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The Best Easy Sausage Balls Without Bisquick Recipe

The best easy sausage balls without Bisquick recipe is made with seasoned flour instead of a baking mix.

Whether you forgot to buy a baking mix or rather not use it you’ll likely not miss the Bisquick or want to use it after trying this easy recipe.

They’re the perfect appetizer, a must-have for a brunch buffet, or even make for an easy make-ahead breakfast or snack on the go.

Like many, I grew up eating Bisquick sausage balls during the holidays.

Bisquick isn’t something I normally use in my own baking, though.

So, I wanted to experiment with making them without using the baking mix but still keeping that flavorful crispy exterior with a soft tender inside.

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Ingredients

Made from scratch, these sausage cheese balls use simple ingredients you probably already have in your pantry and refrigerator.

  • All-purpose flour – I usually use King Arthur’s All-Purpose flour.
  • Baking powder
  • Seasoned salt – I love Lawry’s seasoned salt. You can use regular salt but seasoned will give a bit extra flavor.
  • Black pepper
  • Ground cayenne pepper – Unless you love spicy food, be careful adding this if you’re using hot sausage.
  • Garlic powder
  • Onion powder
  • Sharp cheddar cheese – I like to shred my own cheese for these as pre-shredded cheese is coated in starch and may make for a drier sausage ball
  • Sausage – I usually use Jimmy Dean’s or Gunnoe’s regular/mild country breakfast sausage. This accounts for a lot of the flavor for delicious sausage balls so pick something you know you like.
  • Butter – This may seem like an unusual ingredient but I do find sausage to be a lot leaner these days than when I was growing up. The butter helps add a bit more fat and moisture so the sausage balls aren’t dry.

See the recipe card below for exact quantities.

Instructions

A half sheet lined with a sheet of parchment paper.

1. Preheat your oven and prepare a half-sheet baking pan. You can grease it but I prefer to just use a sheet of parchment paper or a silpat.

Flour mixed with spices in a stand mixer bowl.

2. Place flour, baking powder, salt, peppers, garlic and onion powders in a large mixing bowl. Whisk together.

Shredded cheddar mixed into the flour and spice mixture in a stand mixer bowl.

3. Add in the shredded cheese and give a stir.

All the sausage ball ingredients mixed together in a mixing bowl with a scoop to start forming the balls.

4. Mix in the pork sausage and butter until thoroughly combined.

Uncooked sausage balls on a parchment lined baking sheet ready to be baked.

5. Scoop the sausage mixture into evenly sized balls and place on the prepared baking sheet.

Sausage balls without Bisquick after they have been baked, still on the parchment lined baking sheet.

6. Bake for about 15 to 20 minutes until the balls reach 165°F.

Hint: If for some reason your sausage ball mixture appears dry you can add another tablespoon of melted butter or milk if preferred.

Substitutions

  • Cayenne – The amount of cayenne doesn’t really add much heat spice as it does flavor, but you can use paprika instead if desired.
  • Cheese – Cheddar definitely adds extra flavor to these sausage cheese balls but if it’s not a variety you like you can use something else like Colby Jack or whatever your favorite cheese is.
  • Sausage – Pork breakfast sausage is the classic variety of sausage used but other sausage varieties like turkey should also work. Just keep in mind how lean it is.

Variations

  • Spicy Sausage Balls – Add extra cayenne, or a few drops of hot sauce, or use hot sausage, or pepper jack cheese – or all of the above!

Equipment

Here are the equipment items I use to make cheesy sausage balls quickly and easily.

Storage

While these are so good we almost never have leftovers, they can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.

I find they are best warmed in a 350°F oven until warmed through so they stay a bit crispy on the outside. You can cover them with foil if they start getting too brown.

They can be microwaved too but I find the texture isn’t as good.

Top tip

While you can certainly make these by hand I find it much easier, not to mention less messy, by mixing with a stand or hand mixer.

I do prefer to use the dough hook on the stand mixer but if you don’t have one or are using a hand mixer you can use the regular beaters. They will just be a bit tougher to clean.

They come together so much faster while being evenly mixed.

FAQ

Why do my sausage balls fall apart?

They are likely too dry due to using pre-shredded cheese (it’s coated in starch which can make the balls drier) or your sausage is on the leaner side. Add another tablespoon or two of butter or you can use milk instead. Also, make sure you’re using one pound of sausage. The size of products seems to be shrinking these days so you may only be buying 14 oz vs 16 oz like you’re used to.

Why are my sausage balls hard?

Again, they are probably too dry. See the question above for help.

How do you keep sausage balls from burning on the bottom?

Line your baking sheet with parchment paper or a silpat to provide an additional barrier. You may want to check your oven temperature as it may be running too hot. You can also rotate the sausage balls halfway through cooking.

Can I make sausage balls ahead of time?

Yes, these are perfect to make ahead for game days and parties. There are a couple of options. To make 1 to 2 days before serving, make the recipe up to the point of baking.
Cover the raw rolled sausage balls on the baking sheet or put them in a container and immediately refrigerate.
Since they will be cold, they’ll likely take a few extra minutes to bake. I recommend using an instant thermometer to ensure they get to 165°F as sausage is something you do NOT want to serve undercooked.

Alternatively, you can make and bake the sausage balls, then cover and refrigerate them. Reheat in the oven covered with foil so they don’t get too brown.

