Iva Carter
Published by Iva Carter
Last Updated On: September 22, 2022

For a dedicated carnivore, there is nothing like the smell of sizzling sausage in the morning.

But you might be wondering how many calories there are in a sausage link. I have thoroughly researched this topic, and here is what I found.

Quick Summary

  • Sausage comes in various sizes, meat types, and fat contents.
  • An average link of pork sausage has 85 calories.
  • Turkey and chicken sausage may have more protein and less fat.

Calories In Sausage

Raw sausage beside cheese

A sausage is a cylindrical casing typically filled with ground meat, spices, and other flavorings.

To determine the total calorie composition of a sausage link, we first need to define what a link is.

This is because the calories in 1 link depend on the type of meat, the amount of fat, and the serving size.

For this article, we will consider a sausage link to be a ground pork mixture that is 36% lean and 64% fat and weighs one ounce.

This would equate to 1 link that is about 7/8-inch in diameter and 4 inches long.

In this case, a fresh pork sausage link has 85 calories. Given that a serving size is three ounces, your total sausage serving comes to 255 calories.

"The practice of stuffing salted, chopped meat flavored with spices into animal casings is an ancient custom dating back to Grecian and Roman eras."

- U.S. Department of Agriculture

Fat And Protein In Sausage

The fat content in sausage is highly variable, ranging from 20% to 80%. Since fat has more calories per ounce than protein, the fat content will directly affect the calorie count.

Based on our assumption of 36% lean and 64% fat, a one-ounce sausage link has 2.46 grams of saturated fat, 3.33 grams of monounsaturated fat, and 1.039 grams of polyunsaturated fat.

With an additional 0.059 grams of trans fat, the total fat content in the sausage link is 7.43 grams. This fat contributes 67 calories to the total.

This same fresh pork sausage link yields 4.23 g protein which is responsible for 17 calories. This is about 8% of the daily values recommended in general nutrition advice.

Overall, this food is low in the recommended daily values of sugar, carbs, sodium, and fiber.

Nutrition Facts

A bunch of varying sausages on a plate

Sausage does have additional nutrients like vitamins and minerals. Most are at very low levels, but some, like Vitamin B1 and B12, are found in moderate amounts.

A one-ounce link of pork sausage has 17% of the recommended daily allowance of thiamine (Vitamin B1).

It also contains approximately 11% of Vitamin B12’s recommended daily value (which tells how much a nutrient in food contributes to the daily diet.

These vitamins are crucial for energy metabolism and nutrient breakdown. The serving size of sausage links also contains small amounts of Vitamin D, iron, zinc, phosphorous, and potassium.

Alternatives

It is important to recognize that there are other choices with less saturated fat than pork sausage links. Some of these include chicken, turkey, and beef sausage or hot dogs.

For example, a chicken and apple sausage links have 70 calories each, whereas a turkey sausage only has 50 calories. Beef bratwurst is about 180 calories for a 3-ounce serving size.

Of course, there are other pork sausages out there as well. Pork patty breakfast sausage generally has as many calories per serving as a sausage link.

Kielbasa has about 92 calories per ounce, as does chorizo and blood sausage.

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FAQs

Is Sausage Good for Weight Loss?

No, sausage is not good for weight loss. While it does have some protein and nutrients, it is high in saturated fat and calories.

Although the total fat and protein will help keep you feeling full, if you are trying to lose weight, you should focus on the calorie and nutrition composition and limit your intake of high-saturated fat foods like sausage links [1].

What Is the Healthiest Sausage?

There is no one "healthiest" sausage. It depends on what you are looking for. If you are trying to limit your trans fat intake, then substitute leaner sausage meats. If you are looking for a sausage with more protein, then a pork patty breakfast sausage would be better.

Is Sausage Heart Healthy?

No, sausage is not a particularly heart-healthy food. It is relatively high in saturated fat, trans fat, and cholesterol, which can raise your risk of heart disease. If you are interested in food for your heart's health, you should limit your sausage intake and get professional medical advice.

Is Sausage Good for Keto?

Sausage is OK for Keto. It is high in fat and protein but contains almost no carbohydrates [2]. But if you are doing Keto to lose weight, you should recognize that sausage has a relatively high number of calories. When you adhere to a strict Keto diet, good advice is to substitute leaner protein sources like white meat and fish.

Sausage is delicious and versatile food, but it is high in total fat and calories. That said, when used in moderation, sausage can be part of a healthy diet and used alone or to create a variety of satisfying meals.

If you are looking for breakfast sausage and many other types of meat to be delivered to your doorstep every month, our recommended choice is ButcherBox.

ButcherBox's sausage is made with grass-fed pork, bred without hormones or antibiotics. Click here for more information.


References:

  1. https://www.livestrong.com/article/535414-does-fat-or-protein-make-you-full/
  2. https://chomps.com/blogs/news/is-sausage-keto
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