When the weather begins to turn and one-skillet meals are back on the menu, I absolutely recommend my Kielbasa Skillet recipe! If you are looking for a recipe that is flavorful, quick to make, and totally customizable, this is the perfect one.
The aromas of apple, kielbasa, and rosemary perfectly compliment each other and will guarantee that your family will follow their noses to the kitchen. Serve this dish over wild rice, cabbage, quinoa, or even spaghetti squash.
This one-pan meal is packed with savory goodness, natural ingredients, and takes 20 minutes from prep to serving. You can use whatever apples, onions, and sausage you prefer, but check out my recommendations below.
Make it your own and share with friends with limited prep, cook, and clean-up time needed! And the best part? You only have one dish to clean when it’s finished!
Why you’ll love this recipe
- 20-minute meal from prep to serving.
- Easy cleanup.
- Seasonal flavor in every bite.
Key Ingredients and Substitutions
Onions - I like Vidalia onions but these can be substituted with yellow, white, or red onions.
Apples - I use my favorite honey crisp apples, but you can use any apple that will soften when cooked but not break down completely.
Kielbasa Sausage - I recommend uncured, 100% grass-fed beef Kielbasa for this recipe, but you can use your favorite brand of Kielbasa or smoked sausage. The brand I used is Teton Waters Ranch.
Butter- Butter adds to the caramelized onion and apple flavoring. However, you can swap out this fat for a non-dairy alternative like olive oil.
Fresh rosemary- The fresh rosemary in this recipe, adds to the flavoring the skillet needs to stand out as a favorite. Fresh is best!! You can use dried but use about half the amount.
How To Make Kielbasa Skillet
Step 1|Heat the skillet.
Melt butter in a large skillet over medium heat. This is an entire meal, so a large skillet is important.
Step 2| Add Onions
Add your sliced onions to the skillet. Sprinkle the salt and pepper over the onions and stir occasionally until they start to turn translucent -- about 3 minutes.
Step 3| Add Apples
Add the apples to the skillet and stir them into the onions. Let these sit for 3 more minutes.
Step 4| Add Kielbasa & Rosemary
Add the kielbasa or sausage, and stir it in with your apples and onions and cover the skillet for 6 to 9 minutes until heated through.
Remove the cover and add the fresh chopped rosemary. Stir everything together for 30 seconds.
Serve and enjoy!
Serve immediately! This recipe serves 6.
Chef’s Tips and Variations
- Brown the onions- Once you toss the onions in the pan, let them sit for a good 2 or 3 minutes before stirring. This will let the onions brown and char and add color, flavor, and texture to your dish.
- Pick your favorite ingredients- Swapping out different kinds of apples, onions, and sausage in this recipe will change the flavor slightly depending on what you use. Play around with your favorite ingredients to find the perfect combination for you!
- If you substitute a different apple variety, make sure it won't break down when cooking. Braeburn, Fuji, Golden Delicious, or Jonagolds are all great alternatives, just keep in mind, the flavor is different than the Honeycrisp used here.
- Go preservative free- When selecting your protein for this dish, whether it be Kielbasa or another smoked sausage, try to use something that is natural and uncured with no preservatives.
Frequently Asked Questions
The short answer is that Kielbasa is just the Polish term for sausage! Traditionally, Kielbasa is coarse smoked sausage, usually made with pork. But you can find Kielbasa in almost any variety, made with any meat and packed with different seasons.
Kielbasa that is sliced into ½ inch pieces and fried in a skillet takes 6- 9 minutes to cook through.
- A Spring mix green salad or roasted vegetables pair nicely with this dinner.
- If you want to add soup to round out the meal, my butternut squash soup is delicious! Think Panera, but better, not to mention healthier.
- Looking for more creative ways to use Kielbasa or sausage? Try out my frittata recipe -- but swap out the bacon for sausage!
- If you're like me and can't get enough apples when they are in season, serve these healthy baked apples for dessert.
Storing and freezing
- This Kielbasa Skillet recipe will be good in your fridge for three to four days.
- You can freeze the leftovers. Use an air tight container or freezer bag, it will stay good for up to three months. Thaw before gently reheating on the stove top.
- Kielbasa, or any sausage, is great to keep on hand in your freezer for fast, delicious recipes that you can make on the fly.
- Since it’s apple season, consider freezing some to enjoy during the cold winter months! To freeze ripe apples, dice them and then seal them in an airtight freezer bag. Frozen apples will be softer, so plan to use them in baking or skillet recipes.
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Kielbasa Skillet with Apples and Onions
- large skillet
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 2 medium Vidalia onions sliced into ½ inch half moons
- 2 medium apples sliced into ½ inch slices
- 24 ounces Kielbasa or smoked sausage sliced into 1 inch pieces
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
- 1 tablespoon fresh rosemary minced
- Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium heat.
- Add the onions, sprinkle with salt and pepper, stir occasionally until starting to turn translucent (about 3 minutes)
- Add the apples and stir into the onions, let that sit for about 3 minutes.
- Add the kielbasa, stir, and cover for 6-9 minutes until heated through.
- Remove the cover and add the fresh chopped rosemary, stir for 30 seconds.
- Serve immediately.
- Use your favorite brand of kielbasa. I like to use something natural and uncured with no preservatives. I used Teton for this recipe.
- You can substitute a yellow, white, or red onion in place of the Vidalia onions. It will change the flavor slightly depending on what you use.
- Use an apple that will soften slightly during cooking but not break down. I used honey crisp in this recipe because it’s my favorite.
- For charred onions, don't disturb for 1-2 minutes after putting in the pan and before stirring.