Benton’s: The Best Hams in Tennessee

December 1, 2005

By admin

Country Ham in Tennessee

’Tis the season for eating, and for Benton’s Smoky Mountain Country Hams near Madisonville, Tennessee, business is booming.

“We cure 11,000 country hams a year, so we stay busy, but December is our busiest month,” says Allan Benton, owner of Benton’s Smoky Mountain Country Hams.

Benton’s hams are slow-cured with salt and brown sugar, creating a mouth-watering flavor that has won praise from Southern Living magazine and The Food Network, as well as customers nationwide.

“It’s becoming the cool thing again,” Benton says with a laugh. “People can’t believe Tennessee hillbillies are the ones making this stuff.”

A specialty of Benton’s is prosciutto, paper-thin slices of cured ham that can be eaten alone or used in recipes. Hickory-smoked bacon is another tasty offering. For more information, call 423-442-5003 or visit

Have you tried Benton’s hams or bacon? Are they the best in Tennessee, or even the best in the South? Let us know what you think!

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  1. Tommie Vincent says:

    The taste is awsome. The best I have found since my Dad is no longer living and cures us hams.

  2. Robert says:

    Not as good as country hams from hogs killed on family farms and salted and smoked immediately, but not bad. One of the problems is that the fresh hams Benton processes are brought in to his facility from out of state and they have already deteriorated a little. But there are very few places one can buy “country hams”, even those that are not true “country” hams.

  3. Clyde Kellogg says:

    The bacon is the best, and you need to save the grease to cook with. Love the ham, although it is a tad salty, but that is the way my grandparents cured it. It’s just the way it is.

  4. Jennie Buck says:

    I have never been there but heard a lot of good things, I am trying to find days and hours of operation