Easy step by step photo instructions to cooking bacon in the oven. Nothing is better than great bacon. Now you can have bacon with no mess and minimal work.
Editor's Note: Originally published October 8, 2011. Updated with some updated text, re-edited photos, and dog photos.
How many times have you stood at the stove cooking bacon? You splatter everything including those annoying "burns" on your hands. It wrinkles and rolls up. You have a hard time getting the ends to uncurl and cook. And if you're cooking for company, you are missing all the action.
Well, I here to tell you, it is not necessary. On to the tray and into the oven. You can preheat or not preheat. Done in about 20 minutes.
I initially thought the taste would be different if oven baked. Nope, it tastes the same.
A five. How could great bacon be anything else?
Pro Tips: How to Cook Bacon in the Oven
What oven temperature to use to bake bacon?
400 degrees convection or 425 conventional oven is a good starting point, but you may use as low as 375 conventional to 425 convection if doing other cooking. Time will vary by oven temperature and thickness of the bacon used.
The general rule, of course, is convection runs 25 degrees "hotter" than conventional. So 400 degrees convection is considered equivalent to 425 degrees conventional.
If cooking other things in the same oven at the same time, I use the temperature recommended for what else I'm cooking: a coffee cake, an oven-baked pancake, etc.
I believe even 350 would be ok. Of course, adjust your time a little. You can also start with a cold oven and add a few minutes.
What type of bacon to use?
I usually use thick sliced Hormel Black Label bacon from Sam's Club. I highly recommend this as one of the top bacon commonly available. But this will work with the bacon of your choice.
Thinner bacon will cook faster and does tend to stick more so parchment paper may be preferred to foil.
How long to cook bacon in the oven?
Most often this will be about 20 minutes. Your variables are the oven, the bacon, and finally, the crispiness you want.
The oven and bacon are discussed above. You have convention vs. conventional, the starting temperature and the actual temperature of the oven. And you have thin vs. thicker bacon.
Your done point is that it "looks done." Don't expect it to look different from pan-fried. I like my bacon very crispy, so I use 18-22 minutes depending on the oven and the bacon.
Variations in methods
To use a rack or not.
Many feel it will make the bacon crisper. I don't seem to have that problem, so I don't use a rack. They are a pain to clean vs. folding up the foil.
Foil vs. parchment paper.
Parchment paper will be less likely to stick. Another problem I don't have. I like the foil since it will contain the fat and make cleanup a breeze.
As I have already said, thinner bacon tends to stick more to me, and parchment paper is probably preferred for thinner bacon. But "non-stick" foil is another option.
Some methods "wrinkled" the aluminum foil to get more wave in the bacon. I tried both methods, and I will stay "flat" since it still had some wave in it.
For comparison of several of these methods, please check The Pioneer Woman.
Preheat oven to 400 degrees convection. Or start with a cold oven and add a few minutes.
Line a sheet pan with a large sheet of aluminum foil (heavy-duty preferred) and turn up edges. Place bacon on sheet close together but not touching. 9-10 pieces will usually fit. If you are doing thinner bacon or have issues with sticking, then parchment paper may be a better choice for you.
Place in the middle of the oven for 18 minutes and come back to check. Time will vary with the thickness of the bacon and your taste.
It is done when it looks done. I like my bacon very crispy, so I use 20-22 minutes with thick bacon. Drain on paper towels.
How to Cook Bacon in the Oven
- 10 slices bacon
- aluminum foil - to cover tray
- parchment paper - if needed
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees convection. Or start with a cold oven and add a few minutes.
- Line a sheet pan with a large sheet of aluminum foil (heavy-duty preferred) and turn up edges. Place bacon on sheet close together but not touching. Up to 9-10 pieces usually fit. If you have issues with sticking or using thinner bacon, then parchment paper may be a better choice.
- Place in the middle of the oven. Do something else for 18 minutes and come back. Time will vary with the thickness of the bacon and your taste. It is done when it looks done. I like my bacon very crispy, so I use 20-22 minutes with thick bacon.
- Drain on paper towels and pat "dry" with another paper towel.
- You do not have to preheat the oven. It just takes a bit longer.
- I have done this with oven temperatures of 350 to 425. With or without convention. Just adjust time some.
- Thinner bacon cooks much faster.
- Some bacon has more sugar and will tend to stick. See discussion in the post. Use a layer of parchment paper if you are unsure or have a problem.
- No flipping or rack is needed although some use them.
- It is done when it looks done to your taste.
Originally published October 8, 2011