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Today, we are mastering a life skill: Baked Bacon in the oven. Here’s how to cook bacon that is impeccably crispy and uniformly cooked with less mess. You’ll call yourself a bacon perfection!

bacon baked in oven recipe

Baked Bacon is the Best Bacon

The secret to perfect fried bacon is that it isn’t fried; it’s baked.

Baked bacon is one of those rare culinary situations where the method that yields a superior result (baked bacon) is actually easier than the conventional method (pan frying).

  • Even Cooking. An oven-safe rack allows the heat to circulate evenly around the bacon, a key component of bacon excellence.
  • Hands-Free. No standing at the stove to babysit your bacon. It cooks in the oven unattended.
  • Safer. Oven bacon won’t splatter you with hot grease while you fry it.
  • Restaurant-Worthy. Ever wonder how your favorite brunch, burger or BLT spot achieves those flat, thick, and magically crisp bacon slices? I’d wager my last piece that the bacon is baked. It’s the method most restaurants use.
  • Bigger Batches. Cooking for a crowd? Bake two sheet pans at once.
  • Easy Clean Up. Let the grease harden on the foil, then discard it. Simple!
  • Healthier than Fried. The grease from the bacon drips off and is collected below the rack, which means it stays off your bacon and out of your body. I also pat the bacon to remove some extra grease and keep it crisp.

Conculsion: Oven baked bacon is easier to make, healthier, and produces better results than fried bacon (Air Fryer Bacon is another great method).

Ready to dive into how to cook perfect baked bacon? Let’s do it!

the best bacon baked in the oven

A Quick Note. While baked bacon is arguably healthier than fried bacon, it is still bacon.

Enjoy it in moderation as one tasty component of a balanced diet.

Whenever we have bacon, I like to serve it with other lean proteins, fruits, whole grains, or vegetables to make a complete meal.

a plate of easy baked bacon

How to Cook Bacon in the Oven

The ONLY Ingredient

  • High-Quality Bacon. This might sound obvious, but I can’t overstate its importance: the better quality of bacon you buy, the better your final baked bacon will taste. I promise it’s worth it!

Tips for Buying Bacon

  • Purchase bacon from the butcher counter at the grocery store. It’s usually only a dollar or two more than the pre-packaged stuff, but the taste is remarkably better.
  • Go for the thick cut bacon (no wimpy bacon here!). It’s easier to layer onto to sandwiches, makes more of an impact when sprinkled on salads, and is extra satisfying when munched on its own.
  • For flavor, focus on the quality of the bacon first. Bacon that is applewood smoked is always good, but any flavor is delicious when it’s well-sourced.
bacon on a wire baking sheet to bake in oven

Tips for Perfect Baked Bacon

  • Bake at 400 Degrees F. Some recipes recommend baking bacon at other temperatures or starting the bacon in a cold oven, but I found that a preheated 400 degrees F is the best temperature for baking bacon. It cooks the bacon evenly no matter its thickness and the bacon won’t splatter.
  • Use a Rack. Not only does the rack make the bacon healthier, but it also helps make it crispy and evenly-cooked.
bacon on baking sheet

How Long to Bake Bacon

How long bacon should be cooked in the oven will vary based upon the thickness of your bacon and your desired crispness.

  • For Thin-Cut Bacon. Regular, thin-cut bacon will typically bake in 12 minutes at 400 degrees F. If you want it extra crispy, you can let it bake a little longer, but keep a close eye on it.
  • For Thick-Cut Bacon. Thicker bacon will take 14 to 20 minutes, depending upon your thickness and how crisp you would like it to be.

The time the bacon takes to cook will also vary by how many slices you are making at once.

If your sheet pan is very crowded, you may need to extend the baking time by a few minutes.

Bacon baked in the oven

Cooked Bacon Storage Tips

  • To Store. Cooked bacon will last in the refrigerator for 3 to 5 days. If it starts to smell funny or change appearance, throw it out.
  • To Reheat. Recrisp your bacon slices on a baking sheet in the oven at 350 degrees F.
  • To Freeze. Store baked bacon slices in an airtight freezer-safe storage container in the freezer for up to 3 months. Remove and thaw slices as desired.

How to Use Baked Bacon

Now that you’ve mastered the life skill of how to make oven baked bacon, it’s time to use it!

Baked Bacon

4.70 from 50 votes
Delicious oven baked bacon recipe. Cooking bacon in an oven results in perfect, evenly cooked, crispy bacon every time. Healthier than fried!

Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 20 minutes
Total: 25 minutes

Servings: 1 to 100!


  • 6 slices bacon or any number of strips and thickness you like (see notes for recommendations)
  • Nonstick cooking spray


  • If making an amount of bacon that will fit on a single baking sheet without overlapping (about 6 to 8 slices, depending upon the bacon and sheet), place a rack in the center of your oven. If making a larger amount, place the racks in the upper and lower thirds. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees F.
  • Line a large, rimmed baking sheet with foil for easy clean up (if you prefer to bake the bacon without foil, leave the foil off), then place an ovenproof baking rack on top. Spritz the baking rack lightly with nonstick spray. Arrange the bacon in a single layer on the baking rack.
  • Bake until you reach your desired level of crispness. This could be as early as 12 minutes if you are using thinner bacon and like it less crisp or 20 minutes or more if you using a thicker cut and like your bacon really crispy. If baking two racks at once, rotate their positions halfway through.
  • Once cooked, immediately transfer the bacon to a paper-towel-lined plate and lightly pat dry (this keeps it from getting soggy). Let cool just enough so that you don’t (completely) burn your tongue. Devour immediately or use to top salads, pastas, and sandwiches, or in any of these recipes.
  • To clean up: Let the bacon grease cool and harden, then crumple it up inside the foil and discard. If you’d like to use the bacon grease for another purpose, let it cool for a few minutes, transfer it to a lidded container or jar, and refrigerate.



