First "lower sodium" bacon

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SmokyMose

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Aug 13, 2015
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Indianapolis, Indiana
Since the Mrs. started her low sodium diet I've been making a lot of changes in my cooking.
We don't really use a lot of bacon, but that was on the cardiologist's "no-no" list (how was he to know I can make our own bacon).
I gave Pop's low salt brine a try finally:
1 gal water
1/3 cup kosher Salt (instead of a full cup)
1 cup sugar
1 cup brown sugar
1 heaping tb #1 cure
I also add one of those little bottles of maple extract to the brine.

17 days in the soup, turning and stirring once.

After drying in the fridge a couple of days it went into the smoker for about 6 hrs over PitMaster's Choice:
mailbox.jpg smoked.jpg

After another "air-out" in the fridge it was time to taste and slice:
fried.jpg sliced.jpg packed.jpg
Cure went all the way through. I always worry about that.

Taste is excellent! Not at all salty but definitely bacon and the maple comes through more :-)
Got six (+/-) 14 oz packages and three nice chunks of smoked belly for whatever....

The Mrs. was bumming thinking she could never have BLTs again.
It'll be awhile before we have "real" tomatoes though, LOL!
maters.jpg maters 2.jpg

I'm a Pop's Brine believer still.
Thanks for looking and smoke on!
Dan
 
Looks amazing!

I always weigh my ingredients for Pops Brine to keep it 100 % consistent.. now that you know you can make it and make it well I bet you make more in the future! You can play with the "flavors" to as well as the smoke flavor too.

Again great job!!
 
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Looks amazing!

I always weigh my ingredients for Pops Brine to keep it 100 % consistent.. now that you know you can make it and make it well I bet you make more in the future! You can play with the "flavors" to as well as the smoke flavor too.

Again great job!!
Thank you!
Actually I've been doing bacon with Pop's brine for a few years now. This is the first time I've tried the lower salt version.
 
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Looks nice! Do you feel any differences in taste comparing with normal brine?
Thank you!
The only difference we noticed is the lack of "saltiness". When she started the new regimen of course I did, too.
I pulled my last package out of the freezer a few weeks ago just to get rid of it. After not using salt much for a month or so it seemed
like all I tasted was salt and not the bacon.
We don't realize how much salt we're used to until we stop using so much.
It's in EVERYTHING!
 
Thank you!
Actually I've been doing bacon with Pop's brine for a few years now. This is the first time I've tried the lower salt version.
So.. two questions.. is there a reason you went 17 days and what kind of slicer do you have? My lack of a good slicer keeps me form making more bacon!
 
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So.. two questions.. is there a reason you went 17 days and what kind of slicer do you have? My lack of a good slicer keeps me form making more bacon!
I usually go 2 weeks but I was waiting for a window in the weather for a smoke. Also anything over an inch and a half thick I inject some cure and this was borderline so I didn't inject. Just being sure. A couple of days extra in the brine won't hurt anything.
I have a cheap Chard slicer. The only way I can get good slices is to have the meat almost frozen. I did this batch in stages putting the meat back in the freezer to firm up when it started to get sloppy.
 
I usually go 2 weeks but I was waiting for a window in the weather for a smoke. Also anything over an inch and a half thick I inject some cure and this was borderline so I didn't inject. Just being sure. A couple of days extra in the brine won't hurt anything.
I have a cheap Chard slicer. The only way I can get good slices is to have the meat almost frozen. I did this batch in stages putting the meat back in the freezer to firm up when it started to get sloppy.

Perfect! I just don't have enough "width" in my slicer with a 7 1/2 blade to slice all the way a cross a belly. I'm looking for a new one for sure!
 
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Perfect! I just don't have enough "width" in my slicer with a 7 1/2 blade to slice all the way a cross a belly. I'm looking for a new one for sure!
I can't slice all the way across a belly. I use a 2 gallon bucket so cutting the belly in half and squaring off fits the bucket with the "off-cuts" in there.
 
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