15 Best Italian Sausage Recipes for Weeknight Meals

These spicy and hearty Italian sausage recipes will teach you new ways to enjoy the flavorful ingredient.

overhead view of Baked Ziti with Sausage and Pumpkin Tomato Sauce with wooden spoon
Photo: Blaine Moats

When it comes to versatility, Italian sausage has few equals. In the next 15 recipes, it becomes a party snack, an appetizer, a side dish, and an entrée. Fitting for a casual get-together or family dinner, this spicy ingredient can be the star or the supporting character in your meal. There's even a meatless option with potatoes and peppers that delivers all of the savoriness without the sausage itself. Whatever your preference, these Italian sausage recipes will keep you coming back for seconds.

01 of 15

Fire-Roasted Tomato and Italian Sausage Grinders

Fire-Roasted Tomato and Italian Sausage Grinders

Looking for an easy appetizer for your next gathering? Upgrade store-bought Italian sausage links and canned fire-roasted tomatoes into this classic Italian sandwich. This Italian sausage recipe is also great for leftovers. As one BHG home cook shared, "I used leftover sauce (after all the sausages were gone) to add as a spaghetti sauce to pasta so it wouldn't go to waste."

02 of 15

Spicy Italian Meatballs

Spicy Italian Meatballs
Kritsada Panichgul

Not all Italian sausage recipes call for links. Serve a batch of slow cooker beef and ground sausage meatballs at your next party or tailgate. These meatballs are delicious served on their own, but also tasty over hot cooked pasta or in buns for meatball sandwiches.

03 of 15

Lasagna Pasta Chip Nachos

Pasta Chips in metal serving dish
Hannah Bigot

Looking for a creative way to serve Italian sausage and pasta sauce? Try nachos! Instead of tortilla chip layers these Italian nachos use fried lasagna noodles. Top the platter with shredded basil and crushed red pepper flakes.

04 of 15

Sausage and Roasted Red Pepper Braid

Sausage and Roasted Red Pepper Braid
Zoë François

Make a savory version of a bread braid with this cheesy Italian sausage and roasted red pepper version. This is a great appetizer to serve at your next gathering. We've included a recipe for homemade dough but you can easily use purchased pizza dough.

05 of 15

Italian Sausage and Zucchini Quiche

Italian Sausage and Zucchini Quiche
Jason Donnelly

Start your day with this crustless breakfast quiche. Italian sausage, zucchini, red sweet peppers and cheese add a burst of flavor to this savory egg dish. This is one of the best recipes for Italian sausage at breakfast.

06 of 15

Spicy Sausage and Collard Soup

bowls of Spicy Sausage and Collard Soup with parmesan cheese
Carson Downing

Soup isn't just for winter months. Make this tasty soup with Italian sausage, collard greens, and beans. Serve for lunch or dinner—or freeze to eat later. This is the best Italian sausage soup recipe for customizing. Not a fan of collard greens? Try kale.

07 of 15

Sausage, Potato, White Bean, and Kale Soup

Sausage, Potato, White Bean, and Kale Soup
Linda Pugliese/From Healthyish by Lindsay Maitland Hunt

Start this easy soup recipe by caramelizing Italian sausage, then add cannellini beans, kale, and fennel to the mix. It will taste like you spent much longer than 35 minutes simmering to make this soup.

08 of 15

Detroit-Style Pizza

detroit-style pizza in box

Brie Passano

Italian sausage is a classic pizza topping and for good reason! Mix up pizza night with this Italian sausage recipe. Make homemade pizza with a Detroit-style crust that's thick and chewy. This recipe calls for sautéed Italian sausage and mushrooms.

09 of 15

Meatless Sausage and Bell Pepper Potato Hash

skillet of Meatless Sausage and Bell Pepper Potato Hash
Blaine Moats

Hot Italian meatless sausage is the main ingredient in this vegan dish. Two types of potatoes, peppers, fresh spinach, and tomatoes make this a hearty dish. Bonus, it's we weeknight-ready dinner that's done in 30 minutes.

10 of 15

Stuffed Artichokes with Spicy Italian Sausage and Sweet Red Pepper

Stuffed Artichokes with Spicy Italian Sausage and Sweet Red Pepper
Karla Conrad

Italian sausage turns artichokes into a hearty entrée in this slow cooker recipe. Use your slow cooker to steam the artichokes until they're soft and infused with Italian herbs and spices. Serve the dish with fresh lemon wedges.

11 of 15

Stuffed Manicotti

Stuffed Manicotti and Stuffed Shells in white baking dishes
Andy Lyons

This stuffed manicotti recipe tastes delicious thanks to a flavorful Italian sausage meat sauce. Spoon it over cheese-stuffed manicotti noodles for a classic take on the dish. Or, change up the filling and sauce options, we've included variations right in the recipe.

12 of 15

Sausage, Red Onion, and Rainbow Chard Couscous

Sausage, Red Onion, and Rainbow Chard Couscous
Carson Downing

Looking for a lighter entrée that still showcases the flavor of spicy Italian sausage? This couscous recipe mixes Italian sausage, rainbow chard stems, and roasted vegetables for a colorful dish. A dollop of creamy herb cheese is the perfect finish.

13 of 15

Baked Ziti with Sausage and Pumpkin Tomato Sauce

Blaine Moats

Comforting baked ziti gets a twist thanks to sweet Italian sausage, fire-roasted tomatoes, and canned pumpkin. This dish is great for pumpkin and squash season. As one BHG reviewer raved, "My family loves this casserole dish! Good flavors and because we like it a bit more spice just added a pinch more of red pepper."

14 of 15

Roasted Butternut Squash and Sausage Enchiladas

sausage and roasted butternut squash enchiladas
Jason Donnelly

Italian sausage and butternut squash mixture give classic enchiladas a taste of fall. To speed up the prep of this Italian sausage recipe, look for precut butternut squash at the grocery store. Substitute squash with another vegetable for a seasonal take on this entrée.

15 of 15

Polenta and Sausage Pies

Polenta and Sausage Pies

Sausage pairs well with polenta (also known as corn grits). Hot Italian sausage and red sweet peppers make this an easy and flavorful dinner option. It's also a great make-ahead meal.

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