Things Everyone MUST Know About Bacon!

Published Categorized as Ingredients

Bacon – the sizzling, crispy delight loved by millions (including myself)! Do you think you know everything there is about bacon? Well, read on to see for yourself! Let’s get into the savory world of this beloved meat, revealing tips to make the most of every delicious strip.

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Things Everyone Must Know About Bacon!

Table of Contents

How to Tell if Bacon is Undercooked?

Cooked bacon typically has a deep, brownish-red color, with fat that ranges from white to golden. It should be stiff enough to lift easily from the pan.

Raw bacon is flat, pinkish-red, and slimy, while cooked bacon is darker, drier, and stiffer. Undercooked bacon retains a lighter color and flexible texture. As bacon cooks, it shrinks, curls, and changes color.

Well-cooked bacon develops a golden brown color and forms “fond” from caramelized fat.

For perfect bacon, cook at 400°F to 425°F, depending on your preferred crispiness. Regular-cut bacon takes about 12-18 minutes, while thick-cut may need up to 20 minutes. Cooking on the stovetop requires turning the strips frequently for even cooking, whereas oven baking doesn’t require flipping.

Paying attention to bacon’s color and texture lets you avoid undercooked bacon and enjoy it safely!

Full blog: How To Tell If Bacon Is Undercooked

Is Smoked Bacon Cooked?

It might seem like smoked bacon is already cooked, but the answer depends.

The term “smoked” does not always mean “cooked.” Smoking meat can be done at both hot and cold temperatures. Hot smoking cooks the meat, while cold smoking, which is common for bacon, imparts flavor without cooking it.

To determine if smoked bacon is fully cooked, examine the meat. Raw smoked bacon looks similar to unsmoked raw bacon and is often sold alongside other raw bacon. Some bacon labeled as smoked may be precooked; check the packaging to see if the manufacturer indicates that it is ready to eat.

Most smoked bacon is considered raw because the smoking process does not cook the meat. Some smoked bacon is precooked, so always check the packaging.

Always check the packaging and cook bacon thoroughly before eating.

Full blog: Is Smoked Bacon Cooked

How to Store Cooked Bacon?

Bacon is one of the most delicious and versatile meats available so it’s VERY easy to cook more than you can eat! And of course, rather than wasting everything, there’s always storing your bacon properly for future enjoyment. But how do we retain its crunch or freshness?

Do not leave cooked bacon at room temperature for more than 2 hours. Store in the fridge for 4-5 days or freeze for up to one month.

For short-term storage, the fridge is suitable. For longer storage, freezing is necessary.

Cooked bacon can be stored in the fridge for 4-5 days. To do this:

  1. Cook bacon slightly less than usual if planning to reheat.
  2. Cool bacon to room temperature quickly.
  3. Blot off excess grease with a paper towel.
  4. Store in a Ziploc bag or airtight container, optionally wrapping in cling film to minimize air contact.

For storage beyond 5 days:

  1. Cook and blot bacon as for fridge storage.
  2. Cool to room temperature.
  3. Place pieces on a baking tray lined with parchment paper and flash freeze for 3 hours.
  4. Transfer to Ziploc bags or airtight containers, grouping pieces and wrapping in plastic to prevent freezer burn.
  5. Freeze for up to one month.

Bacon can be cooked from frozen, but if thawing is preferred:

  1. Leave in the fridge overnight.
  2. Submerge in cold water in a sealed plastic bag.
  3. Microwave on high for 10 seconds at a time until thawed.

Reheat bacon using a frying pan for best results, or use the oven or grill. Cook until it reaches the desired crispiness.

Full blog: How to Store Cooked Bacon

Can You Refreeze Bacon After Thawing or Cooking?

Yes, bacon can be frozen and it freezes beautifully.

Bacon can also be frozen after cooking. Refreezing bacon depends on the thawing method:

  • Fridge Thawing: Safe to refreeze.
  • Room Temperature Thawing: Not recommended to refreeze.
  • Cold Water or Microwave Thawing: Cook the bacon first, then refreeze.

