Chow Town

Watch: Pig snoot on a bun — yes it’s real, and people are digging in

Chowtown Live pigs out with snoot at Tenderloin Grill

Kansas City Star food editor Jill Wendholt Silva explores the curious allure of the pig snoot sandwich at Tenderloin Grill on Southwest Boulevard. Manager Juan Vega shows Silva how the sandwich is prepared for those who dare sample.
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Kansas City Star food editor Jill Wendholt Silva explores the curious allure of the pig snoot sandwich at Tenderloin Grill on Southwest Boulevard. Manager Juan Vega shows Silva how the sandwich is prepared for those who dare sample.

Do you turn your nose up at the mere mention of a pig snoot sandwich?

Don’t tell the members of the Kansas City Barbeque Society who gathered at the Tenderloin Grill at 900 Southwest Boulevard, a Kansas City classic since 1932.

“It’s snot the wrong thing, but the right thing to do,” says Gary Bronkema, who became a fan of the sandwich some find squeam-inducing four or five years ago during one of the KCBS Wednesday snoot lunch meet-ups.

Even these most intrepid culinary adventurers admit staring down nostrils dripping mustard and secret hot sauce can be, well, a bit unnerving. Nevertheless, 10 members showed up when I put a call out for snoot lovers to share their thoughts for a recent Facebook Live I hosted.

Megan Day, who competes with the team Burnt Finger BBQ, describes herself a snoot “dabbler.” As she unrolls the snoot, she points out the delicious meat encased deep inside.

“Right in there is this beautiful succulent pork that is just delicious,” she says. “That’s what I go for. You got to get through the rest to get to the good stuff.”

The grill’s manager Juan Vega shared the process for preparing the pig snoot: The meat is pressure cooked for two hours to achieve the perfect tenderness. Depending on the size of the snoot, it may be cut in half, then it is placed on a bun and dressed. “Everything” includes hot sauce, mustard, horseradish, onion rings and tomato.

The sandwich sells for an affordable $3.69.

Kansas City Star food editor Jill Wendholt Silva explores the curious allure of the pig snoot sandwich at Tenderloin Grill on Southwest Boulevard. Manager Juan Vega shows Silva how the sandwich is prepared for those who dare sample.

Tenderloin Grill co-owner Ashlee Ruhl, who flew back to Kansas City from her new homebase in Georgia for the live snoot gathering, grew up eating the sandwich. It’s an aquired taste for some — and she admits sometimes she ate it to gross her brothers out. But there’s a group of fans who root for snoot over the restaurant’s less offensive-looking tenderloins, burgers and tendergers (a tenderloin/burger) combo.

But hey, if Kansas City’s rookies in blue are willing to eat snoot (check out the story hanging on the wall Chow Town blogger Ardie Davis wrote for The Star a few years back), perhaps it’s time to give one a try.

Read about the first time I tried the pig snoot sandwich. I had a little liquid courage on my side.

Other odd bits I’ve eaten, like woodchuck.

Jill Silva is The Star’s James Beard award-winning food editor. Reach her at @kcstarfood or @jillwsilva on Instagram.

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