How to Cook Bacon in the Oven

Cooking bacon in the oven creates perfectly crispy, delicious bacon. It’s also super easy, creates less mess than cooking it on the stovetop and allows you to multitask in the kitchen. If you’ve never baked bacon, give it a try!

So what do you serve your bacon with? Well, everything! Including my poached eggs, soft and hard boiled eggs and fried eggs. And you can’t forget my paleo pancakes (and dipping bacon in that maple syrup – yum).

Slices of cooked bacon on a sheet tray.

Cooking Bacon in the Oven

When it comes to the most perfectly crispy, evenly cooked bacon you really can’t beat cooking bacon in the oven. But it’s amazing how many people have never tried it. It seems the stovetop reigns supreme.

Today I’ll share with you why you should change your habits and cook bacon in the oven. And trust me, once you cook bacon in the oven, you’ll never cook it on the stovetop again!

Cooking bacon on the stove creates splatters all over your stove top and produces hot spots on the pan. This means certain pieces of bacon may cook faster than others. And it’s why you might have some bacon slices that accidentally charcoal a bit too much while other slices are still undercooked.

Cooking bacon in the oven cooks all of your bacon slices evenly as the heat surrounds them. They slowly sizzle, don’t splatter and end up evenly cooked. It’s a beautiful thing.

How to Cook Bacon in the Oven

It’s incredibly easy! Though it always helps to watch a quick video tutorial. Watch the video below!

Oven Baked Bacon – In 5 Steps

  • Preheat your oven to 400 degrees fahrenheit.
  • Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • Lay the bacon slices on the baking sheet.
  • Cook the bacon for 18-20 minutes or until it’s as crispy as you’d like.
  • Remove the bacon from the oven and transfer to a paper towel-lined plate.

Raw bacon on a sheet tray.

Benefits of Cooking Bacon in the Oven

  • First, you can cook for a crowd (and sometimes that crowd is just your immediate family). This is key for the holidays or when lots of people descend on your house. It’s also HUGE for helping you keep your sanity in the kitchen with the masses.
  • Second, cooking bacon in the oven is way cleaner than cooking bacon on the stove. I’m notorious for getting splatters all over the stovetop because I probably cook my bacon a bit too hot. But when you cook bacon in the oven you don’t get any splatters because the bacon just sizzles until it’s perfectly crispy (or done to your liking).
  • Lastly, cooking bacon in the oven allows you to multitask in the kitchen. Because once you toss that sheet pan of glorious bacon in the oven, you’re free for about 15 minutes to whip up some eggs or make a batch of pancakes or waffles.

Crispy oven baked bacon on a sheet tray.

A Few More Tips

  • Line a large sheet pan with parchment paper (or don’t line it at all – but that’s messy). With parchment paper it’s as simple as tearing off a piece, placing the bacon on top and cooking.
  • Should you place the bacon on a cooling rack to cook? I don’t think so. I tried it and the difference is negligible. But then I had to clean a cooling rack (and those buggers are hard to clean).
  • 400 degrees fahrenheit works well for both regular and thick cut bacon. Heat your oven and cook the bacon for 18-20 minutes or until it’s reached your desired level of crispiness. I do rotate the pan halfway through, just to ensure even cooking, but that’s it. And remember that your bacon will continue to crisp up once it dries.

What to do with Bacon Grease? Save it!

If you purchase organic bacon, as I do, definitely consider rendering and saving the bacon grease. Not only does bacon grease impart a richness of flavor into braised meats and other dishes, it has a high smoke point which means it’s far more stable to cook with.

Rendering bacon grease.

Here’s how to render bacon grease:

  • Once you’ve cooked your bacon, remove the bacon to a paper towel-lined plate.
  • Line a fine mesh sieve with another paper towel (you could also use a nut milk bag or cheesecloth) and pour the hot bacon grease over the sieve and into a glass jar.
  • Note: it’s important to use glass and not plastic, as you’ll melt plastic with hot bacon grease.

You can see in the photo above that I had some previous bacon fat already in my glass jar that’s opaque and lighter in color. When I have a new batch of bacon, I just pour this straight on top then cover the jar and refrigerate it.

So what do I use my rendered bacon grease for? Oh, just about everything. It’s what I fry my eggs in and how I sear pretty much any meat. It’s also great for sautéed or roasted vegetables to add depth and flavor.

Tasty Recipes with Crispy Bacon

How to Cook Bacon in the Oven (Easy & Crispy)

4.94 from 126 votes
Prep Time: 5 mins
Cook Time: 15 mins
Total Time: 20 mins
Servings: 2 slices of bacon
Author: Lisa Bryan
Cooking bacon in the oven creates perfectly crispy, delicious bacon. It's also super easy, creates less mess and allows you to multi-task in the kitchen. Watch the video above to see how easy it is!

Ingredients

  • 8 bacon slices

Instructions 

  • Preheat your oven to 400 degrees fahrenheit. Line a baking tray with parchment paper, then place the bacon side-by-side on the tray.
    Raw bacon on a parchment lined baking tray.
  • Cook the bacon for 18-20 minutes or until it's reached your desired level of crispiness. Remove the tray from the oven and transfer the bacon with tongs to a paper towel-lined plate.
    Cooked bacon on a baking tray.
  • If you're rendering the bacon fat, line a fine mesh sieve with a paper towel. Then place the sieve over a glass storage container and pour the bacon fat from the sheet tray into the sieve. Cover the glass storage container and place it in the refrigerator for future cooking needs.
    Rendering bacon grease.