If you need an option to make them more than two days ahead you can roll and bake the balls, cool them, flash freeze on a freezer-safe pan, and then place into a freezer-safe bag or container for up to one month.

Thaw overnight in the refrigerator, place on a baking sheet, cover with foil, and bake until warmed through.

Looking for more appetizer recipes? Try these:

Pairing

Here are some dip recipes you may like with this sausage ball recipe:

Pinterest image for easy sausage balls with no Bisquick.
Sausage Balls Without Bisquick Recipe

Sausage Balls Without Bisquick Recipe

Yield: ~32 Sausage Balls
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes

This easy sausage cheese balls recipe is made without Bisquick or a baking mix. It’s the perfect party appetizer, a must-have for a brunch buffet, or even makes for an easy make-ahead breakfast on the go.

Ingredients

  • 1 ¼ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon seasoned salt
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • ½ teaspoon ground cayenne pepper
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon onion powder
  • 8 oz sharp cheddar, grated
  • 1 lb pork breakfast sausage
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 400°F. Line a baking sheet with rim with a silpat, parchment paper, or foil.
  2. Whisk together 1 ¼ cups all-purpose flour, 1 ½ teaspoons baking powder, ½ teaspoon seasoned salt, ¼ teaspoon black pepper, ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper, ½ teaspoon garlic powder, and ½ teaspoon onion powder together in stand mixer bowl. Place on stand mixer fitted with dough hook attachment.
  3. Add in 8oz of shredded cheese and stir in using the hook at low speed. Turn off the mixer and add in 1 pound of breakfast sausage and 3 tablespoons of melted butter and mix on low, gradually increasing the speed to medium to medium-high until all ingredients are thoroughly combined.
  4. Scoop the mixture into about 32 equal portions, rolling each between your palms into a ball shape. Place each ball about 1-inch apart on the lined baking sheet.
  5. Bake in preheated oven for 15 - 20 minutes or until the sausage balls reach 165°F internally. Place on serving platter and serve immediately. Leftovers can be kept covered in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Reheat in the oven to slightly crisp up or they can be microwaved.

Notes

I normally use regular pork breakfast sausage for this recipe but if you'd like the sausage balls on the spicer side you can use spicy breakfast sausage or any flavor that you prefer.

A couple of readers have said the sausage balls ended up slightly drier than they'd like. I usually use Jimmy Dean breakfast sausage and have not had this issue, but if you know that your sausage is on the leaner side you may want to add another tablespoon or 2 of butter.

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 10 Serving Size: 2 - 3 sausage balls
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 328Total Fat: 24gSaturated Fat: 10gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 11gCholesterol: 71mgSodium: 667mgCarbohydrates: 14gFiber: 1gSugar: 1gProtein: 15g

Nutrition information may not be accurate. Nutrition information is calculated automatically by and provided by Nutritionix. Exact nutrition information depends on the specific ingredients, brands, and amounts you use.

Did you make this recipe?

Please leave a comment on the blog or share a photo on Pinterest

Food safety

  • Cook to a minimum temperature of 165 °F (74 °C)
  • Do not use the same utensils on cooked food, that previously touched raw meat
  • Wash hands after touching raw meat
  • Don’t leave food sitting out at room temperature for extended periods – 2 hours maximum; 1 hour max if above 90°F

See more guidelines at USDA.gov.

Pat

Saturday 14th of October 2023

They are so much better than those made with Bisquick. I actually made them half size (about 12 grams each) and cook them about 8 minutes. Excellent!

Smart Savvy Living - Michelle

Sunday 15th of October 2023

@Pat, thanks so much for trying my recipe and taking the time to share how it turned out. So glad you liked the sausage balls!

Debra Hodges

Saturday 29th of January 2022

I LOVE these sausage balls! Every sausage ball I have ever eaten has been dry until I found your recipe! Thank you so much! I have made these at least 4 times since I found this recipe. The only thing I changed was to add sea salt instead of season salt (didn't have any), I also added 2 more tbsps of butter, per your notes. Heading into the kitchen now to make more :)

Smart Savvy Living

Wednesday 2nd of February 2022

Hey Debra, it makes me so happy to know you enjoy my sausage balls recipe so much! Thank you for trying my recipe and taking the time to come back and share how it turned out.

Marie

Sunday 26th of December 2021

Delicious! This recipe came out beautifully!

Smart Savvy Living

Monday 27th of December 2021

Hi Marie, I'm so glad you enjoyed the recipe! Thanks so much for giving it a try and taking the time to come back and share how it turned out.

Emily

Tuesday 29th of December 2020

I’ve never made this without cooking to sausage first. This blows my mind. Lol. I am so excited to make this recipe!

Susan

Monday 15th of March 2021

@Smart Savvy Living, These are fabulous! The raw sausage cooks up really nice In the oven and they end up with a little bit of a crunch. My husband loves to eat them cold when he’s a bit “snacky” so I always keep extras in the refrigerator. One of his favorite keto munch ales for sure!

Smart Savvy Living

Tuesday 29th of December 2020

That's funny, Emily, as I have never made sausage balls by cooking the sausage first, ha. Hope you enjoy them!

Jennifer

Tuesday 24th of November 2020

Doubling using turkey sausage and serving with a side of warmed cranberry butter

Anne

Thursday 19th of October 2023

@Jennifer, I want to hear more about this cranberry butter!!!

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