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Cooking Tips

How to Cook Polish Kielbasa




How to Cook Polish Kielbasa

Curious what makes kielbasa different from other types of sausage? The word “kielbasa” is Polish for sausage. While there are often dozens of types of “kielbasa” in a Polish butcher shop, the most popular type of kielbasa in the U.S. is a smoked sausage typically found in a ring or rope shape. This mild and sweet Polish sausage is delicious in a variety of dishes!

Polish kielbasa from Coleman Natural Foods is smoked and fully cooked. Just heat it through and it’s ready to eat. This pork sausage has no nitrates or nitrites, no artificial ingredients or preservatives, and includes pork sourced from American Humane Certified farms that never use antibiotics, growth hormones, or confining crates. And it’s keto-friendly!

Looking to add some rich, smoky kielbasa to your meal rotation? Here are some traditional and alternative ways to cook smoked Polish kielbasa.

Table of Contents

How to Cook Kielbasa: The Traditional Way

Smoked kielbasa has a wonderful umami flavor that pairs well with tangy ingredients like mustard, onions, sauerkraut, and sour cream. Here are some simple, classic ways to make Polish kielbasa.


Slice kielbasa into 1-inch thick rounds and heat in a skillet for a super quick start to a weekday meal. To round it out, sauté onions, then add potato and cheese pierogies in the pan with the sausage. Pierogies are Polish dumplings filled with sweet or savory fillings, like cheese, meat, and spinach. You can often find them in the frozen section of the grocery store. This classic dish is fast to make and filling for a hungry family!


For a hearty, one-pot meal, try a traditional Polish combination of cabbage and kielbasa. Stew cabbage, onions, garlic cloves, and sliced apples with butter over very low heat until everything is tender, about an hour. Then add sliced kielbasa. Cook over low heat for another 45 minutes or so.

The liquid from the veggies and apples will slowly be extracted, creating a flavorful broth in the bottom of the pot. When everything is soft and cooked through, it’s ready to eat!

For some slow cooker takes on this one-pot style, try Slow Cooker Polish Sausage and Cabbage or Slow Cooker Beans with Kielbasa.

kielbasa slices with cabbage and rice
Onions and garlic can add loads of flavor to a kielbasa and cabbage dish.


Whole kielbasa is delicious grilled! Cut the sausage rope into bun-length pieces, and grill for 4-6 minutes on each side. When they reach an internal temp of 145°F, they’re hot enough to eat! Place them on a roll with brown mustard, tangy sauerkraut, and diced onions. Perfect for a summer dinner!

And while you can grill this sausage on its own, if you’re looking for a fun way to cook kielbasa that the whole family will enjoy, try making these Personal Foil Packet Dinners on the grill.


Whether you’re enjoying kielbasa on a bun or eating it alongside mashed potatoes and sauerkraut, steaming will ensure the sausages are heated all the way through without becoming burnt on the outside.

To steam your kielbasa, heat a saucepan over medium heat and then place the sausages in the pan. Allow the kielbasa to cook for two to three minutes—or until it forms a nice brown color—then turn the sausages 180º. Once the other side has developed light char marks, pour half an inch of water into the pan.

Allow the water to come to a simmer, then cook for five minutes, or until the internal temperature reaches 145ºF.

Get Creative: More Ways to Cook Polish Kielbasa

Go beyond the grill with these novel ways to use Polish kielbasa in your weekday meal lineup! Savory, simple, and sizzling.


Shakshuka is a Middle Eastern dish of eggs cracked into an aromatic tomato sauce. For extra protein and richness, try this extra-filling Kielbasa Shakshuka variation! It’s great for brunches or weeknight dinners, and it’s Paleo-friendly.

shakshuka with kielbasa and peppers
This spicy shakshuka dish is sure to warm you up on chilly evenings.


Kielbasa sandwiches aren’t limited to the traditional roll with mustard and onions! A Kielbasa and Sauerkraut “Reuben” combines traditional Reuben sandwich ingredients with smoky sausage. Thousand Island dressing and sauerkraut provide some zip, while smoked gouda cheese and the kielbasa bring salty succulence. These grilled sandwiches can be ready in just 15 minutes!


Filling portions and a Mediterranean kick come together in this Sourdough Stuffing With Kielbasa recipe. Using pine nuts and currants, this dish is loaded with herbs and spices like sage, thyme, and parsley to delight your senses.


Aromatic veggies, filling lentils, and Polish sausage come together in this easy gluten-free dish. Make a big pot of Hearty Lentils with Kielbasa and eat it all week long, or freeze the leftovers!

kielbasa and lentils
Enjoy a nutrient-dense dinner by combining root vegetables with kielbasa.


Kielbasa is perfect for one-pan recipes you can bake in the oven. Slice the sausage and your favorite veggies into bite-sized pieces, and lay them flat on a sheet pan. Drizzle with olive oil, salt, and pepper, and bake at 350°F until sausage is hot and veggies are crisp-tender.

Often, a juicy kielbasa with hearty veggies like potatoes or broccoli can benefit from a dash of something sweet – like a honey drizzle or a handful of cranberries. Try this Sheet Pan Garlic Honey Sauced Veggies and Kielbasa that you can prep in 20 minutes and cook in just 30, or this Kielbasa Sheet Pan Dinner with Dried Cranberries and Feta that takes just 10 minutes to prep and 35 to cook!

Uncured Polish Kielbasa: Fast, Filling, Flavorful

We’ve just scratched the surface on how to make kielbasa!

Coleman Natural’s Uncured Smoked Polish Kielbasa can add heartiness and depth to hundreds of recipes. Since it’s already cooked through, it’s the perfect quick-cooking addition to weeknight dishes. And with 7 grams of protein per serving, it will keep you full and satisfied until your next meal. Keep a few links in the freezer to toss into recipes when they need a little protein boost!

For even more recipes on how to cook kielbasa and other Coleman Natural products, try these next:

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