How to Store Cooked Bacon and Preserve its Texture to the Last Particle
Bacon is known as one of America’s “most wanted” foods, and it is common to discover a plate of leftover bacon in your kitchen.
Are you left with a plate full of cooked bacon and don’t know what to do with it? Throwing away such a delicious food item won’t be fair.
I will tell you how to store cooked bacon and preserve its crispy, sizzly, and natural texture. Bacon can be stored using different techniques that involve microwaving, refrigerating, and freezing it.
How to take care of the extra/leftover bacon? To understand how to store cooked bacon, you must know the freshness level of bacon before storing it.
Time Vs. Freshness Comparison for Cooked Bacon
Cooked bacon has a very brief life. It is ideal to consume bacon immediately after cooking. The table below states the freshness of cooked bacon at room temperature with time.
|Immediately after cooking||Fresh, ready-to-eat bacon.|
|1 hour after cooking||Still very fresh and flavorful. It can be eaten without worrying about bad taste.|
|2 hours after cooking||You should probably check for bad signs before eating the bacon. Click here to see the ominous signs.|
|3 hours after cooking||Your bacon has probably gone bad. If you see any bad signs, immediately throw the bacon away and don’t eat it.|
As the table shows you, cooked bacon can only last for 2 hours at room temperature. So, does it mean you cannot eat cooked bacon after 2 hours?
At room temperature, yes, but I am here to rectify this problem for you. Let us discuss how to store cooked bacon to enjoy it after 2 hours, 2 days, or even 2 weeks!
How to Store Cooked Bacon – Short & Long-Term
Unopened bacon from the market can last for weeks. The problem occurs when you want to store cooked bacon. Below are a few of the most effective methods to store cooked bacon for the short and long term. The main goal is to preserve the bacon’s juicy, savory, and sizzling flavor.
Microwave – Reliable for Short-Term Storage
Imagine inviting your friends over for a party. Bacon is a perfect party dish, but what if your friends are an hour late? Does it mean that the bacon is scrapped from the menu? Not at all. Short-term storage is the answer to such situations.
All you have to do is to cook the bacon and go to the microwave.
· Place a baking sheet in the center of the microwave.
· Set the temperature of the microwave to approximately 200 degrees Fahrenheit. It is the ideal temperature to retain the crispiness and flavor of the bacon.
· Make sure not to cover the bacon with a lid. The use of a lid will capture the steam released by the bacon. This steam will convert to moisture and make the bacon soggy.
Storing Cooked Bacon for Intermediate-Term
Refrigerators and food preservation go hand-in-hand. Bacon is no exception. Using a microwave is ideal when you have to eat the bacon after an hour or two. A refrigerator comes in when you want to store bacon for longer than just a few hours.
· Allow your bacon to cool to room temperature.
· Prepare an airtight bag to seal the bacon in it.
· Place the set-up in the refrigerator.
If your seal is fully airtight, this technique can allow you to keep your cooked bacon fresh and full of flavor for up to five days.
I am convinced that you have already guessed this one. Yes, the answer to storing cooked bacon for several weeks is “freeze it”. Your reasons may be leftover bacon or an emergency trip out of town. Whatever the reason, freezing has got your bacon covered.
· Allow the cooked bacon to cool down to room temperature.
· Airtight freezer bags are your best bet to keep your bacon sizzling and flavorful.
· Place the cooked bacon in the airtight freezer bags next to the ice in the freezer.
The freezing method can keep your bacon fresh for approximately a month.
How to Check if Cooked Bacon is Edible or Not
There are several ways to identify if your cooked bacon has gone bad. Some of them are:
Cooked bacon is not edible if there is a change in color. The meaty red color of bacon starts to lose its saturation when the bacon goes bad. The white part also tends to lose its color. In most cases, the color seen on bacon that has gone bad would be green or grey (ish).
If you see patches of green or grey on your bacon, prepare a trash bag and discard it immediately.
Freshly cooked bacon gives off an appetizing scent. Contrary to this, a piece of bacon that is not edible will give off a pungent stench, ultimately letting your senses know something isn’t right. Smell your bacon; it is not worth eating it if it stinks.
Bacon that has gone bad would have a slimy and slippery texture, unlike freshly cooked bacon’s smooth and crispy texture. If you feel a slimy texture, throw away the bacon.
Mold formation is one of the most obvious signs to identify a piece of inedible bacon. Molds are green in color and are clearly visible on the surface of the bacon. Discard the bacon if you see any molds on the surface.
Here are some combinations of bacon that can adequately satisfy your appetite.
· Grilled peaches with bacon wrapping.
· Bacon and salad are a very delightful pair.
· Bacon goes very well with chocolate, cookies, and other bakery items.
· Mashed potatoes with bacon.
If you want to learn more delicious bacon combos, you can check them here.
Bonus Section – Quick Bacon Recipes at Home
Here are some quick bacon recipes that you can easily prepare and enjoy at home:
· Oatmeal and Bacon: Take 2 cups of oatmeal. Add I tbsp. maple syrup and cooked bacon (crumbled) into the oatmeal. Stir until combined.
· Bacon Egg Sandwich: Fry an egg, tomato, and two pieces of bacon. Make a bread sandwich and enjoy it with cheese!
· Spicy-Sweet Bacon: Cook sweet bacon. Coat it with sugar after sprinkling some chili powder on it.
· Bacon Banana Bread: If you love eating baked banana bread, try adding a little crumbled bacon to the batter before baking.
Bacon is one of the most popular food items. Cooked bacon has an extremely short shelf-life. But, it can be stored for a few hours, a few days, and even a month. All you have to do is to act on my tricks, and you will be able to reheat and eat your cooked bacon with the same rich flavor, taste, and scent.
Frequently Asked Questions about storing cooked bacon
There are 85-90 calories in 2 slices of cooked bacon.
2 slices of cooked bacon have 85-90 calories, 6g of protein, and 6g of fat.
You can store cooked bacon by freezing it after placing it in an airtight freezer bag. Don’t put hot bacon directly in the bag. Allow it to cool to room temperature.