A derivative of a Polish word, “kielbasa” refers in certain parts of Europe as a particular type of sausage, while in the U.S., it has come to be indicative of what most Americans refer to as “Polish Sausage,” a pork and garlic concoction generally in a natural casing.
Johnsonville’s version is pure pork, with flavorings, and the label attests to no fillers(1). The casing is collagen; collagen casings are often used in mass-production for consistency and ease in manufacturing. Collagen casings, made from the collagen and bones of beef or hogs, are considerably less expensive in the manufacturing process, as well.
The product comes six to a 14 oz package, and is manufactured at Johnsonville’s plant (USDA est. 34224) in Sheboygan, Wisconsin.
As with most products in this segment, the sausages are fully cooked right out of the package, and consumers merely need heat them to their preferred level of ‘doneness’. I pan fry to put a little char on them, as for me, that gives them a texture more closely resembling a natural casing.
This is a very mild sausage, with flavor more reminiscent of hot dogs, than any sausage served in Poland or in Polish owned emporiums in America.
The mild flavor and fine grind are not strikes against Johnsonville’s product, but more indicative of a sausage that will be widely accepted by most of the population.
Served on a egg roll with yellow mustard and sauerkraut.
Pork, water, salt and less than 2% of
the following: corn syrup, potassium lactate,
dextrose, spices, monosodium glutamate,
paprika, natural flavors, sodium diacetate,
dehydrated garlic, sodium erythorbate,
sodium nitrite, collagen casing.
Johnsonville Polish Kielbasa Review