What is the Difference Between Pork and Bacon

The main difference between pork and bacon is that pork is the fresh raw and unsalted meat taken from pigs, while bacon refers to a synthetically curated meat variant made with pork.

The fresh and unsalted pork from the pig goes through a curing process and becomes bacon. During this process, the manufacturers add various flavors to bacon. Therefore, the texture and the flavor of bacon differ from pork. In brief, bacon is a sub-variant of the cured pork.

Key Areas Covered

1. What is Pork 
      – Definition, Features, Cooking
2. What is Bacon
     – Definition, Features, Cooking
3. Similarities Between Pork and Bacon
     – Outline of Common Features
4. Difference Between Pork and Bacon
     – Comparison of Key Differences

Key Terms

Bacon, Pork

Difference Between Pork and Bacon - Comparison Summary

What is Pork

Pork is the freshly harvested raw meat from a pig.  Pork is unsalted and uncured. Meat lovers all around the world add pork as a main protein source to their daily diet. This is especially due to the sweetness of this meat.

Pork is a source of protein with a comparatively high percentage of fat. However, you have to be careful when you cook pork because pork meat can have parasites such as tapeworms. Therefore, proper and careful handling and cooking will help you to avoid foodborne infections. Generally, manufacturers use the whole body of the pig to deliver the meat. But pig shoulders, chops and trotters are the most commonly available cuts in the local market.

Compare Pork and Bacon

Some religious communities refrain from consuming pork meat. But for some communities, pork is an unavoidable source of protein. Pork is also used to produce tasteful processed items such as ham, bacon, and sausages. During these curing processes, manufacturers add salt to the freshly harvested raw pork. Furthermore, even in some cases, manufacturers smoke the raw pork to make it absorb the additional flavors and become extra flavorful.

What is Bacon

Bacon is basically the cured pork. Bacon manufacturers process the raw pork with salted water and other flavor enhancers. During the curing process, they usually soak the raw pork for a period of time in the saltwater. Then they leave it to dry.  After that, they boil the meat and smoke it. Bacon is a tasty meat item that comes in different flavors. While smoking the meat, manufacturers use distinct varieties of wood dust to flavor the meat.

Pork vs Bacon

Generally, pig’s belly or the sides are used in making bacon. But bacon is usually full of fat. Today bacon is a popular side dish that frequently comes with the meals such as burgers, sandwiches, and soups. Further, grilled bacon stripes are a popular delicacy among many foodies all over the world, especially because of their taste and texture. Since bacon is an already cured processed meat item, we can directly consume it with no further cooking, unlike raw pork.

Similarities Between Pork and Bacon

  1. Pig meat is the main ingredient in both pork and bacon.
  2. Both pork and bacon are delicacies popular in western and eastern cuisine.
  3. Both pork and bacon contain a high-fat content.

Difference Between Pork and Bacon


Pork is the raw meat freshly taken from a pig, while bacon is a processed meat item made with cured pork.

Region of Derivation

Generally, manufacturers use the whole body of the pig to take meat for pork. However, pig shoulders, chops and trotters are the most commonly available cuts in the local market. In contrast, in making bacon, meat is mainly taken from the belly region of a pig.

Culinary Requirement         

You should clean your pork well before cooking, and you should properly cook the meat before consumption. This is because raw pork can contain parasites that would give you stomach infections. However, you can consume bacon directly since the meat is brined and smoked during the process of curing.


The main difference between pork and bacon is that the manufacturers deliver pork from the raw meat of the pig while they cure pork to make bacon, which is a processed meat variant. Thousands of meat lovers consider pork a delicious source of protein and add it to their daily meals as a main protein component. In addition to using bacon as one of the main protein sources, foodies also use it as a flavor enhancer with many delicacies all around the world.


1. “11 Best Pork Recipes: POPULAR PORK RECIPES.” NDTV Food, 28 Dec. 2018.
2. “Bacon – Do You Know How It Is Made?” MeatScience.

Image Courtesy:

1. “Pork-belly-meat-bbq-pig-pork-1122171” (CC0) via Pixabay
2. “Bacon-fry-food-roasted-1341868” (CC0) via Pixabay

About the Author: Anuradha

Anuradha has a BA degree in English, French, and Translation studies. She is currently reading for a Master's degree in Teaching English Literature in a Second Language Context. Her areas of interests include Arts and Literature, Language and Education, Nature and Animals, Cultures and Civilizations, Food, and Fashion.

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