Whether it’s in a sandwich or a salad, bacon adds a salty, meaty flavor to any meal. You can fry it, grill it or bake it until it is good and crispy. Although it is loved for its taste, bacon also contains a decent amount of essential minerals and other nutrients. Regardless of what you need it for, learn how to cook bacon just the way you would like it.
Nutrients in Bacon
Bacon is made from pork cuts. This means it is rich in protein and iron. Bacon also carries several types of B vitamins that perform various important functions in the body. B vitamins can improve anything from immunity against sicknesses to skin health. Another good reason bacon is healthy for you is the magnesium, phosphorus and zinc it contains. Magnesium and phosphorus strengthen bone and teeth, while zinc accelerates healing and cell creation.
Natural vs. Packaged Bacon
Knowing how to cook bacon well depends on the cut and type of bacon you prefer. Packaged bacon has both benefits and drawbacks. On the one hand, packaged bacon is usually more flavorful because it has been treated with flavoring solutions. On the down side, it contains nitrates, which are potentially harmful chemicals that are not healthy for the body.
Natural bacon comes highly recommended by nutritionists. It might not have the same strong flavor that packaged bacon has, but ranks higher in nutrient quality. Natural bacon doesn’t have preservatives and is low in fat. To strengthen the flavor of natural bacon, marinate it in your choice of seasoning before cooking.
How to Cook Bacon on Stovetop
Frying bacon is the quickest and most popular way to prepare it. You’ll need:
- 1-2 pounds bacon
- Paper towels
If using a non-stick pan, spray cooking spray on the entire surface. If it’s an ordinary pan, drizzle 1 tablespoon of cooking oil.
While the pan is still cool, lay out your bacon strips alongside each other without touching.
Turn on the stove and cook bacon on medium-low heat. Sauté until bacon is uniformly brown and slightly crispy on its sides. You can cook for longer if you prefer yours extra crispy.
Remove bacon strips with tongs and drain oil on a paper towel. Serve and enjoy.
How to Cook Bacon in Oven
Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil. Place the bacon strips of the foil without overlapping. Bake until brown with crispy edges.
Remove from oven and drain on paper towels or a piece of newspaper. Serve.
How to Cook Bacon Tips and Tricks
Oil splatter is one of the challenges of cooking bacon. To minimize splatter, remove pan or baking sheet from heat during cooking and pour excess oil into a jar or container. When frying, it is better to add the bacon while the saucepan is still cool. Cooking times vary according to the thickness of bacon strips. The thicker your bacon cut, the longer you’ll have to cook it. Opt for bacon with less fat for weight management.