What is Guanciale? October 30, 2018 14:51

Although a very different culture when it comes to food, the Italians and the Scots do have one thing in common... a deep-rooted love of bacon! Ours may be slightly less refined - white rolls and Heinz ketchup are indeed the most popular accompaniments for pig meat here in Scotland - but nevertheless, pork with the fat on is high on both lists of favourite ingredients. 

Regular customers to PB eat almost as much pancetta as they do puddledub, but what you might not be so familiar with is guanciale. Many will make the mistake of thinking bacon, guanciale and pancetta are one and the same but I promise, they're not.  Read on to discover your new favourite ingredient!


Guanciale pork meat comes from the jowl or cheek of the pig, and its devotees claim there is no substitute for it. This delectable, robustly flavoured meat is seasoned on the surface with salt, pepper, sage, rosemary and garlic although it's worth noting that seasoning may change region to region based on tradition and curing habits. It is then dried and aged for at least 3 months, a process which concentrates the flavours.

Italians love their guanciale and for good reason – the fat lends marvellous flavour to any meal as it is so strong that a little bit of the meat goes a long way. It is famously found in spaghetti alla carbonara or bucatini all’amatriciana. 

Buy it from the deli counter now!