How to Cook Knackwurst

Knackwurst, also known as knockwurst, is a preboiled, fully cooked German sausage typically made from ground beef, pork or a combination and heavily seasoned with garlic. When heated, the outer casing of knackwurst becomes crispy, giving it a texture different from other sausages such as bratwurst. It is best to choose a low-fat method like steaming, grilling or broiling when preparing knackwurst since the sausages are high in fat, saturated fat, cholesterol and sodium.

Step 1

Fill a large stockpot with water, beer, broth or a combination. Bring the liquid to a boil over high heat.

Step 2

Take the stockpot off the heat. Place the knackwurst into the liquid. Put the pot's cover in place and allow the sausages to stand, undisturbed, for 10 to 15 minutes.

Step 3

Remove the steamed knackwurst with tongs. Serve the sausages as is, or grill or broil them to enhance the crispy exterior characteristic of knackwurst.

Things You'll Need

  • Stockpot with tight-fitting lid

  • Water, beer or broth

  • Tongs


Cooked knackwurst is typically served with sauerkraut, warm or cold potato salad or mashed potatoes. Epicurious suggests trying the sausages with pickles, beer, mustard and a strongly flavored German bread such as pumpernickel.


Even though knackwurst is preboiled when it is prepared, you should not eat it without cooking it. The Association of Nutrition and Food Service Professionals advises that all sausage, including knackwurst, should be cooked to an internal temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit.

Avoid putting knackwurst in boiling water. According to the National Hot Dog & Sausage Council, the sausages will split open if they're boiled. Knackwurst may be successfully poached -- cooked in lightly simmering liquid like water or beer -- but to avoid splitting the sausage casing, it's best to stick with the steaming method.

A 221-calorie serving of knackwurst has 20 grams of fat, 43 milligrams of cholesterol and 670 milligrams of sodium.

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