Pancetta Vs Bacon: Key Differences Between Pancetta And Bacon

Pancetta Vs Bacon: Pancetta and Bacon are often confused with one another. Both these pork products taste alike and have few differences and it is worth knowing them.

In this quick guide of us, we shall explain What is Bacon, What is Pancetta, Differences Between Pancetta and Bacon and avoid confusion between them. By the end of the article, we are sure you will get an idea of Pancetta Vs Bacon in the clear picture as we have broken down everything you might need.

Pancetta Vs Bacon

What Is Pancetta?

Pancetta is a salt-cured meat that is simply prepared from pork belly. This dish is seasoned with herbs like garlic, black peppers, and bay leaves.

Certain spices and aromatics are added to the dish to make it flavorful. It is at times referred to as Italian Bacon. Pancetta is an Italian Word that comes from the linguistic derivation Paunch which means belly.

Cured meats are given a pink color to provide a distinctive bright red color to the meat. Pancetta is sold thinly sliced and it comes prechopped. You can obtain the cubed pancetta in supermarkets.

Cured pork dishes can be consumed raw or even in dishes like pancetta-wrapped shrimp, and many more.

What Is Bacon?

Bacon is a smoke-cured meat prepared using pork belly. Various types of wood such as Applewood or Maplewood are used to give flavor to bacon. After the bacon is smoked it will turn in deep pink and even has a golden rind. It is mostly cured in salt and sometimes sugar too.

You can cut it into thick or thin pieces based on your choice. Other countries have different types of bacon and this kind of Bacon is known as American Bacon Or Streaky Bacon.

Pancetta Vs Bacon: What’s The Difference?

In general, both pancetta and bacon are derived from pork belly. However, the only difference is in the curing process and how they are cooked. Pancetta is cured with salt and various spices such as ground peppers, garlic, fennel, nutmeg, black pepper, etc. Later they are dried for 3 months and then consumed.

Bacon is cured similarly but there is a difference in the process in which they are smoked. It undergoes a cold-smoking process and needs no cooking.

Thus, the bacon remains raw. Pancetta is quite popular in Italian Recipes and on the other hand, Bacon is pretty famous in American and English Cuisine. In terms of appearance too they vary. Bacon is served thinly sliced whereas pancetta is rolled and given in a wrap casing to keep its shape intact.

Difference Between Pancetta And Bacon

One more basic difference between them is the process in which the meat is cooked. Bacon is smoked whereas Pancetta isn’t. Thus, there will be a huge difference in the taste too due to this. If you are looking for smoked flavor be sure to substitute pancetta in place of Bacon as both will not have the same flavors.

If you prepare a bacon sandwich and a pancetta sandwich the taste will not be the same as the sandwich prepared with bacon has a smoky flavor and the one without will have a different taste.

You can find Bacon quite easily whereas you need to invest some time to find Pancetta as it isn’t easily available. You can find it online but we can’t guarantee you the quality of it compared to the one you purchased in person.

How Is Pancetta Made?

The preparation process for Pancetta is quite simple. Follow the simple steps to cook pancetta easily and enjoy a delicious recipe.

  • Firstly season the pork product with salt, pepper, and other seasonings such as fennel seeds, coriander, and juniper berries.
  • After the seasoning keep it in the refrigerator till it turns firm for a week or up to 10 days.
  • Later wash the meat to remove the seasonings and preseason it with some pepper.
  • Roll the meat tightly in a cylinder slipped with casing and then tie it to butcher’s twine in one to two intervals.
  • Pancetta is hung in a cool and dry place till it is cured. Usually, it takes about three weeks for the pancetta to finish from the start.

Ways To Use Pancetta And Bacon

There are plenty of ways in which you can use Pancetta or Bacon in your cooking. They are explained below for your reference so that you can incorporate them into your recipes.

  • You can wrap bacon or pancetta slices around meat and seafood or vegetables before cooking to have crunchiness.
  • You can use either of them as a pizza topping.
  • One can render the fat from these pork belly products before cooking the vegetables in soup to obtain flavor.
  • Cubed Pancetta Bacon can be cooked with tomato sauce and pecorino cheese to prepare recipes amatriciana.

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How Is Prosciutto Different From Pancetta And Bacon?

The key difference between Prosciutto and Pancetta Bacon is in the curing process. It takes around 10 days to cook bacon and three weeks to cook Pancetta. You can interchangeably cook the Pancetta and Bacon in dishes as they are the same cut from the same part of the pig.

You can’t substitute Prosciutto in Place of Pancetta Bacon as the curing process and meat cut is different. Prosciutto can be consumed uncooked whereas Bacon and Pancetta cooked.

Pancetta Recipes

Although Pancetta can be consumed on its own you can include it in a variety of dishes. It is the hero of the meal and you can include it in delicious pancetta-wrapped scallops, Italo Bassi and Riccardo Monco, and other Pasta Dishes. You can have it as a signature ingredient in the recipe pasta carbonara.

Bacon Recipes

Unlike Pancetta Bacon is a versatile ingredient that you can include whenever smoke is called for. You can add it to dishes like cabbage risotto, cornbread, etc. If your taste buds are looking for a smoky flavor and crunchy taste then use the bacon as a salad topping.

FAQs on Pancetta Vs Bacon

1. Can I substitute bacon for Pancetta?

Yes, you can substitute bacon for Pancetta as long as you are aware of the change it is making to your recipe.

2. Is pancetta the same as prosciutto?

No, they aren’t the same. Pancetta comes from pork belly whereas Prosciutto is fat cut from the hind leg of the pig.

3. Can I eat pancetta raw?

Yes, you can cut pancetta into thin slices and have it raw.

4. Why can you eat prosciutto raw but not bacon?

Unlike Bacon prosciutto is taken from the hind leg and salt cured and the curing process takes way longer compared to bacon thus making it safe to consume raw.

Wrapping Up

Now that you have got an idea of Pancetta vs. bacon it’s up to you what to choose based on your preference for flavors. Be wise to include them in your dishes and satisfy your taste buds. for more interesting updates on articles like canadian bacon vs ham feel free to bookmark our site.

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