How to Cook Bacon Perfectly
From bacon sarnies to rashers with eggs, bacon is a big part of meal times in the UK. Bacon is an extremely versatile cut of pork and different cuts cook differently. Here's your guide to cooking bacon perfectly.
Bacon can be cooked in four ways. Not all methods are suited for all cuts of bacon, so it is important to know the type of bacon you are preparing and the best way of preparing it. Bacon can be fried or griddled, oven roasted or baked, microwaved and grilled.
Fried or Griddled Bacon
Who's it for: The keen bacon lover with time to stand and wait for the bacon cook.
Why fry or griddle: Fried or griddled bacon yields crispier fat and slightly chewy meat.
Ideally for: Streaky bacon (don't add oil) Back bacon rashers (add oil)
Uses for fried or griddled bacon:
- Crumble the cooked bacon and sprinkle over salads or soups.
- Keep the bacon whole and add to sandwiches and burgers.
- Serve layered between American-style pancakes.
Oven Roasted or Baked Bacon
Who's it for: The busy cook who needs time to get on with other components while the bacon cooks.
Why oven roast or bake: Roasted or baked bacon tends to leave fat mostly as it is. It cooks the fat without rendering it down, resulting in softer bacon.
Ideally for: Back bacon (don't add oil).
Uses for oven roasted or baked bacon:
- Using bacon to cover a roasting joint to keep it moist.
- Cooking bacon along with other items in a slow cooked recipe.
- Adding bacon to beans or peas and cooking them in the oven.
Who's it for: The rushed cook who needs bacon quickly! Why cook bacon in the microwave: It speeds up the cooking time; microwaved bacon tends to be just as soft as oven roasted or baked bacon.
Ideally for: Back bacon and other similar lean cuts
Uses for microwave bacon:
- Great for quick bacon sandwiches
- As an accompaniment to breakfast
- As a midnight snack
Who's it for: Anyone who likes their bacon less crispy.
Why cook bacon under the grill: Grilled bacon tends to be soft with slightly burnished edges. Great for cooking bacon quickly.
Ideally for: Streaky bacon or bacon rashers
Uses for grilled bacon:
- Sandwiches and burgers
- Using bacon as a component of a meal
Knowing which methods are best suited for the type of bacon you'd like to cook will result in better-tasting dishes and a better use of your bacon. Do you cook bacon in any other way? Leave a comment and let us know what we've missed out!
- Ella Dooly