Baked bacon is great, but this candied bacon recipe is even better! Sweet, smoky, spicy yet still bacon, what's not to love! Breakfast or brunch won't be the same after this!
The bacon is sweetened with a combination of maple syrup and piloncillo aka Mexican brown sugar but balanced against the heat from Piri Piri seasoning.
WHAT'S NEEDED TO MAKE CANDIED BACON
- Maple Syrup
- Piri Piri Spice - Cayenne, though not as complex in flavor to Piri Piri, is a good substitute
DIRECTIONS FOR COOKING SWEET & SPICY BACON
This is a simple recipe that's mainly technique-driven without any real work. With baked bacon, it's pretty much set it and forget it. While it cooks you're free to multi-task.
Though most people fry bacon in a pan/skillet baking is actually the more effective method that results in consistent texture and great results. I like baking personally because one - allows you to add your own seasoning and two - you can cook large quantities at one time.
Pre-heat the oven to 375 degrees. Line baking sheet with aluminum foil and then place a wire rack above. Lay the bacon on the rack. Be sure to leave enough room between the bacon slices.
Brush the maple syrup onto the bacon. Then add the piloncillo and Piri Piri seasoning. Use a grater to get the piloncillo to the consistency of brown sugar.
Bake the bacon about 15 minutes until the piloncillo is fully melted and the bacon has reached desired crispiness. Let the bacon cool and settle for about 5 minutes before serving.
CANDIED BACON COOKING CONSIDERATIONS
Don't fret over the ingredients. Work with what you have. Brown sugar and cayenne are easy substitutes for piloncillo and Piri Piri respectively.
Be mindful of bacon thickness. Thicker slices equal longer cook time so more coating is needed from the maple and piloncillo mix.
I like to line my baking sheet pan with aluminum foil for easier cleanup. By overlaying a wire rack above you get more effective cooking as this allows the air to circulate around the food and the dippings to be caught in the pan vs. the bacon cooking in its own grease.
This dish is not "shelf-stable" so if not consuming immediately refrigerate it until you plan to eat it.
Candied bacon can also be frozen easily and eaten later. Allow the bacon to cool to room temps then wrap each piece individually with wax paper. Once wrapped place in a freezer-safe bag and store in your freezer.
To reheat frozen bacon, bake in the oven for about 5 minutes at 350 degrees.
Allow bacon to rest after cooking. This gives it time to firm up.
Eat solo as is or drop in the mix of your next homemade bloody mary.
MORE RECIPES THAT CONTAIN PILONCILLO
MORE RECIPES WITH BACON
MAKE THIS SWEET AND SPICY BACON
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- 8 slices bacon
- ½ tablespoon piri piri spice
- ¼ cup maple syrup
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Season bacon with piri piri spice
- On a parchment-lined rimmed baking sheet, arrange bacon in a single layer. Bake until fat is rendered and bacon is beginning to brown, about 15 minutes.
- Remove bacon from oven and brush both sides with maple syrup. Return to oven and bake until bacon is browned and sticky, about 5 minutes. With tongs, transfer to a wire rack, then set rack on baking sheet and let bacon drain. Serve warm.