Oven baked bacon is, hands down, the easiest way to get perfectly crispy and delicious bacon with the least amount of mess. Once you learn how to bake bacon in the oven, you’ll never cook it any other way… Makes big batches a cinch!
How To Bake Bacon
I can still vividly recall the first time I cooked bacon myself… I cranked up the burner and fried those slices into oblivion. My older cousin took one look at the shriveled-up, singed pieces of bacon that I pulled from the skillet and literally laughed out loud. Definitely NOT my finest cooking moment!
I can’t say that I ever perfected frying bacon on the stovetop, but once I learned how to bake bacon in the oven, it became a moot point. Cooking bacon in the oven is, hands down, the easiest and BEST way to cook bacon. You get crispy and delicious slices of bacon with the least amount of mess. I’d saying this trick is running neck and neck with this baked grilled cheese for my favorite #momhack of all time!
I’m always amazed at how many of my friends and family don’t realize that you can bake bacon in the oven… It dawned on me tonight, while I was baking a batch, that if they don’t know, chances are a good portion of you may not be aware of how to bake bacon either.
And it would be such a shame not to share the knowledge, because baked bacon is such a pleasure. Baking bacon almost always yields perfectly cooked bacon! But even better, it creates much less of a mess, and there’s less of that lingering scent of fried bacon. Oh, and did I mention you don’t need to turn it repeatedly?
I understand if you’re a little skeptical, but give it a try just once. I really think you’ll be a baked bacon convert. Especially if you’re cooking for a crowd — baking bacon in the oven makes big batches a cinch!
How To Make Bacon In The Oven
Pop the whole thing into an oven that’s been preheated to 400 degrees, and then bake it for approximately 15-20 minutes. Pat each slice dry with a paper towel to remove any extra grease, and serve. Easy-peasy!
How Long To Bake Bacon
Note that how long to bake bacon in the oven depends 1) on the thickness of your bacon and 2) how crispy you like it. I like a high-quality, thick-cut bacon myself, so I tend to bake it for the longer end of the spectrum. Until you get a feel for how long you need to bake your favorite brand, I suggest checking it at 15 minutes and then every additional minute until it’s cooked to your taste.
Also, I really like this cooling-rack-on-baking-sheet method because it produces crispier bacon and most of the fat drains off while it’s cooking. But if you like your bacon a little chewier, you can try baking it right on the sheet. In either case, lining the baking sheet with aluminum foil makes for even easier cleanup (and I’m ALL about easy cleanup)!
Oven baked bacon is a TOTAL game changer for me! No more standing at the stovetop for 30+ minutes watching and turning bacon, while trying to avoid those painful grease splatters. I just can’t help but share the love!
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Save The Rendered Bacon Fat
One final tip: don’t even THINK about throwing out the flavorful rendered bacon fat that collects on the baking sheet. This stuff is pure magic!
Let it cool slightly, then pour it off into a glass jar through a mesh strainer lined with a coffee filter. You can then store it in the refrigerator for up to a month or in the freezer for even longer.
Wondering how to use it? Well, I like to use it for sautéing and roasting vegetables, like in this roasted butternut squash recipe… EVERYONE always wants to know the secret to my amazingly flavorful veggies — I don’t mind sharing! It’s also fantastic stirred into cooked beans, for greasing the griddle when making pancakes (like the ones at Cracker Barrel!), and in savory cornbread. Trust me, you’ll have NO PROBLEM using it up!
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Wondering how to use leftover bacon? Try these recipes: