Sausage Balls

This is an old recipe from Jimmy Dean.  It goes way back to my childhood…and maybe yours, too!  My mom would make a big batch of these at the holidays and keep them warm in the crock pot.  We’d snack on them as long as they lasted on the buffet.  My son shares a love for these yummy little cheesy sausage bites.  Long ago, I used to make a bunch of appetizers and host an appetizer party the night before Thanksgiving.  Things over the years changed, and due to work and time constraints, that was no longer an option.  But, these apps survived, and now they make an appearance as a quick Thanksgiving breakfast bite.  We also make a sweet treat
to go with them, and that will be the subject of another post.  However, Sausage Bites are the next addition in my Twelve Weeks of Holiday series!

I use the basics of a recipe I saw in an ad for Jimmy Dean, but I have made some changes…which actually happened by accident when I miscalculated and measured incorrectly.  We liked the mistakes, so that’s what we do!  I make these ahead of time and freeze them uncooked.  Just freeze them on a cookie sheet, then throw them in a resealable bag until the night before you need them.   I move the bag to the fridge the night before to thaw.  Then bake them according to directions the next morning.  And, side note…I prefer to grate my own cheese rather than use the pre-packaged shredded.  That definitely has it’s place, but for this, going the extra mile really pays off!

Simple ingredients…img_8907

Knead all the ingredients together…


Roll into balls and place on parchment lined pan and place in the freezer…


After they have frozen, place into a resealable bag and back into freezer until ready to thaw and cook…



  • 1 pound pork sausage
  • 2 1/4 cups baking/biscuit mix
  • 4 cups shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder


Pre-heat oven to 375.  Shred the cheese and mix all ingredients in a very large bowl.  I toss the cheese, baking mix and garlic powder together to evenly distribute, and then I add the sausage.  You will need to use your hands to dig in and knead the mixture so it sticks together.  It may seem like it will be too much to blend properly…but just keep at it.  It will come together!  Form into 1 inch balls.  I was able to get about 46 out of this.  You can always double if you’re having a big party.  Place on a a parchment lined pan and freeze before dumping them into a bag and back into the freezer.  The night before you’re planning on baking them, move to the fridge to thaw.  When you’re ready to cook them, place on baking sheet and bake for 15 minutes, until golden and cooked all the way through.  I usually serve some kind of pepper jelly alongside the sausage balls for optional dipping.

Author: Debbie Nance

I am a working wife and mom, and I live with my family near Charlotte, NC. I am originally from Texas and have lived in a number of states in the southeast due to my job in radio. It sometimes requires moving to chase the dream. My husband and I have been married since 1994 and we host a country music radio show together. I am passionate about cooking and, I spend most of my time watching the Food Network, reading about food and testing new recipes.

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