Polish Sausages

Polish sausages, made in Poland, have always displayed a consistent quality. Take for example the finest meat stick in the world, the Kabanosy. This pork sausage has been made the same way for a few hundred years and every person loves it and most people in Poland are familiar with the recipe. Unfortunately today, kabanosy is made from chicken, turkey, beef, or other meat combinations. Although the communist government was a step back, they did create rigid standards for making meat products and sausages and those standards were stictly enforced. This forced the state run meat industry to produce great products which were the same all over the country. There is probably no other country in the world that has created national standards for making sausages and enforced them for 50 years. The disliked sytem is long gone but it has left behind the legacy of wonderful meat products which are still made and sold in Poland. Although the sausage recipe may remain close to the original, the modern methods of production and chemicals that are used produce products that might look pretty but do not taste the same as before. The only way to experience the taste of those original sausages is to make them yourself at home.

The Official List of Polish Sausages

Hot Smoked Dry and Semi-Dry Sausages

(Kiełbasy trwałe i półtrwałe pieczone lub parzone)

(B = Baked, P = Poached, P/B = Poached or Baked)

Cold Smoked Dry and Semi-Dry Sausages

(Not Cooked, Ready to Eat)

(Kiełbasy trwałe, półtrwałe i nietrwałe wedzone surowe)

1* Kabanosy B Kabanosy 1 Salami Salami
2* Hunter's Sausage B Kiełbasa myśliwska 2 Hungarian Salami Salami Węgierskie
3* Salami Krakowskie B Salami kakowskie 3 Salmon Sausage Kiełbasa Łososiowa
4* Juniper Sausage B Kiełbasa jałowcowa 4 Delicatessen Sausage Kiełbasa Delikatesowa
5 Hunt Sausage B Kiełbasa łowiecka 5 Hungarian Smoked Sausage Kiełbasa Węgierska Wędzona
6 Podkarpacka Sausage B Kiełbasa podkarpacka 6* Polish Smoked Sausage Kiełbasa Polska Wędzona
7 Loin Sausage B Kiełbasa polędwicowa 7 Smoked Frankfurters Frankfurterki Wędzone
8* Limanowska Sausage B Kiełbasa limanowska 8 Soft Serwolatka Serwolatka Miękka
9 Tarnowska Veal Sausage B Kiełbasa cielęca tarnowska 9* Metka Metka
10* Tuchowska Sausage B Kiełbasa tuchowska 10* Pomorska Metka Metka Pomorska
11 Beef Sausage B Kiełbasa wołowa krajana 11* Brunszwicka Metka Metka Brunszwicka
12* Rzeszowska Sausage B Kiełbasa rzeszowska 12* Salmon Metka Metka Łososiowa
13* Countryside Sausage B Kiełbasa wiejska

Fresh Sausages (Not Ready to Eat)

(Kiełbasy nietrwałe surowe)

14* Krakowska Cut Sausage B Kiełbasa krakowska krajana 1* White Sausage Kiełbasa biała surowa
15 Vacation Sausage B Kiełbasa wczasowa

Head Cheeses



16 Tourist Sausage B Kiełbasa turystyczna 1 Italian Head Cheese (Polish Style) Salceson włoski
17* Krakowska Sausage P/B Kiełbasa krakowska 2* Silesian Head Cheese Salceson śląski
18 Foundry Sausage P Kiebasa hutnicka 3* Brunszwicki Head Cheese Salceson brunszwicki
19 Bialostocka Sausage P Kiełbasa białostocka 4* Tongue Head Cheese Salceson ozorkowy
20* Baltycka Sausage P/B Kiełbasa bałtycka 5* Black Head Cheese Salceson czarny
21* Ukrainian Sausage P Kiełbasa ukraińska 6* Pomorski Black Head Cheese Salceson czarny pomorski
22* Zywiecka Sausage P/B Kiełbasa żywiecka 7* Wolsztynski Head Cheese Salceson wolsztyński
23 Kujawska Sausage P Kiełbasa kujawska 8* All trimmings Head Cheese Salceson podrobowy
24* Lithuanian Sausage P/B Kiełbasa litewska 9* Mazowiecki Head Cheese Salceson mazowiecki
25* Podhalanska Sausage P/B Kiełbasa podhalańska 10* Countryside Head Cheese Salceson wiejski
26 Tarnogorska Sausage P Kiełbasa tarnogórska 11 Pork  Head Cheese Głowizna wieprzowa prasowana
27* Beer Sausage P/B Kiełbasa piwna

Liver Sausages

(Kiszki pasztetowe i wątrobiane)

28 Goose Beer Sausage P Kiełbasa piwna z gęsiną 1* Pate Sausage Kiszka pasztetowa
29 Torunska Pork Sausage P Kiełbasa toruńska wieprzowa 2* Pate Sausage with Semolina Kiszka pasztetowa z kaszą manną
30 Belzka Sausage P Kiełbasa bełzka 3* Liver Sausage Kiszka wątrobiana
31 Serbska Sausage P Kiełbasa serbska 4* Obornicka Liver Sausage Kiszka wątrobiana obornicka

Hot Smoked Regular Sausages

(Kiełbasy nietrwałe grubo- i średniorozdrobnione)

5 Liver Sausage with Barley Groats Kiszka wątrobiana z kaszą jęczmienną
1* Ham Sausage P Kiełbasa szynkowa

Offal Sausages

(Kiszki podrobowe)

