Bakin’ the Bacon: hands off!

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When you’re frying a pound of bacon, do you stand over the stove, turner or tongs in hand, hot grease popping and splattering as you turn, wait, turn, wait, turn… wait?

There’s a better way.

The holidays are fast approaching, and with them come celebratory breakfasts, including fresh-baked sticky buns, stuffed French toast, and savory brunch casseroles of all kinds.

There’s not much crisp, golden bacon doesn’t go with. In fact, I can’t think of a single breakfast dish that isn’t improved by a rasher or two of bacon.

Nor can I think of a single person I know who doesn’t love bacon.

Which leads me to believe most of us will be frying bacon at least once this month.

Change the word “frying” to “baking,” and I’m with you.

That’s right, baking. If you’ve never baked bacon, you’re in for a revelatory experience.

Not only does baking bacon save you the hassle of babysitting (baconsitting?) as it fries; it’s also a much cleaner experience; and yields perfectly cooked bacon: evenly brown, wonderfully flat, perfectly crisp and, of course, ridiculously tasty.

How much hands-on time and effort does it take you to fry a pound or two of bacon? Contrast that to baking bacon: about 5 minutes hands-on time, and zero effort. Bonus: all the bacon gets done at the same time, hot, sizzling, and ready to serve with the oven-warm cinnamon buns.

Convinced? Give it a try. Trust me, you’ll never go back to pan-frying bacon again.

Preheat the oven to 350°F. If you’re baking some other breakfast dish, it’ll probably already be at this temperature. And if you’re baking something that calls for a temperature other than 350°F, no worries; the bacon won’t mind.

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Line a large, rimmed baking sheet with parchment. Lay up to a pound of bacon atop the parchment. Most packaged bacon comes 16 slices to the pound, and will fit on a half-sheet pan (18″ x 13″), with a bit of overlap.

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Bake the bacon for about 25 minutes, or until it’s started to shrink. Separate the pieces where they’ve overlapped, and continue to bake until it’s as dark and crisp as you like, anywhere from an additional 5 to 15 minutes.

Remove the bacon from the oven.

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This bacon baked for 40 minutes total. Can you hear it sizzling?

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Notice how flat it stays as it bakes; no curled, twisted, gnarly pieces.

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Transfer the bacon to a paper towel-lined plate to drain. Serve with the rest of your breakfast. I highly recommend baked Praline French Toast, for you sweet-salty aficionados.

Next: cleanup.

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This is why you use parchment: it keeps your pan clean. (BTW, those stains on the pan aren’t from the bacon; they’re permanent.)

Simply fold up the parchment with the rendered bacon fat, and discard it. If you want to keep the fat, drain it off the pan into a heatproof jar or other container.

Any fat left on the pan, swipe it off with a paper towel. Then rinse your pan in hot, soapy water. No scrubbing a frying pan; no cleaning messy grease spatters off the stovetop and surrounding counter.

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Get it while it’s hot! And don’t forget the warm cinnamon buns

 

 

PJ Hamel
About

PJ Hamel was born in Wisconsin, grew up in New England, and graduated from Brown University. She was a journalist in Massachusetts and Maine before joining the King Arthur Flour Company in 1990, where she's been ever since. Author or co-author of three King Arthur ...

comments

  1. mumpy

    i’ve been bakin’ the bacon for years because a butcher told me to try it that way….took me a few tries to figure out i needed to line the pan – i started with foil, before i discovered parchment and i KNOW you’re right….this is the easiest and best way to cook the yummy stuff….you could also put the bacon on a cooling rack to keep it out of its own grease while it cooks, but that does require cleanup.

    Reply
    1. Jill Ripley

      My bacon sticks to the paper towel, guess Pam could solve the tick. I also micro the bacon to ride some of the fats before baking, same with sausages.

    2. Christina

      I line the pan with parchment, then put the bacon on a rack on top of it. The pan is still easy to clean, and I put the rack in the dishwasher. I like the way it cooks on a rack better than sitting in grease, but it’s not terribly different.

    3. Bill Santiff

      Jill, do not use paper towels in the pan! Go to the store and buy a roll of Parchment Paper…it is in the same area as the aluminum foil and waxed paper. This is a wonderful pan liner for many purposes including baking cookies in addition to baking bacon. You use paper towels to drain the bacon on AFTER it comes out of the oven.

      The bacon does not splatter because you are cooking it at only 350*F instead of in a 700-900 degree frying pan…it is a slower process.

      For our church’s parish breakfasts we buy 10 pound boxes of “lay flat bacon” from Sysco (a food wholesaler) that have the bacon already laid out on sheets of parchment paper. We just put two sheets side by side on a big commercial baking sheet pan and put it in the big convection oven set at 350. We do three pans at a time and in 20-30 minutes we have 5 pounds cooked and ready to be drained on paper towels and then go to the steam tables.

