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Bacon recipes: Amazing ideas you need to try

Bacon! Bacon, bacon, bacon! Does it make everything better? With these recipes, all signs point to a resounding yes.

Bacon-stuffed cheeseburger

WHAT YOU'LL NEED: 1 1/2 pounds 93
Photo Credit: Marge Perry

1 1/2 pounds 93 percent lean ground beef
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
6 strips bacon
2 ounces thinly sliced reduced-fat cheddar
4 hamburger buns, split and toasted
Shredded lettuce, sliced tomato, sliced onion (optional)


1. Combine the beef, salt and pepper. Form into eight very thin patties.

2. Cut the bacon across in half and cook in a large nonstick skillet over medium high. Transfer to a plate lined with paper towel to drain.

3. Top four of the patties each with three pieces of the bacon. Add a second patty on top of the bacon and pinch the edges of the meat closed to enclose the bacon in the center of the burger.

4. Heat the bacon drippings in the pan over medium high; add the burgers and cook 4 minutes. Flip them over and top with the cheese, cook 2 minutes. Cover the skillet and cook another 2 minutes, until burgers are cooked to desired degree of doneness.

5. Serve the burgers in the toasted buns with any combination of tomato, lettuce and onion. Makes 4 servings.

Beer and bacon potato salad

WHAT YOU'LL NEED:3 bottles Samuel Adams Boston Lager3
Photo Credit: Samuel Adams, Recipe by Food Network Star chef Michele Ragussis

3 bottles Samuel Adams Boston Lager
3 pounds baby potatoes
8 eggs
1 package bacon
1/2 red onion, diced
Half head celery, diced
1 bunch scallions
1/4 bunch dill
16 ounces mayonnaise
1 teaspoon yellow mustard
3 dashes red wine vinegar


1. Bring a large pot of Samuel Adams Boston Lager to a boil. Add the potatoes, and boil in beer for about 15 minutes or until fork tender. Drain and let cool. Set aside.

2. Bring a large pot of water to boil, and hard boil the eggs for about 12 minutes. Let eggs cool.

3. In a large sheet pan, cook the bacon at 375 degrees until crispy, and then dice. Set aside.

4. Once eggs are cool, peel and chop.

5. In a large bowl, mix diced red onion, 1 bunch finely sliced scallions, diced celery, diced bacon, chopped eggs, and dill.

6. Once potatoes are cool, add to bowl of ingredients and smash together so they are half mashed.

7. Add all wet ingredients, salt and pepper and mix well. Add about a tablespoon of the bacon grease for a little added flavor.

Seared scallops with spinach and bacon

WHAT YOU'LL NEED:1 1/2 pounds large sea scallops1/2
Photo Credit: Marge Perry

1 1/2 pounds large sea scallops
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon black pepper
3 slices bacon
9 ounces baby spinach


1. Pat scallops dry and season with salt and pepper.

2. Cook bacon in large nonstick skillet until crisp. Transfer to a plate lined with paper towels to drain.

3. Add the scallops to the pan and cook until well-browned on the undersides, about 3 minutes. Turn and cook until well-browned and nearly cooked through, about another 3 minutes. Remove from pan.

4. Add the spinach and cook, tossing, until it is just wilted and bright green, about 1 minute. Crumble the bacon and stir into the spinach.

5. Serve the scallops on a bed of the spinach. Makes 4 servings.

Apple and bacon grilled cheese

WHAT YOU'LL NEED:2 slices center-cut bacon1 1/2 ounces
Photo Credit: Marge Perry

2 slices center-cut bacon
1 1/2 ounces Irish Cheddar cheese, cut into thin slices
2 slices whole-wheat bread
1/2 apple, cut into 1/4-inch wedges


1. Cook bacon in medium skillet; remove and drain on a plate lined with paper towel.

2. While bacon cooks, place the cheese on one slice of bread.

3. Add the apple slices to the pan with the bacon drippings and cook until lightly browned on each side (a total of about 4 minutes). Place the apples on the cheese and top with the bacon slices. Close the sandwich with the second slice of bread and place in the hot skillet. Cook until browned on the underside, about 2 minutes; flip and cook until browned on the underside again and the cheese is melted.

