Cretons (Pork Spread) Recipe

Creton, a pork spread, is a breakfast staple in the province of Quebec. There are many versions going around but this one has pretty simple ingredients and preparation and the taste is great with just the right amount of spices. It’s based on the creton recipe in L’Encyclopedie de la Cuisine by Jehane Benoit, a classic French Canadian cooking book.

Cretons are usually eaten on toasts (sometime with a dash of mustard) or on crackers. This makes a pretty big batch for one person but it can be frozen and it will be as good when thawed.



1 lb (454 g) of ground pork
2 slices of white bread
1 cup of milk
1/4 teaspoon of cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon of ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon of garlic powder
Salt and pepper, to taste


  • Remove the crust from the bread and tear in small cubes. Put in a pan with the milk and stir together.
  • Add the pork,the spices, the salt and the pepper to the pan and mix. Cook over low heat for about an hour, stirring from time to time.
  • Once the cretons are well cooked, you can eat them as is or put them in the blender and chop a few seconds for a smoother texture. They can be stored in the fridge for a week, or in the freezer for a long time.

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3 Responses

  1. Ali P in the Qc says:

    Aaah cretons… When I first met my husband so many French Canadian foods sounded so gross but I ended up loving all I have tried so far! For cretons I have his step-mother’s recipe. She’s from Rimouski. I don’t make it very often because it takes so long but he says mine is almost as good as her’s. ;oD

  2. Cindy says:

    Indeed I understand how it can sound gross, especially all this talk about poutine. But what’s not to love in our lovely recipes, it’s got the salt and the grease, and often the sugar too!

    Your creton must be great for him to say it’s almost as good as his mother’s, that’s high praise :-P.

  3. Millie says:

    I’ve just made my first attempt at making cretons, following the recipe I see here, but added some shortening to it as my bf (who is originally from Montreal) mentioned something about it. He doesn’t remember his mother’s recipe and keeps forgetting to ask her (men!) so I’m scoping on the internet to find that one recipe that makes the perfect cretons in his eyes. We’re out in Saskatchewan and it’s hilarious when I mention cretons. Everyone here looks at me like I’m on glue. I already knew about the poutines, but am only now beginning to learn about the other Quebecois dishes. Bring it on! I always loved the poutine and I have every reason to believe I’ll like everything else too. We were out in Quebec during October 2010 and I actually liked the food out there better than what I’ve had around here. I’m originally from Alberta, but now live in Saskatchewan.

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