How To Cook Bacon {Perfectly}

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I’m just gonna say it.. you CAN cook bacon perfectly, each and every time.  No fuss, no muss, no spatters left behind on your stove and backsplash, no ugly curling slices.  Just perfectly cooked bacon, done exactly to your liking.

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The fail-proof way to cook bacon perfectly each and every time.

Hot, crispy, salty bacon… how can you go wrong?  “Bacon is Meat Candy.”  I saw that on a t-shirt once and chuckled at the perfection of the phrase. Perfect bacon is pure deliciousness on a plate – in a sandwich – wrapped around scallops.  You can even candy bacon with brown sugar and serve it up as an appetizer that’s guaranteed to fly off the plate at your next gathering.

Today I’m going to teach you how to cook bacon perfectly, every single time.  It’s actually super easy when you know a couple of little tricks.  Once you learn them, you’ll never find yourself reaching for that box of limp pre-cooked bacon at the grocery store {that one that curiously doesn’t need refrigerating}!

You can cook bacon many different ways, in a skillet, in the microwave, you can even deep-fry it.  I don’t find any of these styles to be ideal.

Cooking bacon tends to be a little messy as it spatters, especially in a skillet.  {TTOTT7 story:  My backsplash carries a permanent reminder of this from when Soso and her BFF decided to cook some skillet bacon (on high!) while I was at work}.

It’s also inconvenient as none of my skillets are large enough to hold an entire package of bacon.  The microwave is convenient if you just need a couple of pieces but it tends to overcook the bacon and turn it into tough bacon jerky unless you’re hovering the whole time.  But there’s another way that’s easier, has a better final product, doesn’t curl and isn’t as messy.

So how do you cook bacon perfectly?

The oven method is pretty close to ideal provided you use the magic secret:  start the bacon in a cold oven.  There’s a second trick I like to do that helps the bacon cook exactly the way I like it… using cookie cooling racks. When you cook bacon directly on the racks they allow the fat to drip off the bacon and to the bottom of the pan.  This way the bacon isn’t cooking in it’s own grease the entire time.   {BTW, save those drippings for use in future cooking!}

The racks also allow both sides of the bacon to crisp up at the same time. This allows you not to hover as you wait to turn it over nor do you or your backsplash get spattered with grease.  Plus, it doesn’t curl as it cooks!  It’s the perfect trifecta.

The method couldn’t be simpler.  Place cookie cooling racks on a baking sheet with a lip because you don’t want the grease to drip in your oven.  You can line the sheet with aluminum foil first if you’d like, which makes for easier cleaning.

How to cook bacon perfectly - The fail-proof way to cook bacon perfectly each and every time.

If you like, you can collect some of the bacon grease (I’ve also heard it called “bacon butter” – isn’t that a lovely term for such an unpretty, yet useful, product?).  Bacon grease firms up slightly and turns opaque once cool.  Keep in a container and store in your fridge or cabinet for future use.   I always keep some on hand for cooking scrambled or over easy eggs instead of butter.  It’s also good for when you’re caramelizing onions.  But back to how to cook bacon perfectly!

Place the strips across the cookie cooling sheets, being careful not to overlap.  Wherever you overlap the bacon won’t crisp up, it’ll stay limp and we’re after crispy, perfect bacon!  Don’t stretch them, just lay them neatly.

How to cook bacon perfectly - The fail-proof way to cook bacon perfectly each and every time.

Place the baking sheet in the cold oven and set temperature to 400 degrees and the timer for 15 minutes.  Turn on the oven light now so you don’t forget.  You’ll be coming back after 15 minutes to peek in the window and gauge color.

Continue checking on the bacon at intervals for the next 5-15 minutes.  You’ll know when the bacon is the color and crispness that you prefer.  Slide the pan out of the oven and allow the bacon to cool enough for you to handle.

How to cook bacon perfectly - The fail-proof way to cook bacon perfectly each and every time.

You may want to pat the bacon with paper towels at this juncture if you feel it’s greasy, but that’s personal preference.  Remove bacon from cooling racks and serve immediately or freeze it for future use.

How to cook bacon perfectly - The fail-proof way to cook bacon perfectly each and every time.

Leftover bacon freezes beautifully!  Place bacon in recloseable freezer baggies and squeeze out as much air as possible before tightly closing.

To reheat, lightly wet a paper towel and lay across plate, placing as many slices as bacon as desired to be rewarmed.  Microwave for approximately 30 seconds, checking at intervals until you’re happy.

And there you have it!  An easy, guaranteed perfect method for cooking bacon.

Have you tried this method before or do you have a favorite you’d like to share?  Give it a try and comment below to let me know what you think or share a snap and tag @ttottblog on Instagram, I’d love to see your successes!

Fondly, Kristen

 

 

 

 

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fondly-kristen

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