    4. "kmom1000@yahoo.com"

      I also bake my bacon. I will make 2 or 3 pounds and then freeze what we didn’t use. Some I leave long and some I will chop up to use on potatoes or what ever and it is so easy for me. I just reheat a couple of minutes either in the oven if I am cooking or microwave for a few seconds. I don’t even thaw them. They are still crispy. I did invest in a vacuum sealer and make the bags the sizes I need. It is just my husband and me now, so it comes in handy.

    5. Richard

      I agree its easier (microwaving is easier still, making that the “easiest”), but best? Whenever I invite people over to the house for breakfast, and I refuse to bake or microwave my bacon, I follow the guide of cook’s illustrated (start from a cold pan with room temperature bacon, constantly flip to cook evenly), and my guests who are used to “baked bacon” consistently “fall in love” all over again with bacon. Baked bacon has a tough texture to it that fried bacon doesn’t, where as fried bacon is “crisp” rather than “hard”.

      Its like people trying to convince me that they can make baked chicken wings as good as fried. I might compromise for health, but don’t lie to me!

      Enjoy baked bacon as a compromise, and maybe even prefer the texture if thats how you like bacon to be, but personally, I get disappointed anywhere I go and I’m promised bacon (which to me means fried) and get baked. :’(

  2. Laura

    I do a twist on this method: disposable pan on the gas grill. Although, I love the smell of bacon, I’m not a fan of it lingering long past breakfast. Grilling outside solves that.

    Reply
    1. AnneMarie

      DITTO that! goes for oniony pot roasts, garlic chicken (YUM), and TURKEY (which the cooking smell of actually gives me a migraine!)

    1. PJ Hamel , post author

      Not for me it didn’t, Elizabeth. Give it a try (following the directions, using parchment), and see how it works for you. PJJ

    1. PJ Hamel , post author

      No, LouAnn, not in my experience. No guarantees in your oven with your pan and your bacon, but give it a try; if it spatters, you can always go back to spattering on the stovetop, right? :) PJH

  3. Sue Conrad

    I’ve done the bacon baking before…………but I put the bacon on a wire cooling rack that’s then placed on a parchment-lined sheet pan; however, now that I own USA Pans with their silicone coating, I can skip the parchment paper! The partially cooled bacon fat then gets poured into a container and placed in the fridge; some of it will be an ingredient in my late dad’s favorite molasses cookies, aptly named “Daddy Cookies”!!

    Reply
    1. PJ Hamel , post author

      Bacon fat in molasses cookies – sounds like a nice pairing, Sue. I was thinking of a bacon fat apple pie crust, actually… :) PJH

    1. PJ Hamel , post author

      Linda, in my experience, it doesn’t. Follow the directions in this blog post – I think you’ll be happy with the results. PJH

  4. Amy

    I’ve been baking bacon for a few years now. Since there are usually only two of use after draining on the paper towels I wrap the bacon (in the same paper towels) pop in a large zipper bag and freeze, perfect portions of bacon for sandwiches, salads, whatever – everything is better with bacon!

    Reply
  5. Amanda

    What a great tip! I lined my pan with aluminum foil, folded the sides up so there would be no leaks. The foil contained all the bacon grease and there was absolutely no clean up. I also blotted the “baked” bacon with paper towels to absorb extra grease. Perfect bacon!!

    Reply
    1. PJ Hamel , post author

      Pam, the grease doesn’t spatter when I bake bacon on an aluminum baking sheet lined with parchment at 350°F. Can’t vouch for other methods or temperatures, but try it this way and see how it works for you – PJH

    2. Amy Rae

      I’ve been doing this for a long time, I actually do mine at 400 degrees for 20 minutes. No spatters in the oven even at a higher temp. But I think I will follow these directions now…gives me more time to deal with everything else!

  6. Diane Brown

    I have been cooking my bacon this way for years and find it ‘s the best way to cook it. The clean up is also so easy and it’s easy to keep the drippings for another use.

    Reply
  7. JuneF

    YES! I bake anywhere from 6 to 9 lbs of bacon for our family & friends Christmas breakfast just the way you describe except that I use the parchment paper for 2 rounds of baking before changing it out. It truly is the best way to cook bacon.

    Reply
  8. Mary Graff

    I’ve been baking my bacon for years. I line my pan with foil, then put a cooling rack in the pan and put my bacon on the rack. It comes out flat and it’s not sitting in the grease as it bakes. Delicious!!

    Reply
  9. Denise

    My neighbor taught me this method 45 years ago and I’ve made it this way ever since. It’s the only way to cook bacon!

    Reply
  10. Wendy

    I have been baking bacon for years and I believe it tastes better than fried! I put a layer of newspaper in the pan, and then a cooling rack as you use for cooling cakes and cookies. I then put the bacon on the rack to cook. All the fat drips off and is absorbed by the paper, facilitating clean up. The bacon is wonderfully crisp and not at all greasy. Cleaning the racks is a little bit of a pain, but if you soak them for a while, everything comes off. Enjoy.

    Reply
    1. Alma

      I too have been baking my bacon for many years, also using the cooling rack to keep the bacon off the bottom of the pan. I found if you lightly spray, with cooking spray, the cooling rack, top and bottom, a quick wash in hot soapy water, it cleans right up. A friend whose son is a chef, told me at his restaurant, he coats each strip of bacon with brown sugar at the beginning of the baking process and it turns into “bacon candy” It really is very good.

