Spam, that iconic American food product, is a versatile pantry staple with a history all its own, and devoted fans in countless countries around the world (especially in Asia). Whether you welcome its delicious, savory, meaty flavor with open arms or shun it in favor of something a little more recognizable, Spam is here, and here to stay.
We happen to love it unabashedly, and gathered up our 11 best Spam recipes for hearty breakfasts, easy lunches, and quick, comforting dinners. That way, next time you pop open a can of the good stuff, you'll know exactly what to do.
This beloved Korean comfort food originated on army bases, using instant, canned, and readily available ingredients (like kimchi and mushrooms) to make one hearty, sharable pot of stew. The anchovy fillets in the broth lend a ton of umami richness, and the Spam adds heft and flavor.
Gyeranjjim (steamed egg) is a staple dish in Korean households that's easily made into a rib-sticking meal with the addition of Spam. Best of all, it's a 30-minute one-bowl wonder.
3. Spam Buns
These crisp, fluffy Spam-stuffed buns will give your pigs in a blanket recipe a run for its money, and are a welcome sight at any gathering where meaty appetizers are the name of the game. Serve with your favorite kind of mustard, or pivot to Asian flavors and serve with teriyaki sauce for dipping.
This may be our favorite way to use up leftover rice (and put a dent in that jar of kimchi at the same time). Spicy, salty, tangy, and thoroughly satisfying, this kimchi fried rice needs nothing more than the addition of crisp Spam cubes, savory nori strips, and a runny fried egg to make a reliably easy and delicious meal.
Clearly, Spam and eggs are a match made in rice bowl heaven, and this eye-catching deopbap topped with soft scrambled eggs is no exception. Lightly season the Spam with maple syrup before cooking for a subtly sweet glaze that adds complexity and a little smoky depth to the finished product, and drizzle with soy-spiked mayonnaise before serving.
6. Ohana Burger
Ohana is Hawaiian for "family," and when your family loves Spam, this extra-meaty burger is a great way to incorporate it into dinner. Sharp, tangy blue cheese provides a welcome foil to Spam's fatty porkiness, and sweet onions add the right amount of zing, packing every bite of your burger with flavor.
Few sandwiches in this world are as perfect as a BLT. For an even porkier version, sub fried Spam for the bacon, slather with Japanese kewpie mayo, and watch lettuce and tomato shine even more brightly.
Spam is equally welcome in a bowl of a noodles as it is in a sandwich, burger, or on a bed of rice. Try teriyaki Spam for a version of this recipe that will transport you straight to the Hawaiian islands (flavor-wise, at least).
Where you find Spam, you will frequently find eggs—no matter the application. This pasta-studded, soy sauce and sesame oil-splashed soup from Hong Kong is a welcome vehicle for tender fried Spam cubes, and of course, a runny over-easy.
You may have had a breakfast burrito before, but if you haven't had one teeming with Spam and kimchi, you've yet to try one of the best iterations of this meal-in-a-tortilla. Inspired by activities one might undertake at 4 a.m. in Los Angeles, this Spam-tastic burrito is at its very best with a generous splash of hot sauce.
These Hawaiian-style tacos feature finely diced Spam cubes, crushed pineapple, sweet onions, and a hint of soy sauce on warm corn tortillas. Spice them up with a hit of vinegar-based hot sauce, and top with a little sour cream to bring the flavors all together.