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 What To Do With Pork Skin From Shoulder? [Explained]

We can use a Pork’s shoulder skin to make many delicious dishes. And in fact, you can do it in a budget-friendly way.  

Pork Shoulder skin is satisfying if you can utilize it properly. So, what to do with pork skin?

Well, first of all you can use the skin to make a crispy pork rind. You can also fry it and use it as a topping for either Pizza or Pasta. You could use it as a topping on salads too. 

But that’s just scratching the surface. There are various other ways to use Pork skin and make delicious meals out of it. So, if you want to know more, keep reading. 

Pork Shoulder: Which Part of the Hog is it? 

Before we give you a list of things you can do with pork shoulder, it is important to understand the anatomy of a hog. So, let us talk about pork shoulder, shall we? 

We have seen people confuse pork shoulder with the butt. This is not the case.  Pork butt is the not the back end of a hog. Rather, it is the upper part of the hog that we mistake for the shoulder. 

If you take a look at the cuts of a pork diagram, you will see that the pork shoulder is the part right above the hock.  Sometimes, it maybe below the pork butt. Another name for pork shoulder is picnic shoulder. 

But how do you actually differentiate pork butt from the shoulder? That’s easy. The shoulder has a layer of skin on it. 

Sometimes though this part is sold without the skin.With that out of the way, let us see what the skin can be used for and whether you should keep the skin or throw it. 

Keep or Throw the Skin of Pork Shoulder? 

You might be wondering if the skin of a pork’s shoulder is worth keeping. Sadly, there is no one straight answer. It depends on the recipe you want to make. 

You don’t need to throw the skin away if you are thinking of making a recipe that will need it. But if you can’t think of making something from the skin, there’s no point in keeping it. 

For instance, if you want to make pulled pork, you might not need the skin cos pork butt is a lot better for this dish. You could also use the pork shoulder after removing the skin from it. 

One disadvantage of the skin is that it doesn’t let the seasoning penetrate properly. And if your meat is not salted, it won’t be tasty.  

However, the skin may as well be something you would want to keep on the meat. The skin is pretty tasty if you are making a pork shoulder roast. 

In addition to shoulder roast, there are other popular pork shoulder cut ishes that you can try for yourself. So, let us take a look at some of them. 

Pork Shoulder Skin Uses: Popular Recipes

Okay, so you decided not to throw away the pork shoulder skin. That’s fine and all but what do you do next?

Well, you cook it of course. There are a number of recipes you can make out of Pork shoulder skin. Here are a few of them:

Recipe 1: Pork Shoulder Skin-on Roast with Crackling

Crackling pork roast with the skin on is definitely a crunchy delicious meal. Pork shoulder is the best part of a pig to roast. 

But, how do you make this recipe? Let us find out. 

You of course need to leave the skin on so, you get a crispy outer crust which is the best part of the pork. A boneless pork shoulder is what we would recommend for this dish. 

The next part is actually making the recipe. You can make it in a Puerto Rican style or you can cook it in a cuban style. 

No matter which style you choose to go with, the common thing is that the meat cut should be cooked slowly.

The pork shoulder should always involve slow cooking of the meat. Here is a list of spices and condiments that you will need to make the Cuban-style roast pork shoulders: 

  • Minced Garlic
  • Cumin
  • Oregano
  • Orange Juice
  • Lime Juice
  • Mint Leaves

You can use the ingredients above to make a delicious cuban-style pork shoulder roast at home. 

Just follow the recipe we have provided above and slow cook it in an aluminum cooker. You will get a dry but pulpy inside and a pretty crispy crackle on the outside.

Recipe 2: Crispy Pork Rinds

Shoulder roast is nice and all but do you know what’s better? Crispy Pork Rinds. Yes, the skin of pork shoulder is delicious on its own. 

Just separate the skin from the meat and make some crispy pork rinds as snacks. The way you do it is quite simple as well. Just cut the trimmed skin into bite-sized pieces and then bake them for around 250 degrees. Now, you can see puffed skin when you take it out of the oven. 

After you have successfully baked it, fry the rinds in neutral oil and that’s about it. You can serve the pork rinds either hot or you can store them in an airtight container and eat when you like it. 

You can enjoy pork rinds with various side dishes like dips, guacamole, cheesy sauce, and more. In addition, you can use the rinds as a substitute for breeding in casseroles, coating proteins and vegetables as well. 

Recipe 3: Pork Rind Stir Fry

You can also stir fry pork rind if you don’t want to just bake it. Just add some seasoning and spices to the rind and then bake the skin. 

After that, stir fry them and serve them hot with pasta or with salad. 

Recipe 4: Pork Skin for Gelatinous Stock Base

Yes, you heard it right. You can use Pork skin to make a stock base with the consistency of a gelatin. Making it is also quite simple really. 

The gelatinous stock base can be used in other dishes as a thickener or taste enhancer. Just like chicken or beef stock for gravy. 

To make this stock, just boil the pork shoulder skin and bones together in a pot. After that, you can add it to stews, soups, noodle broth, etc. 

On that note, here’s our recommendation for an Instant Pot that you can use to melt the pork skin easily:

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  • VERSATILE INNER COOKING POT: Food-grade stainless-steel cooking pot with a tri-ply bottom offers more even cooking and an anti-spin design that secures the pot for perfect sautéing.

Frequently Asked Questions [FAQs]

Is it necessary to remove the fat cap on pork shoulder?

The fat cap adds incredible flavor and texture to the meat. So, we don’t recommend you to remove it entirely. You can, however, remove a quarter of it. But if you don’t like the dish to be fatty, you do have to remove the fat cap.  

At what temperature does pork fat melt?

It’s difficult to give you the exact temperature but the temperature range is 200 to 250 degrees Fahrenheit. At this temperature range, pork skin starts to gelatinize. The fat won’t melt at any temperature less than this.

Are lard and bacon grease considered similar food?  

Yes, lard and bacon grease are considered the same thing as both of them are rendered pork fat. You can use any one of the two when a recipe calls for it. 

Final Thoughts

So, there you have it guys. We guess we have answered your queries. You can definitely use the recipes that we mentioned above to make good use of the pork skin. 

We hope you will be able to make good use of the pork skin after you have read this article in full.