ABSTRACT: The aroma-active compounds of American country ham were investigated by using direct solvent extraction-solvent assisted flavor evaporation (DSE-SAFE), dynamic headspace dilution analysis (DHDA), gas chromatography-olfactometry (GCO), aroma extract dilution analysis (AEDA), and gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS). The results indicated the involvement of numerous volatile constituents in the aroma of country ham. For DHDA, 38 compounds were identified as major odorants, among them, 1-octen-3-one, 2-acetyl-1-pyrroline, 1-nonen-3-one, decanal, and (E)-2-nonenal were the most predominant, having FD-factors ≥ 125 in all 3 hams examined, followed by 3-methylbutanal, 1-hexen-3-one, octanal, acetic acid, phenylacetaldehyde, and Furaneol™. For the DSE-SAFE method, the neutral/basic fraction was dominated by 1-octen-3-one, methional, guaiacol, (E)-4,5-epoxy-(E)-decenal, p-cresol as well as 3-methylbutanal, hexanal, 2-acetyl-1-pyrroline, phenylacetaldehyde, and γ-nonalactone. The acidic fraction contained mainly short-chain volatile acids (3-methylbutanoic acid, butanoic acid, hexanoic acid, and acetic acid) and Maillard reaction products (for example, 4-hydroxy-2,5-dimethyl-3(2H)-furanone). The above compounds identified were derived from lipid oxidation, amino acid degradation, and Maillard/Strecker and associated reactions. Both methods revealed the same nature of the aroma components of American country ham.