Caramelized onion, bacon and goat-cheese pizza

WHAT YOU'LL NEED: 4 slices center-cut bacon 2
Photo Credit: Marge Perry

4 slices center-cut bacon
2 cups thinly sliced red onion
1 (12-inch, 10-ounce) whole-wheat thin pizza crust
4 ounces goat cheese
1 tablespoon chopped parsley


1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees.

2. Cook the bacon in a large, nonstick skillet; transfer to a plate lined with paper towel.

3. Add the onions to the skillet and cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until very soft and golden, 12 to 13 minutes.

4. Crumble the bacon. Place the pizza crust on a baking sheet; spread half the goat cheese over the surface, leaving a 1-inch perimeter clear. Top the cheese with the onions and bacon. Crumble the remaining 2 ounces of goat cheese over the onions and bake 8 minutes, until the crust is heated through. Remove from the oven, sprinkle with parsley and serve.

Hot potato salad

WHAT YOU'LL NEED: About 4 pounds russet potatoes
Photo Credit: The Washington Post / Deb Lindsey, Recipe by Bonnie S. Benwick

About 4 pounds russet potatoes
Kosher salt
1 pound processed cheese, such as Velveeta, well chilled
11/2 cups low-fat mayonnaise (do not use nonfat)
1 cup half-and-half
1/2 medium yellow onion, chopped
1 cup small, pimento-stuffed Spanish olives (about 57)
Freshly ground black pepper
6 thin bacon slices, cut into 2-inch pieces


1. Thoroughly scrub the potatoes, then place them in a large pot. Cover with water and add a pinch of salt; bring to a boil over medium-high heat; cover partially and cook for about 25 minutes or until tender. Drain and cool completely.

2. Peel the potatoes, then cut them into 1-inch cubes.

3. Grate the cheese on the large-holed side of a box grater; the yield is about 43/4 cups.

4. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Grease a broiler-proof 9-by-13-inch baking dish with cooking oil spray.

5. Whisk together the mayonnaise and half-and-half in a large mixing bowl, then add the onion, olives, potatoes and cheese, tossing to coat and distribute evenly. Season lightly with salt and pepper. Transfer the mixture to the baking dish, spreading it evenly.

6. Scatter the bacon pieces on top. Bake for 55 to 65 minutes, until bubbling, then transfer to the stove top (off the heat) while you position a rack 4 to 6 inches below the broiler.

7. Return the baking dish to the oven; broil for about 5 minutes or just until the bacon has crisped. 8. Let stand for 5 minutes before serving. Makes 8 to 10 servings.

*Recipe adapted from "Ultimate Book of BBQ: The Complete Year-Round Guide to Grilling, Smoking and Barbecuing," from editors of Southern Living with Christopher Prieto (Oxmoor House, 2015)

Mac and cheese with bacon and peas

WHAT YOU'LL NEED:16 ounces elbow pasta6 slices center
Photo Credit: Marge Perry

16 ounces elbow pasta
6 slices center cut bacon
1/4 cup flour
2 cups milk, divided
1 cup frozen peas
3 cups shredded light Cheddar
3 tablespoons butter, melted
1/2 cup panko bread crumbs
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese


1. Coat a 9-by-12-inch baking dish with cooking spray. Prepare oven for broiling.

2. Cook the pasta according to package directions; drain but do not rinse.

3. Cook bacon in a large saucepan and drain on paper towels.

4. Pour off all but about 1 tablespoon of bacon fat from the pan. With the pan off the heat, add the flour and 1/4 cup of the milk to the pan and whisk until smooth. Stir in the remaining milk and cook over medium heat, whisking constantly, until the mixture is near the thickness of heavy cream, about 7 minutes.

5. Add the peas, remove from heat and stir in the cheese until the sauce is smooth. Crumble the cooled bacon into the sauce and toss with the pasta. Transfer to the prepared pan.

6. Combine the melted butter, bread crumbs and grated Parmesan; sprinkle over the macaroni and cheese. Place under the broiler until the topping is golden, about 3 minutes. Serve immediately.

Spinach salad with warm strawberry-rhubarb dressing

WHAT YOU'LL NEED:10 cups young, tender spinach leaves,
Photo Credit: Eve Bishop

10 cups young, tender spinach leaves, washed and dried
6 strips bacon
1 shallot, finely chopped
1 cup strawberries, stemmed and chopped
1 cup chopped rhubarb
1/4 cup water
2 tablespoons sugar
2 tablespoons cider vinegar
2 ounces crumbled feta or goat cheese (optional)


1. Place spinach in a large bowl. Heat bacon in a skillet over medium-high until crisp. Transfer to a paper towel-lined plate to cool before crumbling.

