When it comes to cooking bacon, one of the most efficient methods is to bake it in an oven. Everyone has a preference as to how well done they like their bacon. However, how long should you bake bacon in a 350-degree oven?
Bacon will be crispy and delicious in a 350-degree oven after about 15-20 minutes for thin bacon. Average bacon slices need 22-27 minutes, and thick-cut slices need 26-30 minutes in the oven.
Cooking bacon in the oven is one of the easiest ways to prepare a lot of it at once! In this article, we’ll answer any questions you may have about baking bacon at 350.
Does Bacon Thickness Impact Oven Cooking Time?
The varying thicknesses of bacon strips can have an impact on how long they’ll need to sit in the oven before they’re done. Usually, pre-packaged bacon is extra thin or of average size. Bacon from a butcher or deli counter trends on the thicker side.
The thinnest bacon pieces need 15-20 minutes in the oven. For more average sizes, 22-26 minutes will do the job. Savory, thick-cut bacon, meanwhile, takes 26-30 minutes to reach crispy perfection.
At What Temperature Is Bacon Safe to Eat?
Everyone enjoys bacon at different levels of doneness. Softer, chewier bacon has just as many fans as crispy, crunchy strips. No matter how you like it, it should always be cooked to at least 145 degrees.
How Can You Tell When Bacon Is Safe to Eat?
Bacon spoils less than other meats because it is salt-cured. The additives and nitrates fight against botulism. That does not mean, however, that bacon can be eaten raw. Bacon eaten raw can lead to toxoplasmosis, tapeworms, and trichinosis.
So, how can you tell if your bacon is cooked to that ideal 145 F doneness temperature? Because bacon is so thin, it can be hard to take a reading with a meat thermometer. Though chewier bacon may taste good, baking until the meat is crisped can help prevent undercooking.
If you have a digital, contactless thermometer, you can get a temperature reading easily - however, these are not always entirely accurate, especially on the bumpy surface of bacon.
Benefits of Oven Baking Bacon
When one pictures cooking bacon, a frying pan or skillet usually comes to mind. While this is a more traditional method, a 350-degree oven is one of the best ways to prepare bacon.
Some of the benefits of oven-baking bacon are:
- Slices stay flat. When they’re allowed the room to spread out on a baking sheet, bacon has less of a chance to curl up and around on itself.
- Splatter-free cooking. One of the benchmarks of making bacon in a pan is the amount of splattering that comes from the grease cooking off. In the oven, the splattering is fully contained.
- Strips cook evenly. Pans can have cold spots or uneven heat distribution. In an oven, all-around heating facilitates all-around cooking.
- Easily feeds a crowd. Family brunches are made easier by sticking a baking tray of bacon into the oven instead of trying to cram more into a skillet.
- Hands-free cooking. Since the bacon only needs to sit in the oven for 15 minutes or so, home chefs are free to see to other elements of meal prep while the bacon cooks away.
- Easy Cleanup. Once the bacon is done, the only cleaning involved is removing the foil that lined the sheet.
Is Oven Baked Bacon Healthier?
One of the many reasons that oven baking is the ideal method for bacon is the slight health benefits. When using a rack, the grease renders out and collects below the rack. That keeps it away from the bacon strips, lowering the fat content.
It’s not significantly healthier to bake bacon rather than to cook it in a skillet - it’s still bacon, after all.
What Do You Need to Cook Bacon in the Oven?
Cooking bacon in the oven is easy and blissfully light on the needed tools. A large, rimmed baking sheet lined with foil will handle the cooking. Tongs or a spatula have removing the cooked bacon covered. Finally, a bed of paper towels soaks up extra grease.
What Is the ‘Cold Oven’ Method of Cooking Bacon?
Some home chefs swear by this method of bacon preparation. The claim is that the bacon will shrink less if it is baked this way, though results on this are inconclusive. However, it does eliminate the step of preheating.
For this baking style, place a baking sheet of bacon in an unheated oven. Once it is in, turn the oven on to 350 degrees. The bacon will need more time to cook in this method, so add 4-5 minutes to the overall baking time.
Does Using a Rack Help Bacon Cook in the Oven?
For those who prefer their bacon on the extra crispy side, adding an ovenproof baking rack to the cooking process will up the crunch factor. The rack makes it so the grease drips below the cooking meat, reducing moisture levels.
The rack also allows for air to reach every surface of the bacon, helping everything get nice and crispy at an even rate.
Ensure that the rack you’re using is oven safe. The type used for cooling cookies and cakes may not be the best choice. These racks may be treated with a nonstick coating, or won’t be able to handle the high heat of the oven.
Should You Cover Bacon When Cooking It in the Oven?
If you’re worried about excess splattering causing a cleanup issue in the oven, a layer of foil over the bacon will help catch the oil. Lay a layer of foil over your strips, but remove it during the last 5 minutes of cooking. This will help with overall crispiness.
