Why bake your bacon, you ask? Two reasons. First, it cooks more evenly than on the stovetop, and, by using the oven, you free up space to cook more fabulous main dishes like eggs in a hole or omelettes.
Plus, I tend to be a cook who watches my food very closely, and this allows me to feel safer about leaving my bacon unattended without worrying that I'm going to burn it. Some of you out there are probably aghast at the idea of preparing bacon in the oven, but I dare you to try it and let me know what you think.
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Oven Baked Bacon Recipe
Looking to make the best most flavorful bacon ever? Then you need this oven baked bacon recipe in your life!
Oven Baked Bacon is life changing. It is the most flavorful, perfectly cooked bacon you will ever have.
Bold statement I know- but I stand by it.
Baking bacon- especially starting with a cold oven and bringing everything up to temperature together, renders the fat perfectly- which means it is melt in your mouth delicious.
Plus, it makes the most perfectly crunchy but not burned bacon.
Like your bacon on the softer side? Just bake it a little less- that easy.
Baked bacon also helps avoid all the splatter (and occasional burns to the fore arms- ouch!) from frying on the stove-top and since it is baking in the oven it frees up the stove to cook other delicious things!
How to Cook Bacon in the Oven
One thing I remember from my childhood was the fear of burnt bacon. There was nothing my dad hated more. But somehow the bacon inevitably ended up singed. We even tried one of those microwave bacon gadgets, but to no avail.
In my teen years, I was determined to find a way to cook bacon without reducing it to ashes. I found that if I cooked it in a skillet over very low heat and flipped it often, it came out very evenly cooked. But it was so time-consuming and demanded so much attention that I dreaded making it.
Then I discovered that bacon cooks up beautifully in the oven&mdashno turning necessary! I&rsquove been hooked ever since.
There are several ways to cook bacon in the oven. I&rsquoll show you three methods and let you know which is my favorite!
First off, we have The Cooling Rack Method. I lined my baking sheet with aluminum foil, placed the rack on top, and laid out the bacon. It&rsquos okay if the bacon is touching&mdashit will shrink up a lot while it cooks.
Bake for about 20&ndash30 minutes, or until it&rsquos as crispy as you like it. I like mine about medium crispiness: not too limp, but not shatteringly crisp either.
Remove to a paper-towel-lined plate.
Look at that: a completely clean pan underneath!
The next way I tried was The Parchment Paper Method. I simply lined the pan with parchment paper and placed the bacon on top.
I was surprised that the bacon cooked more quickly than the cooling rack bacon. I was sure that the parchment would block the reflection of the pan and slow the cooking process.
I was also very surprised to find that the pan underneath the parchment paper was clean. I thought some grease spots would leak through the parchment paper.
The last approach I tried was The Directly-on-the-Pan Method. Pretty much just as it sounds.
The bacon cooked up very nicely. This is actually the method that I&rsquove been using for years. But this way has the most cleanup.
Of course, you can strain and save the grease for cooking, storing it in special grease storing containers or glass jars.
I know this is so granny, but I like to save yogurt or sour cream containers from time to time to pour cooled bacon grease into if I intend to get rid of it. Then I can just throw out the whole container. You can also freeze the grease before you put it in the bin on trash day.
So, which is my favorite method?
I didn&rsquot really see an advantage to cooking the bacon on a rack, other than that it cooked out more of the fat. The ends seemed to cook faster than the middle. And you have to scrub bacon bits off the rack.
The directly-on-the-pan method is very simple and works well, but there is a lot of cleanup. You have to soak the pan before you can wash it.
I really didn&rsquot think this would be the case, but I liked the parchment method the best. It had the least cleanup, and the bacon cooked really nicely. But it&rsquos important to pour off the grease and throw out the parchment quickly&mdashI made bacon again and left the parchment on the pan for hours, and the grease soaked through.
You can get the same effect by lining your pan with aluminum foil, but I&rsquom kind of a hippie health nut, so I don&rsquot like to cook my food directly on aluminum.
I cooked my bacon in a 400-degree oven, as directed on the package. If you&rsquore cooking bacon ends and pieces or thick-cut bacon, a lower oven temperature works better. I cook uneven bacon at 350 degrees.
I like to check my bacon after 10&ndash15 minutes of baking. When it&rsquos getting close to being done, make sure to peek at it every few minutes. Bacon can go from not-quite-done to burnt very quickly.
I had heard that placing your bacon in the oven BEFORE you preheat it helps it to cook more evenly. I tried it with the first two batches, but I didn&rsquot really see a big difference. It saves on energy, though!
It works best if you pour the grease out of the pan while it&rsquos still warm. If you&rsquore using a plastic container to hold the grease, make sure to wait until it cools a bit, otherwise it will warp or melt the plastic.
I don&rsquot find the need, but if you&rsquore really particular about cooking your bacon evenly, you can flip it halfway through the cooking time and also rotate the pan.
