Cudighi Sandwich {Cudighi Recipe}

5 from 3 votes
Calories: |Fat: |Carbohydrates: |Protein: | 40 minutes
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Inspired by Cotechino, Cudighi is a pork sausage from Upper Michigan Peninsula, featuring wine, nutmeg, cinnamon, and cloves. Savory and aromatic delight!
Cudighi, a cherished pork sausage originating from Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, showcases a rich blend of Italian heritage and Midwestern culinary traditions. Introduced by Italian immigrants in 1936, it draws inspiration from Cotechino sausage, featuring a distinctive flavor profile accentuated by wine and mulling spices like nutmeg, cinnamon, and cloves. Crafting Cudighi begins with selecting lean and fatty pork cuts, typically shoulder and bacon, mixed with red wine and an array of spices. The ideal ratio is 2/3 lean meat to 1/3 fatty meat, although variations exist depending on personal preference and pork quality. After seasoning, the pork is ground to desired consistency, forming a sausage paste ready for stuffing into casings or shaping into patties. An optional step includes freezing the mixture as is. The process may involve the use of a meat grinder with tube accessories for efficiency. Whether enjoyed fresh or frozen, Cudighi embodies the essence of Italian-American cuisine, offering a savory and aromatic experience reminiscent of old-world flavors mingled with the comforts of the Midwest.

Why you’ll like it

  • Inspired by Cotechino sausage: Cudighi is a pork sausage originating from the Upper Michigan Peninsula, featuring flavors of wine and mulling spices like nutmeg, cinnamon, and cloves. It was introduced as Gudighi in 1936 by Italian immigrants inspired by Italian Cotechino sausage.
  • Lean and fatty pork cuts: To create the beloved Cudighi Sandwich in Upper Michigan, the key is mixing lean and fatty pork cuts with spices, then serving the cooked sausage in a roll with mozzarella cheese and marinara sauce, often garnished with sweet peppers while avoiding garlic and onions.
  • Versatile dish: You can experiment to find your own unique Cudighi sandwich style.



Tips & Tricks For The Perfect Cudighi

  • The trick to obtaining the perfect Cudighi Sandwich loved by Yoopers is just to mix the lean pork cuts with the fatty ones and add the spices.
  • Once, the sausage meat is cooked, then put in a roll together with mozzarella cheese and marinara sauce. Then I like to top it with sweet peppers avoiding the garlic and onions altogether!
  • This is my take on cudighi! Just go for it and find your own Cudighi style.


Ingredient Substitutions & Variations

  • Spicier. Add cayenne to the spices mix.
  • Meat recipe. Swap the Pork with beef or duck

Health Info

  • Calories:
  • Sugar:
  • Sodium:
  • Fat:
  • Carbohydrates:
  • Fiber:
  • Protein:

Cudighi Sandwich Recipe

5 from 3 votes
Author caroline sciberras
Servings 8
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 16 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Fat: |Carbohydrates: |Protein:


Inspired by Cotechino, Cudighi is a pork sausage from Upper Michigan Peninsula, featuring wine, nutmeg, cinnamon, and cloves. Savory and aromatic delight!


For the sausage stuffing (optional)

  • 1 meter beef casings for 2 lbs ground pork making 6-8 patties.

For the ground pork mix

  • 9 1/2 oz pork shoulder spalla di maiale
  • 9 1/2 oz pork neck capocollo
  • 9 1/2 oz pork butt fondello
  • 3 oz pancetta

For the spice blend

  • ½ cup dry wine red or white
  • 1 tbsp salt fine *less is needed if you want to consume fresh sausage, while you need slightly more if you intend to season it(
  • 1 tbsp black pepper ground
  • 1 clove garlic
  • ¼ tsp nutmeg ground
  • ¼ tsp cinnamon ground
  • 1 cloves toasted

For 8 sandwiches

  • 8 Bread Rolls
  • 16 slices Mozzarella Cheese
  • 8 Sweet Peppers
  • 2 Onions
  • 8 Garlic Cloves


Cudighi Sausage

  • Cut the pork into coarse cubes just the right size to fit into the mincer. Spread everything out on a work surface, mixing the lean parts with the fat ones.
  • Combine all the spices to a bowl.
  • Spread the spices on the ground pork , mixing well, so that the ingredients blend well with each other.
  • At this point, grind everything with the meat grinder choosing by how much you want the dough to be chopped more or less coarsely.
  • If you want a very fine minced mixture you can brush the meat twice, otherwise just once, it depends on personal tastes. You can also leave a part of the bacon to be ground separately, which is coarser.
  • Now add any other ingredients , such as wine or pepper or juniper grains, which could not be passed through the meat grinder. Mix well with your hands, or in a planetary mixer , to obtain a homogeneous mixture.
  • The sausage is ready

