Gather-round the frying pan everybody because it's National Bacon Day and it’s enough to make any bacon-lover squeal.
Admittedly, there are very few things in this world that don’t taste better when paired with a bit of bacon. Whether it’s chocolate-covered bacon from the candy shop, bacon cheeseburgers, bacon-wrapped tater tots, or even bacon-flavored chapstick, it’s hard to deny that bacon is a delicious tasty treat that had truly gotten its fingers into almost everything! Here are a few bacony recipes from Pork.org (Pork Checkhoff) and the Minnesota Pork Board to help you celebrate!
Simply Saucy Bacon-Wrapped Pork Loin
- Preheat oven to 450ºF. Sprinkle pork with salt and pepper.
- Heat oil in large skillet over medium-high heat. Add pork and brown on all sides, about 6 minutes. Transfer to plate and cool for 10 minutes.
- Wrap bacon slices vertically around pork roast; do not overlap bacon. Tie lengthwise and crosswise with kitchen string to hold bacon in place; tuck loose ends of bacon under string. Place on a rack in a roasting pan, tucked-bacon side down.
- Roast on rack for 15 minutes. Turn pork over and reduce temperature to 350ºF and roast for 15 minutes. Remove rack and return pork to pan, tucked-end side up. Roast, turning occasionally until bacon is browned and an instant-read thermometer inserted in the center of the roast reads 145ºF, about 50 minutes. Remove from oven and let stand for 10 minutes.
- Skim fat from pan juices, leaving browned juices in pan.
- Add barbecue sauce and dijon mustard and bring to simmer over medium heat, stirring to loosen browned bits in pan; simmer 2 minutes.
- Remove strings, carve pork, and serve with sauce.
Grilled Chocolate Chip Cookie Bacon S’mores
- Make the cookies: In a bowl, cream together butter, sugar and brown sugar for 1 to 2 minutes until light and very fluffy. Add vanilla, egg and egg yolk, and mix well. In a separate bowl, whisk together flour, pudding mix, baking soda and salt.
- Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients and mix until incorporated and dough comes together. Stir in chocolate chips. Cover very tightly and chill for at least 1 hour.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Roll dough into balls (about 1 1/2 inch) and space 2 to 3 inches apart on a baking sheet. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes until lightly browned on top. Allow to cool 5 to 10 minutes on baking sheet before transferring to a cooling rack to cool completely.
- To grill the bacon: Heat a grill to medium-high heat. Thread bacon onto skewers in an S-shape. Place skewers directly on grill and cook 8 to 12 minutes, rotating as needed to ensure even cooking. Transfer to a plate, let cool and then remove bacon from skewers. Set aside.
- Meanwhile, roast the marshmallows: Roast marshmallows directly over the grill using skewers or roasting sticks until cooked to your preference.
- Assemble s’mores: Flip one cookie over so it’s upside down. Place a square of chocolate on top of the upside down cookie, then top with grilled marshmallow, bacon and a right side-up second cookie. Serve immediately.
Smoky Pork, Bacon, and White Bean Chili
- In a large saucepan or small stockpot over medium heat, cook the bacon, stirring occasionally, until crisp, 8 to 10 minutes. Use a slotted spoon to transfer the bacon to a paper towel-lined plate and set aside.
- Add the onion to the bacon fat and cook, stirring occasionally, for 2 minutes. Increase the heat to medium-high, add the pork, and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onions are crisp-tender, 6 to 8 minutes. Stir in the chili powder and paprika. Stir in the tomatoes (with their juices) and water. Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer, and cook, stirring occasionally, until the pork is tender, 35 to 45 minutes.
- Stir in the beans and about 2/3 of the bacon and cook, stirring occasionally, until heated through, about 10 minutes. Add salt to taste. Serve the chili garnished with the remaining bacon and the sour cream and scallions, if using.
Cheesy Maple Bacon Cajun Pulled Pork Sandwich
- To make the Cajun Pulled Pork: In a small bowl, combine the salt, black pepper, paprika, cayenne pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, thyme, and celery seed. Rub the mixture over all sides of the meat, pressing it to adhere. Transfer the meat to a slow cooker and add any of the spice mix that didn’t adhere. Add the broth, cover, and cook until the pork is very tender, 6 to 8 hours on low or 4 to 5 hours on high.
