How To Cook Bacon On Smoker? The Key Facts

Bacon is a beloved breakfast staple that can be cooked in a variety of ways. But have you ever tried cooking bacon on a smoker?

If not, you’re missing out on a delicious and smoky twist to this classic dish. Smoking bacon is surprisingly easy and can be done on any type of smoker, whether it’s a pellet grill or a traditional smoker.

In this article, we’ll explore different methods for cooking bacon on a smoker and provide tips for achieving the perfect crispy texture.

So grab your favorite brand of bacon and let’s get started!

How To Cook Bacon On Smoker?

There are several ways to cook bacon on a smoker, each with its own unique flavor and texture. Here are some popular methods:

Choosing The Right Type Of Bacon For Smoking

When it comes to smoking bacon, the type of bacon you choose can make a big difference in the final product. While you can use any type of bacon for smoking, some varieties work better than others.

Thick-cut bacon is a popular choice for smoking because it holds up well to the longer cooking time and high heat. It also has a higher fat content, which adds flavor and helps keep the meat moist.

If you prefer a leaner option, you can use regular cut bacon, but keep in mind that it may cook faster and become crispy quicker.

Another factor to consider is the quality of the bacon. If possible, choose high-quality bacon from a local butcher or farm. This will ensure that the bacon is fresh and free from any additives or preservatives that can affect the flavor.

Lastly, consider any additional seasonings or flavors you want to add to your bacon. While some people prefer to let the smoky flavor shine through, others may want to experiment with different spices or marinades to enhance the flavor of the bacon.

Preparing Your Smoker For Bacon

Before you start cooking your bacon on a smoker, it is important to properly prepare your smoker. Here are some steps to follow:

1. Preheat your smoker: Start by preheating your smoker to the desired temperature for cooking bacon. The temperature will vary depending on the method you choose, but generally, a temperature range of 200°F-350°F is recommended.

2. Prepare the smoker grates: Spray or brush the smoker grates with oil to prevent the bacon from sticking.

3. Choose your wood chips: Select the type of wood chips you want to use for smoking your bacon. Popular options include apple, maple, and hickory.

4. Add water to the water pan: If your smoker has a water pan, fill it with water to help regulate the temperature and add moisture to the cooking environment.

5. Monitor the temperature: Keep an eye on the temperature throughout the cooking process to ensure that it stays consistent.

By following these steps, you can ensure that your smoker is properly prepared for cooking bacon and that your bacon turns out perfectly smoked and delicious.

Smoking Bacon With Wood Chips Or Pellets

Using wood chips or pellets to smoke bacon is a popular method that gives the bacon a delicious smoky flavor. The type of wood used can also impact the flavor. Fruit-based woods like cherry or apple pellets are great for a milder flavor, while hickory or mesquite can give a stronger taste.

To start, preheat your smoker to the desired temperature, usually around 300°F. While some recipes suggest using a water pan, others opt for dry smoking for extra crispiness. Once your smoker is preheated, add your wood chips or pellets to the smoker box or tray.

Next, prepare your bacon by laying each strip on a wire cooling rack over a foil-rimmed baking sheet. This allows the smoky air to circulate through the grill and cook the bacon evenly. You can also add any additional seasonings or rubs at this point, but be careful not to make it too salty.

Once your smoker is ready and your bacon is prepped, place the wire rack with bacon onto the smoker rack and close the lid. Smoke the bacon for 20-30 minutes or until it reaches your desired level of doneness. Keep an eye on it towards the end to avoid overcooking or burning.

When finished, remove the bacon from the smoker and enjoy immediately. Smoking candied bacon is another popular option that involves low and slow cooking to allow the sugars to seep in and crystalize for added sweetness.

Monitoring Temperature And Cooking Time

When cooking bacon on a smoker, it’s important to monitor the temperature and cooking time to ensure that it cooks evenly and to your desired level of crispiness. The temperature and cooking time can vary depending on the type of smoker you’re using and the thickness of the bacon.

For pellet grills or smokers, preheat the grill to 300 degrees Fahrenheit for best results. If using other types of smokers, pay close attention to the recommended cooking temperature and adjust accordingly. Once preheated, spray or brush the grill grates with oil to prevent sticking.

Place the bacon directly on the greased grill grates and let it cook for 20-30 minutes, or until it reaches your desired level of crispiness and internal temperature. It’s important to use a leave-in probe thermometer like the DOT to keep track of the bacon’s internal temperature.

If smoking pork belly to make bacon, cure it for a full week before rinsing off the curing liquid and patting it dry. Refrigerate uncovered for at least 4 hours before smoking or slow cooking in an oven at 200 degrees Fahrenheit until it reaches an internal temperature of 150 degrees Fahrenheit.

For best results, keep the bacon cold in the fridge before smoking and place it in a single layer over a cooling rack on a lined baking sheet. Add BBQ dry rub if desired and smoke for 40-45 minutes at 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

Tips For Achieving Crispy Bacon On A Smoker

If you’re looking to achieve crispy bacon on your smoker, there are a few tips to keep in mind. First, start with cold bacon straight from the fridge. This helps with rendering the fat and allows for a smoky flavor because it cooks on the grill longer.

Next, avoid smoking the bacon directly on the grill grates. While you can if you really want to, the best way is to use a foil rimmed baking sheet and wire rack over the top. Lay each strip of thick cut bacon over the wire cooling rack in a single layer. This allows for the smoky air to circulate through the grill and cook the bacon. The bacon grease is collected underneath, and you avoid a huge mess and any potential for a grease fire.

Before smoking, add any additional seasonings to the strips of bacon. Avoid rubs with extra kosher salt so it’s not too salty. Use fruit-based wood pellets for smoking, such as cherry or apple pellets, for a mild flavor. However, if you want a stronger flavor, use hickory or even mesquite to step it up a notch.

Always start with a fully preheated smoker at around 200°F. Place the bacon onto the smoker rack and allow it to cook until the desired doneness. After 30 minutes, increase the temperature to 400°F and smoke for another 15-20 minutes until the bacon is crispy.

Alternatively, you can smoke bacon at 300°F for 20-30 minutes until it reaches your desired level of crispiness. Use a leave-in probe thermometer to keep track of the pork’s internal temperature.

No matter which method you choose, keep an eye on the bacon near the end of cooking time to avoid overcooking or burning it. And remember, cooking time will vary depending on how thick your bacon slices are.

With these tips in mind, you can achieve perfectly crispy and flavorful bacon on your smoker every time!

Serving And Enjoying Your Smoked Bacon

Once your bacon is cooked to perfection on the smoker, it’s time to serve and enjoy it! Here are some ideas for how to enjoy your delicious smoked bacon:

1. As a side dish: Smoked bacon makes a great side dish for any meal. Serve it alongside eggs and toast for breakfast, or with grilled chicken and vegetables for dinner.

2. On a burger: Add a few slices of smoked bacon to your burger for an extra burst of flavor. It pairs perfectly with melted cheese and crispy lettuce.

3. In a salad: Crumble up some smoked bacon and sprinkle it on top of a salad for a smoky, salty crunch.

4. Wrapped around other foods: Wrap smoked bacon around shrimp, asparagus, or even dates for an appetizer that’s sure to impress.

5. On its own: Let’s be honest, sometimes the best way to enjoy smoked bacon is simply on its own. Grab a few slices and savor the smoky, salty flavor.

No matter how you choose to enjoy your smoked bacon, be sure to store any leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge. It will stay fresh for several days and can be reheated in the oven or microwave.