2. Add shallot to skillet with bacon fat and cook until softened, 2 to 3 minutes. Add strawberries, rhubarb, water and sugar, and bring to a boil. Stir in vinegar, lower heat and simmer until fruit is soft and falling apart, about five minutes. Puree in a blender or food processor and season with salt and pepper.

3. Toss about 1/2 cup of the warm dressing with spinach. Divide among serving plates and sprinkle with bacon and cheese, if desired. Serve immediately with extra dressing on the side.

Oysters Rockefeller with beer-braised swiss chard

WHAT YOU'LL NEED:24 oysters1 shallot, diced into small
Photo Credit: Samuel Adams, Recipe by Food Network chef Michele Ragussis

24 oysters
1 shallot, diced into small pieces
1 package bacon
2 bunches Swiss chard, chopped into small pieces
1 bottle Samuel Adams Boston Lager
1/2 pint heavy cream
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese
Breadcrumbs (optional)


1. Dice half the package of bacon into small pieces. In a large saute pan, cook bacon until it starts to brown and gets crispy. Drain off half of the grease. Using the remaining half of the grease, add the diced shallots. Cook about 2 minutes.

2. Add the chopped Swiss chard and half a bottle of the beer to the saute pan. Let reduce until almost all of the liquid is gone.

3. Add heavy cream and Parmesan cheese to the saute pan. When mixture thickens, let it cool.

4. In the meantime, open the oysters. Try to save the liquid, as keeping the liquid in the oyster adds extra flavor. Use a good spoonful of the mixture to top the oysters. Add a sprinkle of cheese and a small amount of breadcrumbs (optional).

5. Bake at 400 degrees for about 3 minutes, and then broil about another minute until golden brown.

Penne, cheese and bacon casserole

WHAT YOU'LL NEED:1 pound penne6 slices center-cut bacon1/3
Photo Credit: Marge Perry

1 pound penne
6 slices center-cut bacon
1/3 cup flour
2 cups skim milk
3 cups light shredded Cheddar
2 (14.5-ounce) cans diced tomatoes, drained
3 tablespoons butter, melted
1/2 cup bread crumbs
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese


1. Coat a 9-by-13-inch baking dish with cooking spray. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees.

2. Cook the penne in plenty of lightly salted boiling water until al dente. Drain and set aside.

3. Meanwhile, cook the bacon in a large saucepan or deep skillet. Remove from pan and drain on a plate lined with paper towels.

4. Stir together flour and 1/3 cup of the milk until smooth. Add to the pan and stir; immediately add remaining milk and cook, stirring, 8 to 10 minutes, until thickened to the consistency of heavy cream. Remove from the heat and stir in the Cheddar until smooth. Stir in the tomatoes and toss with the penne. Crumble or chop the bacon and stir it into the pasta before transferring to the baking dish.

5. Combine the melted butter, bread crumbs and Parmesan and sprinkle evenly over the top of the pasta.

6. Place in the oven until the topping is golden, about 8 minutes.

Artichoke, bacon and new potato stew

WHAT YOU'LL NEED:1 pound new potatoes2 strips thick
Photo Credit: MCT / Recipe by Russ Parsons, Los Angeles Times

1 pound new potatoes
2 strips thick bacon, cut crosswise into 1/2-inch strips
1 tablespoon minced shallots
4 medium artichokes, trimmed to hearts and stems, quartered lengthwise, stored in water with lemon juice or vinegar added
3/4 cup water
1/2 cup cream
2 tablespoons minced chives


1. Steam the potatoes until tender, about 15 minutes, and set aside. When cool enough to handle, cut into quarters or bite-sized pieces.

2. Fry cut-up bacon in a dry skillet over medium heat until brown, about 10 minutes. Discard all but about 1 to 2 teaspoons of fat and add the shallots. Cook until the shallots are fragrant and tender, about 3 minutes.

3. Add the artichokes and the water, cover tightly and cook until the artichokes are tender, 10 to 15 minutes.

4. Remove the lid, increase the heat to high and cook, stirring, until the liquid has reduced to traces of syrup, about 5 minutes.

