I'm making meat sauce for lasagna, and the sauce recipe calls for pork neck bones, and I cannot find them. What are my substitution options? Thank you

  • Posted by: sarahjax
  • November 29, 2018


HalfPint November 30, 2018
Try pork trotters. Lots of collagen and gelatin. You might now need as much.
Smaug November 29, 2018
I'm tempted to suggest a substitute recipe, but I must be strong- neck bones will add a lot of gelatin; if that's what you want, you could try beef or veal neck bones or oxtails- in a pinch, I guess you could add commercial gelatin. They'll also add some flavor- not a very pleasant one, by my lights, so you should try to add some sort of pork bones.
PieceOfLayerCake November 29, 2018
I found that the closest substitution for pork neck bones are what are often called "country-style" ribs. My dad (who was 100% Italian and quite used to using neck bones) would use them when we lived out in Colorado and couldn't readily get neck bones. Any pork cut with a good amount of connective tissue will work though. Search for pork cuts that are meant for braising or slow roasting.
tia November 29, 2018
You can try asking at the meat counter if you haven't already, they might have some but don't usually put them out. I'd use any kind of raw meat bone for this. You could use oxtail probably, if you can't find pork bones. The bone from a pork shoulder, maybe? Beef bones? My sister once bought an entire cow femur to make stock from her usual grocery store. She had to ask if they had any bones, but they did and they cut it up for her.

Honestly, you can probably get away with leaving it out even though I don't know what recipe you're using. It would deepen the flavor and add a richer mouthfeel but it's probably not strictly necessary. If there are other things in the sauce that would give flavor (like, say, the meat you're putting in) you can probably leave the bones out.
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