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Cooking Bacon

Just wondering -- slow or fast -- microwave? Have tried many different ways of cooking bacon. Different methods for different brands?

What's your favorite way of cooking bacon?

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    1. 425F oven for 10-12 minutes, depending on thickness of the bacon, with the bacon spread out on a sheet of aluminum foil in a half sheet pan. Mmm, perfect bacon every time.

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      1. I like the Ina Garten method....put the bacon on top of a cooling rack placed on top of a rimmed sheet pan, so the fat drips off while it cooks. 400 degrees 15-20 mins (I do mine longer because I like it crispy). In the last few mins of cooking, brush a little maple syrup on. Delish.

        1. most often, i zap it, placing slices on a plate, covering the bacon with a paper towel. 5 minutes. it sizzles in its own fat, and i can pour off the fat for future use. i used to put paper towels underneath also, but that gives a dry, stiff, unappealing result. (though fine for crumbling purposes).

          otherwise, i fry it instead of heating the whole oven for bacon.

          1. I have a convection microwave, & microwave a plateful for approx. 7 minutes & it is always perfect. I generally use same brand. If I had a fine, $$ brand I would not micro. it.

            1 Reply
            1. re: louweezy

              why not micro a $$ brand? how much is "$$"?

              i usually use a good brand name, which i buy typically "buy one/get one" -- freezing one package while the other i open for the fridge.

              i guess if i were doing a huge batch of bacon, i would use the oven, but i usually wouldn't make that much. ( a pound at a time?) i have heard good things about sprinkling the brown sugar before baking for that little "sumpin' sumpin'".

              as to stovetop, i use a splatter screen, if needed, though usually i don't cook the bacon at high heat to spatter too much.

            2. Definately the oven. you can do lots of bacon at once with none of the grease getting all over the stove top. I sometimes sprinkle a little brown sugar over the top. I'll have to try the maple syrup one of these days. That sounds really good.

              1. I like the oven on a rack over a rimmed pan as well, especially because it's an easy way to pour off and save the bacon fat. You never know when you're going to need a bit of bacon fat. ;-)

                5 Replies
                1. re: JoanN

                  Well, I've tried the oven and the microwave, and I still prefer a frying pan on the stove top. Medium temperature so it cooks more evenly and doesn't pop and spatter much. Also it's the easiest method for saving the rendered grease, which I use for lots of other purposes. Now, if I had a house full of company and had to get five pounds of bacon cooked in the next half hour, yeah, I'd go to the oven. Otherwise, I'll keep doing it the old way.

                  Jim

                  1. re: Jim Washburn

                    I normally use the micro because it is so easy and fast, but it seems to be harder to capture that nice grease and little brown things. I guess it is absorbed by the bacon. For a lot of bacon, I defininely use the oven. Beautiful bacon, just not worth the effort for a small amount. The rack idea, per Ina G, sounds good.

                    1. re: MazDee

                      the rack/sheet is my method of choice as well [but no maple syrup for me].

                      we've discussed this before...

                      http://www.chowhound.com/topics/457958

                    2. re: Jim Washburn

                      I like use the fry pan and bottle the rendered fat also. I cook it slow and turn it often.

                      1. re: Jim Washburn

                        me too - stovetop

                        It isn't cooking bacon for me unless at least one time during the process I get a splat of hot grease on my wrist and do that jump back away from the stove dance.

                    3. I am happy with a white plastic gadget I bought at a yard sale although I have seen them in catalogs---name is Makin' Bacon. You drape the bacon over little trees, lay a paper towel over the lot, and microwave it. I do a whole pound of bacon at once, about 3/4 done, then keep it in a plastic bag in the refrigerator. When I want some, I wrap a couple of slices in a paper towel and finish it off in a minute in the microwave. The Makin' Bacon contains all the bacon grease and it cleans up very easily---more easily than a frying pan---in hot soapy water.

                      1. Oven - 450 for about 15-18 mins (thick bacon) - perfect.

                        1. I've found my George Foreman grill makes fabulous bacon.

                          2 Replies
                          1. re: Fuser

                            I second that! It's about the only thing I use the Foreman for, but it does make excellent bacon. AND you don't have to worry about splatter.

                            1. re: Mattkn

                              I always use thick cut bacon that I pepper heavily with fresh cracked pepper.

                              And so what I found is that if I am making a smaller batch I'll use the panini press, it works fine and keeps the bacon flat.

                              Otherwise, for a large batch, then I use the oven 375, place the bacon on a rack on a cookie sheet lined with foil, or the BBQ (propane) same way.

                          2. I use the oven, but unlike most of the folks here, I actually set the oven temp to below the smoking point of bacon fat, which is 370 degrees Fahrenheit. I usually set it to 350. It just takes a bit longer than when it's at 400, but it crisps up just as nice and doesn't make my kitchen smoky at all.

                            2 Replies
                            1. re: Morganna

                              I make the Chili Bacon from the Santa Fe School of Cooking cookbook, with Red Chili Honey, it's like candy. It's an oven recipe

                              1. re: MsDiPesto

                                intrigued by that chili bacon, i looked up the recipe:
                                http://www.santafeartsandculture.org/...

                                it comes from a site with several tasty-sounding southwestern style recipes:
                                http://www.santafeartsandculture.org/...

                            2. I put about a pound of bacon on two part broiler pan, put it right up under the broiler on high. Turn it when the first side gets brown. It takes attentive watching, but I'm usually buzzing around the kitchen doing other stuff anyway. If we're cooking a big family weekend b'fast, people are constantly walking through the kitchen raiding the bacon, so I do at least 2, sometimes 3 batches, so there's actually some left to eat with eggs and biscuits, etc. At the end, when the pan's cool, I simply pour the fat into a container. Easy as pie, my kitchen's not greasy, and I've saved stove eyes for other things.

                              1. oven, 375 for about 15 mins.

                                1. I prefer bacon cooked in its own fat, chewy with a little bit of crunch. I found cooking it in the microwave between paper towels removes most of the flavor and makes it too crisp.

                                  So I use the oven, definitely. 375 or so... rimmed pan, lined with parchment makes cleanup a breeze. I pour off the bacon fat into a jar once the pan has cooled off a little.

                                  For just a few slices, I do the same in my convection toaster oven - using a 1/4 sheet pan and parchment.

                                  No turning, minimal mess and perfect bacon every time. MMMMM bacon!

                                  1 Reply
                                  1. re: mimilulu

                                    mimi, try micro with less time and no towels underneath the bacon.

                                  2. Cast iron frying pan, low-to-medium heat, covered to start then uncovered about halfway through the cooking.

                                    DON'T use a gas grill!

                                    1. I'm firmly in the oven-at-350-on-a-rack school of thought. Since I can't eat bacon as often as I'd like (three times a day seven days a week) I bake a pound at a time and freeze it for future use, packaging up single servings using my Food Saver gadget. Frozen like this they taste pretty much like freshly made after they're thawed and very briefly re-heated in the m/wave.