What is a serving size of turkey kielbasa?

Turkey kielbasa is a type of smoked sausage made from ground turkey meat. It originated in Poland but has become popular in many cuisines. Determining the proper serving size for turkey kielbasa is important for keeping portion sizes under control and getting the right balance of nutrients. Below we will explore what constitutes a standard serving size of turkey kielbasa, how many calories and nutrients are in a serving, and how serving sizes can vary based on your diet and nutritional needs.

What is Considered a Serving Size of Turkey Kielbasa?

According to the USDA, the standard serving size for turkey kielbasa is 55g or 2 ounces. This is about 1 link of kielbasa approximately 4-6 inches long and 1-2 inches in diameter.

A 2 ounce serving of turkey kielbasa provides:

Nutrient Amount
Calories 140
Total Fat 11g
Saturated Fat 4g
Cholesterol 45mg
Sodium 380mg
Total Carbohydrate 1g
Dietary Fiber 0g
Sugars 0g
Protein 12g

This serving size is based on a 2000 calorie diet. The number of servings you should eat can vary depending on your individual calorie needs.

Serving Size Comparisons

To understand what a 2 ounce serving looks like, here are some size comparisons:

– 1 link of turkey kielbasa (4-6 inches long, 1-2 inches diameter)
– 1/2 cup diced turkey kielbasa
– 2 slices from a whole kielbasa sausage
– 4 mini turkey kielbasa rounds or coins (about 1/2 inch thick)

The standard 55g serving is slightly smaller than typical serving sizes of other types of sausage:

– Beef hot dogs: 1 hot dog (45g)
– Pork breakfast sausage links: 2 links (55g)
– Italian chicken sausage links: 1 link (70g)

So turkey kielbasa has a similar but slightly smaller recommended portion size than other sausages.

Nutritional Value of Turkey Kielbasa

Turkey kielbasa is considered a healthier sausage option because it is lower in fat and calories compared to traditional pork and beef sausages.

A 2 ounce serving provides 140 calories, 12g of protein and 11g of fat, with 4g saturated fat and 380mg of sodium.

Compared to the same serving size of other sausages, turkey kielbasa has:

– Fewer calories than beef hot dogs (140 cal vs 150 cal)
– Less fat than pork breakfast sausage (11g vs 16g)
– Less sodium than chicken apple sausage (380mg vs 450mg)
– More protein than beef frankfurters (12g vs 9g)

So turkey kielbasa makes a more nutritious choice in the sausage family while still providing the savory, smoky flavor.

Factors that Affect Serving Size

While the standard serving for turkey kielbasa is 2 ounces, there are several factors that can alter how much you should eat in one serving:


Older adults may need smaller serving sizes to keep calorie intake lower. Growing teenagers may need larger servings to meet higher calorie and protein demands.


Men generally have higher calorie needs than women, so may be able to consume slightly larger servings.

Activity Level

Those who are very active through sports, work, or exercise require more calories so can handle larger serving sizes. Sedentary individuals may want to stick closer to 2 ounces.

Weight Goals

If you are trying to lose weight, smaller 1 ounce servings may be more appropriate to reduce overall calorie intake. If trying to gain weight or build muscle, larger 3-4 ounce servings can help increase calorie consumption.

Dietary Needs

Certain diets like keto or low carb may call for smaller servings to limit carbohydrates. Heart healthy diets may need smaller servings to restrict sodium and saturated fat.

Serving Size on a Low Carb or Keto Diet

For those on low carb diets like keto, a 2 ounce serving of turkey kielbasa can still fit into daily carbohydrate limits.

A standard keto diet aims for 25-50g of total carbs per day. Since there is only 1g of carbs in a 2 ounce turkey kielbasa serving, it can generally be incorporated in moderation into a low carb meal plan.

However, the high protein and fat content of turkey kielbasa means it can be easy to go over your target calories if consuming too much. Sticking close to the recommended 1-2 ounce serving is best for keto diets. Spreading servings out over the week or month also helps keepportion sizes in check.

Some easy ways to incorporate turkey kielbasa into a keto diet include:

– Breakfast – Add diced kielbasa to eggs or omelettes
– Lunch – Make kielbasa lettuce wrap sandwiches
– Dinner – Mix kielbasa with cauliflower rice and sauteed veggies
– Snacks – Roll up turkey kielbasa slices with cream cheese

Serving Size for Weight Loss

When trying to lose weight through calorie restriction, the 2 ounce serving of turkey kielbasa can fit into your daily meal plan and provide a protein boost to keep you feeling full. However, there are some tips for integrating it into a weight loss diet:

– Limit to 1-2 servings per week – turkey kielbasa is high in sodium and saturated fat which should be minimized on a weight loss diet.

