Kitchen Confidence

The Best Way to Cook Bacon

By • May 14, 2014 • 630 Comments

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Inspired by conversations on the Food52 Hotline, we're sharing tips and tricks that make navigating all of our kitchens easier and more fun.

Today: Why you should bake your bacon.

Bacon from Food52

No, we're not trying to deprive you of one of life's greatest pleasures: cooking bacon in a hot cast iron skillet, watching it curl into crimped little ribbons, smelling it waft up in fierce, meaty clouds, hearing it sputter and stutter like a seventh grade boy asking a girl to the movies.

We are trying to help you cook bacon better.

Because as glorious as cooking bacon on the stove can be, it's also a mess. There is grease all over the kitchen, and all over you. And because a pan is only so big, making a heaping plate of bacon is something that takes a while -- and will leave you smelling like a high-end dog toy.

Instead, you should bake your bacon.

Bacon from Food52

Heat your oven to 400° F. Put your slices of bacon on a baking sheet -- as many as you'd like, just make sure they fit into one layer -- and slide it into the oven. The bacon will sizzle in its own rendered fat, cooking it evenly. And fifteen minutes or so later, you will have those perfect little ribbons -- with minimal cleanup.

Bonus points: Carefully pour the hot bacon fat into a jar, and store it in the fridge. Use as you would lard or butter. 

What's your favorite way to cook bacon? Let us know in the comments! 

Jump to Comments (630)

Tags: bacon, how-to & diy, breakfast

Comments (630)

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32 minutes ago Kathy Edwards

lay on a paper towel cover with more paper towels nuke it 1 minute per slice comes out perfect for me ..for burgers I weave 6 halves per burger nuke 3 for 1 6 for 2 ect...

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1 day ago Christopher Barrett

Steve Fasoline - - Do you brush on the BBQ or dip the bacon in it ?

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1 day ago Paula

I love to lightly coat my bacon in flour and shake off as much as possible then bake it in the oven just as you would without the flour. Gives it a crisp light coating. Yum!

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2 days ago Jere Miller

Steve Fasoline has the best idea. Cook bacon on the grill. Start at cold grill, put bacon on a baking sheet, then place sheet pan on the grill as it"s warming up and close the lid. Check after 5 minutes, more or less. This method will reduce shrinkage to minimal as bacon cooks to a desired crispness. Using the "weave" method described here is a great idea for cooking bacon this way.

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2 days ago Betts

I have baked my bacon for years. I usually do two or three pounds at a time, drain it on paper towels, freeze in separate layers and then I can remove and nuke a few slices at a time.

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2 days ago Johnna

I cook my bacon the way Mrs. Lincoln use to do it...Grease a heavy pan lightly. put your bacon in the pan...put it on the stove on low...fry very slowly until one side is done...it shouldn't curl..if it starts to cut the curl with a scissor. at this point turn..and cook the other side tell finished...beautiful FLAT bacon..and it does not splatter if it does your pan is to hot..

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3 days ago Linda Martin-Coyle

I do mine in oven also,but put on parchment paper on a cookie sheet,comes out great,and just throw the paper with the grease away,No mess,no dirty tray.

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3 days ago Jim Groelke

I cook my bacon in the George Foreman grill. Grease drains out.

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4 days ago Carlos

Here's one better, use a metal baking/cooling rack in your pan. The fat will drip away from the bacon, and the elevation will improve the heat circulation. I bake my bacon at 400 degrees for about 30-35 minutes.

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5 days ago William

When you bake the bacon,layer it between slices like weaving.Over,under,sideways done. When done it comes out in one flat piece just break apart,looks like one thick piece of pure delicious bacon . Make a BLT that has a ton of bacon.

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6 days ago JellyGirl

Use the bacon fat right away to fry up your breakfast eggs or prep your pancake griddle.

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4 days ago Rea Diane Anderson Kemble

Don't forget frying your hash browns in it and using it in your pancake batter!

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7 days ago Rea Diane Anderson Kemble

Okay...here's a top for making BLTs for little hands. We all know that they can be messy to eat even for big hands. But those little hands have a hard time keeping all those layers on the toast. My Mom used to chop up the lettuce, chop the tomatoes, crumble the cooked bacon and stir in the mayo, or as was the case, miracle whip. I was an adult before I knew there really was a difference in taste. Mom always told us MW was just a brand of mayo...tsk tsk. Pile a scoop on a piece of toast and top with another. Cut in quarters and a four year old can handle it

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7 days ago Russell Golemon

This was how I cooked bacon before (it works best to start it in a cold oven ) but now I wrap lay a few slices across paper towels and on top then cook about 4.5 min. crispy & quick thick cut bacon. Easy Peazy!

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11 days ago Rea Diane Anderson Kemble

My mom used to snip the sides in a few places to keep it from curling. You can do several slices at at time in a stack. Use a sharp knife or sharp kitchen shears. You only have to make a small nick, no more than1/4 inch

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11 days ago Joy Dramafree Wally

Also if you cut the bacon in half it won't curl up as much.
Which is good when your cooking for little ones.

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13 days ago Dorothy Knudsen

Shari Burgess has the best I dea and I spread my thick cut bacon with Lt brown sugar. Always easy and not messy at all. Just dicard the foil underneath the draining pan.

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13 days ago Steve Fasoline

Baking is a great idea, but! Baking in the BBQ is even better, preheat on medium temp. Line sheet pan with tin foil and a sheet of parchment on top of that, clean up is a snap! The most important part is the Bloddy mary , you need something to drink while maning the Q!!! 12min later it's bacon time! No mess

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13 days ago Robert

Great Idea!

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18 days ago Christina T.

Agree completely. I bake off a whole pound package of bacon at one time, underbake it a little unless you like yours really crispy (I don't). Keep about six slices in the fridge, enough for a BLT and a couple of breakfasts, freeze the rest in a zippy bag. You can take out as many slices as you need from the freezer and nuke them on paper towels at about 50% power until done to your liking.

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21 days ago JEANETTE

I LOVE BACON. SO I USE MY NU WAVE OVEN. HELPS KEEP GREASE AWAY FROM MY BODY.

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4 days ago William

I put the bacon on sheet of foil to cook it in my NUWAVE. I can also cook frozen biscuits in the NUWAVE at the same time. I love the NUWAVE and the induction cook tops. I haven't used my regular stove in months.

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22 days ago susan

approximately one minute per slice, between white paper towels, in the microwave. Perfect with less grease and nicely crisp.

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9 days ago nratt

Absolutely! We cook our bacon this way all the time. The minute-per-slice rule applies especially when the bacon is new and fresh. Once it has a little age on it though, it seems to cook more quickly; so, you might want to dial back the cooking time a little for bacon from a package originally opened a few days earlier.

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25 minutes ago bob

i have been cooking microwave bacon for years. Hint if bacon is thick use two sheets of paper towel on bottom. amazing how grease you capture.