Cooking turkey bacon in the oven is the best way to ensure deliciously crispy strips, with less fat, fewer calories, and easier cleanup than bacon cooked in a skillet. This post will show you why oven baked turkey bacon is better and how to cook it to perfection!
Turkey bacon is a tasty alternative to pork bacon, and it’s a great option for those who can’t or don’t want to eat pork. But frying bacon on the stovetop is a messy process, and the strips have more fat and calories than oven baked bacon.
Best of all, the turkey bacon in oven method is easier and doesn’t require as much babysitting. Keep reading to find out how to cook turkey bacon to crispy perfection!
Reasons to Cook Turkey Bacon in the Oven vs On a Stovetop
- It’s a time saver.
Cooking bacon in a skillet on the stovetop takes about 12 to 15 minutes over medium heat. In comparison, cooking turkey bacon in the oven takes 16 minutes at 425° Fahrenheit.
So what’s the benefit of baking bacon in the oven? Well, the process of oven-baked turkey bacon is mostly hands-off, while pan frying requires carefully watching the pan the entire time.
So, it can save you time in cleaning all the grease and splatter from cooking in a skillet.
Plus, leaving the skillet unattended puts you at greater risk of having a grease fire and/or completely burning the bacon.
- Less mess and easier clean up.
If you’ve ever spent time cleaning up grease splatters from your counters and stove top, you know it takes quite a while. When you remove a pan of crispy turkey bacon from the oven, there are NO splatters to clean up!
Even better, if your pan is lined completely with parchment paper or foil, you may not even have to wash the pan.
So ultimately, the best and fastest way to cook turkey bacon is in the oven. It’s so easy, and you’ll get amazing results!
Kitchen Equipment Needed for Baking Turkey Bacon
- Oven-safe, grid-style baking/cooling rack – If possible, use a rack that has wires going in both directions. This helps prevent the turkey bacon from slipping through the cracks
- Parchment paper or aluminum foil – While you don’t have to line your baking pan, if you don’t, expect to spend more time cleaning it afterward.
- Large rimmed baking pan -To eliminate the chance of grease spilling onto the floor of your oven, avoid using rimless bakeware like cookie sheets.
- Metal tongs – This is essential for flipping the turkey bacon in the oven. Well, unless you enjoy burning your fingers.
- Paper towels
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Do you love turkey?
If so, be sure to check out our recipes for perfect turkey sausage balls and Instant Pot Turkey Tenderloin with Potatoes and Gravy.
Frequently Asked Questions
Turkey bacon is not precooked, but is smoked or cured. The exception is uncured bacon, which is completely raw bacon. It has no nitrates to add flavor and preserve the meat. Check the package to see if your bacon needs to be cooked before eating it.
Yes, you can bake turkey bacon on an oven-safe wire rack without parchment paper or foil. However, cleaning a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or foil is easier.
Yes, it is possible to undercook turkey bacon. Whether it’s cured, smoked, or nitrate free, turkey bacon is unsafe to eat without first cooking it to an internal temperature of 165° Fahrenheit.
At an oven temperature of 425° Fahrenheit, it takes approximately 16 minutes to cook slices of crispy turkey bacon.
How to Cook Turkey Bacon in Oven
- Preheat the oven according to its type.
If you’ll be cooking turkey bacon in a conventional oven, set the temperature to 425º Fahrenheit. Baking bacon in a convection oven, or in a countertop convection oven requires lower heat. So, preheat convection ovens to 415º Fahrenheit.
- Prepare the baking pan.
Line the baking sheet with parchment paper or aluminum foil to lessen the cleanup. Then, set the baking rack on top of the lined baking sheet.
- Add seasonings, if desired.
You can rub some black pepper on your turkey bacon for additional savory flavor. For a sweet breakfast or brunch treat, season the strips with cinnamon sugar or maple syrup.
- Arrange the strips in a single layer on the rack.
- Bake turkey bacon in oven for 8 minutes on each side.
- Drain excess grease.
After cooking, use tongs to move the turkey bacon strips from the pan. Place them between sheets of paper towel (or blot) to remove any excess bacon grease and fat.
PRO TIP – Don’t throw away excess bacon grease!!
If there’s enough grease on the baking sheet, you can tilt the pan so it accumulates into one corner. Then, pour the grease into a heat-proof glass or canning jar. Cover and store it in the refrigerator for up to 1 month.
Use the bacon grease instead of oil or butter for extra flavor when making southern recipes like cornbread or biscuits and sausage gravy.
Tips for Crispy Turkey Bacon in the Oven
- Don’t overlap the slices. Be sure to leave 1/4″ space between the strips.
- OPTIONAL – Spray turkey bacon slices with non-stick spray, or brush them with melted butter. This may sound strange, but there’s an important reason for this suggestion.
Unlike pork bacon, turkey bacon releases very little fat during cooking. So, while creating crispy turkey bacon in the oven is possible, without using extra fat, it won’t be as crispy as strips cooked in a skillet with additional oil.
- Avoid overcooking. As mentioned above, undercooked bacon is potentially harmful. However, overcooking turkey bacon is also a bad thing, because it leads to dry, tough, and overly chewy pieces.
Serving Suggestions and Recipe Ideas
Serve up your perfect turkey bacon strips with eggs, toast, pancakes, or crispy breakfast potatoes. Or, use them for a BLT sandwich, or chop them up and use them in a cobb salad.
Here are some favorite breakfast ideas that pair well with turkey bacon.
- Sourdough pancakes
- Blackstone pancakes
- Tater Tot breakfast casserole
- Bisquick banana pancakes
- Bisquick pumpkin pancakes
- Banana bread
- Hash brown breakfast casserole
No matter how you choose to enjoy your bacon, we know you will love this recipe!
Cooking Turkey Bacon in the Oven
- Large flat baking rack - (grid style cooling rack)
- large baking Sheet
- parchment paper or foil - (optional)
- 12 ounces turkey bacon
- 1 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
- Preheat the oven to 425ºF.
- Spray the baking sheet with cooking oil or use my recommended method of lining with parchment paper or aluminum foil. Place the flat baking rack on top of the baking sheet.
- Add the strips of bacon to the baking rack, leaving 1/4" of space around the turkey bacon. If using pepper, sprinkle or rub that ton. Bake for 8 minutes, then flip the slices of bacon and bake for 8 minutes more for crispy bacon (see notes below for chewier bacon).
- Using tongs, remove the crisp bacon strips and place them between paper towels to blot the remaining grease and fat.
This post, originally published in June 2022, was updated with additional helpful cooking tips on November 30, 2022.
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