How To Make Perfect Bacon in the Oven
Cook time 12 minutes to 18 minutes
- Calories 236
- Fat 22.5 g (34.6%)
- Saturated 7.5 g (37.7%)
- Carbs 0.7 g (0.2%)
- Sugars 0.6 g
- Protein 7.2 g (14.3%)
- Sodium 375.3 mg (15.6%)
Parchment paper or aluminum foil
Heat the oven to 400°F and prepare the baking sheet. Arrange rack in the middle of the oven and heat the oven to 400°F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper or aluminum foil, making sure there is overhang on all 4 sides (overlap a few sheets if needed, this makes cleanup easier).
Arrange the bacon on the baking sheet. Arrange 12 ounces bacon on the baking sheet in a single layer. The slices can be close together or touching, but don't let them overlap or they'll stick together during cooking.
Bake the bacon. Bake until the bacon is deep golden-brown and crispy, about 14 minutes for regular bacon and 18 minutes for thick-cut bacon. Exact baking time will depend on the thickness of the bacon and how crispy you like it. Begin checking the bacon after 12 minutes. The bacon fat will sputter and bubble as the bacon cooks, but shouldn't splatter the way it does on the stovetop.
Transfer the bacon to a plate lined with paper towels. Use tongs to transfer the bacon to the paper towels to drain and finish crisping. Serve immediately.
Clean up. If you want to save the bacon grease, let it cool slightly, then pour it through a fine-mesh strainer into a heatproof container and refrigerate. If you don't want to save the grease, let it solidify on the baking sheet, then crumple the foil or paper around it and discard.
Even crispier bacon: For even crispier bacon, fit a metal rack over the lined baking sheet and place the bacon on the rack before baking, which allows the bacon allows to cook from all sides and become extra-crispy.
Storage: Refrigerate leftover bacon for 1 week or freeze it for up to 3 months. Rewarm the bacon in the microwave or oven before serving.
Less-Mess Bacon: How to Make Perfectly Crispy Bacon Without Tons of Grease Spatter
Once you've mastered our simple technique, you'll never make bacon on the stovetop again.
This spatter-free oven technique puts the "bake" back in bacon. It&aposs also perfect for entertaining because you can cook multiple batches at the same time. Just remember that the timing will vary depending on whether you&aposre using thick-cut bacon or regular sliced bacon like our pick, Pure Farmland Uncured Bacon.
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
- Line 2 rimmed baking sheets with parchment paper, then lay the bacon strips flat, making sure pieces do not overlap. If you&aposre seeking extra-crisp bacon, place a wire rack on top of each baking sheet and lay the bacon strips on top of the rack.
- Bake until crisp and browned, 15 to 18 minutes, or desired doneness, rotating the sheets once.
- Transfer strips to a paper towel to drain.
Can&apost get enough bacon? Try this technique out while making one of our favorite bacon recipes. While we&aposll always love a side of bacon with a stack of fluffy pancakes or a few perfectly scrambled eggs, there are plenty of unexpected ways to enjoy this cured meat at breakfast or brunch. One of our favorites? Make a Savory French-Toast BLT: An open faced sandwich made with one slice of French toast, plenty of lettuce and tomato, and a good serving of bacon, it&aposs the perfect way to start the morning.
Although we can all agree bacon is the ultimate breakfast side, we believe this salty bite shouldn&apost be saved just for the morning. As an appetizer, enjoy Baked Camembert with Bacon, Rosemary, and Pine Nuts. It&aposs crowd-pleasing and impressive but surprisingly easy to put together. Want more bacon at lunch? You can&apost go wrong with our Bacon Macaroni and Cheese. Bacon goes well with dinner, too. Pair Grilled Corn with Bacon with your favorite cheeseburgers, or make a big pot of Fresh Angel-Hair Pasta with Bacon and Peas. Your family will devour either, guaranteed.
Make Perfect Bacon in the Oven
Of all the ways you can cook bacon, including on a skillet or griddle, in the microwave, or even in a deep-fryer, it turns out that the very best way of all is to bake it in the oven. Bacon is fatty, so it needs to be cooked slowly, at a low temperature, so that most (but not all) of the fat renders away while leaving the finished product crispy and golden brown.
You can try to do that in a skillet or a griddle, but there are a couple of problems. First, an average skillet isn't wide enough to accommodate whole slices of bacon. They'll just crowd each other and end up sticking together. Even if your skillet or griddle is extra-wide (or you decide to cut your bacon in half), you're still cooking the bacon from below, which is more likely to cause it to scorch. It will turn out crumbly rather than crispy. In a skillet, you're going to have to flip it so that both sides of the bacon are cooked. Flipping bacon isn't a major challenge, but it's easier to not have to flip your bacon.
Cooking bacon on the stovetop uses up one of your burners (or maybe two if you're using one of those double-burner griddles), which means you have less room for making eggs, home fries, Hollandaise sauce, or even just boiling water to make coffee. Finally, cooking bacon on the stovetop is messy. Bacon fat is going to spatter all over the place, maybe even onto you.
My mother-in-law has some serious tricks up her sleeve and she is constantly inspiring me with new recipes in my kitchen, and just hacks that make life easier! One trick she taught me? Oven bacon.
