This easy Irish sausage recipe will be one of your favorites because it’s got all the flavor of a traditional bangers and mash without all the work. It’s essentially a sausage skillet using store-bought Irish bangers, potatoes, cabbage, onion and carrots for an Irish dinner recipe that’s easy enough for a weeknight and tasty enough for your St. Patrick’s Day dinner celebrations.
This post has been updated for photos and content since its original publication in 2016. The recipe is the same.
What are Irish bangers?
Irish bangers (a.k.a. Irish sausage) is also known as British sausage or English sausage, are usually made with pork (but can use beef or even lamb), raw egg and breadcrumbs (also known as rusk). These sausages are meaty and flavorful, seasoned with herbs like thyme, rosemary, marjoram and garlic.
Commonly used to make bangers and mash (sausages and mashed potatoes), these versatile sausages are great for other Irish recipes too.
I use them in this Irish banger skillet with traditional ingredients that you’d normally find in a classic Colcannon.
Why you’ll love this Irish banger sausage skillet:
- It doesn’t make a mess of your kitchen, because you only use one skillet for cooking.
- It’s quick and easy to make in about 30 minutes.
- The recipe uses everyday ingredients.
- It’s a hearty, tasty Irish recipe that feeds the whole family.
- Irish banger skillet is the perfect dinner idea when St. Patrick’s Day is on a weeknight.
- If you need to make more, double the recipe and use a larger 12″ skillet.
What you’ll need for this simple Irish sausage skillet dinner:
- Irish Bangers
- Olive Oil
- Red Skinned Potatoes
- Green Cabbage
- Chicken Stock or Vegetable Stock (low sodium)
- Fresh Thyme
- Kosher Salt
- Black Pepper
Depending on where you live and the time of year, Irish banger sausages are available at your local butcher, or supermarket. I found mine at Trader Joe’s, but I’ve also seen them at Whole Foods and Fresh Market.
If you can’t find Irish bangers, you can substitute a mild, unsmoked pork sausage (not Italian), like a bratwurst (It’s not quite the same, because the bangers have a definitive porky quality to them, but I think brats are as close as you can get).
How to make Irish bangers in a skillet dinner:
- Heat olive oil in a large skillet and add the Irish sausages.
- Cook the bangers until they’re browned all over, turning occasionally. Transfer the sausages to a plate.
- Add more olive oil and layer in half of the sliced potatoes, onions and cabbage then layer with the other half of the vegetables.
- Toss in the carrots and thyme, season with salt and pepper and add 3/4 cup of the stock or broth.
- Cover and simmer for about 10 minutes.
- Transfer the bangers and any juices back to the skillet, cover and simmer for 10 more minutes until the Irish sausages are cooked through.
- Remove the sausages from the pan and cut crosswise into large chunks. Return the sausages to the skillet and serve.
What’s the best skillet for making this recipe?
Use a large, heavy wide skillet with 2-3″ high sides and a tight fitting lid.
For this recipe a 10″ skillet is about right, but if you’re doubling it, use a pan that’s at least 12″ wide and with 3″ sides.
You don’t have to use a nonstick pan for this recipe, although you can.
What does the banger skillet taste like?
Unlike Italian sausage or smoked sausages, Irish pork sausage has a deeply porky flavor that isn’t masked by other seasonings. It’s truly the fatty, unctuous pork that shines through — and frankly, the combination with the simple potatoes and cabbage, make this peasant dish a flavor-dynamo.
The sausages are juicy, meaty and perfectly seasoned to go with the simple vegetables. The flavors of potato onion and cabbage remind me of Colcannon but with less effort and healthier than that traditional recipe (no cream and butter).
This tasty Irish recipe is a complete meal in one pan. What could be better than that? The flavors are simple and straightforward but very satisfying.
My husband and daughter went back three times for more, so if that’s any indication, this sausage skillet is a crowd pleaser.
It’s so good and so simple, you won’t want to save it for St. Patty’s Day – this will become one of your weekly standards.
I love how this recipe uses simple ingredients, but you can certainly make some swaps and variations to it. Here’s a few ideas.
Variations and swaps
- Instead of green cabbage, try Napa cabbage, curly kale, shaved brussels sprouts or chopped escarole lettuce.
- Swap larger red skinned potatoes with baby dutch potatoes (they’re small enough to cook completely when simmering in the covered skillet.)
- Add crumbled cooked bacon to the skillet.
- Add frozen peas just before serving.
- Sprinkle with fresh herbs like marjoram or parsley.
Irish Banger Skillet
- 1 large 10" skillet with a lid
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 pound Irish banger sausage
- 1/2 pound red skinned potatoes sliced thinly crosswise
- 1 medium onion sliced thinly crosswise
- 1/2 head green cabbage cored and thinly sliced
- 3 carrots peeled and sliced on a diagonal into 1/2″ pieces
- 1 1/2 cups chicken broth or vegetable broth, divided
- 2 teaspoons fresh thyme divided
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper freshly ground
- In a 10-inch skillet with a tight fitting lid, heat the olive oil over medium high heat. When the oil starts to glisten and moire, carefully add the sausages and cook, turning occasionally until browned. Transfer the sausages to a plate.
- Into the pan, over a medium heat, layer in half of the onion, potatoes and cabbage.
- Layer the remaining onions, potatoes and cabbage. Sprinkle with carrots and add 1 teaspoon of the thyme.
- Pour 3/4 cup of broth over the vegetables, sprinkle with salt and pepper and cover tightly. Simmer for 10 minutes.
- After the vegetables have cooked for 10 minutes, nestle the sausages into the potato mixture, along with any accumulated juices.
- Add the remaining broth and thyme, cover and cook for an additional 10 minutes, or until potatoes and carrots are very tender.
- Remove the sausages and cut them into chunks. Return the sausages to the pan and serve.
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