However, some bacon, especially thinner cuts, will not splatter when baked in the oven. If they do, it is relatively minimal. Thicker cuts have more fat to render out and will make a bigger mess because of it.
What Kind of Bacon Is Best to Bake?
Handling the convenience and even cooking of oven baking is no trouble for any kind of bacon.
For bacon that crumbles well and has a bit of chew, regular cuts of bacon will do the job well.
Rendered edges and a meaty texture are best found in oven-baking thick-cut bacon.
Looking for something leaner that still scratches that bacon itch? Turkey bacon is less fatty, and still cooks up to an excellent texture in the oven. Turkey bacon needs about the same amount of cooking time as pork bacon.
How Long Should You Bake Bacon at 350 in an Air Fryer?
Air fryer bacon makes breakfast even easier with simple cleanup and a shortened cooking time. There is no need to preheat the air fryer for bacon.
At 350 degrees, regular cut or thin bacon can bake in the air fryer for 7 minutes. For crispier slices, 8-9 minutes is best.
Thick-cut bacon bakes for 9-10 minutes for those who want more chew to their meat. Crispiness, on the other hand, comes in at about 10-12 minutes of cooking in the air fryer.
Can You Reheat Bacon in the Oven?
If you find yourself with bacon leftovers, they can be revived in the oven. To do so, so, preheat the oven to 325 F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and arrange the bacon in a single layer.
It will take 10 minutes for the bacon to start sizzling. Let the bacon cool on the pan for about 3-5 minutes before consuming.
Can You Bake Frozen Bacon?
Freezing bacon is a clever way of preserving it. When you’re craving a salty, savory slice, bacon can be cooked right out of the freezer.
The methods are the same, but it will need more time since it must thaw first. Thin frozen bacon should cook for 20-25 minutes, with a five-minute adjustment for time as slices get thicker.
My Personal Tips for Baking Bacon in the Oven
Don’t Stretch the Slices
Bacon slices will wrinkle and warp more if they’re stretched when placed on the cooking rack. Draping them across the length of the pan will help them keep their shape.
Alternate Your Placement
Bacon slices are rarely uniform. If you find that your bacon tapers at one end, alternate them when you place them in the pan. Lay the narrower end at the top for the first slice, and then at the bottom for the second, top for the third, and so on. This way you avoid overlapping, which leads to uneven cooking.
Rotate the Pan
Oven-baking bacon already makes for an even cooking experience. However, to make this process even more uniform, rotate the sheet once in the oven during the baking process. Flipping the bacon halfway through helps with uniform browning and crisping.
Frequently Asked Questions
Cooked bacon keeps in an airtight container for 3-5 days in the fridge. A narrow dish with a locking lid will be the best choice for storing bacon. Wrapping the bacon in foil before putting it in the container will help keep extra oxygen from further spoiling the meat.
You can also wrap bacon in a gallon storage bag for easy refrigeration. When doing so, squeeze as much air as possible out of the bag before storing it. This will help it maintain its crispiness.
Once bacon has been baked in the oven, it can be stored in the freezer for up to three months. For best results, let the bacon cool before wrapping it up for freezing.
Keep track of when the bacon went into the freezer by carefully labeling it with the date.
Cooking bacon before the rest of the meal is ready to eat can give the slices too much time to cool and get soggy. If the bacon is finished early, turn the oven off and leave the baking sheet where it is. The oven will trap in the warmth and prevent it from getting too cold.
Need the oven to bake something else? Stash the bacon in an empty skillet with a lid over it. This will help trap steam and heat. The bacon will still cool slightly, but not as much as it could when left out in the open.
How to Bake Hot Honey Bacon in the Oven at 350 F
- 1 pound of bacon, either regular or thick cut.
- 2 tablespoons of honey.
- ¼ teaspoon of ground coriander
- ? teaspoon of cayenne pepper, adding more to taste
- 1 tablespoon sesame seeds
- Preheat your oven to 350 F. Line two baking sheets with aluminum foil. Do not use a rack for this recipe, as it will allow too much of the glaze to drip off.
- Arrange your bacon slices on the sheet in a single layer. For best results, do not overlap any of the slices.
- Add 2 tablespoons of honey to a small saucepan over high heat. Add in the spices and cook until melted. This will take about 1 minute.
- Using a pastry brush, spread the honey and spice mixture over the bacon slices.
- Bake for 10 minutes.
- Remove the pan from the oven and sprinkle your bacon slices with the sesame seeds.
- Continue to bake for another 10-15 minutes, depending on the thickness of the bacon. Bacon is done when it is browned and sizzling.
- Allow the bacon to drain and cool, glaze size up, on a bed of paper towels. Serve immediately.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 2 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 1152Total Fat: 82gSaturated Fat: 27gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 51gCholesterol: 225mgSodium: 3821mgCarbohydrates: 23gFiber: 1gSugar: 17gProtein: 78g