COVID-19 Update: At Isernio’s, safety for our employees and our products is always our top priority. And thus, we’re taking extra precautions to ensure our team is protected. Rest assured, we will put the well-being of our people and our commitment to crafting delicious, safe food for our customers above all else. Learn more about our safety precautions here. >>

Archive | Blog RSS feed for this section

A Menu for Your Intimate Thanksgiving Dinner

With the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, it’s likely that Thanksgiving celebrations will look a lot different than most of us are accustomed to. Instead of big gatherings with extended family, dinners will be smaller and more intimate. But that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy all of the traditional dishes you love.

We’ve crafted a menu to help you celebrate this untraditional Thanksgiving with traditional flavors, just on a smaller scale.

Appetizer: Sausage Pumpkin Pinwheels

These puff pastry pinwheels are the perfect snack to curb your hunger while waiting for the main meal.

Main Dish: Rock Cornish Hen Stuffed with Sausage

Don’t skip the poultry just because you’re not making a whole turkey! This recipe that serves 4 makes right-sized portions of the stars of the show: the bird and the stuffing!

Side: Skillet Green Bean Casserole

You don’t have to skip your favorite side – but you don’t have to have a giant baking dish of it, either. This stove-top version is not only smaller, but healthier, too!

Side: Risotto with Sausage and Wild Mushrooms

The mushrooms give this creamy risotto an earthy flavor that’s perfect for the holiday. This recipe serves 4-6 and is easily halved if you want an even smaller dish.

Side: Sweet and White Mashed Potato Swirl

No need to make two dishes when one will do! This recipe blends two of your Thanksgiving tabletop favorites into one savory dish.

Salad: Mixed Greens with Dried Cranberries and Toasted Pecans

Salad sprinkled with the flavors and textures of the season is a perfect way to round out your meal.

Dessert: Easy Apple Tarts

Think you’ll have room for dessert? Make a tray of these!

Isernio’s is proud to be crafted with premium ingredients to make your holiday dishes shine. Check out our full line of products including traditional pork and chicken sausage, mild or hot Italian, and specially-seasoned ground sausage and chicken options. Though Thanksgiving won’t be the same, we hope you don’t let the small celebration temper your gratitude. COVID may have taken our gatherings, but it hasn’t taken our blessings.

Happy Thanksgiving. We’re grateful for you.

Dinner Made Simple with Isernio’s Meal Starters

We take pride in adding new products to our line-up that we know our customers will love. And we’re exceptionally proud of our newest additions because they not only reflect the quality you’ve come to expect from Isernio’s, but they’re here to make your life easier, too.

Meal Starters consist of our premium chicken sausage mixed with a custom blend of seasonings to add effortless flavor to any dish. They’re great at any time of the day – mixed in with your morning eggs, as a topping for your lunchtime salad, or as the flavor centerpiece for endless dinner options.

Our Meal Starters come in three varieties – read on to meet the newest members of the Isernio’s family!

Roasted Garlic and Herb

Cooking a classic? This is the one you want! Our chicken sausage is seasoned with garlic and herbs for a savory addition to dishes like pasta, lasagna, casseroles, pizza, or soup.

Sweet Chili & Ginger

The sweetness of this variety mingles with the other robust flavors of your favorite Asian dishes. Try it in stir fries, lettuce wraps, egg rolls, or on your salad with a tangy soy-based dressing.

Southwestern Style Chile & Garlic

Looking for a punch of flavor? This option is great in tacos, on Southwest-style salads, with a breakfast scramble, or in soup. With a hint of heat and a traditional smoky flavor, this might become your new go-to for Taco Night.

Our Meal Starters offer a no-fuss dinnertime solution that add effortless flavor to even the most basic of dishes. You can even take them camping for a campfire skillet meal that requires NO extra seasoning!

See? We told you they’d make your life easier.

Use our Product Locator to find our Meal Kits in a store near you, and tag us on Instagram @iserniosausage so we can see what you make. We love seeing how you use our products!

Golf Fundraiser Supporting Folds of Honor

For the past five years we’ve participated in a local golf tournament supporting Folds of Honor, and not even a global pandemic could keep us from returning this year.

