – Fine

A plate with small holes that allows the user to produce finely ground meat.

Grinder Stuffing Tube

A tube that attaches to a grinder for easy sausage making. Common materials used to make the tube are plastic and stainless steel – in most cases the latter option is the preferred tube.

Ground Meat

Any meat that has been processed through a meat grinder and chopped into smaller pieces.

Hand Grinder

The original type of grinder that requires to user to crank the handle to grind the meat. Hand grinders are still used today and are a durable tool, ideal for processing small quantities of meat.

Head Cheese

A colourful, cold cut sausage that originated in Europe. It is a terrine, or meat jelly, made from the head of a cow or pig.

Honey Loaf

A honey flavored pork and beef sausage similar to bologna.


A dried, salted meat snack that is made from lean meat that has been trimmed of all fat.

Jerky Gun

A very useful, hand held tool used to form strips of raw meat that can then be dehydrated into jerky. For a larger capacity tool, the jerky cannon is an excellent option.

Jerky Hanger

Used to hang jerky from during the smoking, dehydrating or cooking process. The hanger also comes with a pan underneath to catch any drippings.

Jerky Slicer

Create even sized strips of jerky using this motorised meat slicing tool. The jerky slicer can be a manual (hand crank) machine or a motorized option.


A fat cooked sausage with a strong flavor of garlic. Knockwurst originated from Northern Germany and is also referred to as garlic sausage or Knoblouch.

Lebanon Bologna

A dark, smoked tangy sausage made from coarsely chopped beef from Lebanon, PA.


A sausage made with coarsely ground pork that is seasoned then cured in pickling liquid.

Liquid Smoke

A product that comes in liquid form to add a smoky flavor to meat.

Liver Sausage

A popular sausage in Europe made of finely ground pork or calf liver, fat, pepper, nutmeg, marjoram and allspice. AKA Liverwurst. In the U.S. liverwurst is often sliced and used as a sandwich spread.

Luncheon Meat

A popular loaf or canned meat made of seasoned pork or beef. AKA Cold cuts or lunch meats.

Lyons Sausage

A specialty food from Lyon, France that uses pork, seasoning and fat that’s been finely diced. Truffles or pistachios can also be added. Lyons sausage is cured and air dried.

Manual Stuffer

A sausage stuffer that uses arm-strength to power the tool rather than a motor. Good for small quantities of meat but not ideal if you have a large deer to process!

Meat Lug

A container used to mix meat and for storage of the meat.

Meat Mixer

If you are processing large quantities of meat, this tool is very useful as it allows for easy mixing of the ground meat with seasonings, water and anything else that needs to be added.

Meat Pan

A holding tray at the top of a meat grinder. More expensive models have much larger meat pans so that you don’t have to refill the pan frequently.

Meat Slicer

A useful tool for slicing meat to an exact thickness.

Meat Smoker

A tool that smokes sausage on a lower heat for extended periods of time.

Meat Stomper

A component of the meat grinder that allows the user to push the meat down towards the cutting blades. The stomper in a must-have piece of equipment that keeps your fingers a safe distance from the blades.


An uncooked German sausage made from ground pork that tends to have a strong flavor. Mettwurst is usually smoked or cured and should be cooked before eating.


A large Italian sausage made from finely chopped pork and beef with fat added. A popular choice of meat for sandwiches or paninis.

Natural Hog Casings

A sausage casing that comes from the intestine of a pig, these are popular for making Italian sausage and bratwurst.

Natural Sheep Casings

A sausage casing that comes from the intestine of a sheep. These casings are ideal for making breakfast links.

Olive Loaf

A fine textured lean pork and beef loaf with stuffed olives added.


A popular meat made of raw brined beef which is dries, seasoned and then smoked. A similar meat to corned beef.


A bright red salami made from cured beef and pork with chilli or paprika added. A common topping on pizzas in the U.S.

Pig Tail Flipper

A long steel rod with a sharp hook on the end. This all-in-one tool is perfect for BBQs as it can pierce and turn food effortlessly.

Polish Sausage

A thin Polish sausage traditionally made from ground pork. A wide variety of sausage recipes fall within the umbrella term, Polish sausage. AKA Kielbasa.

Poly Ham Net

A useful net used to hang meat during smoking.

Pork Sausage, Italian

A pork sausage traditionally seasoned with fennel, parsley and chili.

Processing Table

For most at-home sausage makers this table won’t be required. A processing table is a large stainless steel table built to take large loads and ideal for easy clean-up.


A thinly sliced Italian ham that is raw cured. Prosciutto is often used on pizzas and served as an hors d’oeuvre.


An umbrella term for any seasoned dry sausage often made from pork or beef.


See Italian sausage.

Sausage Stuffer

An appliance that allows the user to efficiently stuff ground meat into casings.


Similar to wood chips, only in a finer sawdust texture. Used to add flavor to meat, sawdust is burned in smoke houses and come in a range of flavors including mulberry, oak, hickory, maple, apple and mesquite.


An accurate scale is extremely important when sausage making. Scales allow the sausage maker to add the correct proportions of meat and seasoning.

Smoke Lined Casings

A type of plastic sausage casing that adds a smoky flavor to the meat.


A loaf of cooked pork that has been ground and then mixed with cornmeal.

Soy Protein Concentrate

A soy-based food enhancer which prevents the shrinkage of meat and assists with moisture retention.


Similar to a poly ham net; however, stockinettes a tightly woven to hold the meat juices in. Ideal for smoking ham and turkey.

Stuffing Plate

A component of the meat grinder that is used in conjunction with a stuffing tube. The stuffing plate is used to help align the auger when stuffing sausages with a meat grinder.


A hammer-like tool used for banging on meat to make it more tender.


A commonly used tool for measuring the temperature of food when cooking.


A natural sugar produced by some fungi and yeast. It is used to bring out the flavor in the sausage.

Vacuum Sealer

A kitchen appliance that seals food in an airtight bar. This allows a longer shelf life in the freezer and also prevents freezer burn.

Veal Loaf

A combination of veal and pork finely ground and cooked as a loaf. AKA leberkause. Can be eaten cold or hot.

Vertical Stuffer

A sausage stuffing machine that is built vertically to use up less bench space. The vertical model tends to be a little easier to operate that the horizontal version although they both produce similar end products.

Vienna Sausage

Small, unlinked sausages that often come in cans or jars or water. Vienna sausage has a very long shelf life and is also known as frankfurter or wiener.


A distinctive white sausage with a lovely mild flavor that originates from Bavaria, Germany. In Europe, these sausages are traditionally eaten for breakfast or a mid-morning snack. They are a fantastic sausage to eat at any time of the day and they pair well with a wide variety of side dishes. The weisswurst is made of pork and veal.


A twisted chain of smoked sausages also known as hotdogs or frankfurters. Wieners usually consist of pork and beef with seasonings like salt, pepper, sugar, garlic, coriander and nutmeg.

Wood Chips

Used to add flavor to meat, wood chips are burned in smoke houses and come in a range of flavors including mulberry, oak, hickory, maple, apple and mesquite.