– Be mindful of additional calories – kielbasa is often used in heavier dishes like pasta or potatoes which can pile on extra calories. Keep additional ingredients light.

– Avoid frying or breading – stick to baking, grilling, or roasting turkey kielbasa to prevent unnecessary added calories and fat from frying.

– Watch your portions – measure serving sizes carefully and resist over-snacking on sliced kielbasa while cooking.

– Pair with veggies – serve kielbasa with lots of low calorie nutrient-dense vegetables like mustard greens, Brussels sprouts, or broccoli.

Enjoying turkey kielbasa occasionally can add flavor to a reduced calorie diet when kept to sensible serving sizes.

Healthy Serving Ideas

To maximize the nutrition of your 2 ounce turkey kielbasa serving, here are some healthy serving suggestions:

– Breakfast sandwich – Serve sliced kielbasa with egg and spinach on an English muffin

– Veggie skewers – Skewer kielbasa cubes with peppers, onions, mushrooms, zucchini

– Soup – Add sliced kielbasa to healthy soups like minestrone, cabbage, or bean soups.

– Salad topping – Chop kielbasa over leafy green salads for added protein

– Stir fry – Saute kielbasa with lean meat or tofu and vegetables in a stir fry

– Kabobs – Make kielbasa and vegetable kabobs brushed with low calorie marinade or dressing

– Pizza – Top a thin whole grain crust with sauce, turkey kielbasa, and vegetables for a protein-packed pizza

– Pasta – Mix diced kielbasa into a tomato based pasta with spinach or broccoli

– Baked beans – Add sliced kielbasa to baked beans for a smoky, savory flavor boost

With some creativity, turkey kielbasa can be used to make many nutritious dishes while still keeping portions in check.

Cooking Methods for Turkey Kielbasa

Turkey kielbasa tastes great using a variety of cooking methods beyond just grilling or frying. Here are some healthier cooking suggestions:

– Roast – Roast whole links or slices at 400°F for 15-20 minutes for an evenly browned exterior.

– Grill – Grill over medium-high heat, turning occasionally, until plump and grill marks appear.

– Saute – Dice kielbasa and saute in broth or oil over medium high heat until lightly browned.

– Bake – Nestle chopped kielbasa into casseroles, potatoes, beans or stuff peppers before baking.

– Air Fry – Cut kielbasa into rounds and air fry at 370°F, flipping halfway through, until crispy.

– Microwave – Microwave sliced kielbasa for 1-2 minutes on high until heated through (not recommended for first cooking raw sausage).

– Simmer – Add whole links or diced kielbasa to soups, stews, or chilis and let simmer until cooked through.

– Steam – Place kielbasa in a steam basket over boiling water for 8-10 minutes until plump and cooked through.

Getting creative with preparation methods can give you new ways to enjoy turkey kielbasa beyond frying while still keeping it tasty.

Portion Control Tips

To keep servings of turkey kielbasa in check, here are some handy portion control strategies:

– Use a food scale to weigh out 1-2 ounce portions

– Measure out servings in advance when preparing multiple servings for the week

– Slice a whole kielbasa lengthwise then cut into equal sized slices or cubes

– Portion kielbasa onto individual plates instead of serving family-style

– Buy pre-portioned kielbasa slices or mini links

– Store in serving size zip top bags or containers

– Keep a serving size guide handy for visual cues

– Focus on small bites and chew thoroughly to make it last longer

– Avoid mindless snacking on kielbasa while cooking

– Follow suggested kielbasa to vegetable ratios in recipes

With some easy tricks, it’s possible to enjoy flavorful turkey kielbasa while still practicing healthy portion control at every meal.

Should You Eat Turkey Kielbasa Daily?

While turkey kielbasa can be healthy in moderation, it may not be recommended to eat it on a daily basis. Here are some reasons why you may want to limit kielbasa:

High in Sodium

Turkey kielbasa contains about 380mg sodium per 2 ounce serving. Eating this much sodium daily long-term could lead to high blood pressure in some people.

