Curly-Q Grilled Sausages Recipe -
Curly-Q Grilled Sausages  Recipe
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Curly-Q Grilled Sausages
These kickin’ spiral-cut grilled Italian sausages aren’t just cool-looking. See more

Curly-Q Grilled Sausages

Recipe by  

"Giving a sausage a cool, coiled shape isn't just fun or frivolous; it's also fully functional. The extra surface area picks up additional delicious smoky, caramelized flavors from the grill. You could brush barbecue sauce on an un-helixed Italian sausage, but here you're literally flavoring the sausage inside and out. I served them on buns with homemade basil-garlic mayonnaise."

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Ingredients Edit and Save

Original recipe makes 2 grilled sausages Change Servings
  • PREP

    10 mins
  • COOK

    15 mins

    1 hr 25 mins


  1. Place sausages into a skillet over medium heat and pour in water. Add a large pinch of salt to the water and bring to a simmer. Cover and cook for about 3 minutes per side.
  2. Remove sausages from pan and let cool to room temperature. Refrigerate until cold, at least 1 hour. Insert a metal skewer the long way through each cooled sausage.
  3. Preheat an outdoor grill for medium-high heat and lightly oil the grate. Pour barbeque sauce into a small bowl.
  4. Place a sausage on a work surface and start making a knife cut about 3/4 inch from the end, holding the knife blade at a slight angle and cutting down to the skewer. Slowly rotate the sausage and continue cutting in a spiral until sausage is cut to about 1 inch from the other end. Gently spread the sausage apart on the skewer to create about 1/2 inch of space between the curls.
  5. Place sausages onto the preheated grill and cook until browned and meat is no longer pink inside, about 6 minutes; turn occasionally.
  6. Brush sausages with barbeque sauce using a pastry brush when sausages are nearly done. Cook, continuing to turn sausages, until sauce has caramelized onto the meat, about 1 minute per side. Transfer to a plate and let sausages cool for about 30 seconds before removing skewers for serving.
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Reviews More Reviews

Jun 23, 2013

Like Deb C, I didn't cut the spirals close enough. However, that did not matter! These were amazing. I fixed 10 using Mild & 4 Cheese Johnsonville Italian Sausage. Between 3 adults and 2 kids, there were gone in a few minutes (I am not ashamed that I ate two and my six year old declared they were better than hotdogs!) Had my first with mustard but realized they are perfect even without toppings. My husband said we'd definitely make them again and I'd like to experiment with various sauces on them while cooking. Thank you for another no fail recipe Chef John!

Jun 01, 2013

Chef John, I am going to eat my words. This technique is awesome but when I saw bbq sauce and italian sausage, I cringed. (I am not a fan of BBQ sauce) Never the less I pressed on and did a package of Johnsonville Brats and one of Italian sausage. They were a HUGE hit. This a fun technique and the BBQ sauce glaze is really great! Thank you for a fun dinner! (Tip - watch the video!)


21 Ratings

Jun 05, 2013

Unfortunately, I didn’t cut the spirals close enough, however I still got the delicious smoky, caramelized flavors from the grill so aptly described by Chef John. I never cared for sausage until I used Johnsonville sausage so that is what I used. I added grilled onions, grilled red peppers, and provolone. Yummy!

May 26, 2014

Very good. Only thing we changed was that we cooked the sausages in beer. Thought the prep was a lot of work for little additional flavor.

Apr 06, 2014

Wanting to use up a package of Italian sausages, I came across this recipe. I too, didn't get my cuts close enough to get the true spiral appearance. But, that didn't change the taste of the sausages. I had sautéed some onions that we enjoyed with these. Also with dinner, we had 'Grilled Corn with Cilantro Lime Butter' and 'Napa Cabbage Salad with Lemon-Pistachio Vinaigrette', both AR recipes. Dinner was quite good tonight. Thanks, Chef John.

Mar 23, 2014

Excellent! Cooked on our indoor grill because it's still winter here despite the fact that it's officially spring. Can't wait to try it on the outdoor bbq. I used Bulls-Eye Grilled Onion & Garlic BBQ sauce, and topped with caramelized onions and green peppers and a swoosh of mayo. Fun and delicious.

Aug 13, 2013

Takes some practice cutting, but it is worth it. Don't let BBQ sauce fool you; it works well. You'll put it on ribs right? Going to make it a part of all cookouts.

Jun 15, 2014

Just made this for father's day dinner. We used Bratwurst. AWESOME! But curious as to why you have to put it in the fridge and cool the sausage?


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  • Calories
  • 227 kcal
  • 11%
  • Carbohydrates
  • 5.5 g
  • 2%
  • Cholesterol
  • 36 mg
  • 12%
  • Fat
  • 17.1 g
  • 26%
  • Fiber
  • 0.1 g
  • < 1%
  • Protein
  • 12 g
  • 24%
  • Sodium
  • 1041 mg
  • 42%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.

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