If you haven’t made bacon in the oven then you aren’t living! haha. But seriously. It turns out absolutely fantastic, still frys in its own fat (very important) and the clean up is ten times easier! I haven’t ever posted this recipe because, well, it’s not really a recipe! But every time I make it on my Instagram stories, I get so many DMs asking me “hey, what temp and how long for the oven bacon again?” So I thought, I guess it needs its own place on the blog! For the record, I know I am certainly *not* the inventor of oven bacon. I am not sure where my lovely Mother-in-law got her original method from (and she can’t remember either) but it works like a charm.
The trick to oven bacon is to put it in a cold oven. Why you ask? Because, same with frying it stovetop, it will cook slow and steady which lends it to more evenly cooked, uncurled, perfect bacon. And, heck, it just reduces your overall cook time.
After you pop it in the *COLD* oven. It takes about 30 minutes however, some bacon is thinner and cooks more quickly– so I recommend checking it around 20 minutes to see how close the bacon is to your desired doneness. Sometimes it needs to come out around 25 minutes depending on what style of bacon you are working with.
Whether it be a hectic morning just getting ready for work and getting the kids to school and you want an easier way to get bacon on the table, or you’re hosting brunch at your house and want to cook a *ton* of bacon, oven bacon is the way to go!
Why Oven-Baked Bacon?
I love using the oven baked bacon method. Instead of me having to stand over the stove and babysit it cooking in batches, I can pop a bunch of bacon in the oven and let it do its magic while I get ready in the morning.
Another great thing about bacon in the oven is that there is less mess. You don't get the mess of splattered bacon grease all over your stove. For some reason it just doesn't splatter as much in the oven. Also there's less mess on the pan to clean up. I always use parchment paper on my baking sheet, which makes clean up easy and helps the bacon not to stick to the sheet tray. Yes, the baking sheet will still need to be cleaned, but it doesn't require scrubbing, only washing off the grease that soaked through the parchment paper.
One last benefit is taste and texture. I adore a straight and crispy yet chewy piece of bacon. Please don't give me a curled up piece of bacon with raw fatty ends and a burnt middle. You're not letting bacon live to its full potential if you serve it like that. Bacon deserves better. You deserve better. By cooking it in the oven, the fat is rendering slowly and cooking evenly, resulting in perfectly straight evenly cooked slices. It's a thing of beauty if you ask me.
We started making oven baked bacon years ago and I haven't looked back. It's the only way I cook it now unless I am needing crumbled bacon for a dish and then I just chop it up and put it in my pot that I am cooking in.
Now if you want to make a super yummy BLT, put this oven baked bacon on some toasted sprouted bread or my homemade white sandwich bread. Is there anything better than a BLT with a fresh garden tomato? I think not!
Benefits of Cooking Bacon in the Oven
- First, you can cook for a crowd (and sometimes that crowd is just your immediate family). This is key for the holidays or when lots of people descend on your house. It’s also HUGE for helping you keep your sanity in the kitchen with the masses.
- Second, cooking bacon in the oven is way cleaner than cooking bacon on the stove. I’m notorious for getting splatters all over the stovetop because I probably cook my bacon a bit too hot. But when you cook bacon in the oven you don’t get any splatters because the bacon just sizzles until it’s perfectly crispy (or done to your liking).
- Lastly, cooking bacon in the oven allows you to multitask in the kitchen. Because once you toss that sheet pan of glorious bacon in the oven, you’re free for about 15 minutes to whip up some eggs or make a batch of pancakes or waffles.
Oven Roasted Vegetables with BACON
There is something about vegetables roasting in the oven that puts me in a good mood. I know, I’m weird. I love everything about oven-roasted vegetables, from the smokey, slightly sweet, nutty taste to that rustic appearance. They make me happy and don’t even go throwing in a roasted chicken because then I get super happy! Ahhh the aromas!! Fall is HERE folks. (I don’t know where that came from, just felt like typing it.)
These oven-roasted vegetables are super yummy because they have bacon (cue that dog bacon Beggin Strips commercial that I can’t get out of my head) and fresh garlic in the mix! You totally can’t go wrong with bacon. Oh and there’s butter in there too. Mmm butter! Don’t be mad. Butter makes it better baby. I only use butter and bacon in my roasted veggies on special occasions so don’t go sending me an email about how I’m messing up a healthy dish.
Today really wasn’t a special occasion just wanted to show you guys how I make my super easy and delicious oven-roasted vegetables with bacon. (side note) I totally love cooking for y’all, you guys give me the best excuse to make all kinda naughty stuff and get away with it. I love you all…just in case I haven’t said that enough lately.
Ok back to bacon and roasted vegetables. Yes, they are the bomb and way too easy to make. The vegetables do take on a slight smokiness from the bacon, which I love by the way, but their natural flavor isn’t covered up, which I really love by the way. In this recipe, I used a few of my favorite in-season vegetables like sweet potato, russet potato, broccoli, baby carrots, green pepper, red pepper, and red onions. Use a variety of your favorites and make sure that it’s colorful! It makes it prettier!!
Don’t be shy with that bacon either! If I had more than just 5 pieces I would have added more in there! I like bacon with every bite! So yum!! The fresh garlic and butter just make everything sing so don’t skip that either!!