Do you love sausages?
Do you love casseroles?
If you answered yes to both questions, then you will love this recipe for Hairy Bikers’ Sausage Casserole. This is one of my favorite dishes to make when the weather gets cold and I need something warm and comforting. It’s also a great way to feed a hungry crowd, as it serves six people generously.
Hairy Bikers are a duo of British chefs and TV personalities who are known for their love of food and motorcycles. They have written several cookbooks and hosted many shows, including The Hairy Bikers: Mums Know Best, where they featured this sausage casserole recipe.
What is Hairy Bikers Sausage Casserole?
Hairy Bikers’ Sausage Casserole is a delicious and hearty dish that is made with sausages, bacon, beans, tomatoes, and spices. It’s a traditional British dish that is inspired by the Hairy Bikers, a duo of chefs and TV personalities who love food and motorcycles. This dish is perfect for cold winter days, as it will warm you up and fill you up.
Why You Love this Recipe
There are many reasons why you will love this recipe for Hairy Bikers’ Sausage Casserole.
Some of them are:
- Uncomplicated Elegance: Whip up this dish effortlessly using common ingredients and tools. With just a frying pan and casserole dish, you’re less than an hour away from a scrumptious meal.
- Culinary Chameleon: This casserole flexes to your whims! Swap in sausages, beans, or veggies of your choice. Feeling fiery? Adjust the chili or smoked paprika to hit that perfect spice note.
- Friendly on Your Wallet (and Your Family!): Serve a hearty meal without breaking the bank. Ideal for large gatherings, this dish generously caters to six. Enhance its reach with additional beans or by teaming it with rice or bread. Plus, it’s a savvy solution to leftover sausages or bacon lurking in your fridge.
- A Palate Pleaser: Relish the rich, spicy sauce with undertones of sweetness, complemented by flavorful sausages and bacon. It’s a filling dish thanks to the beans, striking a balance between taste and nutrition.
Hairy Bikers Sausage Casserole Ingredients
This recipe is easy to follow and uses simple ingredients that you probably already have in your pantry.
You will need:
- 1–2 tbsp Sunflower oil
- 12 good-quality pork sausages
- 6 rashers of streaky bacon, cut into pieces
- 2 onions, thinly sliced
- 2 garlic cloves, crushed
- ½–1 tsp of hot chili powder or smoked paprika
- 400g tin of chopped tomatoes
- 300ml of chicken stock
- 2 tbsp of tomato purée
- 1 tbsp of Worcestershire sauce
- 1 tbsp of dark muscovado sugar
- 1 tsp of dried mixed herbs
- 2 bay leaves
- 3–4 fresh thyme sprigs
- 100ml of red or white wine (optional)
- 400g tin of butter beans or mixed beans, drained and rinsed
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Rice or rustic bread slices, to serve
How to make Hairy Bikers Sausage Casserole
Making this sausage casserole is very easy and doesn’t require any special skills or equipment. You will need a large non-stick frying pan, a large saucepan or a flameproof casserole dish, and a wooden spoon.
Here are the steps to follow:
Step 1: Brown the sausages and bacon
Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in the frying pan over medium-high heat. Add the sausages and fry them gently for 10 minutes, turning them occasionally until they are nicely browned all over. Transfer them to the saucepan or casserole dish and set aside.
Add the bacon to the same frying pan and fry it until it starts to brown and crisp, then add it to the dish with the sausages.
Step 2: Cook the onions and garlic
Add the onions to the frying pan and fry them over medium heat for 5 minutes, stirring often, until they start to soften. You may need to add a little more oil if the pan is too dry.
Add the garlic and cook for another 2–3 minutes, until the onions turn pale golden brown, stirring frequently.
Sprinkle over the chili powder or smoked paprika and cook for a few seconds longer, stirring well.
Step 3: Make the sauce
Stir in the tomatoes, stock, tomato purée, Worcestershire sauce, sugar, herbs, bay leaves, thyme sprigs, and wine (if using). Bring the mixture to a simmer, then pour it carefully into the pan with the sausages and bacon.
Return the pan to a simmer, then reduce the heat, cover it loosely with a lid, and leave it to simmer gently for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Step 4: Add the beans
Stir in the beans and continue to cook for another 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the sauce is thickened.
Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Step 5: Serve
Serve the sausage casserole hot with rice or slices of rustic bread. Enjoy!
