11 Simple Prosciutto Substitutes

Prosciutto substitute

What’s a good prosciutto substitute depends on your preferences, but some of the best substitutes for prosciutto are Jamon Serrano, Ham, Culatello, Pancetta, bacon, and many others.

Prosciutto is a type of salted ham originating from Italy. It has a slightly sweet flavor, it is eaten raw and thinly sliced, and it is often seasoned with garlic, rosemary, black pepper, and juniper. This delicacy is most often eaten in sandwiches, on pizza, in baked dishes, and on charcuterie boards.

To learn more about how to replace prosciutto, keep reading this article! Here you will find several great prosciutto substitutes.

Prosciutto Substitute

Prosciutto substitute pin

1. Jamón serrano

Also known as Serrano ham, this is a rich and dark cured meat with a deep and nutty flavor. It is less salty than prosciutto, but it is still a good replacement and can be used in any dish that usually requires prosciutto. Because it is less salty, Serrano ham is the perfect choice for those who need to lower their salt intake.

2. Culatello

Another Italian cured meat, Culatello has a rich flavor, similar to prosciutto. It is cured with salt, black pepper, garlic, and dry white wine. In general, Culatello has less fat than prosciutto.

3. Ham

In terms of flavor, ham is the most similar to prosciutto. As a matter of fact, ham and prosciutto are actually synonyms in Italy, but in the rest of the world, smoked ham is a more flavorful cured pork meat. Ham usually comes from pork belly and pork leg.

4. Black forest ham

This type of ham is seasoned with blueberries and garlic, and it has a unique sweet yet tangy flavor.

5. Bacon

Another substitute for prosciutto, bacon is salt-cured pork meat high in fat content. Bacon has a savory and slightly smoky flavor and can be eaten raw or cooked.

6. Pancetta

Salt-cured meat product similar to prosciutto, but without the smoky flavor of prosciutto. However, unlike prosciutto, pancetta can’t be eaten raw. You need to cook and cool it down first before serving and eating.

7. Salami

A salt-cured type of Italian sausage, salami has a bold and tasty flavor because it is made of fermented sausages. There are also several salami varieties, sweet, savory, and spicy.

8. Beef bresaola

If you want a non-pork prosciutto replacement, beef bresaola should be your number one choice. Beef bresaola is air-dried Italian delicacy with a sweet, musty, and nutty flavor.

9. Duck prosciutto

Another non-pork substitute for prosciutto. Duck prosciutto is made of cured duck breast meat. It has an intense, almost pork-like flavor and goes exceptionally well with salads and sweet ingredients like pickled raisins and cherry preserves.

10. Swiss cheese

If you don’t eat meat, you can substitute prosciutto with Swiss cheese or any other aged cheeses, like Romano and Asiago.

11. Mushrooms

When you are looking for a vegan prosciutto substitute, mushrooms are probably your best choice because they are rich in complex flavors and full of proteins, which makes them a good substitute for any type of meat. Portobello and shiitake mushrooms are most often used because of their strong flavor and meaty texture.

Prosciutto Substitute Halal

If you don’t eat pork meat, you can substitute prosciutto with duck breasts or beef meat. These are both halal options, and you will be able to enjoy a similar flavor without actually eating pork products.

Prosciutto Substitute Non Pork

Another non-pork option for replacing pork prosciutto is turkey ham. Turkey ham has a rich and complex flavor, similar to prosciutto. However, make sure to cook turkey ham before eating it!

Prosciutto Substitute Vegetarian

Aged cheeses, like Swiss cheese, Romano, Asiago, Gouda, Brie, etc., can replace prosciutto for vegetarian dishes. These cheeses are rich in flavor and have a slightly chewy texture, resembling the thinly sliced prosciutto.

Prosciutto Substitute For Pancetta

Both prosciutto and pancetta are cured meats with a similar flavor. Pancetta, also known as Italian bacon, has a texture of prosciutto, which makes it a good replacement. The only thing that makes pancetta different from prosciutto is the lack of smoky flavor and the fact that you can’t eat it raw.

Prosciutto Substitute For Bacon

Bacon has a higher fat content than prosciutto, but it is still a good option for replacing prosciutto. Prosciutto and bacon have a similar smoky flavor, and both can be eaten raw or cooked.

Prosciutto Substitute Beef

Beef bresaola is a great replacement for prosciutto. It has a nutty, earthy, and musty flavor, perfect for a sandwich or pizza.

Prosciutto Substitute Beef Wellington

Beef Wellington is usually wrapped in prosciutto, but you can replace prosciutto with beef bresaola or completely skip the wrapping part. It is up to you!

Prosciutto Substitute For Pasta

Prosciutto is a popular ingredient in many pasta dishes and pasta sauces. However, you can still enjoy your favorite pasta recipe even if you don’t have any prosciutto left! When you cook pasta next time, you can easily substitute prosciutto with pancetta, bacon, smoked or regular ham, or serrano ham.

Prosciutto Substitute Cooking

Some other great substitutes for prosciutto are Capicola and Guanciale. Capicola is cured meat mostly taken from pork neck or shoulder. It has a salty and spicy flavor. Guanciale is made of pork cheeks and cured with salt, rosemary, sage, black pepper, and garlic.

What Meats Are Similar To Prosciutto?

Cured and air-dried meats are the most similar to prosciutto. Pancetta, Capicola, Guanciale, bacon, ham, and many others are quite similar to prosciutto and can be used as substitutes.

What Tastes Similar To Prosciutto?

Pancetta, bacon, and ham have a similar taste to prosciutto, although pancetta lacks that smoky flavor note.

Is There A Vegetarian Substitute For Prosciutto?

Yes, you can substitute prosciutto with aged cheese or shiitake mushrooms. Both are great non-meat options that can replace prosciutto in baked dishes, pasta, pizza, and similar recipes.


Now you got the idea of a good prosciutto substitute. Some of the best alternatives are pancetta, smoked ham, black forest ham, bacon, serrano ham, and salami. They all have similar flavors to prosciutto, and it is up to you which one you will use to replace prosciutto.

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