8.29.2012

tip: how to cook bacon, the easy way


This is life changing people. About a year and a half ago Matt took me to the Guy Fieri road show and I learned a little trick from him that blew my mind! 

Cooking bacon in the oven. Take cold bacon and a cold oven and avoid the pops, splatters, and skin burning effects of stovetop bacon cooking? Yes please! Biggest bonus?! All of your bacon cooks at the same time! No more multiple pans or batch cooking here! Plus, much easier clean up by using tin foil!

It's so easy to do! 
oven bacon
1. line baking sheet(s) with aluminum foil
2. place cold bacon onto sheet* with a little breathing room between each strip. *make sure the sheet has a lip so that the grease doesn't drip on the bottom of the oven. grease fires are never a good thing :)
3. place sheets into cold oven and turn on to 400º F

4. bake for about 20 minutes flipping halfway through


5. it will look like the above picture when ready. pull out and place on paper towel lined plates to drain excess grease

6. crunch, eat, enjoy!

Every oven runs a little different so cooking time may vary. It also depends on the thickness of your bacon. The thicker the bacon, the longer it takes. Listen to your nose, it will smell when the bacon is ready… Also, don't do this in a preheated oven. Don't ask me why, but it doesn't work the same. Made that mistake once and I will never do it again! If you want, you can place the bacon back in the oven on warm or about 200º F for a few minutes to keep it warm while the rest of breakfast gets finished. 

This tip will be your new best friend for tomorrow's post!

118 comments:

  1. wow - this is life changing! i will never cook bacon the same again! thank you for this post :) and now you made me hungry!

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    1. thanks cate! it definitely makes bacon more dangerous since it's so much easier to do... :)

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    2. I always cook my bacon in the oven...I cook for 11 at a time so if I didn't, it would take FOREVER!! I use the broiler pans that have that rack thing so there is no flipping necessary :)

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    3. My friend who cooks at a nursing home told me about this a few years ago. Love it & so does my husband since I never cooked bacon because of a bad burn I got as a child.

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    4. A better tip is to use parchment paper... cheaper to use ! When the bacon is cooked, I elevate the cookie sheet on the stove top using a utensil, to drain all the grease.... easy to clean up for sure ! Learned this when I worked at a hotel/resort and they pre-cooked their bacon for the big breakfast rush the day before...

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    5. I cook bacon this way, but I preheat the oven, set it for 375 degrees, and I don't flip. it comes out perfectly.
      For clean up, I leave the baking sheet out to cool. Once the grease has hardened, I just pick up the aluminum foil off the sheet and throw it out. No draining the fat, and the baking sheets don't even need to be washed!

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  2. I can NEVER cook bacon correctly, I'm doing it this way from now on! Thank you for saving my bacon *giggle*

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    1. LOL! Sorry that was too funny!

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  3. I always cook bacon in the oven and I never turn it over. lol. :D

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    1. i find turning it over helps get an even crispiness but it makes it even easier if you don't flip it! i'm sure some readers will love to hear that! thanks for sharing!

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    2. I also never turn mine and have been cooking it that way for years!!

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  4. We also do this. Sometimes I sprinkle brown sugar on it before we bake it. My son loves that!!

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    1. I love that idea! I bet maple syrup would be fantastic too... maple brown sugar bacon?! CANDY!!! Also, just ate at a restaurant that does a cajun maple bacon. Adding a sprinkle of spices with your brown sugar would make a crust to die for!

      Thanks for sharing your improv!

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  5. This method of cooking bacon is not new...I've been cooking bacon this way for over 20 years. Common sense would tell you to do it this way.

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    1. Wow, you are rude. Apparently I have no common sense, because this is a new cooking method for me :) Can't wait to try it!

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    2. If you're brave enough to be rude, why not brave enough to put your name? Some people are'nt born with common sense but are born with the ability to ask questions politely.Cooking can be overwhelming when you're busy raising kids, working and living life. I'd feel scared to be in your life and have to ask you anything important. dwild52@yahoo.com

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    3. For the rest of us stupidheads who have no common sense but continue to navigate the Earth, we'll continue to learn from people who post these helpful nuggets. I am a great baker, but cannot "cook". When I make bacon, it sets off the smoke alarm because I cannot get the timing of bacon here, pancakes there,and eggs over here. This is a fantastic idea! Thanks for posting it :)

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    4. God, why do rude people post on here. If you have so much common sense then why are you on here with those of us as you say don't have any common sense?

