Are pork trotters and pork knuckles the same thing? What are the differences?

2 Answers 2


These are distinct pieces of a pig. A pork foot is the actual foot, including the toes, as can be seen for example on wikipedia.

A pork knuckle on the other hand is the join just above the feet, also called ham hock or Eisbein when used in German cooking. Again wikipedia has a nice picture showing that this is a slightly different piece.

From a culinary perspective, a pork knuckle contains a lot of meat/ muscle as well as skin and bones. A pork foot is almost exclusively bones and skin with very little meat in between.

  • Thanks. I can't open Wikipedia till someone helps me climb over GFW.
    – Tim
    Commented Feb 27 at 14:23
  • 2
    A foot/trotter has limited meat (i.e. enough for a decent sandwich rather than a decent meal), but is very good for stock particularly if one has a pressure cooker. Commented Feb 28 at 7:45
  • @MarkMorganLloyd I've eaten both port feet and pork knuckles. I'm not sure how you want to make a sandwich with a pork foot, the dishes I had were more based on the idea of cooking for a long time and then gnaw off the skin from the bones. Both feet and knuckles will produce a huge amount of jelly if you cook them for long enough so yes they are good for stock/ hearty soup bases.
    – quarague
    Commented Feb 28 at 8:36
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    I think this would be a better alternative for your second link: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ham_hock Because this one points to the actual piece of meat, while yours points to a dish with that piece of meat.
    – Opifex
    Commented Feb 28 at 8:37
  • @quarague Pressure cook, disassemble, save the limited amount of meat, put the remainder back in the cooker for a few more minutes to render down. Commented Feb 28 at 9:47

Using this diagram from Wikipedia:

13 (front and back) are the hock or knuckle

14 (front and back) are the foot or trotter

enter image description here

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