Sometimes it’s hard to differentiate between two similar cured types of meat like trail bologna and summer sausage, but understanding the difference can make all the difference when it comes to making delicious sandwiches or pairing them with the perfect cheese and crackers. If you want to learn more about both types of meat so you can make an educated choice when adding them to your charcuterie board, check out this great post to read at Eatingwithyourhands. It has everything you need to know about trail bologna and summer sausage, plus some tasty recipes to try.

What Is Trail Bologna?

Trail bologna is a type of smoked sausage made from ground beef mixed with pork fat and spices such as black pepper and garlic. The mixture is then formed into logs, which are smoked over hickory wood for hours until they have a deep mahogany color and smoky flavor. It’s typically sliced thinly and served on sandwiches, salads, or as part of a larger charcuterie plate.

What Is Summer Sausage?

Summer sausage is another cured meat originating in Germany centuries ago. Unlike trail bologna, summer sausage is made from either beef or pork that has been finely chopped before being seasoned with spices such as coriander, mustard seed, ginger, nutmeg, garlic powder, cayenne pepper, and paprika. Once the mixture has been well combined, it’s stuffed into natural casings before being hung up in a cool place to dry for several weeks or months until it reaches the desired texture. Like trail bologna, this type of sausage can be enjoyed on its own or added to other dishes like pizzas or pasta sauces for extra flavor.

Differences Between Trail Bologna & Summer Sausage

The main differences between these two cured meats are their preparation methods and flavors. While both are spicy thanks to their seasonings, Trail Bologna tends to be hotter because it contains more black pepper than Summer Sausage; its smoky flavor also sets it apart from its Summer counterpart, which has only a light smoky flavor due to its shorter curing time. In terms of texture, trail bologna tends to be firmer, while summer sausage tends to be softer because the meat is finely chopped before seasoning, rather than ground as in traditional bologna. And while they both contain fat, trail bolognas tend to have higher levels because they’re made with pork fat as well as leaner cuts of meat.

What to serve with each type of meat?

Although you can certainly enjoy either on its own, each type of cured meat goes best with certain foods. For example, Trail Bolognas go well with strongly flavored cheeses such as the classic blue cheese, while Summer Sausages go well with milder cheeses such as Swiss or Gouda. As well as cheese, crackers are always a good option, no matter what you choose! As for drinks, beer goes great with any of these, but if you’re looking for something non-alcoholic, try pairing them with some fresh fruit like apples or pears instead.

How to store them?

Once opened, store both types in airtight containers in the fridge; they should last up to 3-4 weeks depending on how often you use them! If freezing isn’t an option, just make sure you don’t leave them open for too long, otherwise, the meat will go off quicker than expected!

The bottom line

In conclusion, there are many things that make a Trail Bologna different from a regular summer sausage, including preparation methods, flavors, textures, toppings, and so on. Although both types can be used interchangeably depending on your dish, sometimes knowing these subtle differences can really raise your food game! Hopefully, this guide will help clear up any confusion about these two delicious cured meats!