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    5. If u don't have anything nice to say, don't sat anything at all. It's not about common sense in the kitchen. Cooking and baking is learned through time and helpful tips. Thank you to the people who take time out of their busy lives to post tips and recipes.

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    6. Maybe they didnt mean it the way it came out

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    7. I'm surprised at all the vitriol! This IS a very common cooking method (some packages of bacon even recommend something very similar right on the package). If you didn't know, you didn't know; if you did, cool. There's no need to take unnecessary offense... I know intent is hard to read online, but I hardly think the OP meant it negatively, just more out of surprise. Plus, many of you commented just as anonymously as her :P

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    8. Some people just need to show how clever they are, best to ignore such comments. Thanks for the tip re bacon...my American hubby so misses his American bacon now that we live in Australia...the bacon is cut thicker here too. I will definitely try this method. Everybody SMILE :) xxx

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    9. I will admit I took offense to being told we were in a sense stupid to not know this. I've cooked bacon in a pan on the stove for over 30 years, just the way I was brought up, way back in the old days...

      But I will be trying this way. Old dogs CAN learn new tricks...

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  6. Some of us are common sense girls that haven't thought of using a back to basics approach, so thanks Morgan for reminding us of this great prep technique! Above anonymous: Please share more of your twenty year success tips!

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  7. Was this really unknown??? I've cooked bacon this way since I was a young girl..But I guess we all learn something new everyday

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    1. I discovered the method over a year ago thanks go Guy Fieri! A lot of my friends hadn't heard of cooking bacon this way which is why I decided to share it with my readers. I try to share recipes and tips + tricks that help me in the kitchen. I'm sorry if you felt this post wasn't anything new but lots of people have written saying it's something they never even thought to do!

      Way to be ahead of the curve for the past 20 years! Any tips and tricks you'd like to share with my readers is much appreciated! Hope you find some of my other posts more inspiring and helpful!

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    2. It's new to me, as well. I think it must have to do with who originally taught us to cook. If we came from a big family (or our teacher/parent did), they may have used this method. But, if only 6 or 7 slices of bacon were needed, they can be crammed into a large skillet (no need to heat the oven up). We have always used the skillet method and then cooked our eggs in the bacon grease (after draining most of it). Yummy! I hate the mess, though, so I'm very glad for this tip.

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    3. I cook my eggs in the Bacon grease too! My S.O. loves it. :)

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  8. No, it is not a new method, but I was late to the game too. Been doing it for a couple of years now, and the more people know about it, the better :)

    I have tips myself, but have no idea who would/could benefit from them. I may get flamed because I wasn't the first person EVER to share said tip.

    This is an excellent tip. If you know about it great, good going. If you didn't, well now, how cool is this?

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  9. your verification is downright hateful... and my little kitchen tip? Citrus freezes well.

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  10. I didn't know about this tip. Thanks for sharing. :)

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  11. fyi...just tried and didn't work for me. I hope others have better success.

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    1. oh no! so sorry to hear that! did you start with a completely cold oven? i'm curious what went wrong. i'd love to help you figure it out. the only time it didn't work for me was when i started with a pre-heated oven. the bacon stuck to the pan and almost half disintegrated. it was an awful mess! if i put the bacon in before it preheats, it usually cooks up no problem!

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    2. I cooked my bacon this way for the first timeyesterday. I DID put it in a preheated oven because I didn't completely read the directions all the way through. I lined my pan with parchment paper and it turned out great. My son said it was the best bacon he eve had! Thanks for the great tip. And YES, I am a stupidhead also!!!

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  12. I am a kitchen idiot...so this was EXCELLENT! Thank you so much for the tip. It worked AMAZING and so much easier. I dread cooking bacon, not anymore. Thank you. :)

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  13. Just tried this. A little too overcrispy (my fault for trying to multi-task), but delicious all the same. More seasoning on my cooking stone : )

    Thanks for the tip. I never knew about the cold oven/cold pan secret.

    -Elaine (St. Louis MO)

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  14. Thank You!!! I am going to try this. HATE making bacon the other way and I thought doing it this way would make my oven a mess. A big raspberry to whomever said this was common sense. No, it's not!

