What Is Soppressata?

I’ll never forget the first time I tried salami. I was about seven and I was on a weekend bike ride with my parents. Nearing the end, they decided we should stop at a sub shop for a hearty lunch. My mom ordered me a salami sub with Swiss cheese, lettuce, and mayo. In my memory, this sub was gigantic, and maybe it’s just because of all the exercise I’d just gotten, or the novelty of the salty, savory meat, but I declared it was the best thing I had ever eaten.

I’ve been a salami fan ever since. But did you know that there is actually a wide variety of salamis apart from the genoa variety I chowed down on as a kid? It’s true. Today, we’re turning our attention to soppressata. But what is soppressata? How do you pronounce it? What’s it made of? Let’s grind out some answers. 

What is soppressata?

Soppressata is a form of Italian cured meat. To get more specific, it is a form of dry cured pork salami. According to charcuterie experts at Il Porcellino Salumi in Denver, CO, it uses leaner, more coarsely ground cuts of meat than other salami varieties. It is also pressed after the casing has been applied. This is where the word “soppressata” comes from, and it gives the meat its distinctive oblong shape that helps differentiate it. 

It’s worth noting that there are many regional varieties of soppressata. Italy on its own has numerous, each made with different spices and flavors. 

How to pronounce soppressata correctly?

By this point, you should know how to spell “soppressata.” It’s spelled like “soppressata.” But the way to pronounce this word might be less obvious. It’s pronounced “soap-press-satta” (with a soft “a” like “salt”, not a hard “a” like “sat”).

What is soppressata made of?

Soppressata is usually made with leaner cuts of pork, which could include loin or shoulder (though this is not always the case). Apart from the meat, peppercorn, chili, rosemary, and cinnamon are some examples of spices that are often used. But again, there are numerous regional varieties that utilize different spices. 

Is soppressata pork?

Generally speaking, yes, soppressata is a form of dry cured pork salami. However, if you are avoiding pork products and still want to sample soppressata, there are alternatives available. These include turkey soppressata and even plant-based versions. 

Is soppressata spicy?

The answer to this question is a clear, resounding “it depends.” Soppressata can come in many varieties with a whole bunch of different spices thrown in. Milder versions are typically seasoned with black peppercorns, while spicier versions will use crushed pepper flakes. Mild soppressata is salty and hearty but not spicy at all—similar to Genoa or other mild pork-based salamis—but if the label says “spicy soppressata,” don’t say they didn’t warn you. 

How to use soppressata? 

Soppressata can absolutely stand on its own, whether or not it’s the spicy variety. It makes a great addition to a charcuterie board because it has a satisfying savory flavor and a slightly different look to it than other cured meats. Unsurprisingly, it’s also a popular ingredient on pizza. It’s not dissimilar to putting pepperoni or sausage on a pie, but the spicy version of soppressata can be spicier than these options. 

About the Author

Matt Crowley

Matt Crowley is a comedy writer living in Los Angeles. He likes maple-flavored snacks, loves every kind of cheese, and is slowly learning to accept mushrooms.

Thoughts? Questions? Complete disagreement? Leave a comment!

Your thoughts.

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *