Skip the hot oil splatters and overcooked strips. Oven-cooked bacon is painless, requires little interaction and ensures evenly cooked bacon every time.
There are many ways to cook bacon, but I almost always prepare it in the oven. There are two main reasons why I prefer using the oven as opposed to the stovetop. For starters, it frees me up to multitask in the kitchen. I can set it and forget it. This is incredibly helpful when I’m preparing a breakfast with several components. Secondly and probably more importantly, the bacon cooks perfectly and evenly every single time.
Here is my method for cooking perfect bacon in the oven: line a baking sheet with aluminum foil. The foil isn’t essential but it makes cleanup a breeze. Next, place a cooling rack on the baking sheet. This will allow the fat to drip away from the bacon. If you don’t have a cooling rack you can technically do without it, but the bacon will be less crisp at the end.
You can cook as much bacon as will fit on the cooling rack but just note that the more bacon you cook at once, the longer the cooking time. Bacon cooked in the oven will be perfectly flat and crisp. You can even have a bit of fun with it. Sometimes I like to brush a bit of maple syrup and a sprinkle of ground cayenne pepper onto the bacon just before sticking it in the oven. Delicious.
To Cook Bacon in The Oven:
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil and then place a cooling rack on the baking sheet.
- Line up the bacon on the cooling rack, leaving a bit of space in between each piece. Place in the oven and cook until crisp and golden (or until it reaches the desired doneness), 15 to 35 minutes depending on how much bacon is cooking. Six pieces of thick-cut bacon will take approximately 18 minutes.
- Carefully remove the baking sheet from the oven (there will be hot fat in the bottom of the pan so be mindful). Place the bacon on paper towels to drain briefly before serving.
Photo credit: Jennifer Farley