If you’ve unwittingly been substituting bacon for pancetta all these years, don’t fret. Both bacon and pancetta are made from cured pork belly, which leaves them with that distinct briny flavor, but there's one major difference that can change the flavor profile of your dish if you aren’t careful: Bacon is smoked after it's cured. While that makes it great in breakfast casseroles, it doesn’t infuse dishes with the elegant taste that a delicately aromatic pancetta does. Did we mention that you can also slice pancetta paper-thin and enjoy it without cooking? You can’t do that with bacon! Pancetta is Italy's gift to the world; the proof is in the dishes. Here are 15 pancetta pastas to start your journey.
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