Cudighi Sandwich

  • Heat the marinara sauce and slice the sweet pickles, onions, garlic or any toppings you like for your sandwich.
  • Put the mozzarella cheese on top of the Culighi sausage and put it back on the grill to melt the cheese.
  • Pour the marinara sauce covering the meat patty and top with the pickles, onion and garlic.
  • Enjoy!

How to Make a Cudighi Sandwich 

For the meat

  1. Cut the meat into small pieces and mix with the wine and spices
  2. Combine well and then pass through the mincer. If you don’t have a mincer then you can use the food processor.
  3. Shape the sausage paste. Now you can either fill the paste into the casings or otherwise divide it into small pieces to freeze or cook as patties.
  4. Optionally, if you want to stuff the sausage into casings then you need around 1 meter casing for every 1kg sausage meat. Beware that the casings need to be soaked in warm water and a glass of wine. If you’re using a meat grinder, the job is easier by putting them in the tube accessory. The casine must protrude around 3 inches and then be tied with a knot before inserting any meat.

To Cook the Cudighi Patties in a Skillet

You can cook the Cudighi either on a grill, a burner, or skillet. Turn on the burner to medium to high warming it up. Then only once it has warmed up you can gently place each patty in a roundabout fashion on the skillet. After roughly about five to eight minutes go ahead and flip the patties you should see some good char marks here and make sure to cook this entirely the way through or until the middle of the pork patty itself reaches approximately 160°F / 70°C.
  1. On the burner, heat the skillet on medium to high heat. Leave it warm up well before putting, the sausage patties to cook.
  2. Leave to cook for 5-8 minutes before flipping the patty. Make sure it’s cooked throughout.
cook cudighi sausage

How to cook the Cudighi sausage in an oven

    1. To cook Cudighi sausage in the oven, preheat it to 375°F (190°C), arrange the sausages on a baking sheet, and bake for 20-30 minutes or until they reach an internal temperature of 160°F (71°C), turning them occasionally for even cooking.

How to prepare the cudighi sandwich

To prepare this Michigan sandwich, start by cooking the pork patties and heating the marinara sauce. Then, assemble the sandwich by placing mozzarella-topped sausage patties in bread rolls, adding warm marinara sauce, sweet peppers, and optionally, grilled onions and garlic, before closing and pressing it gently to hold everything in place.
  1. Heat the marinara sauce and slice the sweet pickles, onions, garlic or any toppings you like for your sandwich.
  2. Put the mozzarella cheese on top of the Cudighi sausage and put it back on the grill to melt the cheese.
  3. Pour the marinara sauce covering the meat patty and top with the pickles, onion and garlic.
  4. Enjoy!
Cudighi Sandwich


How is the Cudighi Sausage Stored

Sausages can be stored by:
1. Freezing
2. Vacuum packing
3. Seasoning with extra salt.

Can you freeze the Cudighi sausages?

You can either make a real sausage by filling beef casings with the Cudighi sausage paste or form meat patties and freeze them before cooking.

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Recipe Rating

3 thoughts on “Cudighi Sandwich Recipe”

  1. 5 stars
    Oh, I absolutely adore cudighi! It takes me right back to my childhood in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, where I grew up. My grandma used to make this delicious Italian sausage sandwich, and I’ve carried on the tradition with her cherished cudighi recipe. It’s the perfect blend of spices and that fantastic kick of heat. Apart from the. sautéed peppers and onions I love topping it off with a generous dollop of marinara sauce. It’s the ultimate comfort food on a chilly day! This recipe is a true Yooper delight.

    1. 5 stars
      Hi Karen! We’re thrilled to hear about your love for cudighi and the wonderful memories it brings from your childhood in the UP. It’s fantastic that you’ve carried on your grandma’s tradition, keeping those delicious flavors alive. Cudighi with sautéed peppers, onions, and marinara sauce sounds absolutely mouthwatering! Thanks for sharing your experience, and we hope you continue to enjoy this delightful dish for years to come. If you ever need more recipes or cooking tips, feel free to reach out. Happy cudighi-making!

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