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Spam vs Scrapple: What’s the Difference?

Summary of key points

The main differences between Spam and Scrapple revolve around their ingredients and preparation. Both products are primarily made from pork, but Spam includes ham meat, whereas Scrapple incorporates offal such as liver and other trimmings. Additionally, Spam tends to have a uniform texture due to being processed through a meat grinder and then canned, while Scrapple is mixed with cornmeal and spices before being formed into a loaf and fried for consumption. Spam is often described as having a more aesthetically pleasing appearance compared to Scrapple, which might be important for presentation purposes. Sources: AmericasRestaurant, FoodsGuy, QuiltingBoard, ForABodiesOnly.

Do you ever find yourself standing in front of the meat counter at a grocery store, expecting to find familiar favorites like bacon and ham— only to be surprised by a couple of cans of Spam?

This canned mystery meat may leave you feeling puzzled, but nothing could quite prepare you for its competition on the shelf— Scrapple.

To an unfamiliar eye, it’s difficult to tell how these two foods differ from one another.

In this blog post, we’ll take a look into their shared origin story and help clear up some of the confusion about what makes Spam so unique compared to scrabble.

So if you’ve ever wondered, “What’s the deal with spam and scrapple?” keep reading.

What is Spam?

If you’re perplexed about what Spam actually is, you’ve certainly come to the right place.

To put it simply, Spam is a canned, processed meat product made of pork and ham.

It was first introduced by the Hormel Foods Corporation in 1937, and ever since then has become a popular convenience food across the globe.

The production process for Spam involves combining pork shoulder, ham, salt, water, and a variety of other ingredients, such as potato starch or sodium nitrate.

This mixture is then cooked in order to pasteurize it and give the product its flavor and texture.

The canned version of Spam consists of this mixture with added preservatives, such as sodium nitrite, to increase its shelf life.

Most commonly known in the United States and the United Kingdom, Spam has also become popular in other regions of the world as well.

In Hawaii, it is often used in recipes such as Spam musubi or seared slices of Spam served over rice.

Korea has also adopted Spam, with its own version of the product known as “konnyaku,” which is made from processed konjac yam.

In addition to being a convenient food option for many households, Spam also offers some nutritional value.

It is a source of protein and contains essential vitamins and minerals such as phosphorus, potassium, and iron.

However, it also contains a high amount of fat as well as sodium, so it should be consumed in moderation.

What is Scrapple?

Scrapple is a savory breakfast dish made from pork scraps and cornmeal.

It originates in Europe, where it was created as a way to make the most of leftover cuts of meat.

The traditional recipe calls for grinding the meat into small pieces, mixing it with spices, and boiling it with cornmeal until it forms a thick paste.

This paste is then poured into a shallow pan and allowed to cool and set, resulting in a loaf that can be sliced.

Scrapple is popular in the United States, especially in Pennsylvania, a Dutch country, where it is known as Pannhaas.

It has become a breakfast staple across all regions of the United States and is often served with a side of eggs, bacon, and toast.

The taste of Scrapple varies depending on the region in which it is produced.

Variations often include different types of meat or additional ingredients such as onions, herbs, and spices.

When it comes to nutrition, Scrapple contains moderate amounts of protein and fat and a surprising amount of sodium.

It also contains some vitamins and minerals, particularly phosphorus and zinc.

Despite these benefits, Scrapple has not considered a healthy food because it can be high in saturated fat, preservatives, and nitrates.

Scrapples can be enjoyed in many different ways.

Popular recipes include sliced Scrapple served with a fried egg and toast, Scrapple sandwiches with cheese or bacon, and even deep-fried Scrapple bites.

Creative cooks have also invented regional dishes such as Pennsylvania Dutch scrapple fries and Baltimore’s famous pit beef sandwich topped with slices of Scrapple.

Differences Between Spam and Scrapple

When it comes to taste, texture, and appearance, Spam and Scrapple are quite different.

Spam is usually served in slices that have a uniform shape and a smooth texture.