  11. Maureen Tracey

    I’ve been doing bacon this way for about 20 years!!! It’s the ONLY WAY to do bacon (unless of course you’re only doing it for 1)!!! But I must say. THANK YOU. THANK YOU!!! I have never thought to use the parchment paper!!! Hello??? I have no idea what I was(‘nt) thinking!! But again…THANK YOU!!! It will surely make the clean-up much easier!!!
    Happy Baking!
    Maureen

    Reply
    1. PJ Hamel , post author

      I think the parchment helps keep the spattering down too, Maureen. DEFINITELY keeps the pan clean! :) PJH

    2. Chrissy

      Same here! I would never make bacon if I had to pan fry it. Learning to bake it was a lifesaver! I was told to cut the pieces in half for even cooking and the added bonus is that way my family feels like they are eating more bacon than they really are! ha, ha! I’ll definitely be adding the parchment paper now.

  12. Marianne Dube

    I bake my bacon too, but use my broiler pan instead of a cookie sheet. That way the fat drains away from the bacon, and I save my beloved parchment paper for cookies and other yummy stuff :) Will never “fry” bacon again!

    Reply
  13. Tonya Bassett

    We’ve been doing this for years, but we cook it at 400 for 7 minutes and then flip the pieces over and cook for 7 more – still turns out perfect! So easy!

    Reply
  14. Bobbye Horton

    When I worked as a cook…this was the way I cooked our breakfast bacon…in our big ovens. Customers loved it….

    Reply
  15. marianne

    I bake my bacon too, but put it on a rack over the pan. I hadn’t lined the pan with parchment though, so I’ll try that next time!

    Reply
  16. Karen

    I switched to baking my bacon a few years ago and I will never go back! I line my pan with foil and bake at 375 for 20 minutes. Add minutes if needed. Remove bacon to paper towel and throw away the foil. No grease to worry about and the pan just needs a rinse. Perfect, flat and crispy!

    Reply
    1. PJ Hamel , post author

      Not in my experience, Colleen – aluminum baking sheet lined with parchment, 350°F. PJH

    1. PJ Hamel , post author

      I can only speak to my own experience, Deborah – no splatter in my oven, using an aluminum baking pan lined with parchment. Thus, since no splatter, I don’t have any need to line my oven rack with foil. PJH

  17. Melissa

    This looks great, but doesn’t it fill the oven with splatter? I have tried bacon in the oven before (and chicken in a cast iron skillet, etc.) and the fat splatters everywhere and then bakes on. Smokes a lot until the oven is cleaned (and I still haven’t figured out how to get the baked on grease off my oven windows). Any tips?

    Reply
    1. PJ Hamel , post author

      Melissa, not sure what to tell you – I haven’t experienced any fat splattering from baking bacon. Maybe your pan is too hot -a re you using cast iron? I use an aluminum baking sheet lined with parchment. Maybe the parchment helps keep it from splattering? You might try the parchment sometime… PJH

    2. Jo Ann

      Melissa: Try a single-edged razor blade on the baked-on windows. Just practice before using to avoid scratching it. Easy.

    3. Sally

      Melissa: use DRY baking soda on your oven windows. Using a paper towel rub the soda onto the glass. You’ll be amazed at how the baking soda takes all the grime off. You may have to rub harder in baked on areas. Vacuum up the dirty baking soda when done. Then wipe with a damp cloth to finish.
      Dry baking soda also works on toaster oven windows and chrome to give it a sparkling shine.

    4. Bakinggram

      You might want to try putting a container with vinegar in the oven the night before, then using the baking soda. Even the really baked on areas should be easier to clean.

    5. T Smith

      Melissa, older ovens that weren’t self-cleaning used to recommend putting a bowl with ammonia in them to sit overnight before cleaning and I thought that sounded stupid, until my daughter told me to soak paper towels in ammonia and place them on my stove top and then take a large plastic bag and masking tape and seal the ammonia fumes in over night. Then the next morning take a sudsy non scratchy scrubber and the burnt on grease will scrub right off. I would think you could open your oven door and put the ammonia towels on and seal with plastic over night and have the same results.

  18. Sharon

    How greasy is the oven? I tried baking the bacon, but I found that the oven gets all the grease instead of the stove top, and if its not cleaned up right away you can then get a grease fire.

    Reply
    1. PJ Hamel , post author

      Never have experienced this, Sharon; the bacon bubbles gently, but doesn’t spatter, and I don’t seem to end up with any grease in my oven. PJH

  19. Carol

    I’ve done this for years and in the same types of pans. Except, I have a rack that fits my pans and use it. It keeps the bacon out of the grease and still nicely baked. I keep bacon in the freezer for quick warm/crisp up and only clean up the greasy mess once in a while.

    Reply
    1. bakinggram

      Carol, I am curious how you do the quick warm/crisp up after freezing. I do not like limp bacon, but the freezing sounds great to me then I can cook up the package right away.

