5 Ingredients or Fewer

The Elegant Hors d'Oeuvre's Bacon-Wrapped Water Chestnuts

January 22, 2013
4 Ratings
Photo by James Ransom
  • Serves A crowd
Author Notes

Why are they genius? Well, they're delicious. There is always a fight over them, and never one left behind. It's four ingredients (not counting the chutney) and -- like some of the most genius recipes we've seen -- you don't really need a recipe to remember them. Adapted slightly from The Elegant Hors d'Oeuvre by Margon Edney and Ede Grimm (Tofua Press, 1977). —Genius Recipes

What You'll Need
  • Bacon (1/2 slice for each water chestnut)
  • Dijon mustard
  • Brown sugar
  • Water chestnuts
  • Chutney (optional)
  1. Cut bacon strips in half and lay them on a cookie sheet. Scoop some Dijon mustard into a small bowl and brown sugar into another. Spread each bacon slice with mustard, then sprinkle generously with brown sugar. Place a water chestnut on each slice, roll up, and secure with a toothpick. (Tip: If you're short a water chestnut, cut a big one in half!)
  2. To crisp all sides evenly, you can place the bacon-wrapped water chestnuts on a rack set above a baking sheet, but the rack isn't necessary. Bake 20 minutes in a 375°F oven, or until bacon is crisp. You can use the broiler to speed this up -- just watch them closely, and flip them as needed. Serve with a small bowl of chutney for dipping, or just eat them all as is.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • reahpeah
  • catewms
  • Chef Devaux
    Chef Devaux
  • Linda Gallant
    Linda Gallant
  • robin lewis
    robin lewis
Genius Recipes

Recipe by: Genius Recipes

44 Reviews

tamater S. June 19, 2016
I like the sound of these - without the sugar, they could stand for LCHF or Gluten Free diet... maybe dipping bowl with maple syrup for the sugar appreciators...
Cynthia T. April 11, 2016
It is called Rumaki. You left out the liver and the dates. You take liver chestnuts dates and wrap them in bacon. Pierce with a toothpick and broil. Do your homework you left out the ingredients I included.
cynthia April 11, 2016
Hmm, you have educated me. I thought rumaki, otherwise known as angels on horsebacks involved only bacon wrapped chicken livers. Didn't know about the date, although bacon wrapped dates are another variation on this theme. I'm not a fan of livers except in pate but I remember that at Thanksgiving when I didn't know what to do with the livers, I'd wrap them in bacon for my younger brother who was the only one who would eat and loved them!!
Randy B. November 24, 2021
Such a polite reply to that comment lol. If your recipe had livers and soy sauce, it would be rumaki. But it doesn’t. So it isn’t. Had the reader had done HER homework, she’d know that rumaki is a trader vic’s invention, making soy sauce the integral ingredient for rumaki. Where she got dates is anyone’s guess.
Helen S. March 28, 2016
Made these for Easter and they were a big hit. Will definitely make them again.
cynthia January 11, 2016
Have made these for years but no mustard on mine and I pre-cook the bacon so it's still pliable but needs less final cooking time to crisp up. I wrap the bacon around the water chestnut to enclose it so that the brown sugar doesn't melt out.
Omar January 10, 2016
Use Watermelon rind instead of chestnut
reahpeah January 10, 2016
We've been making these for a while, same basic recipe. Always popular and very easy!
OncNurse5 January 10, 2016
We make these all the time but with a soy sauce, brown sugar & ketchup mixture. It's ALSO very good wrapped around dates, water chestnut stuffed dates or ALMOND stuffed dates. YUMMALISCIOUS - my ABSOLUTE FAAAAAVE!!
catewms January 10, 2016
Our family tradition for New Year's Eve is a huge hors d'oeuvres spread and we always make a variant of these - just bacon wrapped around the water chestnuts, which are marinated for about an hour in soy sauce with grated fresh ginger and garlic. No mustard or sugar.
Sue December 16, 2015
Put a layer of sliced potatoes under the rack and they will cook bacon without smoking the oven
Chef D. November 25, 2015
it contains bacon! I'm In!
I love bacon :)
Heather May 17, 2015
Easy as promised and delicious. How, though, do you prevent the smoke storm in the oven when the bacon grease drops from rack?
Patti H. December 11, 2015
guess you don't :) 1st time I made them I thought something caught fire lol
cynthia November 24, 2021
I have never had a smoke storm. When I make bacon wrapped water chestnuts, I pre-cook the bacon in the oven (never had a smoke storm doing that). Then wrap up the bacon with the chestnuts and brown sugar and some dijon (scant) and throw them all back into the oven to finish cooking (still no smoke storm). I have enjoyed reading about people's variations on this popular hor's d'oeuvre. I have also made bacon wrapped dates, stuffed with a water chestnut, with some dijon on the bacon before wrapping.
Vicki February 18, 2015
I've had a variation of these: water chestnut topped with small chunk of pineapple then wrapped in bacon - very good.
Patti H. December 11, 2015
gotta try that (with pineapple) sounds very good!
Linda G. January 22, 2015
robin L. January 18, 2015
still wondering about what kind of chutney works for there...Food52's Provisions has a pair of onion jam and plum chutneys...?
Emelyn February 25, 2016
I'll bet Major Grey's Mango Chutney would be good here, but I haven't made the recipe yet (I just like to read all the comments before I do make it for the first time). My mother used to mix a spoonful of that chutney in with my chicken salad when I was a kid.
Vicki January 18, 2015
You can also dip these in pure maple syrup. Sounds bad but tastes great.
cynthia November 24, 2021
How can something with pure maple syrup sound bad?!?!?!
yemek T. December 13, 2014
hmm look delicious, it's like this one http://tarifizm.com/kurdanli-sosisli-borek-tarifi/ thanks for good recipe.
Cynthia Z. April 23, 2014
My mother made these years ago with a little twist, she wrapped the bacon around the water chestnut, cooked as directed. When they where ready we would dip them into sour cream and brown sugar.
Marilyn L. April 6, 2014
I grew up with a similar recipe, although my mother's recipe called for soaking the water chestnuts in soy sauce for a time, then rolling in brown sugar,and wrapping in bacon strip and toothpick to fasten. Bake or Broil as described. Fabulous! Pleases all for any occasion. As mother of 6 grown children, my 5 daughters and 1 son have always helped put these together quickly and love the make them. In fact, I shall make 2-3 dozen for our Easter Celebration! Happy Easter, Mimi
Doug January 31, 2014
Try wrapping the bacon around a date and baking it the same way. A taste you will never forget and always come back too for your party.
robin L. January 2, 2014
any chutney recommendations? chutney's one of a few things i've never bought (let alone made)...
cynthia November 24, 2021
I have only had Major Grey's. I found it to be savory with a little sweet taste.....sort of a "middle of the road" chutney. It's readily available in your grocery store.