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What Is Danish Bacon?

By Jane Lapham
Updated May 16, 2024
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Danish bacon is a cured meat made from pigs raised in Denmark. It is cut from the loin of the pig, differentiating it from American bacon, which is cut from the pig's belly. This meat product has the familiar meat and fat striation of most bacon, but it tends to be meatier than American bacon. The cured meat is particularly popular in the United Kingdom, where it has been imported from Denmark since the mid-1800s.

In Britain, a slice of Danish bacon is usually referred to as a rasher. A very popular British dish containing the meat is a bacon butty, or bacon sandwich. The popularity of this bacon in the United Kingdom can be traced back to the mid-1800s, when the Danish began exporting pigs to the region in a strategic economic move that lead to one of Denmark's major exports: pigs. To the present day, Danish bacon is fairly difficult to find outside of the European Union.

Bacon is a cured meat which has been prepared in many areas of the world for thousands of years. Some geographical regions have developed their own unique preparation processes. The spices incorporated into the curing process can also vary greatly by region and are likely to include spices native to the area. Like Canadian bacon, Irish bacon, English bacon, and American bacon, Danish bacon has a unique taste and texture.

Because Danish bacon is cut from the loin of the pig rather than the belly, it tends to be a bit meatier than American bacon. This meatier flavor combines with the smoky, salty flavor imbued by the curing process to give what some call the best bacon taste available. In the United Kingdom, the meat is sold under the brand name Danish Bacon™.

The history of Danish bacon goes as far back as the 1800s. Germany had traditionally been a large consumer of Danish pig products, but opted to ban the import of Danish pigs around the middle of the century. Denmark then began importing to the United Kingdom, where the effects of the industrial revolution left the country ripe for food import. British workers simply needed more food than could be produced by the United Kingdom itself. The Dutch people's strategic economic decision to begin exporting pork to the United Kingdom lead to a huge pork industry that continues to be a large contributor to the Danish economy.

DelightedCooking is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.

Discussion Comments

By anon1004452 — On Feb 14, 2021

If you live in Illinois, particularly the NW suburbs of Chicago, Tony's sells many European cuts of bacon including Danish. I had some for the first time today! I cooked it along with some regular American bacon and the difference is huge.

By kylee07drg — On Feb 15, 2012

I love eating Danish bacon with a sweet pastry. The bacon has so much flavor and saltiness that it provides a perfect contrast to the super sweet, gooey goodness of a sweet roll, doughnut, or cruller.

Also, it tastes the best with orange juice. I like my flavors intense, and throwing several together in one meal results in perfection.

There is nothing better than taking a big bite of meaty Danish bacon and a small bite of a Bavarian cream doughnut at once, then washing it all down with a large gulp of orange juice. This kind of breakfast keeps me full and happy for hours, so I don't have to take time out for a snack. Also, I don't have to eat a big lunch or supper.

By shell4life — On Feb 15, 2012

For those of you who live where you can't find this fresh in stores, you can order Danish canned bacon online. I discovered this in a desperate search to see how I could get the stuff.

The canned variety is supposed to last for years, so you can stock up and not worry about using it before it goes bad. There are nearly fifty slices in most cans, which is pretty amazing.

It is already cooked, so you can take a can of it on a camping trip if you like. I like my bacon hot, so I use the microwave or oven to warm it up.

If I'm cooking something that needs flavor, I don't even bother heating the bacon. I just chop it up into the pot of food and let the warmth permeate it.

By lighth0se33 — On Feb 14, 2012

@OeKc05 – I know how addictive it can be. While I was growing up, my family moved around a lot, and I had the opportunity to eat Danish bacon. We lived in an area where that was the only type of bacon that people ate, and now that I live back in the United States, I miss it very much.

My friends used to top their pizzas with it. Instead of pepperoni, they would cover their pies with tomato sauce, cheese, and Danish bacon. I liked to leave the cheese off so I could concentrate on the wonderful flavor of the bacon.

I would love to have one of those pizzas today! I suppose I will have to pay my old friends a visit to make that happen.

By OeKc05 — On Feb 13, 2012

I grew up on regular old smoked bacon from the United States, and I thought that all bacon tasted the same. Imagine my surprise when I tried Danish bacon.

It is like the regular goodness of bacon multiplied by ten. There is no way to accurately describe how good it tastes. You just have to try it for yourself, but be forewarned that you will become addicted.

I had Danish bacon while visiting a friend in London. It has been hard to go back to American bacon. I simply can't find any of the Danish variety around here, and bacon isn't something that I would want to order online, because I would be concerned about its freshness.

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