Pork Roll Vs Scrapple: The Difference, Explained

pork roll vs scrapple

Pork roll and scrapple are two common and delicious breakfasts if you are in a hurry.

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But what if one day you have to prepare breakfast yourself, which has been all the time done by your mom?

Can you differentiate these two pork products and buy them yourself at the grocery store?

Don’t worry, this article will help you differentiate pork roll and scrapple by putting them side by side and clearly point out the similarities and distinctions so that you can choose your favorite one.

What is pork roll?

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Pork roll is a processed meat product that has been a staple in New Jersey and the surrounding regions for decades.

It was developed by John Taylor of Trenton, that’s why it is commonly known as Taylor Ham, especially in New Jersey.

Pork roll is not an actual sausage, but it has a similar texture.

Pork roll is made from pork shoulder and ham, which are ground together and then mixed with salt, pepper, sugar, and other spices before being shaped into a loaf.

The loaf is smoked or boiled before the outer casing is removed, and they’re sliced into individual portions.

What is scrapple?

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Scrapple is a dish that originated in Pennsylvania Dutch, is also known as pan rabbit.

It’s traditionally made from scraps of pork, which is made from hog offal such as head, heart, liver, other trimmings, and cornmeal, cooked into a loaf and then sliced into rounds.

The slices are fried until browned on both sides before serving.

The word “scrapple” comes from the Germanic root “scrap,” which means to cut or slice off bits of food for cooking purposes.

This pork product has a uniquely rich and savory taste and a sausage-like texture.

With breakfast from scrapple and some slices of bread, this savory dish will surely keep you going through the day!

What are the differences between pork roll vs scrapple?

Pork butt and pork picnic cuts are usually mistaken because they come from the same shoulder area.

However, in fact, they differ in many ways, as listed out clearly in the comparison table below:

 ComparisonPork rollScrapple
ComponentsMade from ground pork shoulder, ham, and fat, mixed with salt, pepper, sugar, and other spicesMostly made from pork scraps (head, heart, liver) and other trimmings, with cornmeal and buckwheat flour, and other spices
Fat contentLeaner because pork roll consists of a high amount of leaner parts like ham and shoulderHave more fat because it contains the skin and other fatty bits of meat  
Tastea cross between Canadian bacon and regular bacon, fatty and salty but less hammy and smokySpiced but not spicy, rich, and savory taste
PrepareAll the ingredients are shaped, hung, and cured in cotton bagsScrapple is made by boiling the ingredients, the bone and fat is removed while the meat is preserved
UsePork roll can be eaten right from the can, but taste better with the heatScrapple is usually fried to create a crispy outside and mushy inside before serving

What are the similarities between pork roll vs scrapple?

Pork roll and scrapple are both the favorite products for breakfast.

Let’s see besides the key aforementioned differences, do they share any similarities?

1. They have a sausage-like texture

Pork roll and scrapple both have the sausage-like texture, which is mushy.

When you eat either one of these, the mouthfeel is very satisfying.

The best way to cook these processed products is to pan-frying quickly to result in the crispy outside and mushy, tender meat inside.

2. Pork roll and scrapple are all cooked before canning

Pork roll is cured and scrapple is boiled before they are shaped in a loaf and canned.

Therefore, it is true to say that you can safely consume these two processed products directly from the can.

However, as mentioned earlier, most people prefer enjoying scrapple brown fried.

Moreover, thanks to the canning process, pork roll, and scrapple can last longer than other fresh pork cuts if properly stored.

Just always keep them in an airtight container and in the fridge for longer use.

Which one is better?

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So, which one is better? Well, that depends on your personal preference.

But if you’re looking for a quick and easy breakfast to make with no fussing in the morning.

When you don’t have time to prepare anything else, pork roll more often than not gives you what it takes without breaking the bank.

Scrapple on the other hand has its own unique taste, but you usually need to spend some time frying it before eating.

The only thing left now is deciding between scrapple or pork roll as your favorite breakfast sandwich toppin.

Or maybe both because after all, two slices of toast are never enough, right?