Contains Nitrates/Nitrites

Many turkey kielbasa products contain preservatives like sodium nitrite to inhibit bacteria growth and extend shelf life. There are concerns that frequent nitrite consumption may be linked to cancer.

Can be High in Fat

Although turkey kielbasa is leaner than other sausages, a 2 ounce serving still provides 11g of fat, including 4g of saturated fat. Too much can potentially raise cholesterol.

May Promote Heavier Eating

Kielbasa is often paired with starchy sides or used in heavier dishes like pasta. Daily eating may lead to overconsumption of calories, carbs, fat.

Could Lead to Micronutrient Imbalance

Regularly filling up on kielbasa could push out eating a diversity of more nutrient-dense foods like vegetables, fruits and whole grains.

While the occasional serving of turkey kielbasa can fit into a healthy diet, limiting to 1-2 times per week is likely better for your overall nutrition and health. Be sure to keep servings sizes in check.

Turkey Kielbasa Recipes

Here are some delicious and nutritious recipes using a standard 2 ounce serving of turkey kielbasa:

Turkey Kielbasa Sheet Pan Dinner

– 1 link turkey kielbasa, sliced (about 2 ounces)
– 1 pound Brussels sprouts, halved
– 1 red onion, sliced
– 2 tablespoons olive oil
– 1 teaspoon garlic powder
– Salt and pepper to taste

1. Preheat oven to 400°F.
2. Spread Brussels sprouts and red onion on a rimmed baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with garlic powder, salt and pepper. Toss to coat.
3. Add sliced turkey kielbasa to pan and arrange in a single layer.
4. Roast 25-30 minutes until sprouts are tender and kielbasa is browned.
5. Serve sheet pan dinner immediately.

Turkey Kielbasa Skillet

– 1 link turkey kielbasa, diced (about 2 ounces)
– 1 small onion, chopped
– 2 cups chopped kale
– 3⁄4 cup cooked brown rice
– 1 15-ounce can reduced sodium white beans, drained and rinsed
– 1 tablespoon olive oil
– 1⁄2 teaspoon garlic powder
– 1⁄4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
– Salt and pepper to taste

1. In large skillet over medium heat, heat olive oil. Cook onion for 3-4 minutes until tender.
2. Add kielbasa and cook 2-3 minutes more.
3. Stir in kale and cooked rice and cook 2-3 minutes until kale wilts.
4. Add beans, garlic powder, red pepper flakes, salt and pepper and cook 2-3 minutes until heated through.
5. Remove from heat and serve skillet meal.

Mediterranean Turkey Kielbasa

– 1 link turkey kielbasa, sliced (about 2 ounces)
– 1 red bell pepper, chopped
– 1⁄4 red onion, chopped
– 10 grape tomatoes, halved
– 1⁄4 cup kalamata olives, halved
– 2 tablespoons olive oil
– 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
– 1⁄4 cup fresh parsley, chopped
– 1⁄4 teaspoon oregano
– Salt and pepper to taste

1. In a bowl, combine red bell pepper, red onion, tomatoes, olives, parsley and oregano.
2. Whisk together olive oil, vinegar, salt and pepper. Pour over vegetable mixture and toss to coat evenly.
3. Heat a grill or grill pan to medium-high. Add turkey kielbasa slices and cook 2-3 minutes per side until plump and browned.
4. Serve grilled kielbasa over top of Mediterranean vegetable salad.

The Bottom Line

So what’s the final verdict on turkey kielbasa serving sizes? Here are some key takeaways:

– The standard serving size is 2 ounces or about 1 link, providing 140 calories and 12g protein.

– Serving sizes may be adjusted based on your age, gender, activity level, weight goals, or dietary needs.

– Turkey kielbasa makes a leaner option compared to beef or pork sausage when eaten in moderation.

– Be mindful of sodium, nitrates, and saturated fat if consuming frequently.

– For best nutrition and health, limit turkey kielbasa to 1-2 times per week.

– Use healthy cooking methods like baking, grilling, or steaming instead of frying.

– Practice portion control by measuring servings, limiting snacking, and bulking up meals with veggies.

– Incorporate turkey kielbasa into balanced meals and dishes that align with your dietary preferences or restrictions.

Enjoying the smoky, savory flavor of turkey kielbasa in appropriate serving sizes can be part of an overall healthy diet when paired with wholesome ingredients and mindful eating habits.

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