One of my absolute favorite recipes to make with my grandmother was Sausage Balls. I loved to grate the cheese with her Mouli grater, and then mix, and mix, and mix the dough to get all of the flour worked it. A few sausage ball sculpture appeared along the way too.
I finally got around to de-glutening this recipe a few weeks ago and made them for my family for the first time. The gluten free sausage balls were a hit with everyone. If you’ve never had sausage balls (I’m not sure how widespread this recipe is outside of the Deep South), you must try them. Heaven in your mouth!
9 oz. (2 c.) Bob’s Red Mill All Purpose GF flour
1 Tbsp. baking powder
16 oz. ground sausage
10 oz. Cracker Barrel Sharp or Extra Sharp Cheddar**
1. Let the cheese come to room temperature and then grate it using a Mouli grater, or the small holes on a handheld grater.
2. Mix the grated cheese and the sausage together with your hands until it is very well combined.
3. Mix the flour and baking powder together, and then gradually work all of the flour into the sausage and cheese mixture. Use your hands again.
4. Form the dough into small balls – approximately golf ball size. Place them on a cookie sheet and bake at 350 degrees (pre-heated oven) for 25 minutes.
- If you don’t have a grater with small holes, you can use a larger holed grater. It will just take you longer to work the sausage and cheese into a homogenous mixture.
- **If you opt for a less expensive cheese, do go for the Extra Sharp. My grandmother always insisted on Cracker Barrel cheddar for Sausage Balls and Cheese Straws so I’ve kept up the tradition here. I’ve also noticed that Cracker Barrel has reduced their package size to 8 oz. I’m wondering if the packages were even larger than 10 oz. when I used to make this with my grandmother back in the 80′s? Feel free to up the cheese amounts if you want! Sarah S. emailed me to let me know that you can make these dairy free by using Daiya cheese.
- I weigh my flours on a digital scale instead of using measuring cups. If you do the same, use 9 oz. of the specified flour. If you prefer measuring cups, then you’ll use 2 c. of the flour.
- If you’ve never made sausage balls before, you’ll probably think that you’ll never get all of the flour worked in. Keep working at it. It takes a lot of hand power. I have a feeling my Grandmother only made these when the kids were around so that she could spare her arthritic hands.
- The sausage balls are the best when you cook them long enough to so that the tops start to brown. (The ones in the picture above were from my first batch and they could have used another 5 minutes in the oven). You want there to be a slight crunch to the outside to that there are two distinct textures when you bite it. A crunch on the outside and then soft on the inside.
- Always cut a few in half to make sure that they are completely cooked through.
- I tested this recipe in our RV’s oven. I have no idea how closely it’s heating to the correct temperature. There was an unfortunate accident with my oven thermometer involving a certain curious 2 yr old. Thankfully, only the oven thermometer suffered harm. So, following the baking instructions, but do keep an eye on things and use the tips in the cooking notes to verify that the baking process is complete.