What You Should Consider Before Cooking Bacon On The Stovetop

Is there really anything better than bacon? Take a bite of bacon and you are treated to so many flavors and textures. It's salty, porky, chewy, crunchy, it might even be a little sweet if you opt for maple bacon (or just dip it into maple syrup — heaven!). Americans eat bacon for breakfast, lunch, and dinner ... and they eat a ton of it. According to the South Florida Reporter, the average American eats 18 pounds of bacon per year. It completes our scrambled egg breakfasts, is the star of our BLT's, and no Cobb Salad is complete without it. But the first step to enjoying all of these dishes is cooking the bacon just right.

There are a number of ways to cook this kitchen staple. The Kitchn tested eight different methods for cooking bacon including microwaving, baking, and pan-frying. Considering cooking time, mess, clean up, and, of course, the taste result, Pittman concludes that baking bacon in the oven on a sheet of parchment paper is the best method, with pan-frying in a cast iron skillet close behind. Many people grow up watching their parents and grandparents standing at the stove over a pan of popping, sizzling bacon and it is still quite popular, easy, and fairly quick. But, be careful, there are some things to remember before you light the flame under your skillet.

Stay safe at the stove

It's no secret that bacon is fatty, which is partly why it's so good. When bacon fat gets hot it sizzles and has a tendency to jump out of the pan and onto the closest victim — you! That just plain hurts, but there are some precautions to take to make sure your skin stays burn-free. According to The Kitchn, using a splatter screen can reduce the amount of grease leaving your pan. It is simply placed on top of your pan while the bacon cooks. You will still need to remove it in order to flip the bacon, so she suggests wearing an apron and oven mitts to prevent burns.

Now that you're armed against mishaps, consider that cooking temperature can make or break your perfect piece of bacon. Eat This, Not That says cooking bacon in a pan that is too hot is a big no-no. Chef Ed Harris, winner of the cooking competition TV show "Chopped," told the website that dropping your raw bacon into a searing hot pan can cause it to cook unevenly. Similarly, cooking bacon at too high of a temperature once it's in the pan results in a rubbery result. Executive Chef Hannah Hopkins told Eat This, Not That she prefers heating the burner to medium-low. As the bacon renders, she turns up the heat to achieve a golden brown color.

There are a lot of potential bacon mistakes, Once your bacon is cooked to perfection, drain the grease and try it in this sublime Benedictine and Bacon Sandwich or an egg and cheese breakfast sandwich for a real treat.