      Thanks for any help

    2. MaryJane Robbins

      I’ve done a quick trip under the broiler in my toaster oven to crisp up limp bacon. Works like a charm! ~ MJ

  20. Andee

    My folks have done this for years! The only way to have bacon and feed two hungry teens at breakfast and still have enough bacon for BLTs at lunch!

    Reply
  21. Debra

    Could I freeze the bacon once it’s baked? It would be nice to have bacon done ahead for egg sandwiches, etc..s If so, what would be the best way to wrap & prepare it to freeze & for how long?

    Reply
    1. PJ Hamel , post author

      Yes, I freeze bacon. If you want the pieces to remain intact, it helps to wrap in plastic, then stash it in a plastic container of some kind (e.g., Tupperware), as it’s pretty breakable once it’s frozen. I’ve kept bacon this way up to about 3 months – not sure how long it could ultimately remain frozen though, as with any food, the longer it’s frozen the more it deteriorates, flavor-wise… PJH

    2. Ted

      I do this with a pound package of bacon. Once the bacon is cooked, drained and cooled, I lay the slices, very close together, on a sheet of wax paper, roll it up like a jelly roll, slide it into a plastic bag, put in the freezer. When I want a slice (or 2 or 6), it’s easy to unroll the package and remove what’s needed.

  22. Diane Hagopian

    This is wonderful when doing a full pound (I sometimes sprinkle with brown sugar), however, when just doing enough for two people (or one if I am naughty) I line a plastic cutting board with paper toweling (2 sheets) lay the bacon over and cover with another two pieces of toweling and microwave for 3 or 4 min. – the fat is absorbed and the bacon is crisp and as fat free as you can get

    Reply
    1. PJ Hamel , post author

      Diane, I microwave a couple or three pieces at a time, too. But lately, I’ve been baking a pound, then freezing it – easy to pull out however many pieces you want and microwave for about 30 seconds to crisp. Either way yields great results – PJH

    2. Char

      I also microwave my bacon. Put 2 paper towels on a paper plate, put your bacon on—it’s ok if it laps over the side—it’ll shrink when it cooks—put a paper towel over the top, then microwave 45 seconds-1 minute per piece. After it’s cooked, you can just throw all the paper away!

  23. Robyn

    I’ve made our bacon this way for years! The only difference is I line the baking pan with foil – that way when you are done, you don’t even have to use the soapy water, just wrap up the foil and your pas is as clean as new!

    Reply
    1. PJ Hamel , post author

      Good tip, Robyn – if your foil is wide enough, you can press it up the sides of the pan and, as you say, keep the pan completely clean. Thanks for sharing – PJH

  24. Bernice Kalisz

    Been baking my bacon for a long time I love it but when you have 7 family to feed it to takes a lot and a long time frying so one time pulled out the cookie sheet lined it up and baked my guys like it better baked.

    Reply
  25. Loriekitchen

    Love this method. I have prepared bacon this way several times and it truly lies flat and taste great. Best of all is the clean up. I’d much rather be doing something else then standing over a frying pan, splattering bacon grease all over my blouse or shirt. Nice tip! Thanks

    Reply
  26. Becky

    I’ve been baking bacon for years. I do catering and cook for retreats. We can do 10, 15, 20 lbs of bacon in nothing flat! Beats the heck out of standing over a pan of splattering grease!

    Reply
    1. PJ Hamel , post author

      This is the way our café cooks bacon, too, Becky – pans and pans of it. You’re right, it absolutely beats standing over a frying pan. PJH

  27. vince

    I bake my bacon all the time, Preheat to 400* I use aluminum foil to line the baking sheet and put a baking cooling rack on top of that, the grease goes to the foil letting the bacon ride high out of the oil. When halfway done turn the bacon just one time. When bacon is finished place bacon on paper towels to drain remaining grease and pour the bacon fat into a dish to refrigerate for later use. The pan should be as clean as when you started, quick and easy clean up!

    Reply
    1. PJ Hamel , post author

      Exactly, Vince. I don’t put mine on a rack simply because I don’t like cleaning the rack afterwards – yes, I’m that lazy! :) PJH

  28. Peter Garnham

    I’ve been baking bacon for years. Problem is that cold baked bacon tastes good, too, so it becomes a short-lived snack when left out on a plate . . .

    Reply
    1. PJ Hamel , post author

      I hear you, Peter – it’s WAAAY too easy to have “just one more piece” of bacon! PJH

  29. Marie Stewart

    Been baking bacon for years. Line the pan w/foil. Put a rack on it. You know, the one you cool the cookies on. Lay down the bacon and bake the same. I pour the grease in a pyrex cup to save or throw away. Roll up foil and pitch. Transfer bacon to paper towels. Works for me!!

    Reply
  30. Francesca Tate

    I really would like to use this method instead of frying, where I’m always worried about a grease fire. But if a recipe calls for some bacon fat (say, 1/3 cup), how does one safely put that aside (along with the bacon) for later use? I’m thinking specifically of a Spanish recipe that my stepbrother is asking for, which is Chicken with Figs. It calls for bacon, and rendered fat, to be used in making a sauce. Thanks for any tips on this!