- Meanwhile, make the Sriracha Yogurt: In a small bowl, combine the yogurt and Sriracha. Set aside in the refrigerator.
- About 1 3/4 hours before the pork is done, preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
- Meanwhile, start the Crispy Potatoes: Place the potatoes in a large pot of cold, well-salted water and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce to a simmer and cook until the potatoes are very tender, 15 to 18 minutes. Drain the potatoes and set aside.
- While the potatoes are cooking, make the Maple Bacon: Arrange a wire rack over a large rimmed baking sheet and arrange the bacon on the rack. Bake until the bacon is beginning to brown, 15 to 18 minutes. Remove the bacon from the oven and brush it on both sides with the maple syrup. Continue baking until the bacon is nicely browned, 5 to 7 minutes. Remove from the oven and set aside until cool enough to handle, then transfer the bacon to a plate. Pour the bacon fat on the baking sheet into a measuring cup, about 3 tablespoons. Set the bacon, bacon fat, and baking sheet aside.
- Increase the oven to 500 degrees F.
- Arrange the potatoes on the baking sheet that had the bacon fat and use a spatula to smash each to about 1/2-inch thick. Add enough olive oil to the bacon fat to equal 1/3 cup, and then drizzle the mixture over the potatoes. Sprinkle generously with salt. Bake until well browned and crisp, about 35 to 40 minutes. Top with the scallions.
- While the potatoes are baking, transfer the cooked pork to a cutting board and let rest 10 to 15 minutes. Use two forks to shred the meat into bite-sized pieces. Moisten/season with cooking juices to taste.
- Break the bacon pieces in half and arrange on the bottom halves of the rolls. Top with the pork, cheese, and pickles and Sriracha yogurt if you’d like. Serve with the potatoes and Sriracha yogurt alongside.
Bacon-Wrapped Pork Chops with Seasoned Butter
- In a small bowl, stir together Garlic-Mustard Butter ingredients (softened butter, Dijon-style mustard, minced garlic) until well mixed. Wrap in waxed paper to shape like a stick of butter. Chill while pork is cooking. When ready to serve, cut into fourths and top each pork chop before serving.
- Dry the chops with paper towels and season generously with salt and pepper. Wrap a strip of bacon around each one, securing with a toothpick. Cook as directed below to medium doneness. Remove toothpick before serving chops.
- Broil: Broil 4 inches from heat source, 6-7 minutes. Turn and continue broiling to desired doneness, approximately 5-6 minutes until internal temperature on a meat thermometer reads 145 degrees Fahrenheit, followed by a 3-minute rest time.
- Panbroil: Heat grill pan over high heat; add chops, lower heat to medium-high and cook for 6-7 minutes, until nicely browned. Turn and continue cooking for about 5-6 minutes until internal temperature on a meat thermometer reads 145 degrees Fahrenheit, followed by a 3-minute rest time.
- Grill: Prepare medium-hot fire in grill; grill chops over direct heat for 6-7 minutes; turn and grill 5-6 minutes until internal temperature on a meat thermometer reads 145 degrees Fahrenheit, followed by a 3-minute rest time.
Air Fryer Bacon Brussels Sprouts
- In a bowl, combine brussels sprouts, bacon, and olive oil.
- Season with salt and pepper.
- Toss brussels until well-coated.
- Pour contents into the air fryer basket.
- Set air fryer at 350 for 10-12 minutes. Shake the basket halfway through.
Bacon Chocolate Caramel Apples
- Cook bacon in a sauté pan. Once bacon is cooked, remove it from pan but keep the fat. Melt brown sugar in the pan to form a caramel. Add the bacon to it and mix. Set on a parchment-lined tray to cool. Then, chop the cooled bacon into pieces.
- Wash and dry the apples. Insert a stick into the top of each apple and set aside.
- Place caramels and cream in a microwave safe bowl and microwave for 30 seconds on high. Stir, then microwave again for 30 seconds. Stir until caramel is smooth and drippy.
- Dip each apple into the melted caramel, then place on parchment paper and freeze for 5–10 minutes to help the caramel set.
- Melt semi-sweet chocolate in the top half of a double boiler. Remove from heat and stir until smooth. Dip apples into chocolate, then immediately roll in bacon bits to coat the outside of the apple. Place back on parchment and into the freezer to cool for 5 minutes.
- Enjoy your apples as is, or try topping your bacon chocolate caramel creation off with some melted white chocolate.