Bacon is one of the most celebrated menu items here at our tiny townhouse. The J-man’s eyes light up when he hears that it’s on the menu. Bacon with eggs, bacon with waffles, BLT’s, bacon straight up. You name it, and he loves it.
Even on days when bacon is not officially on the menu, it has a miraculous way of appearing on our table. Often in the form of bacon bits. We always have a bag of store-bought real bacon bits (not those red bits of imitation nastiness) in the fridge and a backup in the cupboard.
I love my hardworking husband like crazy, and it is my pleasure to make him the food he loves best. Soooo one morning last week I surprised him by asking if he’d like to have homemade bacon bits on our homemade pizza that night. He was thrilled!
Before I discovered the art of baking bacon in the oven, the J-man probably would have been filled with fear and trepidation at such a suggestion. He has graciously crunched down countless burnt-to-a-crisp bacon slices. Frying bacon has always been a frustrating and humbling endeavor. It was beyond me!
Until…that glorious day when Lucinda Quinn Scala’s cook book arrived at my door. I can’t exactly remember where I first learned about her book. I may have Googled her website after seeing a snippet of her TV show. Doesn’t matter…I have the book, and it is awesome! It’s chuck full of hearty recipes that the men (and women too…I speak from personal experience) in your life will enjoy. Plus, she gives a bunch of handy tips to make life in the kitchen much easier.
Such as how to bake bacon…in the oven! No frying pan necessary…no more burnt bacon…no more grease splattered all over you and the stove!
Lucinda, the J-man thanks you. I thank you!
Sooooo…if you also struggle from the inability to properly prepare bacon here is the simply cure:
Set your oven to 400°. Line a rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil. Note how the foil on my pan curls up just a little on the long sides and a lot on the narrow sides. Excellent! That will trap the grease and make clean up a breeze. This, to me, is the most wonderful reason to use this method. Not to mention, cooked to perfection bacon!
Line your bacon side by side on top of the foil. Notice that I’ve only used six slices of thick cut bacon. That’s standard practice here since there’s only two of us.
Pop the sheet in the oven and set your timer! Thick cut will need to bake about 15-18 minutes. I kept this batch in for about 17 minutes and wished I had taken it out 1 minute sooner.
Past experience here in The Prudent Endeavor kitchen proves that this method works great with thin cut bacon, as well as turkey bacon. Bake time for thin cut bacon and turkey bacon is 12-15 minutes…or less, depending on your oven.
While the bacon is bakin’ prep a plate by layering a few sheets of paper towel on top. This is my Dad’s method of choice. Thanks Dad!
Pull it on out of the oven when the timer buzzes and use a pair of tongs to gently peel the slices off the foil. Place them on the prepared plate. The paper towel will absorb some of the grease.
Now, cleanup should be easy. Depends on who you are. It’s never totally easy for me…but this method makes it easier. Let the leftover grease that collected on your rimmed baking sheet cool down for a few minutes. Then carefully, gently, while wearing an oven mitt or two pour that grease into an old spaghetti sauce jar (any old jar will do). Once that has cooled down screw on the cap and place it under your sink (well now, that’s where I keep my old grease…I guess you can put yours wherever you want). Eventually when the jar is full of old solidified grease toss it in the trash. Lucinda does mention this in her book. However, I have to give credit to my Mom for teaching me this technique a long, long time ago. Thanks Mom!
Ok, back to my batch of bacon…I chopped the slices up into homemade bacon bits and we used them as a pizza topping. These were about one million point two times better than the store-bought variety we usually use. No joke.
Now, go forth and bake some bacon! And don’t forget to let me know how it turns out.
Sara BPlease be safe while bakin’ your bacon. I am not responsible for any injuries, illnesses or damages that may occur if/when you attempt this recipe. And…Lucinda didn’t pay me to say all those nice things about her cookbook. The opinions are my very own and offered freely. Thanks! Sara