    Reply
    1. PJ Hamel , post author

      Francesca, simply drain the fat from the baking sheet into a heatproof container. I like to refrigerate it, though some people leave the fat at room temperature. Bacon should be refrigerated or frozen; it’s easily re-crisped in the microwave. PJH

    2. Virginia

      Yes, I, too, save some of my bacon fat in a container and keep it refrigerated for when I need it for a recipe. It can go rancid if left out. I don’t understand why some people do that.

    3. waikikirie

      I too save some bacon fat. I pour it into a pyrex measuring cup. When cooled a bit, I pour it into a container and then stash it in the FREEZER. It will firm up but can be zapped in the microwave or left out a few minutes to soften.

    4. bakinggram

      Bacon fat should never be left out of the refrigerator or freezer. It could be frozen by tablespoonfuls in small cupcake papers-ready to use for recipes. For years I use to use it in my bread recipes, making really tasty bread.

  31. pb684

    I’ve been using this method for a while now with one exception…I place a cooling rack inside the sheet pan on top of the parchment and lay the bacon on the rack. This allows the fat to drip off of the bacon leaving it much less greasy…and a bit more healthy (or at least that’s what I like to tell myself!).

    Reply
    1. PJ Hamel , post author

      Lots of folks seem to like to bake their bacon on a rack; I actually prefer to lay it on parchment (so I don’t have to clean a rack!) It’s true it may lose more of its fat on the rack; but I also find it a bit dry when doing it that way. To each his own, eh? PJH

  32. Rose Marie

    I’ve been doing my bacon on the Geo Foreman Grill. Comes out great w/o the grease ’cause as it is cooking the grease goes into a specially made pan that sits at the end of the grill.

    Reply
  33. Lisa

    I bake bacon, too. At the 25 minute mark, I pull it out, drain it on a paper towel, and freeze it using my FoodSaver. Then, when I need bacon for breakfast, BLTs, or anything else, I remove it from the plastic, lay it on a paper towel on a microwave safe plate, and microwave for about a minute. Perfect! (Although my oven door glass is a grease splattered mess, but if I leave the oven light off, no one is the wiser:).)

    Reply
  34. AnneCatLover

    Using a BaconWave in the microwave is also an excellent cooking method. There are 14 or 16 slots that hold the strips of bacon horizontally with two sticks at the end to hold all of them in place while cooking. Microwave on high for one minute per slice; add more minutes as needed. Spray the pan and sticks with Pam or Crisco Oil BEFORE adding the bacon strips. One paper towel can be placed over the top of the bacon and can also be used to absorb any excess fat that remains on the cooked bacon. All the drippings of fat in the pan can be easily poured off for safe disposal. The BaconWave is easily cleaned in the dishwasher! Less waste and, hopefully, less fat around the WAIST.

    Reply
  35. Kim

    I’ve been baking bacon for years too. I use the foil lined pan for zero clean up. I prefer not to use a rack (I think the bacon crisps in the grease). I keep fat, poured off when hot, in a mason jar in the fridge to coat a hot cast iron skillet for cornbread

    Reply
  36. Nancy

    I cook my bacon on my gas grill outside. I have a nice heavy old jelly roll pan and line it with foil. Place the bacon on the foil lined pan on the preheated (350-400) grill for about 10 minutes. I set a timer so I don’t forget it. Then check on the bacon, some time I turn it, sometime I just turn the pan. Cook another 10 minutes. I have perfect flat bacon and a house that does not smell like bacon all day. When pan and grease cool, just though the mess away. I have used this method for the last 5 years.

    Reply
  37. Anne Jensen

    My family has done it this way for over 50 years, either on rack over the pan or on aluminum foil. Spattering has never been a problem (tested in at least 6 different ovens over the years). You can broil if you’re in a hurry, but that might spatter a bit & needs closer watching. I just got a bunch of parchment, so I’ll give that a whirl.

    Reply
  38. Wiley Hall

    A long time ago I cooked my bacon in the oven and I agree that is a great way to do it but then I tried it in my family-sized George Foreman and that’s now the only way I do it.

    Reply
  39. Terri

    I have been baking my bacon for years and will never ever go back to frying. I have never experienced any grease splatter either, as others seem to be concerned about. Honestly if it did splatter I would rather have it contained in my oven as opposed to everywhere around the stove top. The only thing I do differently is use my Pampered Chef stone bar pan. I place the bacon slices right on there and bake for about 20-25 minutes on 400 degrees. Comes out perfect every time.

    Reply
  40. Mark Kyle

    Candied bacon anyone? Add a teaspoon of cinnamon to a cup of brown sugar, spread it out on large paper plate and lay each slice of bacon on the sugar and press gently, turn over to coat the other side the bake as above.

    Reply
  41. Bob

    Have been baking bacon for about 25 years now and it’s the best way to do it. No messy stove or pans to deal with and can do about 2 to 3 pounds of bacon at a time so it goes much faster. And I use aluminum foil so clean up is a breeze, no baking pans to wash!

