Spam is a popular food, especially in Hawaii.
It is made from pork shoulder and ham meat that is finely chopped with spices and then canned in a short, stubby cylindrical can.
Spam has been a staple in Hawaiian cuisine since it was introduced during the mid-1930s.
It became so popular that Spam was often eaten at every meal.
It was first served as Spam sandwiches for breakfast, on Spam musubi for lunch, and as Spam fried rice for dinner.
However, this meat product is not healthy and contains high fat and sodium levels.
Because of this, many people have turned away from Spam and turned towards healthier alternatives such as tofu or vegetables.
In this article, we will explore five healthy substitutes for Spam.
What is Spam?
Spam is a canned meat product used as a protein source in all sorts of food, including soups and sandwiches.
Hormel Foods developed it during the Great Depression to make cuts of pork go further to feed more people.
It has become one of the world’s most recognizable brands, with many recipes developed for its use as a replacement for other meats, such as chicken.
Spam is made from pork shoulder and ham, including salt, water, sugar, hydrolyzed cooked soy protein, sodium nitrite, and carmel color.
The meat is chopped up into tiny pieces before being canned in a large pressurized cooker.
Spam is already cooked before it is canned, making it easier to use.
It has a slightly salty taste that can be enhanced with spices depending on its intended use.
Although most people associate Spam with the flavor of the 1970s, new flavors are constantly being produced in Thailand and other parts of Asia.
The 5 Best Healthy Substitutes for Spam
If you’re looking to cut down on your red meat intake, but you can’t give up the flavor of Spam, here are five healthy alternatives for you to try.
1 – Tofu
Tofu is the meat substitute that will probably be most familiar to you.
This vegan and vegetarian food is made from curdled milk and pressed like cheese making.
It’s low in calories and high in protein, making it an ideal alternative for Spam.
In addition, it doesn’t add any cholesterol to your diet.
Tofu is also readily available and easy to use. Just make sure you don’t overcook it.
Tofu differs from region to region, with the best type of tofu for this purpose being soft or silken.
In Asia, it is called ‘Dahu’.
2 – Pork Roll/Tail
Pork roll is another familiar meat substitute. This product, however, may be harder to find.
The pork shoulder is cut into pieces to make a pork roll before being covered in a spiced coating of pepper and other ingredients.
It’s very similar to Spam as it has a long shelf life.
However, it does not contain any preservatives or phosphates.
In addition, it is lower in fat and has a much longer shelf life compared to Spam.
It does, however, have from 160 to 170 calories in a 3-ounce serving.
Finally, pork roll is a great way for you to enjoy the taste of Spam while saving calories.
3 – Potted Meat
Potted meat is a great alternative to Spam.
This product is made up of cooked ham mixed with spices and set in a mold.
The mixture typically includes pork or beef, fat, salt, pepper, sugar, sodium nitrite, and sodium nitrate.
The result is that the flavor is enhanced, with the meat becoming more tender.
It’s worth noting that this is another food product that has a long shelf life and does not require refrigeration.
The main thing to note about potted meat is that it can be served cold and kept refrigerated.
It also has a very long shelf life meaning you won’t have to worry about using it up quickly.
4 – Scrapple
Scrapple is another food product with a long shelf life.
This dish was originally made up of leftover pork scraps.
However, it has since evolved into a meat, spices, and buckwheat dish.
It is very popular in the American state of Pennsylvania, where it’s referred to as ‘pon haus’.
It’s crucial to note that while it may be nutritious, scrapple does not have a lot of flavors.
It’s also very high in fat and has a lot of calories.
Finally, this food product is also used as a meat stuffing and may be served cold.
5 – Jambon
Jambon is a product made from the pig’s shoulder.
It was originally popular in France and Switzerland before spreading to America, where it’s used as a topping for baked potatoes or sandwiches.
The main benefit of jambon is that it has much less fat than Spam and is often smoked.
In terms of flavor, it is very similar to Spam, only slightly lighter.
However, the color of this ham product varies according to its ingredients.
It’s worth noting that jambon does require refrigeration and doesn’t have a long shelf life as Spam does.
Spam can be a delicious meat substitute for those looking to cut down on their red meat intake.
However, it’s important to remember that it does contain a lot of fat and doesn’t have any lean meat.
It is not nutritious and should only be used as a treat.
Thankfully, there are many alternatives to Spam available if you’re looking for a lower-fat substitute.
These include pork roll, potted meat, scrapple, jambon, and tofu – all of which can offer the same high protein content without any unhealthy ingredients.