Matchstick bacon - an alternative for purse bacon?



Bacon comes from the belly of the pig. But, the smoked jowls make a more fatty type of bacon.

Here’s what a hunk of smoked jowls looks like (skin side up)

Fat side up

First step is carving the leathery hard skin off

Cross section reveals how much fattier the jowls are than bacon

Smoked jowls are chopped up into “lardons”, fancy shmanzy french cuisine term meaning thick matchsticks. Place lardons in cold pan.

Crank up the heat to high, and the lardons will start to render delicious smokey flavoured lard oil

Keep an eye on them until they get to the point where the lardons become delicious crispy matchsticks

Scoop out the matchsticks with a slotted spoon

These matchsticks are SOOOO delicious. Like eating mini fries, but better!

Use to sprinkle in salads, in omelettes, in sautéed veg…or snacking (purse bacon!)

The resultant smokey lard is delicious in cooking. It has a cleaner appearance and taste than bacon, because of the higher fat content in the jowls. This is the oil lard poured out from the pan into a storage container (very clean liquid).

How do you cook your Bacon?
32 day ZC Variable Protein Test
(Richard Morris) #2

I made these last night, then topped a Carlshead pizza with them. Also a little Choko (Chayote) fried in butter and pineapple essence. For a Hawaiian pizza.


Dang…sounds good. I love chayote…and definitely low carb compliant.

(Derek I. Batting) #4

My wife makes several pounds of bacon this way, then lays it all out and rolls over it with a rolling pin. Boom! Instant “bacon bits” for salads, on burgers (melted under extra sharp cheese, of course) or just by the handful. :thumbsup:


Touché! I like the rolling pin technique idea…I have to try that!

(Brian Miller) #6

Thanks much for this post. I can get Pork Jowls cheapnas dirt around here and tried some last weekend however, my lack of knowledge landed me with pieces too large that didn’t end up the way I wanted. The only aspect I was impressed with was the overwhelming amount of grease/lard I was able to render from it. This will be my attempt for the upcoming weekend.


Oh yes. Pork jowls are a tad bit different, but as you said they have a higher fat output. So, if you wanted to do a cauliflower with bacon and cheese casserole, for example, the jowls would be a better option than bacon (my opinion, not science) because the jowl lardon pieces hold together better, and the fat rendered from them I find much more succulent.

In the pictures above, I went all the way to very brown and crispy. Because I will just munch on them like crispy potato chips. But, you can fry them for less time, to get a more tender product. Then, the lardons become versatile in many recipes (wherever you would otherwise use ham or bacon, replace with lardons instead).

(charlson.melissa) #8

I overcooked my pork belly once and it turned into wonderful bacon croutons and crunchy snacks!

(I like to post memes!) #9

@Fiorella Where does one find pork jowls in the US? Do I need to go to a butcher? Or can I be so lucky as to find them in one of the obscure meat bins in Walmarket?


You can find them at the grocery store…not all carry them, but some do. Perhaps @VoodooChum or @Brenda can let you know where they buy it in the US for a good price.

(Scott Shillady) #11

I have seen them at walmart next to the hams :bacon::honey_pot:

(I like to post memes!) #12

Of course! That’s where all the cool kids hang out. I’ll look for it tonight! thanks @BaconNectar!

(Brenda Zorn IDM Educator) #13

CUB Foods, Minnesota
$4.79 lb

(Brenda Zorn IDM Educator) #14


Eating jowls with a Swiss Army knife…love it!!!

(Brenda Zorn IDM Educator) #16


(AnnaLeeThal) #17

Thank you thank you thank you!!

I just bought 5 packages of jowl and was so surprised how cheap it was. My protein needs are pretty low so the fat to protein ratios on the jowl are spot on for my purposes. I’m going to make these little crispy treats soon.

(AnnaLeeThal) #18

Is there something that can be done with the skin that is cut off?


@AnnaLeeMI, The remainder rendered smoked jowl fat makes killer “baconnaise-like” crema, by the way, if you are into that sort of thing…it’s so good I can eat it with a friggin spoon, the recipe right here:

(AnnaLeeThal) #20

I would say that I am, in fact, into that kind of thing.