5. Add the cut-up potatoes and stir to coat with juices. Add cream, salt to taste and continue cooking over high until cream has thickened and reduced enough to coat the potatoes and artichokes lightly, about 5 minutes.

6. Remove from heat and stir in the minced chives before turning into a serving bowl.

Pig candy

WHAT YOU'LL NEED:1/2 cup turbinado sugar (most common
Photo Credit: Johnny Simon / Recipe by competition barbecuer Eric Devlin

1/2 cup turbinado sugar (most common brand name is Sugar in the Raw)
1/2 cup pork rub (see below)
1 pound thick-cut bacon


Preheat grill for medium, indirect heat (300 to 325 degrees) and place a disposable aluminum pan under the grill's grate to catch rendered bacon fat. Spread sugar and rub on separate plates. Dredge bacon slices first in sugar, then in rub. Lay slices on grill, over pan and perpendicular to grates, and cook for about an hour, until bacon is crisp but not burned.

Bacon, egg and tomato pizza

WHAT YOU'LL NEED:1 pound pizza dough1/2 cup part-skim
Photo Credit: Marge Perry

1 pound pizza dough
1/2 cup part-skim ricotta
2 to 3 medium tomatoes, thinly sliced
3 slices cooked bacon, chopped
1 tablespoon prepared pesto sauce
1 tablespoon grated Parmesan cheese
3 eggs


1. Preheat oven to 450. Coat a large baking sheet pan with cooking spray.

2. Working on a lightly floured surface, roll and/or stretch the dough to a 15-by- 12-inch rectangle and transfer the dough to the prepared pan.

3. Spread ricotta over the surface of the dough, leaving a 1/2-inch border clear all the way around. Top with a layer of the tomato slices and sprinkle with the bacon. Drop 1/8-inch bits of the pesto over the entire surface and sprinkle with the Parmesan cheese. Bake 10 minutes, and remove the pizza from the oven.

4. Crack 3 eggs in a row on the pizza, return to oven and bake until the white is set and the yolk still somewhat runny, about another 9 minutes. Remove from oven and pierce the yolks to allow them to run over the surface of the pizza. To serve, cut into 8 squares.

Baked eggs with spinach, bacon and potatoes

WHAT YOU'LL NEED:4 strips center-cut bacon2 medium red
Photo Credit: Marge Perry

4 strips center-cut bacon
2 medium red potatoes, (8 ounces total), cut into 1/4-inch dice
4 cups baby spinach
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
4 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
8 large eggs


1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Coat the inside of 4 (6-ounce) ramekins with cooking spray.

2. Cook the bacon in a large, nonstick skillet over medium high. Transfer to a plate lined with paper towel; crumble bacon when cool.

3. Add the potatoes to the skillet and cook, stirring occasionally, until well browned and tender, 12 to 14 minutes. Add the spinach and nutmeg, and cook, tossing, until just wilted, 2 minutes. Combine vegetables with bacon and spoon the mixture into the ramekins. Add 1 tablespoon of cheese to each.

4. Beat eggs with fork until fairly smooth and pour into the ramekins. Place on a tray and bake about 20 minutes, until the eggs are set -- a toothpick inserted in the center will come out clean. Serve immediately.

Warm radicchio salad

WHAT YOU'LL NEED:4 strips bacon or pancetta, diced1
Photo Credit: Lauren Chattman

4 strips bacon or pancetta, diced
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
1/4 cup olive oil
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1/2 teaspoon salt
Ground black pepper
6 cups radicchio leaves, coarsely chopped
1 fennel bulb, trimmed, quartered, and thinly sliced
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh parsley leaves
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese shavings


1. Cook the bacon in a large pot until crisp. Transfer to a paper towel-lined plate to drain. Discard all but 2 tablespoons bacon grease from the pan.

2. Add garlic and cook over medium heat until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Whisk in olive oil, vinegar, sugar, mustard, salt and pepper.

3. Add radicchio, fennel and parsley to pot and stir to coat with dressing and slightly wilt radicchio leaves, 1 to 2 minutes. Do not overcook.

4. Divide among 4 salad plates, sprinkle with bacon and Parmesan shavings, and serve immediately.


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