January 29, 2021

The 4-1-1 on Maxwell Street Polish Sausages

If you’re a born and raised Chicagoan, chances are you know what a Maxwell Street Polish Sausage is. After all, it’s pretty much our second favorite food group, second to none other than a Vienna Beef Chicago Style hot dog, of course! But do you know how the Maxwell Street Polish Sausage came to be? Or what makes a Vienna Beef Maxwell Street Polish Sausage authentic? Keep reading to find out!

What is a Maxwell Street Polish Sausage

Just in case you’re not from the Windy City, or just not familiar with the delicacy that is a Maxwell Street Polish Sausage, we figured we’d give you the 4-1-1 on one of our favorites. 

The Maxwell Street Polish Sausage came to be in – you guessed it – Chicago on Maxwell Street nearly 7 decades ago where immigrants opened up small hot dog stands near the corner of Maxwell Street and Halsted. Their began fame when they began piling Polish Sausages high with caramelized onions and a dab of mustard. Chicagoans have been hooked ever since!

A Maxwell Street Polish Sausage combines all of Chicago’s favorite foods – Polish Sausage, yellow mustard, poppy seed buns, sport peppers and grilled onions. If you haven’t tried one before, take this as your cue to go out and get one!

What makes it authentic?

While there have been many imitations of the Maxwell Street Polish Sausage throughout the years, the original recipe is the only authentic way to do it! In fact, there are two secrets to achieving that authentic taste and since we’re friends, we’ll share them with you. Ready?

  1. Add white sugar to your onions!

Crazy, we know! But in order to achieve that perfectly sweet, caramelized flavor, you must add 1 tsp of white sugar to your onions while they brown. You can thank us later. 

  1. Score your Polish Sausages with an ‘X’

Before grilling, score the sides of your Polish Sausages with a knife. This helps cook the inside of your sausage at the same speed as the outside. Equally, it helps some of the fat escape during the cooking process! You’ll notice the ends starting to flower open during the cooking process. 

Where is your favorite Chicago stand to get a Vienna Beef Maxwell Street Polish Sausage?