We teamed up with our local PNW food cousins Hempler’s and Fletcher’s and did what we do best – feed people! We handed out pepperoni sticks and grilled up hot dogs to keep the golfers fed. All with appropriate PPE, of course.

The Muckleshoot Casino Washington Open Invitational was held at Meridian Valley Country Club in Kent, WA July 31-August 2. In conjunction with the associated auction it raised $48,000 for Folds of Honor.

Folds of Honor is a non-profit organization that offers scholarships to spouses and children of fallen or disabled service members. They honor the sacrifice of our nation’s heroes by standing in the financial gap to ensure affected families can still afford primary, secondary, and higher education.

The weather was beautiful and the atmosphere was lively. We feel so privileged to be able to support good work that’s going on in our community; we were thrilled to participate in such a worthy cause, and even more ecstatic that it was such a successful fundraiser. We look forward to participating again next year!

Now Is the Time to Try Isernio’s Ground Chicken (New Recipes Included)!

Your summer probably isn’t looking like you expected it to. 2020 has definitely thrown us all a few curve balls. So we thought it would be timely to bring you some news to brighten your season for the next couple of months:

Isernio’s ground chicken is available at Northwest Costco stores for the summer season!

If you haven’t tried Isernio’s ground chicken, now is the time. And if you’re a tried-and-true fan, it’s time to stock up. Our ground chicken rolls are available in a four-pack in the freezer sections of northwest Costco stores at a fantastic value.

Isernio’s ground chicken can be used as a healthy and flavorful swap in any recipe that calls for ground meat. You’ll immediately notice it tastes lighter and more fresh than ground beef or pork, and is juicier than ground turkey. This is because we only use whole-muscle skinless chicken with no fillers, additives, or preservatives.

Just chicken. Nothing else.

In fact, did you know that a standard 4-ounce serving of Isernio’s ground chicken:

  • has less fat than ground beef or ground turkey?
  • has fewer calories than ground turkey?
  • has the same amount of protein as ground beef?

Chicken wins in every category – including flavor.

Ground Chicken Recipe Ideas

Once you’ve picked up your Costco haul of Isernio’s ground chicken, it’s time to get cooking. Here are some of our favorite ways to use ground chicken!

Burgers: Who doesn’t love a good burger? We have lots of tips on how to keep your burgers juicy. You can also try one of these flavor-packed recipes!

  • Green Chile Chicken Burgers with Cheddar and Grilled Onions – Smoky roasted green chiles, grilled onion rounds, and sharp cheddar cheese make this the next-level burger recipe you’ve been searching for.
  • Grilled White Cheddar Chicken Burgers with Apple Slaw – Whole fennel seeds and melted white cheddar inside these ground chicken burgers adds a pop of flavor into every bite. Topped with a slaw made from fresh ingredients including sweet apples, these tasty burgers will please a crowd.
  • BLAT Burger – Top your burger with bacon, lettuce, avocado, and tomato for a fresh and flavorful burger! For a cut above, use Hempler’s bacon and support our local PNW cousin!

Meatballs: Lighten up your traditional meatballs by using juicy ground chicken instead of beef or pork.

Tacos: Simply use your regular taco seasoning, or try our original recipe for Baja Chicken Tacos.

Grilled Chicken Caesar Salad: No bland or dry chicken here. Make flavor-packed chicken patties to top your salads with this amazing recipe!

Asian-Inspired Recipes: Stir-fries are simple when you swap ground chicken for diced chicken. Try these!

  • Spicy Chicken & Cabbage Lettuce Cups – Plenty of tangy crunch and lean protein will make this easy skillet meal a popular choice for the whole family on a weekly basis.
  • Skillet Orange Chicken – Using ground chicken means this classic dish is on the table is less time than it takes to grab take-out!

With so many delicious possibilities, what are you waiting for? Grab your ground chicken at Costco today and get creative in the kitchen!

What’s your favorite way to use Isernio’s ground chicken?

Seven Recipes for Father’s Day that Kids Can Make

We know you want to spoil dad on Father’s Day – but so do the kids! Instead of tackling complex recipes that make them feel excluded, choose simple but indulgent dishes that the kids can have a hand in making. These kid-friendly options are bound to be a hit in any family – after all, the secret ingredient will be love. 

