Learn how to make perfectly crisp, golden brown bacon every time with no grease splatter or mess! This is a quick and easy tutorial and video on how to cook bacon in the oven. Once you try it, you’ll never go back to the splatter-y mess of the stovetop!
Why Should I Cook Bacon in the Oven?
Because once you do you’ll never go back. Bacon made in the oven is less messy, less painful (if you’re prone to burning yourself with splattering bacon grease) and just less hassle all-around than bacon made on the stovetop. Here’s why I like to make my bacon in the oven:
- No splatter, no mess! The bacon won’t splatter all over your countertop, clothes, or you! It does not pop, sizzle, or splatter in the oven.
- Perfect, evenly cooked bacon, every time. The bacon cooks evenly for beautiful, golden brown, perfectly crisp bacon.
- It’s just as good as stovetop bacon. It’s not a healthified version of bacon, in fact it’s indiscernible from bacon cooked on the stovetop. I feel like this is worth mentioning, because my husband wouldn’t touch bacon made in the oven if it were a health food. This is the real deal crispy bacon, only with less mess!
- Cook a lot at once! You can fit more bacon on a baking sheet at one time than you can in a skillet!
What You Need
You need just a few things:
- Bacon. The bacon in these photographs is classic (not-thick-cut) bacon, but I include notes in the recipe if you’re trying to cook thicker bacon.
- A rimmed cookie sheet. The rim is important as bacon creates a lot of grease! You’ll want to keep that grease from spilling in your oven, which will happen if you use a rimless baking sheet! I’ve found that a standard-sized cookie sheet can hold approximately 12 strips of bacon. If you’re only cooking a few slices of bacon, you can get away with using a jelly roll pan, and of course you can use a larger pan to cook more bacon.
- Foil or parchment paper. You can cook bacon directly on an unlined, ungreased baking sheet. However, it makes quite a mess. I prefer to line the baking sheet with parchment or foil to make cleanup quick and easy when I’m finished. I personally prefer foil, as it seems to help the bacon cook a bit faster and I can wrap it around the edges of my baking sheet, ensuring that none of the grease gets onto my cookie sheet (which isn’t a big deal, it’s just messier).
How to Make Bacon in the Oven
- Preheat oven to 400F (205C).
- Line a baking sheet with parchment or foil (preferred). (note that I do not use a wire rack as many recipes do, I discuss this in detail in the FAQ section below).
- Arrange bacon on prepared baking sheet.
- Cook for 8-10 minutes, then remove from the oven and use tongs to carefully flip each piece of bacon. Return to the oven to bake until preferred doneness (most likely crisp and golden brown!).
- Let the bacon cool for several minutes, then carefully remove from the baking sheet to a paper towel-lined plate or serving platter. If I’m crumbling the bacon I remove it quickly, pat it dry, and then crumble it.
SAM’S TIP: Don’t over-crowd your bacon! Make sure your bacon slices aren’t over-lapping or they’ll end up chewy or even under-cooked.
Frequently Asked Questions
Many techniques have you cook the bacon on a wire rack that fits in your baking sheet. I tried this technique multiple times and did not personally find that it yielded bacon that was any better. While I expected the bacon made on a wire rack to be crispier, I did not find that to be the case and so I do not use one nor do I think it’s necessary for you to do so.
There is, however, a potential health benefit to using a wire rack, which I’ll cover below.
No, bacon made in the oven using my technique does not yield healthier bacon.
However, if you are looking to make your bacon a bit healthier you can arrange a wire rack on your baking sheet and then cook the bacon on the wire rack for the same amount of time. The grease will drip away from the bacon as it cooks.
I personally prefer the results when my bacon is flipped, I feel it ensures even cooking and a crispier bacon. However, if you’re juggling a number of things in the kitchen, it’s acceptable to skip this step, your bacon will still be good!
The frustrating fact of life is that most ovens do not run true to temperature. Your oven may cook faster or slower than your neighbors, and so the best thing you can do is simply keep an eye on your bacon as it cooks. Many ovens also say they are preheated to the indicated temperature when they actually aren’t!
The specific thickness of your bacon can also cause it to take more or less time in the oven.
After you’ve made your bacon this way a few times, you’ll have a good idea of how long it takes for your specific oven.
One you try this technique, I think you’ll never want to go back to the splatter-y, stovetop technique. Do you already make your bacon this way? Was it a game changer for you, too? Let me know in the comments!
A Few Recipes for Bacon Lovers
Let’s bake together! I’ll be walking you through all the steps in my written recipe and video below! If you try this recipe, be sure to tag me on Instagram, and you can also find me on YouTube and Facebook
How to Cook Bacon in the Oven
- 12 slices bacon
- Rimmed baking sheet
- Foil or parchment paper
- Preheat oven to 400F (205C) and line a baking sheet or cookie sheet with parchment paper or foil (preferred for easier cleanup). Use enough so the foil or parchment goes up the sides of the pan for easy cleanup later.
- Arrange bacon in a single even layer on the prepared pan. Do not overlap the bacon.
- Transfer pan to 400F (205C) preheated oven and bake on the center rack for 15-20 minutes (this is for classic-cut bacon, thick-cut bacon will likely take longer), flipping the bacon halfway through (see note).
- Cool for several minutes and then carefully transfer to a paper towel lined plate. Enjoy!
Flipping baconI recommend flipping the bacon halfway through, in my experience it makes a better looking and crispier bacon. However, if you are in a hurry or cooking a lot of things at once, you can skip flipping the bacon.
Keep an eye on your baconAll ovens cook differently and many different brands of bacon are cut to different thickness. If flipping your bacon, gauge its doneness when flipping and when determining how long it needs to go back in the oven. If not flipping the bacon, take a peek at it at 10-12 minutes.
How to dispose of bacon greaseAllow the bacon grease to cool in the pan completely until solidified. If you lined the pan with parchment or foil, simply wrap the solidified grease up in that and toss it in the trash. If you don’t want to wait for the grease to solidify, you can funnel it into a heatproof container and dispose of it in the trash later. Never pour bacon grease down your drain, it can clog your pipes.
Nutritional information is based on third-party calculations and should be considered an estimate only. Actual nutritional content will vary based upon brands used, measuring methods, cooking method, portion sizes, and more.