Frequently asked questions

From cooking questions to understanding the difference between all of the different kinds of cuts, find a list of Frequently Asked Questions here. If you don’t see your question listed, use the form to ask us and we'll be sure to answer.

  • Is pork considered to be a white meat or red meat? +

    Pork is considered a red meat, as the meat from all cloven-hooved animals is classified as red.
  • Is it safe to eat pork with a hint of pink? +

    Yes, because pork is considered a red meat, the inside of a whole muscle cut is sterile and therefore safe to consume with a hint of pink. This would apply to cuts such as tenderloin, loin chops and loin roasts.
  • What are the leanest cuts of pork? +

    There are many cuts of fresh pork that, when trimmed of external fat, are considered lean or extra lean sources of protein. The leanest cuts come from the loin.
  • Do I have to take the membrane off the back of ribs prior to cooking? +

    Taking the membrane off the ribs before you season them allows the rub to permeate the meat, leading to a mouth-watering end product. It also makes the ribs easier to eat!
  • What’s the difference between back, side, sweet and sour and spare ribs? +

    Back ribs: these have the highest proportion of meat to bone, and are considered tastier and more tender than side ribs. They come from the back of the animal, adjacent to the loin and attached to the backbone, and are more expensive. Side, sweet and sour, and spare ribs: these ribs are all the same. Their names are used interchangeably, except that sweet and sour ribs are cut into strips about 2-inches wide. These ribs lie against the belly (where bacon comes from) and attach to the breastbone.
  • How do I thaw pork after it has been frozen? +

    Pork should be thawed in the refrigerator rather than on your countertop.
  • What is seasoned pork? +

    Seasoned pork has been processed using a brine (salt, water, sodium phosphate) solution, in order to create a product that retains moisture even when overcooked. Pork that is seasoned must be labelled as such and contain a list of ingredients. Pork that has not been seasoned does not have to have an ingredient list.
  • Can I substitute lean ground pork for lean ground beef? +

    Yes, anything you use ground beef for is easily substituted with pork. Any ground meat labeled “lean” must contain less than 10 g of total fat, 4.5 grams of saturated fat and 95 milligrams of cholesterol per 100 gram serving.
  • Can I re-freeze raw pork that has been thawed in the refrigerator? +

    No. Cook it and then freeze it.
  • Is cooking with a slow cooker safe? +

    The slow cooker cooks foods slowly at a low, safe temperature, generally between 1700F-2800F. The direct heat from the pot, lengthy cooking time and steam created within the tightly covered container combine to destroy harmful bacteria and make the slow cooking process safe for cooking foods.
  • Can you cook pork that is partially frozen? +

    You can cook pork from partially frozen; however we recommend thawing the pork in the refrigerator prior to cooking for best results and reduced risk of improper cooking. There is a risk that the middle of the meat might not be cooked thoroughly, so always use a meat thermometer and ensure 1550F is reached internally.
  • Is pork harder for humans to digest than other meats? +

    No, the human body is equipped with digestive enzymes starting in the mouth, stomach, and small intestine to break down muscle tissue to its most basic form – amino acids – which are then absorbed by the surface of the small intestine. Every individual will have different rates of digestion and absorption. What you consume with the pork will also have an effect on digestion rate, e.g. portion size, fat content, etc.
  • Why is it important to let my pork rest before slicing? +

    To ensure pork remains tender and juicy you always want to remove the meat from the grill or oven and let it rest for 5-10 minutes under loosely tented tin foil. This practice allows the meat juices to re-distribute throughout. For larger cuts of pork allow up to 20 minutes of resting time.
  • Why should I pat my meat dry before grilling it? +

    When wet meat is placed on a hot grill the meat will steam rather than sear, searing the meat will add desirable flavour and texture.
  • When it comes to making meatballs or meatloaf what’s the best way to mix all the ingredients together? +

    You can mix ingredients with a fork but we recommend mixing with clean hands. This will allow you to incorporate all the ingredients together until just combined without overmixing. Overmixing will cause your meatballs to become dense and heavy.
  • Why would a recipe suggest browning a roast or cubes before cooking in a slow cooker? +

    While this step is not essential, it does create a more appealing dish. Browning the meat will add rich color, more intense flavour, and adds texture to the end product.
  • How do I know if my pulled pork is ready to pull? +

    Pierce the roast with a fork and give it a twist. If it starts to easily fall apart you know it’s ready.
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