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  15. I use a broiler pan that way the grease drips off into the bottom pan. I love making it this way.

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    1. I use a broiler pan as well! Come out fantastic :)

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    2. Oh a broiler pan! that's even better! trying right now!!! THANKS!!! And yes I have been making it the other way for many years, bc that's they way we always did it... LOVE Learning new tips to make life easier!!! THANK YOU!!

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    3. Thanks for all the great tips. You know, cooking methods are a learned thing, not common sense. Common sense is knowning not to stick your finger in the hot grease. People who make negitive comments when someone is trying to be nice and
      share is just another form of a bully

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  16. Iv done this for years, but I put it on 350 n dont flip it... Still comes out perfect... :)

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  17. this may be a dumb question but the bacon doesnt splatter in the oven does it?

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    1. not a dumb question at all! i didn't notice too much splattering. i cook it in the upper 1/3 of the oven. usually there's a little condensation at the top but not a big blob of grease. i also don't keep my oven perfectly clean (dirty little secret, haha). but i really didn't notice any grease being left from this cooking method. i would guess it depends on how fatty your bacon is and how thick it is.

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    2. ok thanks! cant wait to try!

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  18. Some of these reply's just amaze me. For the love of God people, there is no need to get nasty or sarcastic about a helpful post (even if you did already know about it) let the people learn and if you already know just keep your smart remarks to yourself.

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    1. Thanks for saying what I was thinking.

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    2. Amen, of course some of may have known about it, but for the last 40+ years we've been taught the 'fast food'/microwave way of cooking, so no wonder some hadn't heard of it. It is a wonderful way to cooks tons of bacon at a time, and I had never thought to share it, so THANK YOU for sharing it!

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    3. Amen....keep the rude comments to yourself.

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  19. I have a degree in Home Ec and am 65 years old and have never even thought about this wonderful cooking method. Thanks a bunch! Excited to experiment with turkey bacon! Appreciate you!!

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  20. This sounds great! A definite must try. Does anyone know if turkey bacon will cook up just as well in the oven?

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    1. it should cook up just the same. the timing might vary, just keep an eye on it. let us know how it turns out if you do try it!

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  21. I learned this from my Memere who had 12 kids to feed. If you dredge your bacon in flour first, shake off the excess. It does'nt shrink as much and you can use less on sandwiches .This works in a fry pan too.dwild52@yahoo.com

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    1. great tip! thanks for sharing! i'll have to try this one day!

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    2. Great tip! Totally trying that tomorrow.

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  22. Another thing I do when I oven cook it besides flouring it , is I place it on a cookie cooling rack inside a jellyroll pan.I always preheat my oven and use a timer. no burning my delicious bacon .dwild52@yahoo.com

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  23. I put a cookie cooling rack in a 9 X 13 pan and placed the bacon over the cookie rack. Worked great because the bacon didn't sit in the grease and the pan caught the grease

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    1. that's a great idea. i was worried if i did it this way that the bacon would stick to the rack. i'll have to try it next time! thanks for sharing!

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  24. I am 60 and just learned how to do this! It is a great idea and I appreciate you sharing it. I am shocked at some of the rude comments - can not possibly understand why someone would be rude over a post like this. Sad for them Thank you - love the idea.

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  25. I have done it a similar way, but used parchment paper and a pre-heated oven. I wonder if the aluminum foil makes a difference. I will have to it your way and see how it goes! thanks for the ideas, keep them coming!!

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    1. i'm sure parchment and aluminum foil both work the same! i just like that the aluminum foil gathers all the bacon grease and i can just throw it away without having to clean my pan at the end!

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  26. And to make life easier...flipping is optional. I forgot one time and it turned out the same. I'm from a big family so we rarely cooked bacon on top of the stove. It would have taken forever.

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  27. What about the smoke? I make Paul's Deen's chicken bacon wraps for appetitizers occasionally and the smoke always fills the kitchen and leaves a lingering odor.....any suggestions?

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    1. the reason i cook the bacon in the oven is to avoid the smoke! it's never been a problem when i do it in the oven. if you're encountering smoke it could be for 2 reasons.

      1. your oven may run a little hot and you could be scorching your bacon. if this is the case, turn the temperature down a bit and cook it a little longer so that the fat renders out.
      2. you're overcooking it causing the bacon to smoke.

      i get a little smoke from this cooking method but it quickly dissipates. i have a very temperamental smoke detecter and it's never set off when i do it in the oven.

