Wait, What?? There's a gland in my Butt!!!!

  • Some of the links on this forum allow SMF, at no cost to you, to earn a small commission when you click through and make a purchase. Let me know if you have any questions about this.
SMF is reader-supported. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission.


Epic Pitmaster
Original poster
Staff member
OTBS Member
Apr 27, 2017
South Louisiana-Yes, it is HOT
Yes. If you use boston butts to make sausage, there is a gland you need to be aware of and it is best to remove it prior to grinding. Here is how to find it...

I like to cut the fat caps off with a good sharp Scimitar steak slicer. Be mindful of the knob of shoulder bone just under the fat cap when slicing though.

If you notice the orientation, the steak knife is pointing to where the shoulder bone was cut in half. this is where the boston butt meets the picnic shoulder roast (bottom of the leg). The boning knife at the top points to where the gland is located in the butt. It is about 1" or so under the fat cap.


(Notice the top of the gland in the fat cap) After removing the fat cap. With the picnic side facing you, you will notice that the muscle structure looks kinda like a hand...


The gland will be in the pocket of soft fat at the end of your fingers.... (will be right or left depending on which side of the pig the shoulder came from.)


Just carefully cut out a plug of the soft fat to remove the gland.


Also check the bottom of the fat cap...there might be some there as well if you sliced through the gland.

If you don't think this is necessary, remove a gland and fry it in a pan.....chew that and let me know how you like the taste..........

Happy sausage making. Hope this tutorial helps you.
Another reason I want to check the glands is to ensure the health of the hog. If the gland is infected-trust me, you will know... just from the smell of the gland and it's appearance. Now I want to stress that it is rare to run across one that is bad, but even with all the safety measures put into place by the industry and the USDA, it does happen. I have found 3 bad butt glands over the course of the last 30 or so years.
  • Like
Reactions: crazymoon
I process my own deer and hogs when I get lucky, lot more deer than hog, got glands in the shoulders and necks also. easy to find them if cutting slices but whole muscle groups and you might miss them, I'm sure I may have cooked some up early on but never any bad taste.
I always remove this I saw someone post it in a video and have always removed ever since… talked with a few guys and they told me they had no idea and never remove it I suggested they ought to remove it lol
I've never heard of that, I don't make sausage but I do cook alot of butts and have never taken it out
I think I've seen that before. I know I've seen something similar that wasn't fat or meat, so I've trimmed them out when I've seen them but I'm sure I've also just ground them up when I haven't.
Great post indaswamp indaswamp
I usually get my butt from Costco which are de-boned. They remove the gland in the process, but from the top side.
Here's the visual cue they removed it

I remove the fat cap to check from the underside and they do indeed remove the gland with surgical precision.

I cut down my butt before vac packing and freezing so it looks a smaller than a full de-boned shoulder. Greatly speeds up the defrosting process and today my wife requested pulled pork. I have another package to defrost and put on the smoker. Only the two of us so I don't like to make more a couple pounds.
SmokingMeatForums.com is reader supported and as an Amazon Associate, we may earn commissions from qualifying purchases.

Latest posts

Hot Threads