Smoked Natural Casing Problem ?


  • Hi everyone, I am new to making sausage. Just finished my first patch of 50/50 venison/pork stuffed smoked sausage in natural tubed 32-35mm casings. Smoked in new LEM 40" electric smoker, 1hr@135, 1 hr@155, 1hr@170 untill internal hit 165, pulled put in ice water 15 min. let sit 1 hr. and about half of casings were tight to meat and dark red beautiful, the other half were loose cloudy and grayies and those casings were tuff. Couldn’t see a pattern most links would have some of each, need advise, how to correct next time? Thanks for all help.

  • Team Blue

    daddygee My First thought would be air pockets from the Stuffing? Did you notice anything like that?

  • Team Blue Dry Cured Sausage Admin Walton's Employee Canning

    daddygee can we get some pictures if possible? If it’s not air pockets like Cabelas90 said then my guess would be that the fat rendered out of the sausage and got caught between the casing and the meat. Was the bottom of your smoker a huge mess? Did you use a binder? How long did you mix? Your smoke schedule sounds good but going to 165° isn’t necessary unless you were using some poultry you didn’t list?


  • Cabelas90 yes I did notice air pockets in the casing as it was coming off of the stuffing horn, thanks.


  • Jonathon i have already vacc. packed and froze them so u can’t tell anything about the pictures now. Yes the bottom of the smoker was a mess but given my inexperience I thought that was normal but maybe not. Didn’t use a binder (lol I don’t think) just venison,pork,seasoning,sure cure and water. Thought I got a good mix turned sticky used the walton’s 44lb. hooked to the Butcher 22 grinder, I didn.t reverse direction any while mixing I will next time. What is a good temp to stop at witth this?


  • Guys I went straight from the stuffer to the smoker, I didn’t let it rest in the frig. overnight, is that something I should do?

  • Team Blue

    daddygee Sounds like you had a combination of Fat out and air pockets.
    Going Straight from the Stuffing to smoking depends on Ingredients. You need some sort of cure accelerator like ECA (Encapsulated Citric acid) Or Sodium Erythorbate. There are others as well. But Otherwise it should rest so it can properly cure.

  • Team Blue Dry Cured Sausage Admin Walton's Employee Canning

    daddygee with pork or beef 160° is the moment of instant lethality which is where all the microorganisms that we are worried about are destroyed right away, so no need to go above that temp. Sounds like it might have been a combination of fatting out and air pockets. A binder will help for sure and make sure you are mixing until the meat is very sticky and tacky, you want to be able to grab a handful of this and pull it apart and the meat will stretch for a bit before it breaks into two clumps.


  • Jonathon what type and amount of binder would you recommend ?
    What does it do help the fatting out? Does it affect the taste?


  • Cabelas90 Thanks for your help sounds like ya’ll have nailed it, I am looking forward to my next batch,will update how it does. Thanks again!

  • Team Blue Dry Cured Sausage Admin Walton's Employee Canning

    daddygee I would recommend Sure Gel it is a little more expensive than Carrot Fiber but Sure Gel does more to help with protein extraction than Carrot Fiber does. I have never heard anyone say that Sure Gel changes the taste, I have heard someone say that they thought Carrot Fiber did but I use it very often and have never noticed it. For how much to use the sure gel is 6 oz to 25 lb of meat so use it at that ratio. For breakdowns on Seasoning, Additives and Cures we created breakdown charts here https://meatgistics.waltonsinc.com/category/23/seasonings

    Sure gel works actually adds protein to the mix so with more protein available it makes proten extraction easier and it also helps bind water into the sausage more effectively but the main benefit is the protein extraction.


  • Jonathon great info, I can’t thank you enough for your time an info, I will try these suggestions. Also the Meatgistics Univ. video’s and articles have been great, keep them coming love them, God Bless and y’all stay safe.
    Will update on next batch.

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