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    2. What I do for lingering odors of any kind (bacon, fish, etc) is to put some vinegar and water on the stove - either simmer it or boil it. Of course it smells like vinegar for the immediate time but it dissipates, along with the odor.

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  28. I like to cook bacon on the grill with tin foil...that way the smell is outside. Warning: you may have neighbors saying hello and coming by more often if you do this.

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  29. I have been doing bacon in the oven for years whether it be 4 or 14 slices. Always use foil to reduce clean-up. However I do preheat the oven to 375 & the bacon is done in about 20 min. Don't know why you were told that it wouldn't work if your oven was preheated. I use thick cut & get perfect slices for breakfast, bacon cheeseburgers or blt's.

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    1. i wasn't told it doesn't work in a preheated oven i learned from trial and error! when i used a preheated oven the bacon just dissolved into the pan. it was a crazy mess! i'm sure it all depends on your oven, the thickness of the bacon and if you use foil vs. parchment paper. for me, preheating didn't work but i'm glad to know it works for some people!!

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  30. Does it not pop and splatter in the oven like it does when pan frying?

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    1. Don't know, but I don't "broil" becaue I hate the splatters.

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  31. I have been doing it this way for years too but just recently 'discovered' parchment paper. Try it using that as it doesn't stick to it and is much easier to turn.

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  32. Started doing this years ago when cooking in a cafe and kept it by the grill when anyone ordered bacon just lay the amount needed to warm it plus you can oven cook it a little under done then finish it up on grill when you fix the rest of the breakfast order

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  33. I have worked in professional kitchens for years and this is the method used for mass production, with parchment paper. Me? I put it in my deep fryer now! Thanks for the tips!

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  34. I have a cookie cooling rack that fits nicely inside one of my baking pans with a lip. I put the bacon on the cooling rack to bake & don't have to flip it. I've always preheated, too.

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  35. I have to second the smoke comment. I've done this before, but can no longer do it since I moved. My smoke alarm is pretty close to my kitchen and hard wired. I tried to cook bacon this way once and it was a 12:30 in the morning hassle.

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  36. I do this, but I crumple my aluminum foil just a little so the grease drains down and the bacon doesn't sit in it. I just learned this tip a year or so ago...and it is life changing!

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    1. thanks for the tip! i'll have to try that next time. i was always under the impression that the grease helped brown the bacon. that's why i put it on paper towels after the fact to absorb some of the grease and let it crisp up extra.

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  37. Does the bacon have to be single layer? I was wondering if you need to cook a bunch if you could maybe layer it.

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    1. Yes, the bacon should be on one layer. I know it seems like a pain but if you don't do this, the bacon will stick together and potentially not get crispy at all. If you want to cook a BUNCH of bacon, just do 2 or 3 sheets of it (depending on how much your oven can hold).

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  38. It is amazing that you can be anything on the internet, yet so many people choose to be rude. Thanks for the tip!

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  39. It's a great tip that I've also done for awhile after seeing the instructions on the bacon package. It's really helpful that they're on the package, in case anyone forgets. (I think I use Farmer John; I don't know if all bacon has the instructions.) I pre-heat the oven to 400, use foil, bake for 12-14 minutes, then drain on paper towels. Nice, crisp, perfect. You're so right about the clean-up being sooooo easy. That's my favorite part; no grease spatters on the stove, counters, hood, floor, me ... :-)

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  40. I love cooking bacon in the oven. I use my Pampered Chef large bar pan, no need for the foil and no need to turn it. I usually do 425 degrees for 20 minutes. I love that I can enjoy a cup of coffee and not have stand over the stove. No splatters. Take the bar pan out of the oven put the bacon on paper towels and let the grease harden in the stone, scrap it out and wash it under hot water...no soap. So many uses for the bar pan....if you'd like one, click on this link http://pamperedchef.biz/sheilaburt?page=host-search-results&showId=3931654

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  41. Can you also cook the bacon in a convection oven and have it turn out the same way?

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  42. I, too, have been cooking my bacon this way for years. Not sure where i learned it, but any chance i have to share this t tip, i do. I like it because it's easy clean up, doesn't require much monitoring and i can get chewier bacon this way. It also helps keep it nice and flat for sandwiches. I have never noticed a difference when using a preheated or cold oven though.

