Bangers and mash is quintessential comfort food. One bite, and we’re certain you’ll agree. The addition of roasted red onions with tangy balsamic, sweet brown sugar, and a sprinkle of chili flakes, is superb.
Sure, you could call this recipe for Britain’s best-loved comfort food Sausages With Roasted Sweet and Spicy Red Onions and Mashed Potatoes Gilded with Parmesan. But that’s so American. We sorta feel obliged to call it bangers and mash, just, you know, because. Faux British accent optional.–Renee Schettler
LC Banging Out Bangers And Mash
Wanna bang out this bangers and mash recipe in even less time? The roasted red onions are a lovely, sweetly sour complement in a fetching shade of red, though you’ll be hollering “Dinner!” half an hour earlier if you pretend they don’t exist—just on über-crazy nights, natch.
Bangers and Mash
For the onions
- 4 red onions peeled and cut into eighths
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar (optional)
- 1/2 teaspoon crushed red chile flakes
- Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 2 tablespoons balsamic or red wine vinegar
For the bangers and mash
- 1 1/3 pounds (about 4 large) potatoes, such as Desiree, Yukon Gold, or red-skinned peeled, if desired, and cut into 1 1/2-inch chunks
- 8 links raw sausage whether chicken, mild or spicy Italian, or whatever makes you happy
- 1/2 cup milk preferably whole
- 2 tablespoons (1 ounce) unsalted butter
- 1/3 cup (generous 1 ounce) finely grated Parmesan cheese
- Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
Make the onions
- Preheat the oven to 400°F (204°C).
- Place the onion wedges in a single layer in a baking dish. Sprinkle with the sugar, if using, chile flakes, salt, and pepper, and then drizzle with the oil and the vinegar, stirring gently to coat and carefully keeping the wedges intact. Bake until tender, 35 to 50 minutes, stirring the onions once or twice. Let cool slightly in the baking dish. (You can set the onions aside at room temperature for up to several hours.)
Make the bangers and mash
- While the onions are in the oven, bring a pot of salted water to a boil. Add the potatoes and cook until tender, about 20 minutes.
- Meanwhile, sizzle the sausages in a skillet over medium-high heat, turning as needed, until well browned and cooked through, about 15 minutes total. Remove from the heat and let cool slightly.
- Warm the milk and butter in a small saucepan over low heat until the butter melts. Remove the pan from the heat and cover to keep warm.
- Drain the potatoes and mash them with a handheld potato masher. Slowly add the milk and butter mixture and stir with a wooden spoon until smooth. Stir in the Parmesan and season to taste with salt and pepper.
- Plop a mound of Parmesan mash on each plate and lean a couple of sausages against it. Add some of the caramelized onion wedges and, well, you can take it from here.
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Recipe Testers’ Reviews
Easy comfort food goodness is how I’d describe this recipe. Sweet caramelized onions made in the oven means you don’t have to carefully watch the stove top to prevent burning while you tend to the other elements of this recipe. The mashed potatoes were really easy, and as someone who often “wings it” when it comes to adding milk and butter to my mash, I found the ratio of ingredients to be perfect—my potatoes were neither dry nor soupy. Finally, I really liked the overall combination of the slightly sweet, earthy onions with the savory sausage and the not-too-rich potatoes. I didn’t find the onions to be as caramelized as I’d normally want and am wondering what the “fix” would be, since I truly liked the idea of putting them in the oven. Higher oven temp? Longer cooking time? Thinner slices? I chose fresh chicken and apple sausages (for the kids) and chipotle chicken sausages (for the adults). Both were good choices.
Such simple ingredients came together to make a wonderfully flavorful dish! I opted to use mild Italian sausage for this recipe and it complemented the other flavors well. The onions were my favorite part of the recipe and really brought the dish together. The combination of the brown sugar and balsamic vinegar along with the other ingredients made for some really good roasted onions! The Parmesan mashed potatoes were so good. The sweetness of the onions, the creaminess of the potatoes, and the savory sausage really worked well together. This is definitely a dish that I’ll make again. It also makes for a very impressive plate if you pile the onions on top of the potatoes and then lean those sausage links on the whole mound—I love a dish that looks and tastes good!
This is a great all-in-one recipe for supper anytime. We loved the spiciness of the onions with the creamy Parmesan mashed potatoes topped with the sausage links. The best bites were those that had some of each ingredient. Wondering if maybe next time the sausages couldn’t be cooked along with the onions in the oven for even more flavor and one less pan to clean. Otherwise this dish was perfect. I enjoyed the subtle sweetness the brown sugar gave to the onions. I opted to use red wine vinegar but could see how balsamic would also be nice. I used 2% milk since that’s all I had in the house and the potatoes were still delightful.
This was a comforting dish to eat and an easy one to make. The onions weren’t done in the 35 minutes specified in the recipe; they were still firm. Since the balsamic vinegar was beginning to burn on the bottom of the baking dish, and the edges of the onion wedges were beginning to dry out, we drizzled a bit more olive oil on the onions and put them back into the oven for an extra 15 minutes of cooking time. We used Yukon Gold potatoes cut into 1 1/2-inch chunks. They took about 30 minutes to get tender. And then the sausages. We used a combination of sweet Italian, hot Italian, and Calabrese sausages all made at a local Italian deli. Great ingredients make such a difference in a dish.
