It’s a favorite among kids and adults alike — pigs in a blanket. When people serve these up at parties or events, they typically come with a side of mustard and ketchup to dip them in, and perhaps to also help mask the fact that they may have gotten soggy after coming out of the oven.
If this is something that has happened to you, don’t worry; it’s an issue that many cooks face when trying to make these tiny treats. So how can you keep pigs in a blanket from getting soggy?
Before you start to panic, rest assured that it’s a problem that happens to just about anyone, no matter how much of an expert cook they are. The good news is that there are ways to prevent your piggies from getting soggy and staying crisp up until the very last bite!
Making Pigs in a Blanket From Scratch
Many people find that their pigs in a blanket end up soggy because they are purchased frozen and all you have to do before serving them is to heat them up. When they aren’t fresh, they get soggier faster.
However, this isn’t to say they still can’t be good. It just means that you will have to take more precautions.
If you want to make them from scratch, chances are that they will turn out much better. To start, you want to make sure that you have all of the right ingredients to make pigs in a blanket. You’ll need dough, cocktail wieners or mini sausages, and ketchup and mustard.
Before you even start putting together the pigs in a blanket, make sure that you drain all the water out of the sausages. This is one way to prevent the dough from getting soggy later on.
While you can pat the sausages down with a paper towel, you can also use a toothpick to poke holes in them and drain as much water out of them as you possibly can. This will also keep them from potentially exploding when you put them into the oven.
After you do this, you can start wrapping up your piggies! Many people choose to use puff pastry sheets that are already pre-made but if you’re feeling like an overachiever, you can always make the dough yourself.
Before you place them in the oven, be sure to grease up your pan to prevent them from sticking. You can also add a coat of melted butter to your dough to get it brown and add a crispy touch to the dough once cooked.
Those who want an extra added touch to their pigs in a blanket can always add a slice of cheese to them. You can either wrap up the cheese with the dough or you can slice the sausage open and stuff the cheese slice in there.
Once you put them in the oven, they’ll melt perfectly into the sausage.
If you want to keep your pigs in a blanket already made in the fridge a day before cooking, wrap them in a paper towel so it can absorb any moisture that may leak out overnight. This will surely prevent them from getting soggy.
Another option to keeping your pigs in a blanket warm and not soggy is to keep them in a crock pot. This way, they remain fresh no matter where you take them. Be sure to place a sheet of parchment paper in the crock pot before you put the pigs in.
Lastly, you can preheat your sausages in the microwave before wrapping them in dough.
Making the Dough From Scratch
If you’ve got some extra time on your hands, making the dough for your pigs in a blanket could be a fun way to keep you busy and guarantee even better-tasting pigs in a blanket.
In order to make dough from scratch, you will need flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt, butter, and buttermilk.
First, you are going to want to mix up all of the dry ingredients into a bowl. Next, add the unsalted butter by crumbling it up into the dry mix. You can also add shredded cheese for extra flavor.
Once you have done this, you are going to create a well in the middle of the mix where you are going to pour in the buttermilk. When that is done, you want to stir the dough and then let it sit for a few minutes without touching it.
After you’ve left the dough to sit, you can come back to it and add more flour before beginning to shape it. You then want to start cutting it up into small rectangular pieces, which you will use to wrap the sausage with.
You can always trim extra dough using a pizza cutter. Make sure that your hands have flour on them so as to prevent the dough from sticking to them!
Keeping Frozen Pigs in a Blanket From Getting Soggy
Unfortunately, not everyone has the time to make pigs in a blanket from scratch. As a result, they rely on frozen and pre-made ones that you can buy at the supermarket.
While these can taste just as good as the fresh ones, they do get soggier a lot faster.
After you have heated up your frozen franks, place them in a container with a paper towel at the bottom. As mentioned earlier, the paper towel will be able to absorb the moisture and thus keep the dough from getting soggy on the inside.
If you really want to make them from scratch, however, but still want to save yourself some time, you can make pigs in a blanket a day or two ahead of time and leave them in the fridge to chill until they are ready to be cooked.
Puff pastry rises better when the dough goes in the oven cold, so there’s no need to let them sit out and warm before putting them into the oven. If you want to store them for longer than that, you can always freeze fresh pigs in a blanket.
Other Versions of Pigs in a Blanket
Over the years, people have modified the original pigs in a blanket recipe to fit their own tastes. In fact, some people have even combined corn dogs with pigs in the blanket.
Instead of the dough, the sausage is dipped in a cornmeal batter and then stuck on to a wooden stick. These fun treats can usually be found at state fairs, although they are fairly simple to make at home.
Unfortunately, they won’t be as healthy for you as regular pigs in a blanket!
Others like to make pigs in a blanket using a regular-sized hot dog. This can also be called a sausage roll and is popular in parts of Europe.
Some also like to layer on a coat of Dijon mustard to the dough before adding in the sausage. This gives your pigs in a blanket an extra added kick of flavor.
History of Pigs in a Blanket
Now that you know how to make and keep perfect pigs in a blanket, aren’t you the least bit curious about where they came from? We sure are!
Pigs in a blanket were first documented in 1957 after they appeared in a cookbook for kids. Since then, they have become a staple for parents, kids, hungry teens, and even adults.
In fact, pigs in a blanket have become so popular that April 24th has been declared National Pigs in a Blanket Day.
Pigs in a blanket vary depending on what country you are eating them in. For example, in the UK, they are known as chipolatas and can sometimes even be wrapped in bacon.
Many other countries use different variations of the dough or even of the sausage, but at the end of the day, they are still the same pigs in a blanket that we all know and love today.
It’s safe to say that we’ve taught you just about everything you can learn about pigs in a blanket. So, let’s recap, shall we?
If you want to keep your pigs in a blanket from getting soggy, you have a few options. You can preheat the sausages in the microwave before putting them into the dough, you can poke them with a toothpick to get any excess water out, or you can pat them dry with a paper towel before wrapping them up with the dough.
If you want to store them in the fridge, be sure to do so in an airtight container to keep as much moisture as possible from getting to them. Include a few sheets of paper towel in the container to absorb any moisture that does happen to make its way into the container.
In order to keep your piggies warm and dry when serving them, keep them in a crock-pot to prevent them from getting cold. Once you have perfected the art of making pigs in a blanket, your friends and family will be begging you for more!
Sarah is the founder of Baking Kneads, LLC, a blog sharing guides, tips, and recipes for those learning how to bake. Growing up as the daughter of a baker, she spent much of her childhood learning the basics in a local bakery.