Cooking bacon in the oven is hands-off and great for making a big batch! Plus, it’s less messy than stovetop, no dangerous splatters, and it cooks up to your desired crispy level.
Bacon is one of those foods I *always* have in my refrigerator.
I cook with it, sure, and I use it for toppings.
But mostly it’s part of our regular breakfasts. My son is a little bacon fiend, and so I’ve always got some available for him.
And to be honest, I mostly make it in the microwave. Microwave bacon is so quick and easy. You can do just a couple of slices or up to about 8-10 at a time.
You can also control the exact doneness you want, pulling out your bacon earlier or cooking it longer to get it to the cooked level and crispiness you desire.
Or sometimes I make Air Fryer bacon, which gets crazy crispy.
However, whenever I have a crowd to serve or I’m trying to make a big batch, I love cooking bacon in the oven.
It’s totally hands off, you can make a huge sheet pan full of bacon - or two sheet pans full - and the bacon comes out crispy and delicious.
Plus, there’s no oil splattering and burning, no big pans to scrape and clean, no shriveled sad bacon, and no pieces that are half raw and half burnt.
Nope, they’re all evenly cooked just to your liking.
So today I’m going to share with you all the tips and tricks and ins and outs I’ve perfected after cooking bacon in the oven many, many times.
If you want to jump on down to the recipe, simply scroll right on through the rest of the text. The recipe card is near the bottom of the page, above the comments section.
Tips and Tricks:
- The rule of thumb for oven bacon is 400 degrees for 20 minutes.
- However, thick cut or center cut bacon is going to take longer than a regular slice that’s much thinner, up to about 30 minutes. You also might need to flip thicker pieces over to ensure they are cooked through all the way.
- Check early and then regularly. Pull out individual pieces of bacon as they are done to your liking and continue cooking the rest.
- You may need to rotate your pan if your oven doesn’t cook quite evenly.
- Set a timer. I have not once, but twice, totally forgotten about the bacon and it got burned. And when you’re making this much bacon, that’s a damn tragedy and total waste.
As for set-up, I do use and recommend lining your baking sheet with parchment paper. If it’s covered, you won’t have to even clean the pan. (Foil doesn’t work as well for me, the grease always gets under it.)
And as mentioned, you can control how done you want the bacon. Or if you have family members with different tastes - someone likes it half raw and someone else prefers it super done and extra crispy, you can make both!
Everyone gets just what they want!
Now, there are 2 instances in which I recommend you do NOT use the oven to cook your bacon.
- If you are trying to do just 2-3 pieces of bacon, it makes much more sense to cook them in the microwave. It’s faster and you don’t have to heat up the entire oven.
- Or if you need the bacon grease for a recipe, you should cook it in the pan or skillet, so you retain the grease more easily and can continue cooking in the same pan.
Otherwise, this oven bacon is going to be your new best friend at breakfast and brunch!
Last thing, let’s talk about what to do with any leftovers.
Cooked bacon, once cooled, can be stored in a ziplock bag in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. Enjoy cold or microwave 1-2 pieces for 15 seconds, until hot.
There you have it.
More bacon. Bacon every day. Bacon love always.
- 1 pound regular cut bacon (see notes)
- Preheat the oven to 400. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper to prevent leaks and avoid having to clean the pan. (Note: Aluminum foil does not work as well for this.)
- Lay the bacon in an even layer on the parchment paper, filling the entire pan. (You can do some pieces to the side if there’s room to layer them sideways as well.)
- Place the baking sheet on the middle rack in the oven - even if it’s not preheated all the way - and cook for 20 minutes. Rotate the pan after 10-15 minutes if your oven doesn’t cook evenly.
- Check for doneness at 20 minutes and continue cooking until the bacon is to your desired doneness level (it will depend on preference and also on the type of bacon you use; see notes below).
- Remove the pan from the oven carefully, transfer the bacon to drain on paper towels then serve hot.
Thick cut or center cut bacon is going to take longer than a regular slice that’s much thinner, up to 30 minutes. You also might need to flip them over to ensure they are cooked through.
Check early and then regularly. Pull out individual pieces of bacon as they are done to your liking and continue cooking the rest.
You may need to rotate your pan halfway through if your oven doesn’t cook quite evenly.
Set a timer. I have not once, but twice, totally forgotten about the bacon and it got burned. And when you’re making this much bacon, that’s a damn tragedy and total waste.
Leftovers: Cooked bacon, once cooled, can be stored in a ziplock bag in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. Enjoy cold or microwave 1-2 pieces for 15 seconds, until hot.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 265Total Fat: 20gSaturated Fat: 7gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 12gCholesterol: 56mgSodium: 955mgCarbohydrates: 1gFiber: 0gSugar: 0gProtein: 19g