It has a salty flavor that some people describe as being “ham-like.

” Scrapple, on the other hand, is often formed into blocks and has a crumbly texture that resembles breadcrumbs.

It is savory and slightly sweet, with some people claiming it to taste like bacon.

When it comes to production processes, Spam is made from pork shoulders that are cooked in their own juices for several hours.

The meat is then chopped into small pieces and canned or packaged in other forms.

Scrapple, on the other hand, begins with pork trimmings which are boiled until they become soft enough to be mashed together with wheat flour into a dough-like consistency.

The mixture is then cooled and formed into blocks before being sliced and fried.

Nutritionally speaking, both products contain relatively high amounts of fat and calories per serving.

Spam contains roughly 20 grams of fat and 180 calories per 3 oz.

Serving, while scapples contain around 15 grams of fat and 140 calories per 3 oz serving.

Spam is widely popular in the United States, Japan, Korea, the Philippines, and other parts of Asia, while Scrapple is a traditional dish in Pennsylvania Dutch culture.

In recent years, both products have become increasingly celebrated in popular culture as well as embraced by various food movements.

Spam has been featured in numerous films, such as Monty Python’s Meaning of Life and Toy Story 2, while Scrapple has been referenced in shows such as The Simpsons and Futurama.

Both products are also regularly used in online memes to poke fun at certain aspects of American culture.

If you’re trying to decide between Spam and Scrapple, the key differences lie in their taste, texture, production processes, nutritional value, and cultural significance.

It ultimately comes down to personal preference – so why not give both a try?


Q: What is the best way to cook Spam and Scrapple?

A: The best way to cook Spam and Scrapple is with a pan over medium-high heat.

First, you will want to add some oil to the pan and let it heat up.

Once the oil is hot, add in the Spam and Scrapple and cook for approximately 5 minutes, flipping them occasionally.

You will know they are done when they are slightly browned and heated through.

Serve immediately with your favorite toppings or sides.

Q: How do the nutritional values of Spam and Scrapple compare to other processed meats?

A: Spam and Scrapple are higher in fat than some other processed meats, such as bacon or sausage.

However, they also contain more protein and less sodium per serving than most other processed meats.

The exact nutritional values of Spam and Scrapple will vary by brand, so be sure to read the labels carefully before purchasing.

Q: Is there a recommended age for when to introduce Spam and Scrapple to children?

A: It is generally recommended that children be at least 12 months old before introducing them to processed meats like Spam and Scrapple.

However, discuss this with your pediatrician if you are unsure about the appropriate age.

Q: Can Spam or Scrapple be a part of a healthy diet?

A: Yes, Spam and Scrapple can be part of a healthy diet when consumed in moderation.

When purchasing, look for varieties with less sodium content and check the ingredients to make sure they are high-quality cuts of meat.

Additionally, adding other nutrient-dense foods such as fruits and vegetables can help to balance out the overall nutritional profile of your meals.


In conclusion, it is clear that Spam and Scrapple are two distinct products with different ingredients, flavor profiles, preparation methods, and cultural significance.

While both have a long history of popularity in their respective regions, they continue to hold a place in the hearts of many who enjoy them for either their taste or nostalgic value.

Despite the differences between them, both Spam and Scrapple have managed to remain popular for generations.

As a result, it is likely that both will continue to be enjoyed by many people in the years to come.

Spam vs Scrapple – What’s the Difference?

Andrew Gray
Curious about the disparities between Spam and Scrapple? Allow us to clarify the variance between these unique meat products.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Course This vs That
Servings 1 Serving


  • Spam
  • Scrapple


  • Choose between two items based on your preference and availability.
  • Follow the cooking directions for your chosen option, using the appropriate ratio of ingredients.
  • Prepare it according to your desired recipes.
  • Incorporate them into your dish, adjusting the amount to suit your taste.
  • Enjoy the unique taste experience and experiment with different dishes to explore their versatility.
Keyword Spam vs Scrapple
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