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Sausage Ball Recipe (Without Bisquick)

Need some easy finger foods or the perfect appetizer for your next party or perhaps a quick breakfast on the go? This yummy sausage ball recipe (without Bisquick) is just what you’re looking for.

Sausage Ball Recipe (Without Bisquick) image

Homemade Sausage Balls Like Grandma Used to Make

For my family, this easy recipe originated with my husband’s grandmother, Hilda Jean Barnes (aka Memaw). His grandfather was the pastor of the church we were both raised in, and this is one of the recipes Memaw submitted for the church cookbook. I’m so glad she shared this classic recipe before she graduated to heaven.

I admit I’ve tweaked her recipe just a smidgen, but it’s only by adding a little bit of sugar like my great-grandmother included in her drop biscuits. My hubby gave this his stamp of approval, so we can still call this a Barnes family recipe. 🙂 

The 7 Simple Ingredients for This Easy Sausage Ball Recipe (without Bisquick)

You’ll find a full printable recipe card at the end of this post, but here’s a quick list of items you’ll need:

  • All-purpose flour
  • Baking powder
  • Shortening (or softened butter)
  • Sugar (optional)
  • Breakfast Sausage
  • Cheddar cheese, grated
  • Milk
Sausage Balls Recipe without bisquick ingredients

You’ll also need a large bowl to mix the dough and a cookie sheet to bake them on.

How to Make Memaw’s Savory Sausage Balls from Scratch

Now for the fun part! Prepare to get your hands dirty! 🙂 Once you’ve gathered your ingredients, preheat your oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. 

Next, sift your flour, baking powder, and sugar together into a large mixing bowl. Now cut your room temperature butter or shortening into the dry ingredients until the mixture looks like coarse meal. 

Your sausage and grated cheese go in next. (I’d suggest your favorite kind of pork sausage or deer sausage.) Stir them in until well mixed.

Ingredients of best sausage balls in bowl before mixing

I find using my hand the quickest, easiest way to get this accomplished, but if you prefer to use a stand mixer, you’ll want to employ a dough hook.

Hand mixing of Sausage Ball (Without Bisquick) Recipe Ingredients

Next, pour in the milk all at once. Mix gently until the dough begins to pull away from the sides of the bowl.

Milk added to sausage ball ingredients

Now here’s where me and Memaw differ. Memaw would turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead it twelve (12) times. Personally, I keep it all in the bowl and knead it there.

Full mixed sausage ball (without bisquick) recipe ingredients

Once kneaded, shape the dough into balls about the size of a ping pong or 1-inch ball. If you want to make the balls uniform, you might try a cookie scoop.

The best Sausage Balls on baking pan prior to cooking

Next, place the uncooked sausage balls on an ungreased baking sheet about an inch and a half apart. (To make for easy cleanup, you may want to line the pan with foil or parchment paper.) This recipe makes about 40 to 50 sausage balls.

Bake these scrumptious sausage balls at 425 degrees Fahrenheit for about 15 minutes or until golden brown. 

Golden brown sausage balls on baking pan

Serve ‘em Up

These delicious sausage balls serve up great warm for breakfast by themselves, or they’re great for sopping up a good ole fried egg or smothered in gravy. Some even choose to dip them in maple syrup or honey mustard.

Sausage balls without bisquick recipe plated up with eggs and juice

These sausage balls could make the perfect easy breakfast on Christmas morning. They warm up great in the microwave or air fryer.

You can also take these as finger foods or appetizers to your next holiday gathering, game day party, or church social event. Not to mention, they make great snacks at any time of day.

Questions about this Sausage Balls (Without Bisquick) Recipe

“Can I make these easy sausage balls gluten free?”

Absolutely! I’ve made these sausage balls gluten free many times by simply substituting the all-purpose flour with a one-to-one exchange gluten free flour like King Arthur Measure for Measure Flour. I’ve also used the Great Value gluten free all-purpose flour, and it worked great too.

“I don’t have any sharp cheddar cheese on hand. What other cheese can I use in this recipe?”

Each cheese will give a slightly different flavor, but a shredded Colby jack cheese or American cheese would work well too. 

“I only have self-rising flour on hand. Can I use that to make these cheesy sausage balls?”

Sure thing. Substitute the all-purpose flour and baking powder with the equivalent amount of self-rising flour and you’re all set.

“How do I store the remaining sausage balls?” 

I typically wrap them in the foil I used to cover the pan or store them in an airtight container in the fridge. 

“How long will these sausage balls keep?”

Refrigerated these will keep about 3-4 days. Stored in the freezer, they’ll last about 3-4 months.

“What’s the best type of sausage to use in this original recipe?”

Personally, I use homemade deer or pork sausage, but you could also use turkey sausage. If you don’t have a preference, let me suggest the Jimmy Dean Hot Breakfast Sausage.

I hope you enjoy this family recipe and share it with friends. If you’ve had sausage balls, I’d love to hear how you like to eat them.

Yield: 40-50 sausage balls

Sausage Ball Recipe (Without Bisquick)

Sausage Ball Recipe without Bisquik

This easy sausage ball recipe (without Bisquick) makes a fun finger food, the perfect appetizer, yummy snack, or on-the-go breakfast, and it's easily made gluten free with one substitution.

Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes


  • 2 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 5 1/3 tsp baking powder
  • 1 1/2 tbsp sugar
  • 1/3 cup shortening or softened butter
  • 16 oz breakfast sausage
  • 1 1/3 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1 scant cup of milk
  • Cookie sheet(s)


  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. In large mixing bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, and sugar. 
  3. Cut in the butter/shortening until the flour mixture resembles coarse meal.
  4. Add in sausage and shredded cheese. Mix until blended.
  5. Pour in milk all at once, and combine until the dough starts to pull away from the bowl.
  6. Knead dough until well mixed. Approximately 12 times.
  7. Form dough into 1-inch balls and place on an ungreased baking pan about 1 ½ inches apart. 
  8. Bake at 425 degrees Fahrenheit for about 15 minutes or until golden brown. 
  9. Serve warm.


Make this recipe gluten free with a simple exchange of the all-purpose flour with your favorite gluten-free measure-for-measure flour.

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