Italian Sausage Vs Pork Sausage: What’s The Difference?

Pork Sausage

Sausage is one of the most used products in many cuisines around the world. It can be made with different types of meat which is ground or cut into smaller pieces

Sausages usually consist of pork, beef, poultry, lamb, and other types of meats. Other ingredients such as fat, seasonings, salt, spices, breadcrumbs, grains, and preservatives are also added to the meat to improve its flavor and texture.

Usually, sausages are filled into casings made from the intestine or other synthetic materials but there are also fresh sausages that are sold shaped into patties and in bulk.

According to the way they are prepared, sausages can be found fresh, smoked, and dried, and you can use them in many different ways depending on their type. You can grill, bake, pan-fry, roast, broil, and add them to sauces, pasta, casseroles, stews, and soups.

Sausages are also available as vegan and vegetarian products made with tofu, lentils, grains, and other meat alternatives. Countries and regions have their characteristic types of sausages made with their native meats, spices, and seasonings.

Italian Sausage

What’s The Difference Between Italian Sausage And Pork Sausage?

Italian sausage usually consists of pork meat. It is known for its characteristic flavor from the fennel and garlic which are used as a seasoning. The main difference between Italian sausage and pork sausage is the seasoning used for their production.

There are 3 types of Italian sausage, sweet, mild, and hot. Sweet Italian sausage is with added sweet basil, mild Italian sausage is made with fennel and parsley, and the hot variety is with hot pepper flakes.

There are many different types of pork sausage made from ground pork, fat, seasonings, fillers, and preservatives.

Some of the seasonings used in pork sausages include sage, basil, thyme, coriander seeds, onion powder, cayenne pepper, black peppercorns, smoked paprika, and salt. You can find them like patties, in bulk, or filled into casings.

Now, let’s learn more about the differences between Italian and pork sausages.

Italian Sausage Vs Pork Sausage: Comparison Chart

You can check the differences between Italian sausage and pork sausage in the table below.

Characteristics Italian sausage Pork sausage
Origin Italy Breakfast pork sausage originated in North America
Ingredients Regular ingredients, fennel, seeds, garlic, red chili pepper flakes Regular ingredients, sage, basil, thyme, coriander seeds, smoked paprika
Preparation Fresh, you need to cook it before eating Fresh, smoked, and dried
Flavor Distinctive fennel-garlic flavor Depending on how they are prepared and added seasonings, meaty, mild, smoky, and earthy

Is Pork Sausage Same As Italian Sausage?

Pork sausage is not the same as Italian sausage. They include different seasonings and have different flavors.

But they both have the same main ingredient pork meat. Italian sausage has its distinctive flavor from the fennel, while pork sausage is seasoned with sage, basil, thyme, and smoked paprika.  

Is Italian Sausage Different From Regular Sausage?

Italian sausage is different from regular sausage but it also depends on what you mean by the term regular sausage.

Every country and region has its regular type of sausage and it pretty much depends on where you live. However, one thing is certain Italian sausage has a distinctive flavor from the fennel seasoning.

What Is The Difference Between Ground Pork And Italian Sausage?

Pork sausage

Ground pork is a mixture of ground lean pork meat and fat parts of the pork. It usually contains about 15% of fat and works in many different recipes as a filling, stuffing, in sauces, or formed into meatloaves and patties.

Italian sausage, on the other hand, usually consists of ground pork meat and contains 25-30% of fat. The difference between ground pork and Italian sausage is not just in their fat content.

This sausage contains different seasonings, spices, salt, and other ingredients added for a better flavor. Ground pork doesn’t have any other ingredients added.

What Can I Use In Place Of Italian Sausage?

In place of Italian sausage, you can use pork sausage or Toulouse sausage.

There are various types of pork sausages with different seasonings but they are similar to Italian sausage because they are also made with pork meat. You can use the pork sausage in all recipes that call for Italian sausage but you will not get the same flavor as with Italian sausage.

The second substitute you can use instead of Italian sausage is Toulouse sausage which is also made with pork meat. To make these sausages similar to the flavor of the Italian sausage you can use fennel as a seasoning.

Can I Use Country Sausage Instead Of Italian Sausage?

Country sausage is another pork sausage also known as breakfast sausage. It is usually seasoned with sage and black pepper but there are also other varieties seasoned with cayenne pepper and maple syrup.

Country sausage makes a great breakfast and you can find it in form of links or loose sausage and patties. You can use country sausage instead of Italian sausage but have in mind that it has a different flavor. Therefore, you can add fennel to get a similar flavor to the flavor of the Italian sausage.

Can I Use Italian Sausage Instead Of Breakfast Sausage?

Breakfast sausage is the same as country sausage. It includes seasonings like sage and black pepper and has a different flavor than Italian sausage. If you don’t mind the fennel flavor you can use Italian sausage instead of breakfast sausage.

Can I Use Pork Sausage Instead Of Italian Sausage?

You can use pork sausage instead of Italian sausage because they are both made with ground pork meat.

You can also add fennel to get a similar flavor to the Italian sausage because Italian sausage is known for the characteristic flavor it gets from the fennel which is used as a seasoning.

Can You Use Italian Sausage For Breakfast?

You can use Italian sausage to prepare a lovely breakfast with eggs, cheese, and veggies. Fry the sausages first and add the vegetables, cheese, and eggs. Mix all together and your healthy and tasty breakfast is ready in no time.

There are many other delicious breakfast recipes with Italian sausage you can try and choose the one you like the most.

Italian Sausage Vs Sausage On Pizza


Sausage is one of the most used pizza toppings. You can use different types of sausage as a pizza topping but one of the most used is the Italian sausage.

If you like a spicy pizza topping you can use the spicy Italian sausage while the sweet Italian sausage will give a sweet basil flavor to the pizza. You can use Italian sausage as a topping for your pizza raw or precooked. Either way, it will give a beautiful flavor to your pizza.

You can also use your favorite type of sausage on your pizza but you will not get the same fennel flavor that Italian sausage gives to the pizza. If you don’t like pork meat you can use sausages made with some other type of meat like chicken, lamb, turkey, or beef.


Italian sausage is a delicious and versatile ingredient you can use in many different recipes. You can buy it or make it at home and adjust its flavor to your taste.

You can also use pork sausage if you want to try some different flavors in your recipes. Pork sausage or Italian sausage are both good it only depends on your taste which one you are going to use.

Which sausage is your favorite? How are you preparing it? Share your recipe in the comment section below.

1 comment
  1. Pork sausage is my favorite to have on pizza. I also like ham, Canadian bacon, bacon, and beef on pizza. I’ve honestly never been a fan of Italian sausage.

    I remember when I first try a sausage pizza expecting a pork sausage flavor instead of Italian and felt disappointed. Ham/Canadian bacon is the one that got me into liking pizza with toppings as a kid. I used to hate pepperoni, but now I don’t mind pepperoni. Glad places like Pizza Hut and Papa John’s has pork sausage as a pizza topping to choose from.

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