A Guide to Cooking Bacon Like a Pro
There are different types of bacon cuts: bacon slabs, thick-cut, smoked, and the good old breakfast bacon strips. Here are tips on how to cook the different types of bacon, using different kinds of methods and appliances. There are tricks to getting crispy bacon all the time!
To cook bacon in a toaster oven:
1 Preheat! Toaster ovens do not heat up as high as a regular oven, so the next best thing to do is preheat it for at least 5 minutes before adding a tray of bacon.
2 Drain off excess oil and juices. Avoid steaming the bacon in its juices, since these will take longer to evaporate in the toaster oven than on the stovetop. Plus, it will increase cooking time.
3 Check the time! As with any oven, toaster ovens can differ dramatically in cooking evenness and temperature. Since most toaster ovens have no temperature settings and only include a timer, determining the temperature can be tricky. Check your bacon at every 10-minute mark to avoid under- or over-cooking the bacon.
To cook bacon in an air-fryer:
1 Cut it to size. Air fryers usually have small, square baskets. Bacon strips won't fit lengthwise, so cut in half and lay the strips out in the basket before turning it on.
2 Turn up the heat. Air fryers have temperature control so use it at a high setting (180°C). Since air circulates, this can speed up the cooking process however, so check your bacon every 5 minutes to make sure it's cooking evenly and not burning, especially if you've cut the bacon in half.
To cook thick-cut bacon:
Cook thick-cut bacon normally, whether it's on the stovetop or in the oven. It might, however, need a little oil in the beginning if cooking on the stovetop because the fat will take a little longer than usual to render out in thicker cuts. If cooking in the oven, allot around 20-30 minutes for bacon to cook until crisp at 400°F.
To cook bacon slabs:
Sear it first. Use a hot pan to sear the outside of the bacon and create the browned exterior that enhances its flavor. Then drop the heat, cover, and cook until heated through. Or, pop it in a preheated oven (350°F) to get the inside cooked.