Bangers and Mash is a comforting and simple dish of homemade mashed potatoes topped with pork sausage and onion gravy. It’s a comforting British and Irish dish made with simple ingredients but it’s so rich and heartwarming. A great dish to serve with a pint of cold beer and maybe a few veggies on a side.
WHAT IS BANGERS AND MASH
Bangers and Mash is a British and Irish classic that is widely popular. Homemade fluffy mashed potatoes, pork sausage, and delicious onion gravy can’t get much more comforting. This dish has all the key elements of a cozy dinner at home… or at a pub? There is not an Irish restaurant or a pub around me that doesn’t offer it on the menu.
This dish has been around for decades and carries its intriguing name from the World War era. During that time, they had to make sausage cheaply so they added higher amount of bread and breadcrumbs. That created a lot of extra moisture inside the sausage casing so the sausage would pop while it was cooking. That’s how “bangers” got its name, because the sausage would “bang” while cooking.
Even though sausage doesn’t explode in a pan anymore, it still carries the whimsical name. I get a kick out of telling my dinner guests the name of this dish and watching their reaction. After they are done laughing for about 5 minutes, I offer the actual explanation. Bangers and Mash is a fun conversation starter and delicious, comforting dinner all in one.
HOW TO MAKE BANGERS AND MASH
It doesn’t get much more homey that soft and fluffy mashed potatoes. You can prepare potatoes the day before or at the same time as the sausage. Preparing it before can save you quite a bit of time.
Cut potatoes in half or fourths, place them into a pot, and add cold water. Cook potatoes with some salt, pepper, and a couple of bay leaves until fork-tender. Strain off most of the water but save about 1/4 cup of cooking water to mix into the mashed potatoes. Discard bay leaves through.
Add butter, milk, some more seasoning and mash it until smooth. (Unless you like you potatoes chunky, then leave some chunks behind.) If potatoes look a little too thick, add a little more milk and mix.
Saute sausage over medium-high heat until it gets a browned on the outside and then lower the heat to medium-low. Cook until sausage it just done and take it out of the pan. Set it aside while you prepare the gravy.
In the same pan, add a couple of tablespoons of butter and saute onions and garlic until browned. Sprinkle flour over the onions and mix until onions are evenly coated. Continue to stir the onions slowly and pour in the beer. Keep stirring and slowly pour in beef stock. Stir until the gravy is smooth and starts to thicken.
Add Worcestershire sauce, sugar, salt, and pepper and let the gravy come to a simmer. Once it’s thickened, nestle the sausages back into the gravy. Cook sausage and gravy together for a couple of minutes, flip each sausage and cook for another minute or so.
Serve sausage and gravy over mashed potatoes.
WHAT VEGETABLES TO ADD
If you want to see a little green on your plate full of comfort food, these vegetables will be great:
Sauteed Green Beans
HOW TO MAKE IT GLUTEN FREE
Bangers and Mash can be very easily made gluten free. First of all, check the sausage packaging and make sure it’s gluten free. Second, use gluten free all-purpose flour to thicken the gravy.
Note, some brands of gluten free all-purpose flour don’t thicken as well, so you may been to use an extra tablespoon or two.
MORE IRISH RECIPES TO TRY
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Bangers and Mash
- 3 lbs Yukon or Idaho potatoes
- 2 bay leaves
- 1/4 cup cooking water
- 3 tbsp butter
- 1/4 cup whole milk little more if needed
- fresh cracked black pepper
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 8-10 pork sausages (other raw sausage if preferred but not Italian or flavored)
- 2 tbsp canola oil for cooking
- 3 tbsp butter
- 1 large Vidalia onion
- 3 garlic cloves pressed
- 3 tbsp all purpose flour
- 1/2 cup red ale
- 1 1/2 cups beef stock
- 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
- 1 tsp sugar
- fresh cracked black pepper
- Wash potatoes and cut them in half or fourths and add it to a pot. Pour in cold water to fill the pot with enough water to cover potatoes comfortably with about 1-inch over potatoes.
- Cook potatoes with some salt, pepper, and bay leaves until fork-tender. Drain off most of the water but save about 1/4 cup of cooking water to mix into the mashed potatoes.
- Discard bay leaves.
- Add butter, milk, garlic powder, and mash it until smooth. (Or leave potatoes a little chunky is you wish.) Taste potatoes to see how much salt and pepper to add and mix well.
- (If potatoes look a little too thick, add a little more milk and mix.)
- Preheat a large cooking pan over medium-high heat and add oil. Saute sausage until it gets browned on the outside and then lower the heat to medium-low.
- Cook until sausage is just done and take it out of the pan. Set it aside while you prepare the gravy.
- In the same pan, add a couple of tablespoons of butter and let it melt. Add onions sauté until browned. Mix in pressed garlic and sauté until fragrant.
- Sprinkle flour over the onions and mix until onions are evenly coated. Continue to stir the onions slowly and pour in the beer.
- Keep stirring and slowly pour in beef stock. Stir until the gravy is smooth and starts to thicken.
- Add Worcestershire sauce, sugar, salt, and pepper and let the gravy come to a simmer.
- Once it’s thickened, nestle the sausages back into the gravy. Cook sausage and gravy together for a couple of minutes, flip each sausage and cook for another minute or so.
- Serve sausage and gravy over mashed potatoes.