The primary ingredients in Vienna sausage may include various amounts of beef, pork, turkey and chicken. Primarily beef or pork make up some brands of Vienna sausage. Some brands add spices, such as mustard, for flavoring, and some sausage brands include sweeteners, such as corn syrup and water.
In North America, Vienna sausage is a term that commonly describes miniature weiners that are often sold in cans. To make American-style Vienna sausage, people mix lean cuts of meat with seasonings, grind it into a paste and stuff sausage casings with the mixture. They cook the sausage thoroughly and may smoke it as well. Before canning, they remove the casings and cut the sausages into short segments. European Vienna sausage is similar in flavor and texture to North American hot dogs. Europeans often smoke and shape the sausages into longer, thinner links for consumers. Europeans sell Vienna sausages with the casings left on; however, the casings are light and edible.
North American Vienna sausage is a popular staple in lunches due to its small size and easy portability. Served in a can, people eat the sausages as is without heating them. Some people enjoy eating the sausages with crackers. Europeans enjoy hot Vienna sausages inside of a bun with condiments.