    Reply
  42. BettyC

    I tried this one time, the grease starting smoking and I panicked and took it out of the oven. I was afraid the grease was going to catch on fire. I haven’t tried it since!!

    Reply
    1. PJ Hamel , post author

      Maybe your temperature was too high, Betty? Also, if you didn’t last time, try lining your pan; I use parchment. Seems to help prevent splatters. I hope this encourages you to give it another try… PJH

    2. Mary

      I’ve never tried lining my pan when baking bacon and found that the grease in the pan smoked — placing a small amount of water in the pan will prevent the smoking … a half-cup at most should do the trick. I

  43. Rosie

    I do this ALL the time, saw it done years ago when I was a waitress in a huge hotel. So easy, no fuss. I will never fry bacon again!

    Reply
  44. mikey

    When I first heard about this I thought it was bs…….. then I tried it……. I found a new passion for Baking.. lol… I have made my bacon this way now almost every other day for the family….. I am astonished on how good it turns out every time… PERECT…. NO SPLATTER IN THE OVEN WHAT SOEVER….. just simply the fastest n best way to cook / bake bacon. !!!!!!!

    Reply
  45. Roberto

    If cooking for fewer folks and needing fewer slices, we get the same crispy slices in a microwave oven with the bacon between two layers of paper towels on a plate — takes about one to two minutes a slice in a standard microwave — no need to drain the bacon — easy cleanup — just toss the greese soaked towels.

    Reply
  46. Foodiewife831

    This is how I make bacon. I tend to lay mine on top of a baking rack, and put foil on the pan. For an added treat, I sprinkle brown sugar on the bacon– the sweet & salty combo is out of this world. That’s why I foil line my pan, though, as the brown sugar can create a sticky mess to clean up.

    Reply
  47. Karen

    I do mine in the microwave. Two sheet of paper towel on the bottom, bacon in the middle, one sheet of paper towel on top. One minute per slice. Throw away the grease with the paper towel.

    Reply
  48. John Graham

    I have baked bacon two different ways, with rack and without. The rack lets the grease drip away resulting in a “roasted” bacon that I find somewhat drier and tougher in texture. Without the rack the bacon cooks laying in its fat like in a frying pan on top of the stove, resulting in a more “fried” bacon texture which I prefer. Either way is much better than on top of the stove.

    Reply
  49. Diane

    I have been cooking bacon in the oven for years…I use heavy foil and then toss the whole greasy mess. Put the bacon on paper towels…

    Reply
  50. joanelisabeth

    I have done this for years and lately, with the parchment. I re-use sheets from cookie baking
    ( 2-3 times), wipe off the crumbs and do bacon, chops, drumsticks and such. Saves elbow grease.

    Reply
    1. PJ Hamel , post author

      I do this too – use older sheets of parchment that are just about ready for the bin, and lead them to their final demise by using under bacon. Waste not… etc. Thanks – PJH

  51. peter

    I do mine like this, too, but in the microwave. Cover the bacon with paper and it will be done in about 10 minutes or less, depending on your microwave. Smaller quantities take less time, This makes bacon fast food, almost. You have to be quick to get it away from the paper, otherwise it sticks.

    Reply
  52. ann

    c’mon…been doing this for YEARS….bake 2-3 lbs at a time…also chop and fry bits…go into freezer for future meals…..i’m old, and have lots of tricks!!

    Reply
    1. PJ Hamel , post author

      And Ann – while you can teach us old dogs new tricks, us old dogs can also TEACH new tricks, right? :) PJH

  53. Eli

    I’ve been doing this for years and it works great. I skip the rack both because it’s a pain to clean and because the bacon comes out too dry, tasting more like jerky. In this case the best way is also the easiest way!

    Reply
  54. Dorrie Brooks

    I place a large cookie rack on my cookie sheet sprayed with Pam lined with parchment paper, place the bacon on cookie sheet and but in a 350 oven until bacon is crisp (no turning needed as the bacon cooks from the bottom also). Easy clean up.

    Reply
  55. draperl@prodigy.net

    I too have been baking bacon for years. I never got to lining the pan because I use the “catch all” pan I keep in the oven all the time…..it’s a sacrificial pan that I just scrape and wash from time to time. I think I’ll try the parchment. I usually do no less than 2 pounds at a time and freeze part for use later….reheat briefly in the microwave.

    Thanks for the great post.

    Reply
  56. Steph

    We’ve been cooking bacon this way for the last several years and love it. Foil-lined rimmed baking sheet, 400 degrees, no splatter. I wonder if the few folks who experienced oven splatter would have more success if they lowered the oven temp and cooked for longer? Or if it could have anything at all to do with the brand of bacon?

    Reply
    1. PJ Hamel , post author

      Both good points, Steph – a higher oven temp. might just promote splattering. As for brand, I’ve tried three brands I can think of (Oscar Mayer, Plumrose, store brand), and none splattered, so it’s probably more likely the oven temperature or the pan. PJH

  57. Andre

    I’ve baked with the oven as well and it does a great job. Like other posts, I was worried about grease splattering in the oven. What I do is use two cookie sheets. I line one with parchment paper, then I put the bacon on it, then place another sheet of parchment on top of the bacon and then place the 2nd cookie sheet on top of that. No splatter and easy to clean up.

