What is the Difference Between Cured & Uncured Bacon?
Is there anything that doesn’t taste better with bacon?
Bacon can be used to take just about any dish up a notch by adding flavor and a crunch factor. It’s a great source of high-quality protein that can be cooked in a number of ways, and many kids and adults alike love it.
For all these reasons, bacon is incredibly popular. According to the Foundation for Economic Education, the average American eats about 18 pounds of bacon annually.
Coleman Natural Hickory Smoked Uncured Bacon is always a bestseller, and we understand why. On top of tasting great, we’re proud to say our pork bacon is made with simple, natural ingredients. And, it’s uncured.
You might be wondering: What’s the difference between cured and uncured bacon, and why do we choose to make all of our bacon uncured? Let’s dive into how bacon is made.
Cured vs. Uncured Bacon
The main difference between cured and uncured bacon is in the ingredients used for curing. Yes, contrary to what these terms imply, both cured and uncured bacon are cured. They just use different curing agents.
Nitrates and nitrites, such as sodium nitrate and sodium nitrite, are chemical compounds and food preservatives used in the curing process. Cured bacon contains these added preservatives, while uncured bacon uses natural ingredients such as cultured celery powder.
Added nitrites and nitrates may be harmful to your health. Studies have shown that these chemical additives are not easily processed by your body, and may turn into nitrosamines before they are digested. Nitrosamines are carcinogenic, meaning that they may lead to the development of cancer. They may also cause reproductive issues and birth defects.
We use cultured celery powder to cure our meats here at Coleman Natural. We’ve been making all-natural products since 1875, and you won’t find any artificial ingredients in our uncured bacon products.
What Does Curing Do?
Curing is the process by which meat is preserved to lengthen its shelf life and prevent the formation of harmful bacteria that can cause foodborne illnesses. It keeps meat fresh and makes it safe to eat. It also preserves color and flavor.
As the meat absorbs curing agents, it loses some of its moisture and begins to inhibit the growth of microorganisms, including some pathogens. Clostridium botulinum, the toxin responsible for botulism, is just one harmful bacteria that can be stopped in its tracks by curing.
The properties of meat can also change during curing – growing more tender in addition to becoming resistant to bacterial growth and spoilage. Cured meat is often juicy and full of flavor!
At Coleman Natural, we only use natural curing ingredients to make our bacon and other meats delicious and healthy for your family and friends to enjoy.
How Is Uncured Bacon Made?
Uncured bacon is made by curing and smoking meat. First, pork belly is injected with a brine of salt, sugar, and curing agents. This brine can include flavorings as well.
The pork sits in this solution between 12 and 24 hours, absorbing the brine’s flavors and developing bacterial resistance.
After curing in this solution, the pork is slow-smoked over real wood or using liquid smoke. Coleman Natural bacon is smoked over natural hickory or applewood. Different bacon products contain different types and levels of smoke, which can affect the flavor greatly.
The pork belly is then chilled and pressed to prepare it for slicing, ready to be cut into uniform slices. Finally, the bacon is packaged and shipped to stores. At this point, it has been partially cooked during smoking, but it must be fully cooked before eating. You can cook bacon in a skillet on the stove, on a baking sheet in the oven, or even on the grill, in a microwave, or in an air fryer!
This Pork and Bacon Burgers recipe is a perfect way to eat bacon during the grilling season. Using Coleman Natural ground pork and your favorite variety of our uncured bacon, you’ll end up with a juicy burger that takes just 10 minutes to prepare.
But if you don’t want to fire up the grill, you can always count on this Sun-Dried Tomato and Bacon Pasta Salad to serve up the smoky bacon flavor you’re craving.
When purchasing bacon for your family, read product labels and keep an eye out for added nitrates, nitrites, and artificial ingredients. We only use natural ingredients such as sea salt, brown sugar, and cultured celery powder in our uncured bacon products.
Choose Uncured Bacon from Coleman Natural
You won’t see any added nitrates, nitrites, or artificial ingredients on our labels because we believe in making wholesome, healthy, and delicious products for your family to enjoy.
Our all-natural bacon is made with pork raised in the USA, sourced from independent American family farms who treat their livestock responsibly and humanely. Hogs are raised crate-free, given space to roam, and never treated with added hormones, growth promotants, or stimulants.
When eaten in moderation, uncured bacon can be a part of a healthy diet. Our bacon contains 6 grams of protein and only 80 calories per serving, and it’s low-carb and keto-friendly!