How to Make Haggis

Two Parts:Mixing the HaggisFilling and Cooking the Haggis

If you've ever had haggis out of a can, you may be wondering what all the fuss is about. But if you've ever had an authentic haggis, you might be hooked by the rich and nutty flavor. Most traditional Scottish haggis is made with sheep's pluck (heart, liver, and lungs) and seasonings like onions, oats, and spices. Since you can't purchase sheep lungs in the United States, consider replacing the lungs with tongue. You'll find that homemade haggis is definitely a step up from the canned variety.


  • 1 sheep stomach or beef stomach (bung) for the casing
  • 1 sheep liver
  • 1 sheep heart
  • 1 sheep tongue
  • 1/2 pound of suet, minced
  • 3 medium onions, minced
  • 1 cup (225 g) of pinhead or steel-cut oats, toasted
  • 1 tablespoon of kosher salt, plus a handful for salting the water
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon of dried coriander
  • 1 teaspoon of mace
  • 1 teaspoon of nutmeg

Part 1
Mixing the Haggis

  1. 1
    Soak the stomach overnight. You'll need to prepare your casing for the haggis the day before you want to make it. You can use sheep or beef stomach which is also called the bung. Place the stomach in cold salted water and let it sit overnight.[1]
    • Soaking the stomach will soften it so that it's easier to fill and boil the next day.
  2. 2
    Cook the liver, heart and tongue. Bring a large pot of water to boil and add a handful of salt. Rinse the sheep organs (liver and heart) and the tongue. Add the liver, heart, and tongue to the pot and cook them over medium heat for 2 hours. Carefully remove them from the pot using kitchen tongs and place them on a cutting board.
    • A long cooking time is needed to soften and tenderize these tough-muscled meats.
  3. 3
    Mince the liver, heart, and tongue. Let the liver, heart, and tongue cool a little so you can easily handle them. Take a sharp chef's knife and mince the liver, heart and tongue on your cutting board. Mince them into very small pieces, as small as you can manage. Trim off any gristle or skin from the meat and throw the trimmings away.[2]
    • If you're having trouble mincing the meat, try grinding it in a food processor or with a cheese grater.[3]
    • Always use caution when cutting with sharp knives. Ensure your cutting board is on a firm and stable surface when you're mincing the meat.
  4. 4
    Combine the meat with the seasonings. Transfer the minced meats to a large mixing bowl. Stir in 1/2 pound of suet, 3 medium onions that have been minced, 1 cup (225 g) of toasted pinhead or steel-cut oats, 1 tablespoon of kosher salt, 1 teaspoon ground black pepper, 1 teaspoon of dried coriander, 1 teaspoon of mace, and 1 teaspoon of nutmeg. Stir in a few tablespoons of the water from your pot into the mixture just to moisten it.[4]
    • Avoid adding so much water that the haggis mixture binds together into a ball. You want to keep it loose enough to fill the casings.

Part 2
Filling and Cooking the Haggis

  1. 1
    Rinse the sheep or beef stomach casting. Take the stomach that soaked overnight out of its salted water. Rinse the inside and outside of the stomach with fresh unsalted water. Pat the stomach dry and lay it on a clean surface.[5]
    • Depending on the sizes of your haggis, you can make several small haggises or just one or two larger ones.
  2. 2
    Fill the stomach casing. Take a large spoon and scoop the haggis mixture into the stomach casing. If you want to make one large haggis, fill the stomach 2/3 full with the haggis. If you choose to make smaller haggises, just fill the stomach as little as you like. Tie off the loose end of the stomach using kitchen twine. Pierce the stomach casing in several places so that steam can release as it cooks. [6][7]
    • If you really want a tight seal on the stomach casing, you can sew the stomach closed.
    • You can use a sausage stuffer tool to quickly fill several haggises.
  3. 3
    Cook the haggis. Heat a large pot of water to barely simmering (around 180 degrees F or 82 C). Carefully lower the haggises into the water. If you're doing one large haggis, let the haggis cook in the simmering water for three hours. Several thinner haggises will take less time to cook, around 1 1/2 hours.[8]
    • Watch the haggis as it cooks. If you see any air bubbles form, take a sharp skewer and poke the air so that the haggis doesn't burst.
    • Avoid splashing the hot water as you lower the haggises. You might want to wear oven mitts to protect your hands.
  4. 4
    Remove the haggis. The haggis will probably float near the surface of the pot once it's done cooking. Carefully remove the haggis and place it in a bowl of ice cold water to stop the cooking process. Let the haggis cool completely before you slice it and serve it.[9]
    • You can cut into the haggis while it's still hot, but the haggis will spill out of the casing and you won't be able to cut it.
    • Consider serving the haggis with neeps and tatties.


  • To rewarm the haggis for serving later, roast the haggis in the oven until it's warm in the center.

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Categories: European Cuisine | World Cuisines | Recipes