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Curing Help! - Page 2

post #21 of 26
Thread Starter 
I think I'm just gonna cook it as is. I've got a lot of meat to do so I'll just write this one off as a newbie mistake! I really appreciate all the input from you guys it's great! I'm just gonna order some cure #1 and do that. Or could I just omit the salt from My recipe and add the right amount of tender quick?
post #22 of 26

either or

post #23 of 26
In this case, you only need to worry about the cure amount if you intend to "cold smoke" ...if not...just go ahead and cook the sausage in a safe've already added PLENTY of salt !!!!! icon_eek.gif

Please PM me or one of the other helpful folks here if you have questions prior to your next batch!

=Martin= icon_eek.gif
post #24 of 26


Originally Posted by kmart View Post

Ok thanks very much! Is cure #1 and pink curing salt the same thing?
Originally Posted by boykjo View Post

IMHO I wouldn't mix cures


Hi kmart


If you are looking to do more curing in future you may find it useful to get to know more about the science behind the curing process and then you will find that you will have more general confidence and a lot of the uncertainty will go. There is a lot of good information within the forum and also some very good books on the subject.


When using curing salts it is about getting the levels of Nitrite and Nitrate right and, as this is usually provided mixed with common salt, balancing this with the final amount of salt in the end product. The addition of sugars and spices is more a matter of flavour balance, although the sugar does have some preservative effect.


If you are confident in your math and know exactly what is in the curing salts then there is no problem mixing cures however it is easy to make mistakes and as boykjo says it is therefore not a good idea.


Curing salts that people use tend to fall into two common types -

  • InstaCure #1 and #2 (also commonly known as Prague Powder #1 and #2)
  • Morton's Tender Quick (TQ)


There are others however these are the most common. Although there is some consistency when you buy these they can differ from manufacturer and so it is important that when you buy them the ingredients are clearly marked on the packs.


  • InstaCure #1 and Prague Powder #1 contain only Nitrite and this is almost always at 6.25% - diluted in Sodium Chloride (salt)
  • InstaCure #2 Contains Nitrite at 6.25% AND Nitrate at 1% - diluted with Sodium Chloride (salt)
  • Be careful when buying Prague Powder #2 though as, although the Nitrite is usually always 6.25%, the concentration of Nitrate can vary from 1% to 4.75% depending on the manufacturer.


  • Morton's TenderQuick contains Nitrite at 0.5% and Nitrate at 0.5%


Be careful when using "Pink Salt" as both cure #1 and cure #2 are often died pink and so it is important you know which one you are using.


Because TQ is less than 1/10th the concentration of the InstaCure #2 or Prague Powder #2 then to get the desired levels of Nitrite and Nitrate you need to use more than 10 times the amount - which will obviously result in more salt being added along with the cure. One advantage of TQ being more dilute is that it can be measured in Tsps, whereas the other cures should be accurately weighed to at least one decimal place.


The salts containing both Nitrite and Nitrate are good for sausages and hams etc whereas (if following USDA published guidelines) only the salts containing only Nitrite should be used with bacon.


Getting the desired amount of cure into your sausages is all about balancing the math and ensuring that you deliver the right amount of cure with the desired amount of salt.

post #25 of 26


A collection of articles concerning the differences between the two.  Add to it as you wish.

post #26 of 26

I just love this website. Ask and you shall receive.

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