How To Cook Saveloys Sausage (3 Easy Methods, So You Don’t Split Them)

The saveloy, or cocktail sausage, is a standard favorite for any occasion. From kids’ parties to football gatherings to afternoon get-togethers. It’s hard to resist a cocktail sausage!

A saveloy is a variety of highly seasoned sausage usually made of finely ground pork mince encased in a bright red edible casing. They can traditionally be found in fish and chip shops and fast food outlets or can be store-bought.

It’s a versatile little snack, able to be prepared in numerous ways – boiled, deep-fried, smoked, or grilled. The art of cooking the saveloy is in theory a simple one, but one false move will split the casing sending sausage meat everywhere!

So exactly how do you cook these tasty treats without splitting them apart and losing flavor and aesthetics? Let’s explore the ways…

Stovetop Cooking

If you’re anything like me, you’ll throw a pan of hot water on the stove and throw the raw sausage in while it’s boiling away and hope for the best. The result however is usually an unsightly mess of burst cocktail sausage.

A little care and attention will avoid this though, and give perfectly cooked sausages every time. The secret is to slowly and gently cook the meat inside whilst keeping the casing intact.

  1. To begin, place the saucepan of water on the stove and bring it to a boil.
  2. Once boiling, switch the hotplate off and put the saveloys in water. Replace the lid on top and leave it to steam for 10 minutes, to tell if the sausage is cooked it needs to be 160°F, check with a thermometer then drain, serve and enjoy.

An alternative method is;

  1. Place in a pan of cold water and add a splash of vinegar for taste.
  2. Gently bring to a gentle simmer, adding the sausages just as the water begins to boil.
  3. Cook for approximately 20 minutes, keeping the water at a moderate boil. The more agitated the boiling water, the more likely they are to split.

Microwave Oven Method

Cooking your saveloys in the microwave is the quickest method. However, you need to be careful you don’t overcook them and have them split. You need to constantly open the microwave door and check them.

  1. In a microwave-safe dish, place enough water to cover the saveloys. Again, gently heat the water – the cooking time will vary depending on the power of your microwave oven.
  2. Cook in 5-minute bursts until the sausages are steaming and warmed through. This will give you a nice moist sausage while keeping the sausage casing intact. Try adding some smoked salt to add a little bit of extra flavor to your saveloys

Another Method Is;

  1. Sandwich the sausages between a sheet of kitchen towel to absorb any fat the sausages might spit, on a microwave-safe plate.
  2. Program the microwave oven to full power for 30 seconds, and heat the sausages.
  3. Remove with oven gloves as the cocktail sausages will be very steamy and hot.

Frying or Oven Baking

If you prefer your saveloys with a crispier skin, frying or oven baking could be a great alternative.

  1. Coat them lightly in olive oil and then roast them on an oven tray, at medium heat, rotating once or twice over 10-15 minutes.
  2. To fry the cocktail sausages by frying, heat a small amount of oil in a frying pan. Cook the sausages gently in the oil for 10-12 minutes, turning frequently to prevent burning until thoroughly cooked.
  3. Don’t pierce the skin, as this will let the moisture and flavor out. Cook the sausages over moderate heat, too high a temperature their burst the skins.

A Versatile Snack

On the whole, the saveloy is one of those versatile little ready-to-eat foods that are great to have on hand. They can be stored in the vacuum-sealed packaging for 3-4 weeks, once opened 1-2 weeks, or stored in the freezer for longer periods. 

When you’re ready for a tasty snack, simply cook your preferred way, from either defrosted or frozen and enjoy!

Smoke On!


Hi, I’m Charlie, I have been meat-smoking and grilling for the past 15 years. I have an array of different smokers, thermometers, and have a love for finding the right wood and charcoal combo My favourite recipes are my EXTRA CRISPY smoked pork belly, juicy pulled pork, smoked brisket, duck poppers, and ANY SEAFOOD I grill).

I loves sharing his tips with beginners, helping them navigate the world of smoking. I find it’s not just about cooking; it’s a quest for that perfect smoky flavor.

You will usually find me playing with the kids, perfecting my brisket bark, or sipping beers with boys around the fire. Can’t wait to share all my delicious smoking and grilling recipes with you!

You can read more about me on our About Us page.

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