Game Day: Opened Faced Sausage Sandwiches

It’s that tailgating time of year again. The NFL has officially kicked off and college football is well under way. Lots of great games in the coming weeks. Whether you’re heading out to tailgate and watch your favorite team, or enjoying the views from the comfort of your own couch. These tailgating recipes are sure to be a hit with your family and friends. 

By: Gary House

Tailgating or Homegating has begun! It’s football season, pregames are over and the big boys are on the field! I personally can’t decide what is better, the games or the food. Good thing I/we get to have both and seeing how I don’t talk sports on this website, we’ll stick to talking about the great food that we can have for your next Tailgate or Homegate party. If you remember, last year I brought you a touchdown of Delicious Hot Dog recipes to try out, seems they were quite popular so this year I am kicking it up just a notch with my Open Faced Smoked Sausage Sandwiches for game day.

I was fortunate enough to find a local butcher shop that has an enormous selection of handmade sausages where I live, so I selected four of the 35 different types they make: Authentic Portuguese Linguica, Buffalo Wing Brats, Sun Dried Tomato with Mozzarella & Parsley and a Chicken Habanaro Basil Sausage to make these Open Faced Smoked Sausage Sandwiches for you. If your in the Modesto, Ca area stop by and visit the fine folks at Chopping Block Butcher Shop and Deli to sample their selection. (They have no idea I am doing this)

This recipe is a two step process: 1st you smoke the sausages then on game day you grill them. You could do this in one day but why? The idea here is to have them ready for game day (Smoked) and then throw those smokey sausages on the grill to heat and crisp up, then add your condiments to finish.

These sandwiches start off with smoke, they didn’t need to be smoked but that is what I decided to do using my 18″ Camp Chef Smoke Vault. You can just place your sausages directly on the grate or smoke them hanging as I did with some hooks. A heavy smoke flavor is not what I was looking for, I wanted a subtle smoke flavor to cook my sausages, so I choose an Apple wood smoking chip to make this happen. You could pair each sausage up with a unique smoking wood if you choose and many of the more experienced smokers out there will tell you to do so but I always like to keep things simple.

I smoked these at 185° F for about three hours until they reached an internal temperature of 155° F.

Immediately after they were done smoking I placed them into a water bath for a few minutes to stop the cooking process and keep them plump.

Game day grill time!

I choose to butterfly my sausages, yes you could argue that all of those incredible juices would just run out over the grill grates but I didn’t find that to the case. Besides I wanted to have that grilled bite to my sausages that only comes from grilling. I fired up my faithful Camp Chef Big Gas Grill with the Grill Box accessory (perfect for Tailgating or Homegating) and preheated the grill box to 350° F before placing the sausages on the grill. Cook for about 5 minutes then flip them over for 5 more, that should get them nice and hot.

Melt some butter and spread on some Hoagie buns to toast.

Serve up with your favorite condiments or use the ones I created for these Open Faced Smoked Sausage Sandwiches:

Buffalo Wing Brats with Cool Ranch Cucumber Sauce

Buffalo Wing Brats – smoked, butterflied and grilled

2 tbs diced cucumber

2 tbs diced red onion

3 dashes Cholula Chili Lime hot sauce

4 tbs ranch dressing

1/8 tsp cracked black pepper

Mix all ingredients together and serve

Makes enough for 4 sandwiches

Sun Dried Tomato Sausage with Sauteed Leeks, Mushrooms and Garlic

Sun-dried Tomato with Mozzarella & Parsley – smoked, butterflied and grilled

1 leek, base roots and green stems removed, washed and thin sliced

3 Crimini mushrooms, sliced

4 cloves garlic, minced

1 tbs butter

4 tbs marinara sauce to spread on bun

Melt butter, add leeks and mushrooms, sprinkle with salt, saute until both are soft, add garlic cook for a minute longer and serve.

Makes enough for 4 sandwiches

Chicken Habanero Basil Sausage with Creamy Mango Salsa

Chicken Habanero Basil Sausage

1/2 mango diced

3 sweet mini peppers, seeded, diced

juice of 1/2 orange

juice of 1/2 lemon

4 tbs mayonnaise

2 tbs cilantro (save 1/2 for topping)

Mix all ingredients together and serve

Makes enough for 4 sandwiches

Linguica sausage with Cheese, Red Onion and stone ground mustard

Sometimes you just don’t mess with perfection!

Potuguese Linguica Sausage

shredded cheddar cheese

thin sliced red onion

stone ground mustard

Football season is here, Tailgating is starting and Homegating is happening!



For other great recipes by Gary House, check out his website at