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  43. My brother who worked at a hotel told me about this. They do it for their breakfast buffet. Great tip!! Precook it ahead and warm up with a microwave just to get it warm for BLTs or in a hurry for a quick breakfast

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  44. I have a friend who bakes her bacon on a baking cooling rack placed on top of a foil covered cookie sheet. It keeps the bacon out of the grease and you don't have to flip it! The bacon comes out wonderfully!

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    1. Ditto (foil-covered cookie sheet with cooling rack) - this is how I do it also. I turn on the oven - somewhere between 350° and 400° F. and then lay out the bacon. Then I put it in the oven as it continues to heat (it's not fully preheated, but not cold). I set the timer for 20 minutes and keep checking it until it looks just barely cooked. I like the way it lays flat, and the very light crispiness of the bacon cooked this way.

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  45. If you use parchment paper it's even better - it doesn't get those tiny holes like foil.

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  46. I cook mine in the oven just like this. However, I cook it on a rack that I place on the cookie sheet (with sides). That way, I don't have to turn it. Cooks perfect on both sides. I spray oil on the rack and bottom of pan for really easy cleanup.

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  47. I learned it from my chef friend years ago. It's a great tip. Since I don't have to make that much at a time, I do mine in the microwave. The only time I cook bacon on the griddle is if I'm camping, and I curse about it the whole time. :)

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  48. Soooo, I just turned 57 in October, have been cooking for 45 of those years (and pretty good at it); have three kids, the oldest was married almost four years ago. She heard about baking the bacon after she was married, so for the past three years I too have been baking my bacon. I'm pretty smart, know my way around the kitchen but had NEVER thought or heard of doing it this way prior. I'M LOVING IT!! I didn't have any instructions besides "line baking pan with foil".. So pretty much did everything "wrong"..preheated the oven, never turned them and started with the temp at 350...have now moved up to 400 :-) And we love it with maple syrup dribbled on about the last 5 minutes of baking. Now I'm going to check out the cajun style somebody mentioned above.

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  49. My DIL does it this way and then puts agave syrup on it (after cooking). Heaven!

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  50. I saw Martha Stewart cook bacon in the oven once and she had it coated with brown sugar. But when I tried it, it didn't come out right. I don't think Martha gave the correct cooking time. I will have to try this method, though! I've been doing my bacon in the microwave and it comes out alright - but then the microwave stinks of bacon for days! Thanks for this tip and the longer cooking time!

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  51. This is a wonderful idea that I started doing in the past few months. The bacon really does come out crispy! Another thing I do is to grind some black peppercorns over the bacon before I put it in the oven. Wonderful!

    Thanks for this idea!

    For the person above who mentioned the stink in the microwave: Try putting a cut lemon in there (you can even squeeze it a bit in there to activate the oil in the rind). Microwave it for a few seconds. It should take the odor away! This works for fish, too!

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  52. I cook my bacon in the oven, too. I used to do it on a broiler pan, leaving it on a rack, and collecting the grease in the drip pan, but then the bacon grease would turn nasty and rancid.

    Now, I used a rimmed cookie sheet and place the bacon directly on it. I start with a cold oven, and I don't need to turn the bacon. It eventually fries evenly in its own grease. I do it at 350, so it cooks a bit more gently.

    Leaving the bacon to sit in the grease also tempers the grease and prevents it from tasting like truck grease. this is important to me, as I use bacon grease for cooking just about anything.

    When I cook only a few slices of bacon only for Husband and myself, I use the toaster oven. Same method, using the toaster oven's broiler drip pan without the slotted rack.

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  53. i was wondering
    what is the best way to cook the bacon in the oven?
    is it on regular baking sheet? thank you for sharing this tip! this is new for me too,and with me moving out on my own soon with my boyfriend, this will be handy! i am new to this site! so this is a great site with great tip, and your knowledge is very useful to me! i cant wait to get bacon to try it! mmmm bacon! thank you for sharing, and remember everyone, were all on the same boat of learning to together, and lets not let a couple negativity stop us learning together!

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  54. hmmmnn... looks great but i'm not too sure about cooking on aluminum foil?... that part doesn't sound good... any alternative???