2 Beef Ham Sausage P Kiełbasa szynkowa wołowa 1* Brain Sausage Kiszka mózgowa
3* Lemon Sausage P Kiełbasa cytrynowa 2* Pork Jowl Sausage Kiszka podgardlana
4* Krakowska Sausage P Kiełbasa krakowska 3 Countryside Sausage Kiszka wiejska
5* Garlic Sausage P Kiełbasa czosnkowa

Blood Sausages

(Kiszki krwiste)

6* Silesian Sausage P Kiełbasa śląska 1* Breadcrumbs Blood Sausage Kiszka bułczana krwista
7* Ordinary Sausage P Kiełbasa zwyczajna 2* Lodzka Blood Sausage Kiszka łódzka
8* Caraway Sausage P Kiełbasa kminkowa 3* Blood Sausage Kiszka krwista
9 King Sausage P Kiełbasa królewiecka 4* Blood Sausage Ordinary Kiszka krwista zwyczajna
10 Bieszczady Sausage P Kiełbasa bieszczadzka 5* Blood Sausage Supreme Kiszka kaszana wyborowa jęczmienna lub gryczana
11* Gnieznienska Sausage P Kiełbasa gnieżnieńska 6* Blood Sausage Popular Kiszka kaszana popularna jęczmienna lub gryczana
12* Bydgoska Sausage P Kiełbasa bydgoska 7* Rice Blood Sausage Kiszka krwista z ryżem
13* Tomaszowska Sausage P Kiełbasa tomaszowska 8* Silesian Krupnioki Krupnioki śląskie
14 Mazowiecka Sausage P Kiełbasa mazowiecka

This is the official list of Polish Sausages as listed in Polish Government Recipe Guides. These sausages were made by the state meat plants and distributed throughout the country for sale. Most of those sausages are still made today.

Sausages marked with an asterisk ( * ) are listed  in the book  Polish Sausages


15 Sluzewiecka Sausage P Kiełbasa służewiecka

Emulsified Sausages

(Kiełbasy nietrwałe drobno rozdrobnione)

1* Serdelki P Serdelki
2* Steamed Sausage P Kiełbasa parówkowa
3* Steamed Sausage links P Parówki
4* Serdelowa Veal Sausage P Kiełbasa serdelowa cielęca
5* Serdelowa Sausage P Kiełbasa serdelowa
6* Mortadela (Polish Style) P Mortadela
7* Veal Mortadel (Polish Style) P Mortadela cielęca
8 Italian Mortadela (Polish Style) P Mortadela włoska
9 Beef Mortadela P Mortadela wołowa
10* Polish Sausage Links P Kiełbaski porcjowe
11* Bacon sausage P Kiełbasa boczkowa
12 Popular Sausage Links P Kiełbaski porcjowe popularne
13 Cieszyn Steamed Sausage Links P Parówki cieszyńskie
14 Popular Sausage Links with Semolina P Kiełbaski porcjowe popularne z kaszą manną


The Official Classification of Polish Sausages

Polish sausage classification sounds very technical and is somewhat confusing. It divides sausages by the size of the minced meat. You may say that the the size of the grinder plate establishes sausage type:

Note: to produce a high yield sausage ("wysokowydajna") which weighs much more the original weight of meat used requires the addition of water and chemicals that will hold this water inside. Note that there is no upper limit.

Almost all sausages that will belong to one of the above groups will be called by its general name Kielbasa and will be followed by its proper name, for example: Kielbasa Szynkowa, Kielbasa Wiejska, Kielbasa Serdelowa, Kielbasa Krakowska, Kielbasa Mysliwska etc.

Then there is a more practical classification:

plus a special group of sausages:

Pate, liver and blood sausages are commonly known as kiszka sausages.

Fresh, emulsified and special group sausages belong to short-life sausages.

Sausages in the special group are made from less noble parts of the animal like: organ meat (liver, heart, lung, brain, spleen, tripe, casings, jowls, dewlap, skins, snouts and blood). When you see the word kiszka in the name it signifies the fact that organ meats and/or blood were used as materials. Our beloved hot dogs, bologna or its american version known as boloney are made from such meats.

The special group of sausages are fully cooked (boiled) sausages which are normally not smoked. However, at your discretion liver sausages can be smoked for this characteristic smoky flavor. Some headcheeses were also smoked to extend their keeping qualities.

Then each sausage, including special group sausages, is further broken down by the permissible amount (in percent) of protein, fat, salt and water it can contain. We are not going to study Polish sausages in such a detail as this is not a meat technology book and it may create unnecessary confusion.

We would like to mention the fact that it is possible to make different types of a particular sausage not changing its original recipe but employing different manufacturing techniques. And the same sausage will have a different texture, will have a different degree of saltiness and will have different degree of preservation qualities. White Sausage and Polish Smoked Sausage (cold or hot smoked) are made up of the same ingredients but are different products. Smoked variety is cured and has nitrite added, all the rest remains the same. In everyday life people will simply drop the noun Kielbasa altogether and will ask in a store for: Szynkowa, Wiejska, Serdelowa, Krakowska, Mysliwska etc. This is all that is needed as everybody is pretty much familiar with those names hearing them around from childhood. Tthe word kielbasa (a sausage) has a little meaning if you do not follow it with the proper name of the sausage.

Most Polish sausages derive their name from:

An average person is not really aware and could not care less about this technical classification as all sausages have their own characteristic names and people know them.

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