Lisa's Tips

  • If you don't have a heavy-duty baking sheet I recommend purchasing some. They never warp or bend in the oven! 
  • Please note that all ovens cook slightly differently. It's best to keep an eye on the bacon past the 10 minute mark so you can ensure it's cooked to your personal preference.

Nutrition

Serving: 2slices of bacon, Calories: 366kcal, Carbohydrates: 1g, Protein: 11g, Fat: 34g, Saturated Fat: 11g, Cholesterol: 58mg, Sodium: 582mg, Potassium: 174mg, Vitamin A: 35IU, Iron: 0.4mg
Course: Snack
Cuisine: American
Keyword: cooking bacon in the oven, how to cook bacon in the oven, oven baked bacon
©Downshiftology. Content and photographs are copyright protected. Sharing of this recipe is both encouraged and appreciated. Copying and/or pasting full recipes to any social media is strictly prohibited.
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Recipe originally published December 2016, but updated with new photos and information. 

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324 comments on “How to Cook Bacon in the Oven”

  1. Used this twice and the second time I used thick cut bacon. It needed about 10 mins more but it turned out great and less work.
    Thanks5 stars

  2. 18 minutes was waaay too long for thin bacon.  I burnt the tar out of it.  12 minutes is the sweet spot I have found after experimenting.

  3. Love the idea of using the grease after filtering instead of just having a gross container around until it gets tossed.
    Thanks for some great ideas.5 stars

  4. I will never cook bacon any other way again.  It comes out perfect every time!!5 stars

  5. Works wonderfully for big family breakfast!!  Thank you5 stars

  6. Easy and taste great. Will use thus method over the microwave.5 stars

  7. If you use tin foil it takes longer to cook. Better with the p paper but if you dont have any. Great recipe lovvvvvve dshift!5 stars

  8. This recipe did not work at all as written. I baked the bacon for twice the time stated and the bottoms didn’t crisp at all. Definitely going back to the cooling racks so it can bake on both sides. Parchment paper is a mess!

    • Hi Lynne – if your bacon didn’t cook after more than 40 minutes in the oven, I’d recommend purchasing an oven thermometer to double check that your oven temp is calibrated correctly.

  9. Easy instructions. I can do this. For sure. I’m prepping it for a recipe called Bacon Crack. Ever heard of it? Easy and sounds like a winner. What’s not to like? Except that bacon is now $6 a pound!5 stars

  10. loveeeeee this recipe and all this information thank you much and it is my favorite way to cook it … my mouth is salavating just thinking about it lol5 stars

  11. Before reading this I used parchment paper to line the pans, much better than foil as the grease does not smoke! Also I cook at 420 & it works quite well. All in all this is a fantastic recipe!5 stars

  12. I’ve been wanting to try cooking bacon in the oven and am so glad I found your recipe. Followed it exactly and my bacon was excellent!  Using the parchment paper makes no mess- just throw away when done. Thank you for this. I will forever cook bacon in the oven!!!  
    Cheers 5 stars

  13. It really comes out perfect – chewy with almost no clean up. Let the grease dry then threw it away with parchment paper. It’s my second time making it your way. I’m hooked. I even baked my eggs since oven was hot.5 stars

  14. Does the level of your oven rack matter? Top, middle, or bottom? How about what works best bake or convection?5 stars

  15. This is a great way to “bake bacon”. The recipe works. The use of a rack does slightly improve the results. However, as author notes, it also add a great deal to clean up for such a minor improvement. The grease – especially if you use organic bacon – is a resource and should not be wasted. Too many people are afraid of it, but it imparts a large amount of flavor and can be used sparingly. I put it in my cooking oil (refined olive). It seems to increase the smoke point of that oil – and it only takes a little. It also has numerous uses outside the kitchen for those of us in remote areas.4 stars

  16. Can you use aluminum foil in you don’t have parchment paper?5 stars

  17. Thanks. Just a point: The countries and territories that use the Fahrenheit scale are:
    United States
    Bahamas
    Cayman Islands
    Liberia
    Palau
    The Federated States of Micronesia
    Marshall Islands
    … that is, less than 5% of your potential audience.5 stars

  18. I love the bacon recipe. And I’m sure you have lots more that I should look at.5 stars

  19. How long would the bacon fat/grease last in the fridge? Any tips to extend its lifespan?

  20. What do you do about the smoke. Usually by the time mine is close to done small sections of grease start smoking. It then fills house with smoke when I take it out.

    • There shouldn’t be too much smoke when making this recipe, the bacon should just sizzle. If you find that it’s smoking, I would turn the temperature down a notch or take it out a bit earlier as your oven may cook hotter.

  21. I tried this recipe in the toaster oven using foil instead of parchment paper and only cooked for 12 minutes and it came out perfect!  I was worried it would splatter everywhere but it didn’t!  I will definitely be using this method from now on.  So much better than having grease splatter all over the stove and floor.5 stars

  22. Very easy and cooked perfect mrs5 stars

  23. Can I freeze the cooked bacon and when I thaw, should i cook in oven for a minute or two. Perhaps I should for 16 min and then freeze? 

    • Yes, you can freeze cooked bacon (think of bacon bits that you buy at the market). To thaw, you can cook in the oven or microwave until warmed through, or just crumble it directly into recipes.

  24. Followed your instructions to the T. Perfectly crisp bacon strips. The parchment paper is genius. Keto people use this! 5 stars

  25. Love this recipe! I never cook it any other way. A question though: when making more ahead of time, what is the best way to reheat the bacon? Do they splatter/get soggy if you use a microwave?5 stars

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