Cook the bacon, cool it, and then freeze using this method:

  • Place wax, foil, or parchment paper on a baking tray.
  • Lay out the bacon slices side-by-side, not stacking them.
  • Add another layer of paper and more bacon strips, repeating until all strips are laid out.
  • Freeze the tray until the bacon is solid, then transfer the slices to a freezer bag, marking the date.

It’s best to minimize the number of times bacon is refrozen. Thaw bacon in the fridge to keep it safe for refreezing.

Avoid refreezing bacon thawed at room temperature, in the microwave, or in cold water.

Full blog: Can You Refreeze Bacon

Can I Cook Frozen Bacon in the Air Fryer?

Cooking with frozen bacon in the air fryer is one of the quickest and easiest ways to achieve perfect crispiness. If you’re new to air fryers, this might seem scary, but it actually isn’t, really!

Before cooking, you should know:

  • Whole Pack of Bacon: The size of your air fryer basket will determine how much bacon you can cook at once. Avoid overlapping the bacon too much.
  • Flipping Bacon: Flip the bacon halfway through cooking to ensure even crispiness.
  • Curling Bacon: Bacon will curl in the air fryer, similar to other cooking methods. There’s no way to avoid this completely.
  • Healthiness: Air-fried bacon is not necessarily healthier than pan-fried bacon unless you add extra oil in one method and not the other.

Regular or thin bacon slices take around 8 minutes, while thicker slices can take up to 15 minutes. For frozen bacon, add an extra minute or two for defrosting.

  1. Place frozen bacon in the air fryer at 350°F. Cook for 5 minutes, flipping at the 3-minute mark.
  2. Separate the bacon pieces as much as possible. Set the air fryer to 400°F and cook for 8-10 minutes. Adjust the time based on your desired crispiness.
  3. Once the bacon is cooked to your liking, plate it up and enjoy.

Oh, and don’t forget: Cleaning your air fryer after cooking bacon is very important. Remove the basket and pan, and wash them with warm, soapy water. Use a damp cloth to wipe the interior of the air fryer. For a deeper clean, refer to specific air fryer cleaning guides.

The first few tries might result in a smokey kitchen and extra cleanup. If you’re okay with these minor inconveniences, air frying bacon is definitely worth it.

Full blog: Frozen Bacon in Air Fryer

Things Everyone Must Know About Bacon!

How Long is Turkey Bacon Good for in the Fridge?

Unopened turkey bacon, when stored correctly, can last 7-14 days past the sell-by or expiration date. This means it could be in your refrigerator for about a month before going bad. However, it’s best not to push it; try to consume uncooked meat within a week. Cooked turkey bacon will last 3-5 days in the fridge and up to 8 weeks in the freezer. If unopened, it can be frozen for up to 6 months but is best consumed within 3-4 months for optimal flavor and texture.

Proper storage extends turkey bacon’s shelf life. Cooked turkey bacon should cool completely before being wrapped in cling wrap or foil and placed in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. If you prefer to freeze it, double-wrap in cling wrap or foil, place in an airtight container, and freeze for up to 6 months. Thaw overnight in the fridge before use.

To determine if turkey bacon has spoiled, consider its appearance, texture, and smell:

  • Appearance: Fresh turkey bacon should be pinkish. Spoiled bacon may look gray or brown and could develop fuzzy patches of mold.
  • Texture: Fresh turkey bacon is soft and moist. If it feels slimy or squishy, it’s likely spoiled due to lactic acid bacteria.
  • Smell: Bad turkey bacon will have a rotten smell. If it smells off, discard it.

Full blog: How Long is Turkey Bacon Good in the Fridge?

Things Everyone Must Know About Bacon!

Bacon be With You!

I decided to include not SUPER common things about bacon in today’s post. The wider the knowledge range, the better, right?

If you have other bacon things to share, please let me know!

By Anna

Anna Brooks, the voice behind CooksDream.com, is a seasoned writer and editor with an insatiable love for food. While not a professional chef, her culinary adventures and unique insights have captivated readers for years. Anna believes in the transformative power of food, stating it "feeds the soul." Dive into her writings for a mix of inspiration, entertainment, and culinary wisdom. Author Pinterest Facebook Twitter Instagram YouTube Tumblr Reddit Quora

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