This colorful couscous and sausage dish is the perfect light meal on a warm summer afternoon. Couscous always gives me a satisfying, comfort-food happy tummy. When I found myself with some extra time recently, I knew I wanted to do some recipe testing with couscous.
Why cook with couscous?
Two words, sister: BUSY.MOM. Couscous is awesome to serve for dinner on busy weeknights or nights when you just don’t feel like cooking because it’s easy to cook, it’s low-maintenance, and it’s ready in 10 minutes.
The preparation for each brand of couscous may vary. Some cook with a 1:1 water (or broth) to couscous ratio, and others call for more liquid. Before you head to the store for ingredients, make a note on your shopping list to grab the couscous first. Then you can check to see how much broth that brand of couscous needs in order to cook to its full, puffed-up goodness. We used this kind. It called for 1 Tbsp. oil and 2 cups water or broth. I used broth.
Prep the veggies first
Since couscous cooks so quickly, and plus you’ll be tossing the carrot in with it, it’s a good idea to do all the chopping, grating and dicing beforehand. Grate 1 carrot, mince 1 garlic clove, chop up ½ cup diced onion and1 smallish red bell pepper. Quickly cut ½ cup loosely packed cilantro too. Keep everything separate because it doesn’t all go into the same pot or at the same time.
Cook the sausage and couscous
Add the oil to a large fry pan and add the ground sausage. It wants to clump back together, so break it up with a spatula frequently. When the meat is browned, add in the onions and garlic. Saute, stirring occasionally, for 3-5 minutes or until the onion is translucent. The first time I cooked this couscous and sausage recipe, I used a brand of Italian sausage that had just the faintest hint of crushed red pepper in it. Unfortunately, it was enough that my kids noticed. It was way too “spicy” for them. The next time we made this I was careful to choose an Italian sausage that was marked “mild”, and it the kids were much happier. In fact, Johnny (5) said, “Mommy I thought this was going to be yucky but it’s not!” Thanks for the compliment, kiddo… I think.
Meanwhile, cook the couscous according to package directions, adding in the carrot when you put the couscous in the water.
Mix everything together
When the couscous is cooked, add it to the fry pan with the sausage mixture. Add in the diced red bell pepper and toss everything together. Serve it alongside a simple baby arugula salad and dinner is done!
- 1 Tbsp. olive oil, or more depending on couscous preparation instructions
- 1 lb. ground mild Italian sausage
- 1 minced garlic
- 1/2 cup diced onion
- 1 (10 oz.) pkg couscous
- 2 cups chicken or vegetable broth (optional and depending on couscous preparation instructions)
- 1 shredded carrot
- 1 diced red bell pepper
- 1/2 cup chopped cilantro
- 1 package baby arugula lettuce, optional
- Heat 1 Tbsp. oil in a large fry pan. Saute the sausage in oil until browned, breaking it up with a spatula.
- Add garlic and onions to the sausage and cook for 3-5 minutes. Drain the sausage and return to the pan.
- Meanwhile, prepare the couscous according to package directions. Put the shredded carrots into the boiling water or broth when you add the couscous.
- When couscous and sausage are finished cooking, mix them together in a large dish, or in the fry pan if there is enough room.
- Stir the red bell pepper and cilantro into the couscous and sausage mixture.
- Serve warm and garnished with arugula lettuce, if desired.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 6 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving:Calories: 461Total Fat: 29gSaturated Fat: 10gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 21gCholesterol: 85mgSodium: 717mgCarbohydrates: 21gFiber: 2gSugar: 4gProtein: 28g