Exploring the Pork Origins of Wendy’s Iconic Bacon

Wendy’s restaurants are beloved for their fresh made-to-order burgers and other menu items. One of their most popular offerings is the Baconator – a cheeseburger piled high with 6 strips of deliciously crispy applewood smoked bacon.

But have you ever wondered – is Wendy’s bacon actually made of pork? And if so how and where does the company source its pork products?

In this article, we’ll take a deep dive into the pork origins of one of Wendy’s most iconic menu items. We’ll learn about how the bacon is made, Wendy’s sourcing practices, and what makes their bacon so crave-worthy for bacon lovers everywhere.

Wendy’s Bacon is Made from Pork

The first question many Wendy’s customers have is simple – is their bacon made from pork? The answer is a resounding yes.

Wendy’s bacon, including all the applewood smoked bacon used in fan favorites like the Baconator, is made from 100% pork belly. Wendy’s only uses fresh, never frozen pork bellies provided by their pork suppliers.

The bacon is prepared in Wendy’s kitchens daily by their cooks. Each restaurant receives shipments of fresh pork bellies that they then hand trim, cure, smoke and slice to make their signature applewood smoked bacon.

So when you bite into a warm, crispy slice of Wendy’s bacon, you can rest assured you’re enjoying fresh, high-quality pork.

Tracing the Pork Origins

Wendy’s has a long-standing relationship with pork provider Sugardale to supply bacon for their restaurants. The two companies have worked together for over 35 years.

Sugardale, based in Ohio, is a family-owned company that prides itself on humane, sustainable practices and careful oversight of its pork supply chain.

The pigs are raised on family-owned farms, primarily in Midwestern states like Ohio and Michigan. Sugardale works closely with these farm partners to ensure the pigs are treated humanely and raised in clean, comfortable environments.

The pork bellies then go through Sugardale’s proprietary process to be gently smoked with applewood smoke to give Wendy’s bacon its signature flavor. The naturally hardwood smoked bacon contains no artificial smoke flavors or liquid smoke like some other bacon brands.

Wendy’s Commitment to Responsible Sourcing

In addition to its partnership with Sugardale, Wendy’s has demonstrated a strong commitment to responsible pork sourcing across its supply chain.

Some highlights of Wendy’s initiatives include:

  • 100% Pork Quality Assurance Plus certified – This program focuses on ethical farm practices, traceability, and responsible antibiotic use.

  • Animal welfare goals – Wendy’s aims to eliminate pig gestation stalls by the end of 2022.

  • Sustainability standards – Wendy’s pork suppliers must adhere to standards on waste, water use, air quality and more.

  • Reduced antibiotic usage – Working with suppliers to lower preventative antibiotic use in pork where possible.

  • Traceability – Wendy’s requires pork suppliers to track animals from birth farm through processing.

By choosing suppliers aligned with their values and setting clear standards, Wendy’s can serve bacon and other pork products that customers can feel good about eating.

The Making of the Legendary Baconator

Now let’s take a look at how Wendy’s iconic Baconator sandwich comes together using that fresh, never frozen pork bacon:

  • 6 strips of applewood smoked bacon – Wendy’s cooks at least 6 strips of their signature bacon until crispy.

  • 2 quarter-pound beef patties – The patties are made from fresh, 100% North American beef, never frozen.

  • 2 slices of melty American cheese – The real cheese gets perfectly melted atop the hot beef.

  • Bun – The bottom and crown of the bun are lightly toasted.

  • Condiments – Mayo, ketchup, and sometimes additional toppings are added.

When these components come together, you get one of the most crave-worthy bacon cheeseburgers around. The interplay of smoky bacon, juicy beef, gooey cheese, and condiments is a flavor sensation that keeps customers coming back.

Why Wendy’s Bacon is So Irresistible

Wendy’s applewood smoked bacon has achieved an almost cult-like following, and for good reason. Here’s why it stands out from the competition:

  • Real wood-smoked flavor – No artificial smoke added, just honest applewood smoking.

  • Texture – Crispy yet meaty. The bacon has a satisfying crunch followed by a burst of pork flavor.

  • Fresh preparation – Baked daily in restaurants, never frozen. This maximizes flavor and texture.

  • Responsible sourcing – Customers feel good about eating meat from humanely raised, antibiotic-free pigs.

  • Perfect pairings – Wendy’s bacon complements beef burgers flawlessly in sandwiches like the Baconator.

  • Versatility – Wendy’s bacon elevates everything from breakfast sandwiches to baked potatoes and salads.

At the end of the day, the proof is in the eating. Wendy’s has perfected the recipe for irresistibly delicious bacon enjoyed by generations of loyal customers. The applewood smoked flavor and fresh pork quality speak for themselves.

So next time you’re craving a Baconator, you can sink your teeth in knowing exactly where that mouthwatering bacon comes from.

Wendys Baconator — Carnivore Trashformations — Carnivore Diet Recipe


Does Wendy’s use pork?

Pork. Wendy’s only sources pork that is 100% Pork Quality Assurance® Plus (PQA Plus) Certified or the equivalent for our sausage and bacon. We also work closely with the pork industry and our progressive suppliers via the Wendy’s Animal Care Standards Program on topics like antibiotic reduction and sow housing.

How do Wendy’s make their bacon?

Applewood smoked and fresh from a stove. And because you’re equally bacon-crazy, we’ll add it to anything. Not all bacon is created equal. Wendy’s Applewood smoked bacon is smoked over the wood of apple trees which flavors the bacon with sweetness and fruitiness increasing its deliciousnessness.

Is Wendys breakfast sausage pork?

Wendy’s only sources pork that is 100% Pork Quality Assurance® Plus Certified or the equivalent for our sausage and bacon.

What kind of meat is Wendy’s?

Square beef patties make it easy to know you’re enjoying the very best hamburger for your buck: fresh, never frozen and made from 100% real beef. Our signature square hamburger patties have no fillers or additives because we know the beef is what matters when it comes to making the best hamburger in the game.

Does Wendy’s have Bacon?

The company went all-in on Bacon when it introduced the Baconator to its menu in August 2007. Facing competition over healthy choices in the fast food burger space, Wendy’s introduced the Son of Baconator in 2012. The burger featured smaller patties and 300 fewer calories than its 960-calorie father.

Is Wendy’s Baconator a carnivore sandwich?

Wendy’s iconic Baconator sandwich is a masterclass of the bacon cheeseburger form, a fan-favorite and a highly marketable sandwich. The Baconator firmly sits in the proud carnivore diet, stacking two of Wendy’s signature square quarter-pound beef patties and six pieces of Applewood smoked bacon, all covered in melted American cheese.

Does Wendy’s have Baconator Fries?

Wendy’s added Baconator Fries to its menu in 2015. Wendy’s still offers the nacho-like side dish, which features a french fry base topped with warm cheese sauce, shredded cheddar, and the same crispy Applewood smoked bacon that tops its namesake sandwich.

Does Wendy’s have a breakfast Baconator?

Wendy’s Canada also introduced the Breakfast Baconator, a variation on the lunch sandwich that uses breakfast sausage patties instead of beef and adds an egg, to its stores at the same time and it remained a mainstay of Wendy’s menu.

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