  • Here’s a cute idea – make roasted peppers and onions but spell out “dad” in sausages. Older kids can help cut the veggies, while younger kids can help with assembly.
  • Meatballs! Kids of any age can help mix and form meatballs. You can serve them in traditional marinara sauce, or get creative with one of these serving suggestions.
  • Skewers are fun to make and fun to eat. Little hands will love helping put together this special meal for dad. 
  • Ravioli Lasagna is a hearty twist on the classic. Kids of any age will have a blast layering frozen ravioli in place of regular noodles. Add cooked ground sausage to your sauce for extra flavor.
  • Everybody loves pizza (especially dad!) so make an upscale version by putting together an Italian Sausage Stromboli. The kids will enjoy spreading the toppings and helping to roll up the dough to put in the oven. 
  • Dad won’t complain about pizza for breakfast. Simple scrambled eggs and crumbled ground sausage are easy to make with supervision the night before, and assembly’s a breeze in the morning.
  • Sausage & Pepper Quesadillas elevate the typical fare but are simple enough for kids to manage stove-top. Just make sure you’re close by in case they need help flipping!

Don’t forget that your final dishes are only as good as the ingredients you choose. Use Isernio’s sausage to make any recipe feel upscale. Choose from links or rolls, chicken sausage or traditional pork, spicy or mild. There’s an Isernio’s variety for every preference!

What will you (and the kids) make this Father’s Day?

What Are San Marzano Tomatoes?

You can pour your soul into your cooking, but at the end of the day your final dish is only as good as the ingredients you use. To that end, you’ll find a lot of classic Italian recipes – including some of our own Isernio’s original recipes – call specifically for San Marzano tomatoes.

But are San Marzanos truly necessary? Let’s take a look at what they are, how they’re different, and whether they’re worth the extra cost.

What are San Marzano Tomatoes?

San Marzano tomatoes are a variety of tomatoes grown in a specific region of Italy. Located near Mount Vesuvius, the volcanic-infused soil and temperate climate produce a tomato that has fewer seeds, less acidity, and is sweeter than the traditional plum tomato. Because of this perfect balance, San Marzanos need very little in the way of seasoning straight out of the can. The resulting sauce is rich, flavorful, fresh, and practically effortless.

How Can I Identify Real San Marzano Tomatoes?

Because San Marzanos are only grown in a small area of the world, they are imported to the United States and command a premium price tag. But like anything, there are plenty of imitators. Real San Marzanos will have a DOP (Denominazione d’Origine Protetta) seal and certification number on the bottom of the can – and they are only sold whole or in fillets. Any “San Marzanos” that are diced or pureed are fraudulent.

Also, be aware of tomatoes labeled “San Marzano Style.” That means nothing – other than that you’re buying plum tomatoes packaged to look like San Marzanos.

Are San Marzanos Worth It?

Of course, we say yes. When you taste the difference you’ll understand why they’ve garnered the reputation they have. However, we also recognize that they’re not as easy to come by as traditional tomatoes and that they come with a premium price tag. Our best advice, even if you don’t opt for San Marzanos, is to try some new, higher-quality tomatoes than you’ve been traditionally using. Taste how it changes your final dish, and we bet you won’t go back to bland and watery value-priced versions.

Quality Matters

It’s always been our goal to bring you the highest quality Italian sausages available. With no fillers and only premium seasonings, you can taste the difference. Try Isernio’s in your next recipe and see how it takes the flavor to the next level. Try a new variety today!

Quarantine Cooking: Make Homemade Pasta!

You’ve probably got a little more time to spend in your kitchen these days, so why not take the time to do something you always wanted to do but never had the courage to try?! Make homemade pasta! Trust us, it’s way simpler than you think. 

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • 2 cups flour
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 Tb. olive oil
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • add water as needed to combine

To make the pasta dough:

In a food processor – Combine all ingredients until well combined. Knead by hand for 1-2 minutes.

In a stand mixer – Beat eggs; add all other ingredients and blend until well-combined. Knead with dough hook for 8-10 minutes.

