Ham Vs Pork: 4 Key Differences You Should Know
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The pig is the source of both pork and ham. But what accounts for the difference in names, and are there any other traits that distinguish them? Although you may already be aware of the simple answer, there is more to the ham vs. pork argument than first appears. The major distinction between ham and pork is that all ham is pork, but not all pork is ham. Ham is a type of hog meat derived from the pig’s thighs. It is frequently salted and preserved. Hams are offered in ready-to-eat packages. Meanwhile, pork is uncooked meat that can come from any component of a domesticated pig. Pork has numerous applications. It can be used to make sausage, bacon, and pulled pork.

Ham is a type of cured meat obtained from pork. As a result, it is theoretically pork. It is made by salting, smoking, or wet curing raw pig and preserving and seasoning it. So, while both pork and ham are made from the meat of the same animal, ham is a cured processed meat product, whereas pork is raw meat. The oilier cut, on the other hand, is known as bacon. Ham is the less fatty meat of a pig. When compared to other cuts of pork, ham has a distinct flavour and colour.



Here are the key differences:

  1. While the pig is normally marketed raw, ham frequently contains preservatives such as nitrites and nitrates.
  2. Home cooks should prepare raw pig as soon as possible after obtaining it or store it in the freezer. Ham, on the other hand, can be kept in the fridge for several days and dry-cured ham for weeks.
  3. The flavour is one of the primary distinctions between ham and other varieties of pork. Pork has a milder flavour than ham, which has a deeper, smokey flavour.
  4. Ham is typically served sliced, as a filler for sandwiches and other similar foods. Ham sandwiches, ham and cheese sandwiches, hamburgers, and so on are examples. Pork is commonly used in regular household cooking as a curry ingredient. It is commonly used as an ingredient in sausages, salami, ham, and bacon.

To summarise, all ham is pork, but not all pork is ham. Furthermore, ham is a processed meat product, whereas pork is raw meat that requires additional processing before consumption. Thus, pork refers to any meat derived from a pig, whereas ham refers to a specific cut of pig meat - the thigh.