How to Cook Uncured Bacon: A Step-by-Step Guide

Cooking bacon is a simple affair, and for many, a cornerstone of their culinary repertoire. But unlike the cured varieties, uncured bacon must be cooked a little differently. Uncured bacon has become increasingly popular due to its superior flavor and health benefits – it contains no added nitrates or nitrites, making it a more natural product. By using the right approach, you can create perfectly cooked uncured bacon in no time at all. Read on to find out how.

What is Uncured Bacon and what makes it Different?

Uncured bacon is a type of pork belly that has been processed using only natural ingredients. This means that it has not been subjected to curing with nitrates or nitrites. This lack of curing agents gives uncured bacon an earthier taste than cured bacon, and it is often slightly pinker in color. It is typically higher in moisture than cured bacon.

Uncured bacon is often considered to be a healthier alternative to cured bacon, as it does not contain any added nitrates or nitrites. It is also a popular choice for those who are looking for a more natural flavor. Additionally, uncured bacon is often more expensive than cured bacon, as it requires more time and effort to produce.

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What You’ll Need to Cook Uncured Bacon

To cook uncured bacon, you’ll need:

  • Uncured bacon
  • A large frying pan or skillet
  • A spatula
  • Paper towels

Before you begin cooking, make sure to preheat your skillet over medium-high heat. Once the skillet is hot, add the bacon strips and cook for about 5 minutes, flipping the strips occasionally. Once the bacon is cooked to your desired crispness, remove it from the skillet and place it on a plate lined with paper towels to absorb any excess grease.

Step 1: Prepping the Bacon

The first step in cooking your perfect uncured bacon is to prepare the bacon strips. Take your bacon out of the packaging and gently lay it on a paper towel-lined plate, taking care not to overlap the strips. Use a paper towel to gently pat the strips dry, removing any excess moisture (this will help the bacon to crisp up more easily). Now the bacon is ready to cook.

If you are using thick-cut bacon, you may want to score the strips with a sharp knife before cooking. This will help the bacon to cook more evenly and prevent it from curling up. Additionally, you can season the bacon with your favorite spices or herbs before cooking for an extra flavor boost.

Step 2: Heating the Pan

Place your skillet or frying pan over medium heat and allow it to heat up for a couple of minutes. Once heated, add just enough oil or butter to coat the base of your pan – this will help the bacon to cook evenly and prevent it from sticking to the pan. Wait for a minute or so for the oil or butter to heat up.

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Step 3: Cooking the Bacon

Once the pan is hot, add your bacon strips to the pan and cook until they reach your desired level of crispness, turning them over half way through cooking. Cook for around 8 minutes, or until golden brown, before transferring them onto a plate lined with paper towel.

Step 4: Transferring the Bacon to a Plate

Using a spatula, carefully transfer your cooked bacon strips onto a plate lined with paper towel. This will help soak up any excess fat and keep your bacon crisp. Once on the plate, use a second paper towel to pat the bacon strips dry and remove any excess fat.

Step 5: Discarding Grease and Cleaning the Pan

Once you’ve removed all the bacon from the pan, discard any used oil or butter and give your pan a good wipe using kitchen roll. Be sure not to leave any residual oil on the pan as this could burn and impart an unpleasant flavor to your next batch.

Tips for Perfectly Cooked Uncured Bacon

  • Be sure not to overcrowd the pan when cooking your bacon – try to leave enough room between the strips for even cooking.
  • If you prefer your bacon extra crispy, leave it to cook for an extra few minutes before transferring it onto paper towel.
  • If you’re cooking a large batch, consider pre-cooking some of the bacon in the oven.
  • Uncured bacon cooks best at a lower heat – if your bacon is sticking to the pan, lower the heat and wait for the oil or butter to heat up before adding more bacon.
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Storing, Reheating, and Serving Uncured Bacon

To store uncured bacon for future use, place it in an airtight container and refrigerate for up to one week. To re-heat uncured bacon, pre-heat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and cook for around 10 minutes. If you want an extra crispy bite, place cooked strips on a baking sheet and bake for an additional 3-5 minutes. Uncured bacon works perfectly as an ingredient in scrambles and omelets, can be added to sandwiches or burgers for smokiness, or as a topping for salads as an extra zingy crunch.

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