By hand – Place flour on a clean work surface. Create a well in the middle; crack eggs into it and add salt and olive oil. Beat eggs while gradually incorporating flour. Mix by hand and then knead until smooth and elastic.

Once you have your dough, wrap it in plastic and allow to rest for 30 minutes. Then roll out the dough and cut it to your desired shape. Cook in salted boiling water until al dente, typically 1-3 minutes for fresh pasta.

Use fresh pasta in any of your favorite recipes! Make our half hour tomato sauce or extra-special Sunday sauce. Toss it with some classic meatballs or cut your noodles extra-wide to make this Pappardelle Pomodoro. The possibilities are endless; make sure to choose your favorite Isernio’s sausage variety to take your culinary experiment to the next level!

Ten Instant Pot Recipes You Have to Try

The Instant Pot has become a staple in many kitchens. With its ability to cook foods quickly, magically meld flavors without hours of simmering, and get dinner on the table without heating up the kitchen, many home cooks have fallen in love with the countertop kitchen appliance.

We’ve rounded up ten amazing recipes that you can make in your Instant Pot using your favorite Isernio’s sausage. Use traditional links, or opt for our easy-to-use rolls if the recipe calls for removing the casings. 

Instant Pot Italian Sausage and Peppers – This classic Italian dish has never been so easy!

Instant Pot Bangers and Mash – Use your favorite type of sausage to make links and potatoes all at one time.

Instant Pot Italian Sausage Chili – Use Isernio’s rolls to make this comfort food in far less time than it takes to make it stove-top.

Instant Pot Sausage Gnocchi Soup – Using potato gnocchi instead of fresh potato chunks gives this take on Zuppa Toscana an elegant flair!

Instant Pot Sausage, Egg, & Cheese Strata – Breakfast in the Instant Pot? Yes, you can!

Biscuits & Sausage Gravy – Want the quick-and-easy version? This is the recipe you want. Want the “foodie” version that’s a little more labor-intensive? Here you go.

Chicken Sausage Noodle Soup – No need to boil and shred chicken for this version of the comforting classic.

Instant Pot BBQ Sausage & Pepper Sandwiches – This recipe even gives you instructions on how to make it a freezer meal for a super-fast weeknight dinner.

Instant Pot Sausage and Rice Stuffed Peppers – No need to heat up your whole kitchen; just make your stuffed peppers in the Instant Pot!

Instant Pot Italian Sausage Pasta – We love a good bowl of comforting pasta. This creamy dish won’t disappoint!

Isernio’s offers several varieties in both links and rolls to match your family’s lifestyle needs and preferences. We have both Mild and Hot Italian Sausage made with either chicken or pork, and Classic Pork Sausage or Classic Chicken Sausage. Find your favorite variety in a store near you, and try a new Instant Pot recipe today!

Authentic Italian Sausage Made Right Here in the PNW

We love a good story, so for those of you who don’t know it, we thought we’d tell you ours:

Frank Isernio was born to Italian immigrants who settled in Seattle’s Beacon Hill neighborhood. With a father who grew the family’s vegetables and a mother who took immense pride in her traditional Italian cooking, Frank grew up with strong work ethic and a sincere appreciation for fresh ingredients, uncompromising quality, and his cultural roots.

Frank began making sausage as a hobby, using his mother’s time-tested recipe as inspiration. Few authentic Italian sausages were available commercially in the area, so eventually he was convinced to begin selling his sausages to local restaurants. It started as a part-time venture alongside his full-time job as a pipefitter, but the quality of Isernio’s sausages spoke for itself and it bloomed into a full-scale commercial operation.

As the product line grew and distribution expanded, it became necessary to relocate production to a facility with expanded capacity. Committed to staying local where the Isernio’s roots ran deep, the company moved into a state-of-the-art manufacturing plant in Kent, WA in 2012.

Isernio’s is a local company that has received both national and international recognition for its quality, innovation, and authenticity. So the next time you’re looking for high-quality fresh sausage for your traditional (and not-so-traditional) dishes, look no further than your own backyard! Isernio’s brings you the best of Italy straight from the Pacific Northwest. We’re proud to be your neighbor!


The Isernio’s Timeline

The Isernio’s Story