Are you tired of dealing with splattering grease and unevenly cooked bacon on the stovetop? Look no further. In this article, we will guide you through the step-by-step process of cooking perfect bacon in the oven. Not only will this method save you time and effort, but it will also result in crispy and delicious bacon every single time. So, grab your baking sheet and let’s get started.
Preparing the Bacon
To achieve that perfectly crispy texture, it is crucial to start with high-quality bacon. Look for thick-cut bacon with a good balance of fat and meat. Preheat your oven to 400°F (200°C) while you prepare the bacon.
Begin by lining a rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil or parchment paper. This will make cleanup a breeze later on. Place a wire rack on top of the lined baking sheet. The rack elevates the bacon, allowing hot air to circulate underneath, resulting in even cooking.
Next, take each strip of bacon and arrange them side by side on the wire rack. Make sure they are not overlapping as this may prevent them from cooking evenly. If you have more than one baking sheet, feel free to use them simultaneously.
Cooking Time and Temperature
Once your oven has reached the desired temperature, carefully place the baking sheet with the bacon on the middle rack. Close the oven door gently to avoid any unnecessary movement that may cause grease splatters.
Cooking time can vary depending on personal preference and desired crispiness level. On average, it takes about 15-20 minutes for thick-cut bacon to cook in a preheated oven at 400°F (200°C). Keep an eye on it after the 12-minute mark as cooking times can differ between ovens.
If you like your bacon extra crispy, you can continue cooking for a few more minutes. Just be cautious not to overcook it as it may become too dry and lose its flavor. Remember, bacon will continue to crisp up slightly after you remove it from the oven.
Monitoring and Flipping
While the bacon is cooking, it’s essential to keep an eye on its progress. This will ensure that it doesn’t burn or become overly crispy. After about 10 minutes of cooking, carefully open the oven door and check the bacon.
At this point, you may notice that the edges are starting to brown while the centers remain slightly undercooked. To ensure even cooking, use tongs or a fork to flip each strip of bacon over. This will help both sides cook evenly and result in perfectly crispy bacon.
Continue monitoring the bacon closely until it reaches your desired level of doneness. If any areas start to brown faster than others, rotate the baking sheet halfway through cooking for more consistent results.
Drain and Serve
Once your bacon is cooked to perfection, remove the baking sheet from the oven using oven mitts or heat-resistant gloves. Be careful as both the baking sheet and wire rack will be hot.
Place each strip of cooked bacon on a paper towel-lined plate or tray to absorb any excess grease. This step is crucial for achieving that desired crispy texture without being overly greasy. Allow the bacon to cool for a minute or two before serving.
Now that your perfectly cooked oven-baked bacon is ready, feel free to enjoy it as is or incorporate it into your favorite recipes. From breakfast sandwiches and salads to BLTs and burgers, crispy oven-baked bacon adds a delicious touch of flavor to numerous dishes.
In conclusion, cooking perfect bacon in the oven can be achieved by following these simple steps: prepare the bacon on a wire rack-lined baking sheet, cook at 400°F (200°C) for approximately 15-20 minutes, flip the bacon halfway through, and drain on paper towels before serving. Say goodbye to messy stovetop cooking and hello to crispy and delicious oven-baked bacon every time.