    Reply
  58. Carey

    I always bake my bacon. I make mine on my broiler pan, that way the grease can drip into the bottom, and the bacon doesnt need to sit in it.

    Reply
  59. julia

    the bacon is very good cooked in oven….. . but for those who have splatter problems….. tip is baking powders. to clean grease sprinkle on surface let set a couple seconds and ripe off . thats on top of stove and pots and pan ,grills etc.. baking powders is safe. it may leave a little residue but cleans up quick and it is safe ,

    Reply
  60. Lee

    Bread the bacon!!
    Place AP flour in a platic ba- gallon size. Add strips of bacon one at a time and swish around to cover bacon with flour.
    Remove bacon and bake as above. I prefer to bake mine on a wire rack so that the bacon isn’t sitting in the fat.
    Yummy extra crunchy!

    Reply
    1. PJ Hamel , post author

      Wow, Lee – never thought of that! And yeah, if breaded, it would be best to bake on a rack (to avoid gumminess). Maybe mix some brown sugar into the flour, too – oh, my… :) PJH

  61. Cindy

    I worked years in a small pizza place in my home time… I’ve been baking bacon for years. Love it. It is the best when the family is gathering for large Sunday morning breakfast feed a bunch in a hurry and also frees up a burner or two! For those of you who haven’t tried it you should jump right in you’d be amazed how great it is!

    Reply
  62. foxyvee

    I have been cooking my bacon like this for the past 10 years. I buy bacon on sale, bake it until it is almost done, then freeze it or refrigerate it, then microwave it when i want a sandwich or chop it for recipes! its the easiest method ever.

    Thanks for the feedback!

    Reply
  63. Anneedelweiss

    I only meant to take a peek at the KAF blog to see what’s the latest, and I ended up reading all 100+ comments! Great info and tips! A good read. Thanks so much! I love the idea of ‘bacon candy’. Sugar, and cinnamon, and – my goodness – Jack Daniel!?? This leads me to the thought of the flavorful maple sugar and syrup. All good, right?

    Spattering is not a problem for me either. But if that pack of bacon is fattier it does tend to spatter (and smoke) more. When this happens I pull the baking sheet out midway and blot off some of the rendered fat gathered on the parchment before finishing the baking.

    Cooking bacon in the oven is a big step forward from standing next to the hot stove. I am a recent convert ( 2 or 3 years?) but I won’t go back. Totally a good thing.

    Reply
  64. Richard

    PJ I was told at “Cooks” in Charleston SC to start in a cold oven. The reason is the fat renders out
    where if you start in a hot oven it is seared in. I hope this helps.

    Reply
  65. Marilyn Munson

    I’ve cooked bacon using this cant-live-without method for years, never a problem with spattering. I place the cooked bacon onto a rack, I put the cookie rack onto a cookie sheet (with edges) lined with parchment into my warming drawer. I wanted to comment about there isn’t a single person that doesn’t like back, my 27 year old daughter never liked bacon. They discovered a (benign) brain tumor a few years that was removed and she loved bacon after that! True story, funny now that everything is just fine.

    Reply
    1. PJ Hamel , post author

      Well, Marilyn, all I can say is I’m glad something good came of that benign tumor. Glad it all worked out – PJH

  66. waikikirie

    I’ve been bakin’ the bacon for a few years now too. No splatter. Line my pan with heavy duty tin foil, then a sheet of parchment and away I go. Have not fried bacon in years and have no intention of doing so. Boy, judging by the comments, there are a lot of bacon lovers out there….teehee

    Reply
  67. Laurie

    I start in a cold oven set to 400. I foil line my baking sheets, place non stick sprayed racks, and put the bacon on there. No splatters. This is my favorite method for bacon. I have done the brown sugar, but the best way was using a pastry brush to glaze the raw bacon with maple syrup. Tastes so much better than brown sugar.

    Reply
  68. judi d

    I cook my bacon in the oven but I put it on a broiler pan. Grease goes to the bottom of the pan! The grease does not go all over the oven.

    Reply
  69. Susan

    PJ – got another play on words for you – baking + bacon = bacing? Couldn’t resist! And I also had to resist licking the computer screen – your photos were making me hungry!

    Reply
  70. Omaria

    PJ. How about the smell ?. I absolutely HATE the smell of bacon in the house so always have to fry it outside on my portable induction cook top.

    Reply
    1. The Baker's Hotline

      You’re still going to get the smell, especially when you open the oven door! Jon@KAF

  71. Linda

    Great post. Ive been cooking my bacon this way for about 6 months now. NEVER going back to any other method! It`s always perfect and NO mess. I cover my bacon with parchment paper, so it`s sandwiched between 2 layers.
    I cook a pound and then freeze the slices separated by paper towel. Takes 30 seconds in the egg pan to warm up. Bacon anytime without a mess, now that’s what I call perfect!!

