About cooking bacon in the oven.
I used to hate cooking bacon and would avoid it as much as I could because I hated the mess. But there is NO NEED to cook bacon in a frying pan on the stove…no need for the splatter, the mess, the burnt forearms from splatter…there’s no need for any of it. You can cook bacon in the oven, and it’s SO EASY. By far, this is the easiest, most mess-free, fuss-free method for cooking bacon! It’s all about the parchment paper liner on the baking sheet. I *may* even have my old-school-pan-bacon-making-Dad convinced this is the way haha.
Easiest Clean Up!
The key to mess-free, fuss-free bacon making is lining a baking sheet with parchment paper. All the grease and mess stays on the parchment, making it really easy to toss and clean up. You can use foil, but I don’t like it as much because the bacon can stick to it, so instead I prefer to use parchment paper.
But won’t it make my oven a mess, you ask?
NO. I have not ever found this to be a problem…and I use my oven A LOT, there’s never any splatter mess in there. Bacon just doesn’t seem to splatter the same way in the oven as it does in a frying pan.
How to Cook Bacon in the Oven + Tips
Type of bacon:
This oven method will work for all kinds of bacon: pork, thin, thick, turkey bacon…etc. Again, the cooking time will differ depending on the thickness of the bacon. Turkey or chicken ‘bacon’ though, will cook in less time.
Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
This is THE key to fuss-free bacon making. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper, making sure that the paper comes up over the sides of the pan (see my images above). The reason this is so important is because none of the grease can get onto the actual pan, making clean up SO EASY. All you have to do when the bacon is done cooking, is to remove the bacon from the pan, let the grease cool (and save it or toss it), then you gather up the parchment into a bunch to throw out. No grease on the pan, no cleaning!
Lining the bacon on the pan.
I start by lining the bacon from top to bottom vertically on the baking sheet. Then if I need to, I will add any extra pieces down the sides of the pan as shown in the pictures.
Don’t overlap the bacon or crowd the pan.
If you do this, the bacon will stick together and bake into a giant clump. If you have to cook more than 1 package at a time, do it in 2 batches, on 2 different pans. Just lay the bacon on the pan so the pieces don’t touch each other…they can be close together because the pieces will shrink, they just can’t overlap at all.
How long to cook bacon in the oven:
Cook time will vary depending on how thick the bacon is, and how crispy you want the bacon to be (this is such a personal preference). The thinner the bacon, the faster it will cook. I start checking around 10 minutes. Also to note, if you are using turkey or chicken bacon, it will cook much faster than pork because it’s so lean.
What to do with the bacon after cooking it in the oven:
Make sure to transfer the cooked bacon to a plate lined with paper towel. I will also add a piece of paper towel the to the top and dab up grease. The paper towel will soak up any excess grease.
Cleaning up after cooking bacon in the oven:
After the bacon has been cooked and removed from the pan, let the grease cool for at least 30 minutes or more…more is better. I usually let the pan sit while while we eat breakfast, so often enough time for the grease to set. Then I gather the corners of the parchment together tightly and toss the whole thing out. If you don’t let the grease set it can spill out when you pick it up.
Bacon grease tip!
You can keep the bacon grease leftover on the baking pan. The easiest way to get it into a jar is to let the grease cool at least 15 minutes, then use the parchment paper as a kind of funnel to pour the grease into the jar. I keep a jar of bacon grease in my fridge that I use to cook eggs and sometimes add extra flavour to sautéed vegetables and meats. Use a glass jar with a lid to store it.
Storing cooked bacon:
Keep cooked bacon in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 3 – 4 days. I like to wrap mine in a bit of paper towel first to soak up the bacon, then put it in a container in the fridge.
Can I freeze cooked bacon?
Absolutely! Store it in an airtight ziplock bag in the freezer for up to 3 months (or more). Again, I like to keep mine wrapped first in paper towel before putting it into a storage bag.
How to Make Bacon in the Oven
- 1 package of bacon
- baking sheet and parchment paper
- Make sure you have a rack placed in the middle of your oven.
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper, making sure to cover all the edges.
- Bake for 15 – 20 minutes, depending on the thickness of the bacon you use, and how crispy you like your bacon.
- When done, lay the bacon on paper towel to soak up the grease.