How Do I Serve Hairy Bikers Sausage Casserole?
You can serve Hairy Bikers’ Sausage Casserole hot with rice or slices of rustic bread.
Pair it with rice to luxuriate in the rich sauce or choose rustic bread to ensure not a drop is left behind. For a burst of freshness, complement with a green salad or steamed veggies.
What do I Serve with Hairy Bikers Sausage Casserole?
Wondering what complements this casserole?
Here are some delectable choices:
- Homemade Bread Rolls: Immerse a warm, crusty roll into the sauce, a comfort like no other.
- Carrot and Swede Mash: A British favorite, this mash brings buttery richness to the table.
- Pan Haggerty: Experience layers of potatoes, onions, and cheese crisped to perfection.
- Cauliflower Cheese: Indulge in this creamy delight, a golden-baked mixture of cauliflower and cheese.
- Lemon Butter Pasta: A zestful pasta that introduces a dash of brightness.
- Brown Rice Pilaf: A wholesome mix of rice, veggies, and herbs to complement the hearty casserole.
- Green Bean Salad: Crunchy beans kissed with lemon and almonds, a refreshing side to your meal.
- Roasted Cabbage Wedges: Low in carbs but high in flavor, these smoky wedges elevate your dining experience.
Enjoy your meal and the medley of flavors it brings!
Pro Tips to Make Perfect Hairy Bikers Sausage Casserole
Here are some pro tips to make your Hairy Bikers’ Sausage Casserole even better:
- Use good-quality sausages with a high meat content. They will have more flavor and less fat, which will make the dish healthier and tastier.
- Brown the sausages well before adding them to the sauce. This will give them a nice color and seal in the juices, making them more tender and moist.
- Add some wine to the sauce for some extra depth and richness. You can use red or white wine, depending on your preference. Just make sure to simmer the sauce well to cook off the alcohol.
- Add some fresh herbs at the end for some extra freshness and aroma. You can use parsley, basil, cilantro, or any other herbs that you like.
Variations of Hairy Bikers’ Sausage Casserole
You can easily customize your Hairy Bikers’ Sausage Casserole by using different types of sausages, beans, and vegetables.
Here are some ideas:
- Use beef, lamb, chicken, or vegetarian sausages instead of pork sausages. Just make sure they are good quality and have a high meat content.
- Use kidney beans, cannellini beans, chickpeas, or baked beans instead of butter beans or mixed beans. You can even use a combination of different beans for more variety and texture.
- Add carrots, celery, mushrooms, peppers, or any other vegetables that you like to the casserole. Just chop them and add them to the frying pan with the onions and garlic.
- Add some cheese on top of the casserole for some extra creaminess and gooeyness. You can use cheddar cheese, mozzarella cheese, parmesan cheese, or any other cheese that you like.
How do I store Hairy Bikers’ Sausage Casserole?
To retain the freshness and flavors of the Hairy Bikers’ Sausage Casserole:
- Allow the casserole to cool to room temperature.
- Transfer it into an airtight container.
- Refrigerate: Store in the fridge and enjoy within 3 days.
- Freeze: For longer storage, place it in the freezer where it’ll keep its quality for up to 3 months.
How do I reheat Hairy Bikers’ Sausage Casserole?
Bring your casserole back to its savory warmth either in the oven or on the stovetop:
- Preheat your oven to 180°C (160°C for fan ovens or gas mark 4).
- If the casserole isn’t in an oven-safe dish, transfer it.
- Cover the dish with aluminum foil to retain moisture.
- Bake for approximately 25–30 minutes. Ensure it’s heated through and steaming hot before serving.
- Pour the casserole into a suitable saucepan or skillet.
- Warm over a medium-low flame, stirring from time to time to ensure even heating.
- If the sauce seems too thick or starts to dry out, a splash of water can be added to adjust the consistency.
- Heat until it’s thoroughly warmed and bubbling hot.
If you’re short on time or just need a quick reheating option, the microwave can come to your rescue.
- Transfer the casserole portion you intend to reheat into a microwave-safe dish.
- Cover loosely with a microwave-safe lid or plastic wrap. Make sure to leave a small opening for steam to escape.
- Microwave on medium power in intervals of 2-3 minutes, stirring in between to ensure even heating.
