Air fryer sausages are quick and easy to cook. They are crisp and brown on the outside, juicy and succulent in the middle, and full of flavor!
Air frying sausages is the quickest and most convenient way to cook them. No need to stand over a hot stove getting spattered with fat, just pop them in the air fryer and wait!
Scroll down for the printable recipe card on how to cook sausages in the air fryer, or read on for all the details.
What do you need?
You can cook just about any type of sausages in the air fryer. The cooking times below are for sausages around 6 inch / 15cm in length and around 1 inch / 2½ cm in diameter. You will need to adjust the cooking times if you are cooking much smaller or larger sausages.
Most types of sausage don’t need any additional oil adding as they have a high fat content, though a quick spray with olive oil can help to get them extra crispy on the outside if that is what you prefer.
I usually add a tiny spray of oil if I am air frying chicken sausages as they have a lower fat content, and this helps them to brown up nicely.
Should you prick sausages before cooking?
One question that comes up all the time is whether to prick sausages before cooking them or not.
This is a little controversial, and you will find people arguing passionately for both sides. At the end of the day is up to you, but to help you decide:
Sausages that have been pricked allow the fat to drain out more easily. This should help to prevent them from bursting during cooking, and makes them a little healthier.
It does however mean that they may not be as tasty and juicy as sausages that haven’t been pricked. It also may cause the air fryer to smoke during cooking as so much fat ends up in the bottom of the pan.
Note: if this happens you can just stop cooking, drain the fat out, and continue cooking.
Sausages that haven’t been pricked retain all the fat, which means they retain all the taste, but this also means they are less healthy.
They also may be at risk of bursting as the fat heats up during cooking, which would allow the fat to drain out the same as if they had been pricked.
How to Cook Sausages in an Air Fryer
It is very easy to cook sausages in the air fryer. Simply:
- Preheat air fryer to 360°F / 180°C. Because the cooking time is relatively short, it is best if the air fryer is already hot when the food goes in.
- If you like you can prick the sausages 4-5 times each with a sharp knife (see section below for more details on whether or not you should do this).
- Place sausages into the air fryer basket in a single layer, ensuring they are not touching.
- Air fry sausages for 10-15 minutes until they are crisp and well browned and no pink remains inside. Check that they have reached at least 160°F / 71°C in the centre of the thickest sausage.
- Finally, sausages should be rested after cooking, just like steak. Place the cooked sausages on a plate and cover with kitchen foil. Leave to rest for 10 minutes to allow the juices to reabsorb into the meat.
How long to cook sausages in the air fryer?
The length of time it takes to air fry sausages depends on how large the sausages are and what they are made of.
For most standard sized sausages of around 4-5 inches it will take between 10 and 15 minutes to air fry them, depending on how powerful and efficient your air fryer is.
Sausages need to be cooked until they reach an internal temperature of at least 160°F / 71°C, or 165°F / 74°C for hot dogs.
You don’t want to go much higher than that as the fat inside the sausages may become too liquid and either drip out, or cause the sausages to pop.
Sausages are cooked when they are browned on the outside all over, and there is no pink color in the center of the sausage.
If you are unsure it is always best to check the internal temperature with a meat thermometer.
There are many ways to serve grilled sausages, including:
- In a sandwich with mustard, ketchup, onions, and sauerkraut.
- On a bed of mashed potatoes with a side of gravy or sauce.
- With a side of fries and gravy.
- Sliced and added to a salad or grain bowl.
- Wrapped in a tortilla with cheese and veggies for a sausage burrito.
Here are some easy side dishes to go with these sausages:
- Instant Pot Mashed Potatoes (no-drain)
- Instant Pot Spanish Rice (Mexican Rice)
- Cream of Mushroom Soup Gravy
- Easy Brown Gravy (made from Stock)
How to cook sausages in the air fryer.
- 6 sausages
- Olive oil [Note 1]
- Preheat air fryer to 360°F (180°C).
- Optional: Prick the sausages 4-5 times with a sharp knife [Note 2].
- Place sausages in air fryer basket, ensure they are not touching.
- Optional: Lightly spritz or brush the sausages with olive oil [Note 1].
- Air fry sausages for 10-15 minutes until they are crisp and well browned (and no pink remains inside), and have reached at least 160°F / 72°C in the centre of the thickest sausage.
- Remove sausages from air fryer, and place on a plate to rest covered with kitchen foil. This allows the juices to reabsorb into the meat so the sausages stay juicy.
- Adding oil is optional, but is recommended for crispy sausages.
- Pricking sausages is optional. Sausages that have been pricked allow the fat to drain out more easily, which may help to prevent them from bursting during cooking. It also means that they may not be as tasty and juicy, and also may cause the air fryer to smoke during cooking as so much fat ends up in the bottom of the pan.
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Amount Per Serving: Calories: 460Total Fat: 43gSaturated Fat: 13gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 24gCholesterol: 83mgSodium: 1125mgCarbohydrates: 1gFiber: 0gSugar: 1gProtein: 16g
Nutritional information is an estimate only and will depend on the sausages use for the recipe. Please refer to sausage product pack for accurate values.