Usually in America, toad in the hole refers to an egg cooked in the hole cut out of a piece of bread. But in England, it's sausages cooked in what is essentially Yorkshire pudding.
To me, the English version is more whimsical, perhaps because Mr. Toad is my favorite character in The Wind in the Willows?
Watch This Traditional Toad-in-the-Hole Recipe
In any case, this recipe has a playful name, and much like its cousin "pigs in a blanket," is a hit with kids.
I first posted a recipe for Toad in the Hole back in 2003. I wasn't quite satisfied with that recipe, and based on feedback from readers and a bit more experimentation, updated the recipe. Hope you enjoy it!
Tips from Readers
Over the years, many readers, from the UK and beyond, have shared tips, opinions, and stories in the comments. Here are a few.
- Jason says, "Save time and cleaning by cooking the sausages in the oven in a metal pan about 2 or 3 inches deep and add the batter to this after cooking the sausages for about 15 minutes."
- Paul says, "Do not open the oven door once the batter is in the oven. 20 minutes or so should do it but if you like crispier puds, 25 mins up to 30 should suit ya. All ovens are different so this is a guide only."
- Jean says, "In Britain we cut the sausages in half and stand them up in the pan. Even if a few fall over some still emerge from the batter - looking like a toad in a hole!"
- Clive says, "My grandma Joan used to make this for us when we were children growing up in Lancashire, England. Add a sprig of thyme to the batter/mix before the dish goes in the oven."
Toad in the Hole Swaps and Subs
- Top with onion, beef or chicken gravy when serving.
- Add thinly sliced onions to the sausages.
- Use gluten-free baking flour blend instead of all-purpose flour.
- Substitute almond milk for the milk.
- Substitute lard, rendered bacon fat, beef fat, or duck fat for the vegetable oil.
The Best Sausage for Toad in the Hole
Many types of link sausage work for toad in the hole. The important thing is to make sure the sausages are uniform in size. Try these types of sausage.
- Bangers, English sausage made with pork and breadcrumbs
- Pork sausage
- Chicken sausage
- Beef sausage
- Turkey sausage
Resting the Batter
Make the batter at least 30 minutes ahead of time so it has time to rest. It will help to give the batter lift. Before using it in the recipe, give it a quick whisk.
Dishes That Taste Great With Toad in the Hole
- Perfect Mashed Potatoes
- Sautéed Kale with Cashews
- Steamed Broccoli
- Simple Peas and Onions
- Classic Glazed Carrots
Classic English Toad-in-the-Hole
Baking time will vary depending on the type and size of pan you use. Generally, this dish will take less time to bake in a larger, shallower dish than in a smaller, deeper one.
1 1/2 cup (180g) all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
Pinch freshly ground black pepper
3 large eggs, beaten
1 1/2 cup (350ml) milk
2 tablespoons (28g) unsalted butter, melted
1 tablespoon vegetable oil, plus more for greasing the pan
1 pound (454g) bangers (English sausage made with pork and breadcrumbs), or good quality pork or beef sausage links
Make the batter:
In a large bowl, whisk together the flour with the salt and a pinch of pepper. Make a well in the center of the flour. Pour in the eggs, milk, and melted butter into the well and whisk into the flour until smooth. Cover and let stand 30 minutes.
Preheat the oven:
Preheat the oven to 425°F.
Preheat the baking dish:
Generously grease the bottom and sides of an 8 x 12-inch or 9 x 9-inch ceramic or metal casserole dish with vegetable oil. (Do not use a glass baking dish.) Place a rack in the bottom third of the oven. Put the empty dish on the rack in the oven as it preheats.
Brown the sausages:
While the oven is coming to temperature, heat a tablespoon of vegetable oil in a skillet on medium high. Add the sausages and brown them on at least a couple of sides.
Pour the batter over sausages:
When the sausages have browned, and the dish in the oven is hot, pull the oven rack out a bit, put the sausages in the casserole dish, and gently pour the batter over the sausages.
Bake at 425°F until the batter is risen and golden (don't open the oven door while it's baking!), and a toothpick or knife inserted in the middle of the batter comes out clean, 25 to 35 minutes.
Serve at once.
|Nutrition Facts (per serving)|
|Servings: 4 to 6|
|Amount per serving|
|% Daily Value*|
|Total Fat 31g||39%|
|Saturated Fat 11g||54%|
|Total Carbohydrate 27g||10%|
|Dietary Fiber 1g||3%|
|Total Sugars 4g|
|Vitamin C 0mg||1%|
|*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.|