This easy slow cooker sausage casserole is a family favourite, with juicy sausages and tender vegetables in a thick flavour packed gravy. This fuss free dinner is perfect for busy weeknights.
- Why we love this recipe
- Ingredient notes and substitutions
- How to make sausage casserole in the slow cooker from scratch
- My recipe tips
- Use seasonal vegetables: in winter, add a chopped swede or turnip, leeks, or some parsnips. In summer, extra capsicum / peppers or zucchini / courgette.
- Add some lentils or beans
- Serving Ideas
- Make ahead/storage
- Ideas for leftover sausage casserole
- Why not try…
- Slow Cooker Sausage Casserole
Why we love this recipe
- Kid friendly – from sausage curry to one pot sausage pasta, sausages are an ingredient that is always guaranteed to put a smile on my family’s faces.
- This slow cooker sausage casserole recipe is an easy recipe, perfect for busy weekdays when you can prepare in the morning and leave it to slow cook or great for meal prepping.
- This is a budget friendly dinner that is also freezer friendly too. Make double the batch and freeze some for a quick meal later in the month.
- Cooking a slow cooker sausage casserole with vegetables means they not only add extra flavour, and bulk out the casserole, but also means you don’t have to worry about serving extra veggies on the side. Just heat and serve.
Ingredient notes and substitutions
- Sausages – pork sausages or beef sausages both work well.
- Brown onion – yellow onion.
- Vegetables – I often use carrots, celery, capsicum (pepper) but parsnips, mushrooms, turnips or sweetcorn also work well.
- Tinned tomatoes – canned tomatoes. Chopped tomatoes or plum tomatoes work, or use passata.
- Stock – beef stock, homemade vegetable stock, water or boiling water and a stock cube.
- Dried herbs – mixed dried herbs, dried oregano, or dried thyme.
- Garlic – crushed fresh garlic or bought minced garlic.
- Smoked paprika – I love the slight smokiness smoked paprika adds to the casserole, but you could use sweet paprika or Hungarian paprika instead.
- Worcestershire sauce – adds an extra depth of flavour.
- Bay leaves – I love using bay leaves in stews and casseroles, but if you don’t, leave then out or see here for bay leaf substitutes.
- Tomato puree – concentrated tomato paste if you are in Australia, or tomato puree.
How to make sausage casserole in the slow cooker from scratch
- Fry the onion in oil over a low -medium heat until softened. Add the garlic then the chopped celery, carrots and capsicum and cook for 5 minutes (this step is optional if you are stuck on time leave out, but it does add more flavour).
- Tip the vegetables into the slow cooker (or if using the slow cooker to saute the vegetables, tip out on to a plate).
- Brown the sausages on all sides (again totally optional but I personally think it’s worth it.)
- Take off the heat and add the tomato puree and stir, then tip all of it into the slow cooker (or add the vegetables back into the pan if using the slow cooker dish to sear the ingredients.)
- Add the tinned tomatoes, smoked paprika, Worcestershire sauce, dried oregano / mixed herbs, bay leaves and season with salt and black pepper.
- Place the lid on and cook for 8 hours on low. Check for seasoning before serving.
Yes you can. Cook the sausage casserole for 3-4 hours, until the sausages are cooked through and the vegetables are tender.
Absolutely! Chop potatoes into halves or quarters and add with the rest of the ingredients.
My recipe tips
- I personally find sweating the vegetables (softening the carrots and other vegetables) first adds extra flavour, but you can leave this step out if you are pressed for time.
- Browning the sausages – some people say you don’t need to do this step either, but I personally think it adds extra flavour, the sausages have a nicer texture to them, and golden brown sausages look far more appetising.
- This is a basic sausage casserole, and whilst delicious ‘as is’ you can customize it to your tastes: see ‘Variations’ further down the post.
- Salt – bought stocks can be salty, so I recommend adding a little salt at the beginning of cooking, then taste for seasoning at the end, adding a little more salt if needed. This helps prevent the casserole from being too salty.
- If your casserole is looking a little thin towards the end of cooking, make a ‘slurry’: mix a tablespoon of flour or cornflour with a little cold water than stir this in to the casserole. Cook for another 30-45 minutes until thickened.
- Potatoes: crispy parmentier potatoes, or Duchess potatoes (which can be made ahead and frozen for ease), or with creamy mashed potatoes.
- Rice: brown or white rice.
- Other grains: Farro, quinoa, or bulgar wheat.
- Bread: crusty baguette or air fryer garlic bread.
Fridge: store cooked cooled sausage stew in the fridge, covered, for up to 3 days.
Freezer: freeze for up to 3 months. I like to portion it out to serve or 1 or 2 people then place in Ziplock bags and freeze them flat so they will defrost quicker. Defrost in the fridge overnight.
- With potatoes: if you want to add potatoes to the casserole like in this slow cooker Greek lamb, halve or quarter potatoes, depending on their size, and add with the rest of the ingredients. No need to peel them!
- Herbs or spices – a sprig of fresh thyme or rosemary, ground cumin and ground coriander, or ½ a teaspoon of fennel seeds (pork and fennel are a delicious pairing, especially in these sausage rolls.) are particular favourites of mine.
- Apple or dried fruit like a handful of dried apricots or prunes for a touch of sweetness.
- Bacon or chorizo: brown a couple of rashers of bacon or a sliced chorizo before adding to the slow cooker with the sausages.
- Liquid: replace some of the stock/water with wine or cider.
Ideas for leftover sausage casserole
- You can make a leftover sausage stew pie, topped with mashed potato, shortcrust pastry or puff pastry top.
- Make into empanadas using this empanada dough.
Why not try…
You may also like these other family friendly slow cooker dinners:
Slow Cooker Sausage Casserole
- 1 Saucepan (If your slow cooker doesn’t have a searing function)
- 1 slow cooker
- 1½ Tablespoon oil
- 1 onion finely chopped
- 8-10 sausages (approx 800g / 28 oz)
- 2 Sticks celery finely chopped
- 2 cloves garlic crushed
- 400g (14 oz) tinned / can tomatoes
- 550g (20 oz) carrots (approx 3-4), cubed
- 1 red pepper / capsicum cubed
- black pepper
- 250ml (1 c) water or stock
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano or dried mixed herbs
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 tablespoon tomato puree
- Fry the onion in the slow cooker pan if you have a sear function, or a frying pan if not, in 1 tablespoon of oil over a low -medium heat until softened – around 7-10 minutes.
- Add the crushed garlic and cook 1-2 minutes.
- Add the chopped celery, carrots and capsicum and cook for 5 minutes (this step is optional – if you are stuck for time leave it out, but it does add more flavour).
- Tip the vegetables into the slow cooker (or if using the slow cooker to do this step, remove them to a plate).
- Heat the remaining ½ tablespoon oil and brown the sausages on all sides.
- Take off the heat and add the tomato puree and stir, then tip all of it into the slow cooker.
- If using a frying pan, add the water / stock to the pan and swirl around before tipping in to the slow cooker to make sure you get all the flavour packed bits!
- Tip in the tinned tomatoes, smoked paprika, Worcestershire sauce, dried oregano / mixed herbs, bay leaves and season with salt and black pepper. Add the vegetables and browned sausages and stir.
- Place the lid on and cook for 8 hours on low.
- After 8 hours, stir and check for seasoning, adding a little more salt if needed.
- Serve straight away, or cool and store in the fridge for up to 3 days or freeze.