  • I like and recommend thick-cut applewood smoked bacon. The applewood smoke flavor is classic, and the thick cut provides maximum bacon crunch and full flavor. I also prefer center cut bacon when possible, as it is more lean and “meaty.” If you can get the bacon from the butcher directly or from a local supplier, that’s even better. With bacon, quality really counts, and it’s worth the splurge. We are making bacon, after all.
  • TO STORE: Cooked bacon will last in the refrigerator for 3 to 5 days. If it starts to smell funny or change appearance, throw it out.
  • TO REHEAT: Rewarm gently in the microwave or use at room temperature.
  • TO FREEZE: Store baked bacon slices in an airtight freezer-safe storage container in the freezer for up to 3 months. Remove and thaw slices as desired.


Serving: 1bacon stripCalories: 92kcalCarbohydrates: 1gProtein: 3gFat: 9gSaturated Fat: 3gCholesterol: 15mgPotassium: 44mg

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Frequently Asked Questions

How Do I Know When Bacon is Bad?

If your bacon is in its original sealed package, you can go by the expiration date listed on the package. If you’ve already opened the package, make sure to cook up the bacon within 1 week of opening to be safe. (Confession: I’ve used bacon more than 1 week after it’s been opened, but the comfort level is up to you.)
If at any point your bacon starts to change color or smells off, it’s safest to discard it.

How Do I Bake Bacon Without a Rack?

If you don’t own an oven-safe rack, cook the bacon directly on the aluminum foil.

Can I Freeze Bacon?

Uncooked bacon can be frozen in an airtight package for up to 6 months. Thaw it overnight in the refrigerator. If you don’t think you’ll use a whole package within 1 week of opening, freeze the unused portion right away.

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Erin Clarke

Hi, I'm Erin Clarke, and I'm fearlessly dedicated to making healthy food that's affordable, easy-to-make, and best of all DELISH. I'm the author and recipe developer here at and of The Well Plated Cookbook. I adore both sweets and veggies, and I am on a mission to save you time and dishes. WELCOME!

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  1. Loved that I had to scroll through pages and pages of nonsense and ads to find the temperature and cook time.

    1. Hi Antonio. You actually didn’t have to do that at all. All you needed to do was hit the “jump to recipe” at the top of the screen to get to the recipe faster. The post contains lots of tips and information for those who like it, so I think the “jump to recipe” button would be great for you.

  2. How did I not know about this method years ago? It’s so much easier!! I crowd my baking sheets full of bacon, and then rotate them, flip the bacon if it’s on a rack or use parchment directly on the pan, with bacon on top. It takes closer to 45 minutes for my oven to cook the bacon crispy but I’m sure it’s because my whole oven is packed full.5 stars

  3. Hi Erin,

    How do you think this would work with subbing out the baking sheet for a cast iron skillet? With or without rack?

    Here is my thinking: When I pan fry bacon, my kitchen fills with smoke (and I have no hood. *sad trombone*). I would hope that baking would either eliminate this or keep most of the smoke in the oven and slowly seep out instead of walking around in a smoke cloud for an hour.

    Also, if I don’t save the bacon grease for another dish… free seasoning of my skillet!

    I kind of also wonder if the bacon may cook faster or more even with that hot, hot skillet cooking the bottom side of the bacon.

    Regardless, I am almost certain to try it tomorrow. Thanks for the recipe!

    1. Hi Todd! I haven’t tested this out with a cast iron skillet but it would likely work. If you decide to experiment, let me know how it goes!

      1. It turned out great. The one on a rack turned out better and noticeably less salty than the one directly in cast iron. There was zero smoke to speak of. I was able to knock out the rest of breakfast and leave the bacon unattended, which was a nice surprise. After seasoning the two skillets, I still had 2 oz of grease left, which was also neat.

        Having experimented, I will most likely go with your baking sheet method instead… I could really only get about 4 slices of bacon per skillet, which is usually enough. But, the baking sheet sounds a lot less fussy.5 stars

  4. Cleanup of the rack is the main chore of this method, so I cook 2 lbs at a time…and freeze the rest.

    I use this method because cooking is more uniform…and has minimal spatter.5 stars

  5. Usually just “bake” it just in tinfoil which is really no different then frying due to all the grease it is still sitting in. I actually found a baking rack I forgot I had at my house and much better baking taste and experience!!5 stars

  6. This works well. Followed many times. For convenience, I cook 2 lbs in 3 batches over a rack and a pan lined with parchment paper. I keep the bacon fat for roasted potatoes and fried eggs. And freeze most of the bacon for sandwiches, eggs, and salads.5 stars

  7. Yes, this is the ONLY way that I cook bacon. No mes and the bacon always is perfectly done – looks good, too.

  8. Fun fact “Air Fryers” are just counter top convection OVENS. So it’s literally the same as cooking it in the oven

    1. Correct Bill! But you would have to have a convection oven in order for it to be the same. This gives people the option to cook in the oven if they don’t have a convection oven. Enjoy!

  9. I love to cook the whole package of thick sliced bacon this way. I also press a sheet of parchment paper on top of the bacon as it keeps my oven cleaner and doesn’t interfere with crisping.5 stars

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