    Reply
  72. Jo

    Long as I can remember my mom’s cooked it in the microwave on a hanging rack so that the grease drips down. Makes it easy to collect the bacon grease for cooking field peas or collard greens or bacon cheddar scones. In the microwave I can do 12 strips of bacon in about ten minutes depending on if I’m making is crispy (yes!) or more limp strips (for the other members of the family). Though if I might try the baking method just to see how it works.

    Reply
  73. Liz

    I accordian fold tin foil as a liner for the baking pan. It allows the fat to drain while cooking the bacon perfectly and clean up is a breeze. No bacon cooking in it’s own fat and no racks to dish wash. Give it a try. Works great for us every time!

    Reply
  74. Donna Y

    Have you tried Bar Keeper’s Friend? (cleaner and polish) It is a great product. I use it on my pans to get the crud off. It comes in powder or liquid form.

    Reply
    1. PJ Hamel , post author

      I do have it, Donna – haven’t used it on my pans. I’ll give it a try, thanks. PJH

  75. Karen G

    I have a broiler pan that came with my oven, and it’s the best way to cook bacon. It’s a bit of a pain to clean, but it does let most of the grease drip off the bacon while it cooks.

    Reply
  76. Sally

    I’m glad to see you recommend parchment paper, but what most people don’t know is that paper towels are made with a LOT of really nasty chemicals and should never touch food! Notice that none of the paper towel ads say anything about use with food – they only talk about cleaning with it. That’s because it should NEVER be used with or for food.

    Reply
  77. Cheryl

    WOW… what a great idea. I’ve got non stick baking pans that cook to hot for cookies. Now with some parchment paper I will put them back to work bakin’ bacon. Thanks for this great tip! No more spattered stove tops.

    Reply
  78. gaa

    Okay, I admit that when I read this post, I was skeptical. How could the bacon cook in the oven without getting the oven greased up? But PJ said it works. And SOOOOOOO many comments also said it works. So yesterday, I took the plunge and baked my bacon. Cookie sheet covered with foil (from previous batch of candied nuts) and parchment (which I buy in half sheets 100 at a time from KAF) in place. Bacon placed on sheet and put in the oven … Holding my breath …. Wait? Where’s the splattering? The grease flying everywhere? I am a believer!! Bacon perfectly cooked and no mess, no fuss no greasy stove top to clean, no fry pan to scrub, no burns, and time to accomplish other things on the list of “To Do” for Christmas Eve and Christmas Day! Win, win, win! Thanks PJ for posting this tip. I am now a bacon baker never to return to the fry pan. You have never led me astray! Merry Christmas!

    Reply
  79. Sir Loin of Beef

    I learned to bake bacon in the oven in an Army mess hall in 1967, so the idea has been around for a really long time. I line my baking sheets with aluminium fiol, put racks in the pans, lay the bacon out on the racks and stick it in a 375F oven for 18 to 20 minutes. I then remove the pans from the oven, remove the bacon to paper towles to drain, and pour the bacon squeezin’s into a container for use when cooking something that will be served with bacon and for seasoning cast iron pans or my wok.When the bacon has cooled a bit I lay it out on the drained and stripped baking sheets and put the baking sheets in the freezer. Once the bacon is completely frozen, I put it into a zipper bag and keep it stored in the freezer, taking out as few or as many slices as I need at the time. 4 for breakfast eggs, 1 for a bacon cheeseburger, etc.

    Reply
  80. Kate Beeson

    We like our bacon UBER crispy. Almost dessicated. So I do convection 425 until I can’t hear it sizzle anymore and it’s nice and crunchy. Also, I use foil instead of parchment. As for the time to bake, I guess it depends on the thickness of the bacon. I’ve never set a time for it, so I’m not sure how long.

    Reply
  81. Mary "Linda" Brown

    I was so glad to see this post about “baking bacon”. We have six in our family and always cook 2 pounds of bacon – it took forever. Now I can cook it all at once in the oven. It is great and such a time saver. Thank you!!!

    Reply
  82. Deb

    I learned how to bake bacon in the oven back in the mid 60s when I worked at a high-volume restaurant for breakfast. I swear we sold more than a pound of bacon per minute!

    But let me suggest how to remove those “permanent” stains from your pans.

    Take 12 ounces of hydrogen peroxide (the regular stuff) with a half a teaspoon of dishwashing liquid and 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda. This will remove it all with very little effort. The pan will be shiny as it was new but it will still have the dings and dents. This works well also on the bottom of your old pots. Keep on baking! Now you can restore grandma’s old pot!

    Reply
  83. linda thompson

    I love baked bacon. I sprinkle about 1/4 cup brown sugar on the bacon before baking. When it is done, I put it on paper bags from the grocery store to drain, then lay it in a gallon freezer bag. Throw away the greasy paper bags! It saves on paper towels. I cook 3 lbs, 1 at a time then lay the bacon in a gallon freezer bag. Microwave the frozen bacon for 15 seconds and you have BACON!!

    Reply

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