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    1. definitely! you can use parchment paper. it's not as quick of a clean up but will work just fine. you can also cook it on an oven safe cookie cooling rack fitted in a cookie sheet (to catch the drippings).

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  55. I am almost 60 and have done this for a long time BUT I have learned that the easiest is parchment paper.. Such easy clean up but we sometimes when taking right out of oven, put on a cookie cooling rack over some papertowels and it really taste best then.. Let's all the grease drip off of it well. We have brunch for Christmas so I make the bacon the day before since cooking so much.. Warm it the next morning.. Taste like it was freshly cooked!! Great time saver!!

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  56. Made bacon this way for the first time today. I'll definitely be making bacon this way from now on. No more having to stand over the stove cooking them in batches. I had to cook mine a little longer because it was a thicker cut. Came out delicious.

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  57. I'm over 60 and live alone and only cook for myself. Heating a big oven for just 3 or 4 pieces seems like a waste. I'm wondering if I could do this in a toaster oven? I'd have to experiment with temperatures though in a small containment area.

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    1. Pre-cooked bacon keeps for a long time in the frig. I always cook the whole pound at once and put the leftovers in a small container in the frig. Is nice to have on hand for a salad or BLT or baked potato.....etc. I have never cooked my bacon in the oven but will be trying it on the next pound. Have a crowd coming this summer and have 3 pounds to cook then. I think I will try the black pepper and the brown sugar on two of the pans.Thanks for the tip.

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  58. I too am wondering about the splatter issue... We use our Breville countertop oven more than the big oven. It's large for a countertop oven, but wonder if it is too confined a space for this method? Wouldn't want to ruin it finding out.

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  59. Where has Guy Fieri been??? I'm surprised he just thought about this, I've been cooking bacon this way for over 20 years. I'll bet there are lots of people out there who have done the same thing for even longer.

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  60. I bake mine on a broiler pan. I line bottom with aluminum foil and spray the top with cooking spray, grease falls to bottom pan. when done remove foil and throw away and pan is clean, just have top to clean. this is the best bacon ever!

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    1. Love this idea the best! Gonna try it!

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  61. I have been doing this successfully for over 40 years without using any paper or foil - you get to know the power/heat of your own oven through experimenting and observation. After any cooking I always wipe out my warm oven with a damp cloth - it only takes a matter of seconds - but that way it stays as clean as new! I decided to do this very soon after getting married when money was very tight and our first cooker was bought second-hand - it was so dirty that it took 3 days to clean - but under the grease and boiled-over food, I found a perfect un-marked stove - I think the original owner had taken the "self-cleaning-cleaning-oven" label too literally! I was determined that I would never let it get dirty again! With the microwave i too use a bowl of water and a few slices of lemon or a few drops of lemon juice to freshe-up after cooking smelly foods.A quick wipe-over with paper-towels and the micro-vave-cooker is sparkling and fresh.

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  62. I cook my bacon in the oven on a cooling rack over a cookie sheet with tin foil on it. Less grease and it is awesome.

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  63. We are long time bacon bakers! Sometimes when we don't want to heat up the kitchen or have the bacon smell in the house, we place the bacon as directed on a long cast iron skillet with a lip and "bake" it on our BBQ grill set to low flame. Same great result! - Rebeccca

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  64. I think you should always know who is posting....just sayin

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  65. I just made my first batch of oven bacon -- LOVE IT!!!!!!! Thanks for posting this tip.

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  66. I use my broiler pan, so the grease drips away, and I also use thick bacon at 400 degrees 20 to 24 min. depending on if I want to eat now or put away and reheat in a day or 5 in the micro for 30 to 60 seconds. Always there I wrap in paper towels and refrigerate till needed.

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  67. Does this method splatter the inside of the oven with bacon grease?

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  68. This cooking method is great. No splatter, no warped bacon strips, all pieces done the same doneness. I put the bacon on a square wire grid rack. For two reasons, 1-no turning and 2-bacon fat. Cooking the bacon out of the fat leaves the fat pure, no burnt bits. Let the sheet cool for easier handling and safer pouring. When cool enough it won't give you any problems put it a glass jar you can keep air tight in the oven.

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  69. Use the broiler pan, line the inside with paper towels, cook on low-broil. Grease absobs into paper towels for even easier cleanup with now chance to spill...

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