Italian Cotechino recipe, ideal for Christmas and New Year

The cotechino is a traditional Italian dish that consists of a sausage made with ground and spiced pork meat coated with porcine or bovine intestines.

The main ingredients of this recipe are the meat of the shoulder, the skin, the lard, the pepper, the nutmeg and the herbs.

As with all traditional dishes, there are new cotechino concepts; For example, vanilla is added to Cremona and cinnamon is used in the Marche region.

Take Cotechino at New Year's Eve

In many Italian homes this recipe is eaten at the New Year's Eve dinner; where the cotechino is accompanied by lentils. They are two foods that are believed to attract good luck.

On the one hand, lentils, which have a shape very similar to that of coins, and, on the other hand, cotechino, a food with a high content of fat, which symbolizes opulence.

History of the Cotechino

The origin of the cotechino is located at the beginning of the XVI century. It was then that the cook of a prestigious humanist and philosopher of the time prepared this dish for the first time.

In 1511 the troops of Pope Julius II besieged the city of Mirandola, which was an ally of France. Thus, its inhabitants, so that the enemies did not appropriate their pigs, killed them all, thus generating a large quantity of meat that they had to process in some way.

The cook of Giovanni Pico della Mirándola was encouraged to grind it and season it with spices.

Recipe of cotechino and lentils


  • 400 grams of lentils
  • 1 cotechino
  • ½ onion
  • 100 grams of bacon
  • 1 cup of tomato sauce
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Meat broth

Recipe step by step:

  1. To begin with the preparation of this traditional Italian dish for the New Year's Eve dinner, the first step is to soak the lentils in warm water throughout the night so that they soften.
  2. Add the previously peeled and chopped onion to the skillet with the bacon cut into small tacos and a tablespoon of oil. Both ingredients are cooked until the onion takes a light golden color.
  3. Next, add the tomato sauce and fry a little more.
  4. Then lentils and beef broth should be incorporated and seasoned to taste. It reserves.
  5. On the other hand, in a saucepan with water the cotechino is cooked. It should be cooked between 50 and 60 minutes over very low heat. When a few minutes are left for the end of the time, the reserved content of the pan is added.
  6. It is served very hot.

Cotechino recipe with mashed


  • 1 cotechino
  • 5 or 6 potatoes
  • 2 cups of milk
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 clove garlic
  • Nutmeg
  • Extra virgin olive oil

Recipe step by step:

  1. First the mashed potatoes are prepared. They are washed and boiled on their skin for 30 minutes. Once cooled, peel and chop with the help of a fork. Then, in a pan, melt the butter and when it is ready, add the mashed potatoes. Mix and add little by little the milk and a pinch of salt and nutmeg. It is cooked on low heat about 30 minutes.
  2. Next the sausage is prepared. Put water in a saucepan and cook the cotechino for one hour. Once ready, the sausage is drained and cut into slices.
  3. The hot dish is served.

If you want to surprise the guests with a New Year's Eve dinner different from the traditional, this Italian recipe of cotechino with lentils is a different option.

December 31 is a day that is characterized by joy, so it is a great time to innovate in the kitchen. Guests will love to try a new dish, and delicious, typical of Italian cuisine. ThemesChristmas Christmas Recipes

Cotechino with Lentils - Rossella's Cooking with Nonna (March 2023)