We liked each of the components of this dish separately, although they were especially good together. I used sweet Italian sausages that had a hint of spice to them and they were excellent with the cheesy potatoes and the sweet caramelized onions. The onions were a little bit sweeter than I like them, so I’d omit the brown sugar next time.
This recipe makes a very simple but satisfying dinner. The family was ecstatic as it isn’t often I let them have sausages and mash for dinner. I used a fig- infused balsamic vinegar so I didn’t feel the need to add any additional sugar to the onions before baking them. It was an inspired choice, as the onions were sticky sweet with a real smack of heat from the chile flakes. So good! I used an Italian turkey sausage. I haven’t boiled potatoes in years (I usually steam them) but did so for testing purposes. I’d been given some fresh red-skinned potatoes from my neighbor’s garden so after a good washing I didn’t bother to peel them. The 1/3 cup of Parmesan with the warm cream and butter was just enough to make the mash cheesy and smooth but not gloppy. This was a very easy meal to put together. I was pleasantly surprised at how simple it was to manage each component so that they all finished at about the same time. I’ll definitely make this dish and its various parts again.
When I make sausages, potatoes, and onions, I usually just roast them together in a pan in the oven. After testing this recipe, I’ll be making them this new way from now on. The flavors of brown sugar and vinegar in the caramelized onions melded perfectly and resulted in a pleasant sweet-and-sour effect. (I strongly recommend using balsamic rather than red wine vinegar.) The Parmesan mash is a great complement and very easy to prepare. To avoid watery potatoes, I tossed the chunks back in the pan after draining and cooked them for another 2 to 3 minutes. The presentation on the plate was very attractive with the mash topped with a sausage or two and a few spoonfuls of onions. A great dish for the cooler days ahead!
The onions smelled fantastic as they were roasting and the potatoes tasted delicious. My only reservation here would be that the choice of sausage is left to the cook. Pick the wrong sausage and the flavors might not work. The cooking time may vary depending on the size of the sausages, too. I doubled the mash and had very little left over after feeding 5 people, although I had 4 leftover sausages. I’m serving a family though, and not all of us are adults.
A modern take on the traditional British bangers and mash. Whenever I make bangers and mash, I use our local, fresh, plump Cumberland sausages made from a producer with very happy Berkshire pigs. That is what I used here. I like the addition of the chile flakes to the roasted onions, although I’d use more next time. The roasted onions became almost glazed with the balsamic vinegar. I chose to use the brown sugar to sprinkle on the onions. The roasting time was about 50 minutes to get the onions caramelized and soft enough; in fact, after roasting them for 35 minutes, I spread the onion pieces out to roast more evenly as there were chunks that were far from being cooked through. The Parmesan added a delicious boost to the mash. The potatoes were rich and buttery, just as they should be. If forced to choose between traditional stove top, thinly sliced, caramelized onions and this method, my pick would definitely be the former. But these were good in their own right, and the dish came together nicely with everything complementing each other. It really did taste good. The onions would be great in a fresh tomato salad, a warm potato salad, or in a traditional onion sauce or gravy. There is definitely potential for them to be used in many ways! And I like that.
This is a great Sunday dinner. The onions are the right amount of spicy and sweet (I recommend using the sugar) and the potatoes have a good butter to cheese ratio. It’s also pretty low maintenance—if you wanted to make it even more so, you could roast the sausages with the onions, but then you’d probably lose a little edge from both elements. Good, simple, hearty flavors that are hard to beat.
Overall, this was really tasty. I ended up purchasing sweet and hot Italian chicken sausages and we grilled them. They were the perfect thing to go with the rest of the dish. For the mashed potatoes, I used red-skinned potatoes and a really tasty 2-year-old Parmesan cheese. The flavor of the mashed potatoes was really good. That said, the texture was a bit too sturdy. Next time, I’ll start with a 1/2 cup of milk and add a little more at a time to get to the right consistency. I think the amount of milk you need probably depends on the potatoes you use, so it makes sense to adjust the liquid accordingly. We loved the baked onions. I used the brown sugar and I think it helps bring out the sweetness of the onions. Next time, I’ll also make sure to baste the tops with the cooking liquid a few times during baking to soften them up more. I served the dish with a side of braised kale, which paired well with the sausage, onions, and mashed potatoes.
The recipe worked as written and was easy to follow. If I was to repeat this recipe I probably wouldn’t heat the milk and the butter together first, but would instead just add them directly to the mashed potatoes. I used a potato ricer to mash the potatoes and the result was creamy and lump-free. The chile gave an appropriate level of kick to the caramelized onions. I thought that the Parmesan flavor in the mash was quite subtle and would’ve liked this to have been stronger.
This is good, honest comfort food. Easy to cook and assemble. I used a coil of country sausage and it was delicious.
Originally published October 08, 2012
If you make this recipe, snap a photo and hashtag it #LeitesCulinaria. We'd love to see your creations on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.
This was fantastic! My husband is a big fan of bangers and mash, and he said this was the best he’d ever eaten. The preparation is simple and so quick. I used medium-size Yukon Gold potatoes and cut them into quarters. It took about 20 minutes for them to cook. Since the recipe wasn’t specific about the kind or flavor of sausage, I chose some smoked bratwurst. The sweetness of the balsamic, brown-sugared onions with the fluffy, savory, cheesy mash was a delightful combination. This was a winner at my house. Yum!