- Once steaming hot throughout, remove it from the microwave, let it sit for a minute, and then serve.
Serve immediately and relish its revitalized flavors!
How to make Hairy Bikers Sausage Casserole in a slow cooker
If you want to make Hairy Bikers’ Sausage Casserole in a slow cooker, you can follow these simple steps:
- Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a large frying pan and fry the onion over high heat for 3–4 minutes, until lightly browned, stirring often. Transfer to the slow cooker.
- Add the remaining oil to the same frying pan and fry the sausages over medium-high heat for 4-5 minutes, until browned on all sides. Transfer to the slow cooker.
- Add the carrots, potatoes, tomatoes, stock, tomato purée, herbs, bay leaves, thyme sprigs, and wine (if using) to the slow cooker. Season with salt and pepper and stir well.
- Cover the slow cooker with its lid and cook on low for 7–9 hours or high for 5–6 hours, until the sausages are cooked through and the sauce is thickened.
- Stir in the beans and cook for another 10 minutes, until heated through.
- Serve hot with rice or bread.
This method is very easy and convenient, as you don’t need to watch over the casserole while it cooks. You can also save some time and energy by using a slow cooker. The slow cooker will keep the casserole warm until you are ready to serve it.
Each serving provides:
- 423 kcal
- 23.5g protein
- 16g carbohydrates (of which 9.5g sugars)
- 28.5g fat (of which 10g saturates)
- 4.5g fibre
- 2g salt
Other Hairy Bikers Recipes
How can I make this recipe vegetarian or vegan?
Swap out the traditional meat-based ingredients with vegetarian or vegan alternatives. For instance:
- Replace regular sausages and bacon with their vegetarian or vegan counterparts.
- Opt for vegetable stock over chicken stock.
- Skip Worcestershire sauce or find a vegan version.
- Boost the veggie content by adding mushrooms, bell peppers, or zucchini.
How can I make this recipe lower in calories or fat?
Certainly! Here’s how you can make a leaner version:
- Use leaner meat options like turkey or chicken sausages and bacon.
- Trim visible fat from the meat prior to cooking.
- Minimize the use of oil, sugar, and cheese.
- Opt for low-fat milk or yogurt if making mashed potatoes.
- Consider serving with a vibrant green salad or steamed veggies instead of rice or bread for a lighter meal.
What to do if the casserole is too runny?
How long does sausage casserole last?
When stored properly, sausage casserole remains fresh for:
- 3-4 days in the refrigerator.
- Up to 3 months in the freezer. Always pay attention to the expiry dates of your ingredients before prepping or reheating. And remember to seal your casserole in an airtight container and refrigerate within two hours after cooking.
How long does it take to cook sausages in the oven?
The duration required to cook sausages in the oven can vary based on their size, type, and the set oven temperature. As a rule of thumb, medium-sized pork sausages usually bake to perfection in roughly 20 minutes when set to 350°F (177°C). For food safety, always ensure the sausages’ internal temperature reaches at least 160°F (71°C) by using a reliable food thermometer.
- Related: Mary Berry Venison Casserole
Can you reheat sausage casserole in a slow cooker?
Absolutely, a slow cooker can serve as an efficient method to reheat your sausage casserole. However, it’s essential to observe a few guidelines:
- Avoid overcooking: Over extended periods, the casserole might become too soft or lose moisture.
- Thaw first: If your casserole is frozen, ensure it’s fully defrosted before initiating the reheating process.
- Optimal settings: A low setting for about 2-3 hours is typically sufficient for reheating, rather than the longer durations mentioned. Monitor closely to ensure the consistency remains intact.
- Adjust consistency: If the casserole appears too thick or is drying out, consider adding a splash of water or broth to maintain its saucy texture.
The Hairy Bikers’ Sausage Casserole offers a blend of simplicity, versatility, and robust flavors, making it a favored choice for many. Its adaptability caters to various dietary preferences, from traditional to vegetarian and vegan. Efficient in storage and reheating, it ensures minimal wastage and maximum enjoyment over days. Whether you’re serving it fresh or reheating leftovers, this casserole promises a delightful and satisfying culinary experience every time. Remember to always follow food safety guidelines and enjoy your meal.
I hope you enjoyed this article and learned something new about Hairy Bikers’ Sausage Casserole. If you try this recipe, please let me know how it turned out in the comments below. I would love to hear from you!