Are you tired of the same old pork bacon for breakfast?
Why not try making your own homemade turkey bacon?
Not only is it a healthier alternative, but it’s also surprisingly easy to make.
With just a few ingredients and some simple steps, you can have delicious and crispy turkey bacon in no time.
Whether you’re a seasoned chef or a beginner in the kitchen, this recipe is perfect for anyone looking to switch up their breakfast routine.
So, let’s get started on making your very own homemade turkey bacon!
How To Make Homemade Turkey Bacon?
To make homemade turkey bacon, you’ll need a few key ingredients and some basic kitchen equipment. Here’s what you’ll need:
– 1 pound of turkey breast, trimmed and cleaned
– Hi Mountain Buckboard Bacon Cure (or your preferred bacon cure)
– 1/4 cup maple syrup
– 1 tablespoon of pork bacon fat (optional)
– A sharp knife
– A large bowl
– Plastic wrap or a tight-fitting lid
– A smoker or pellet grill
– A meat thermometer
Now that you have your ingredients and equipment ready, let’s get started on making your homemade turkey bacon.
Step 1: Prepare the Turkey Breast
Remove the thin outer membrane of the turkey breast with a sharp knife. After trimming, weigh the turkey breast to determine the correct amount of cure needed. The instructions included with the Hi Mountain Buck Board Bacon Cure have this information. Apply the cure to the turkey breast, making sure it’s completely covered. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap or a tight-fitting lid and refrigerate for 10 days. Turn the turkey breast over after 5 days.
After the brining process is complete, rinse all the cure off the turkey breast. Immerse the turkey breast in a water bath for 2 hours. Rinse the turkey breast one more time to make sure the last bit of cure has been removed.
Step 2: Smoke the Turkey Breast
Pat the turkey breast dry and let it stand at room temperature while you heat your smoker or pellet grill to 180F degrees. Once the temperature of 180F has been reached, place the turkey breast on the grill. Baste the turkey breast with maple syrup every 30 minutes. Make sure to turn the turkey breast a couple of times during the smoking process so you can cover the entire turkey breast with maple syrup.
Continue cooking until the internal temperature of the turkey breast reaches 165F degrees, then remove it from smoker.
Step 3: Rest and Slice
Rest the turkey bacon on a cooking rack for at least 30 minutes before slicing. Slice the turkey bacon to your desired thickness and cook in a large fry pan with 1 tablespoon of pork bacon fat until crisp.
Step 4: Enjoy!
Your homemade turkey bacon is now ready to be enjoyed! Serve it up with your favorite breakfast foods or use it as a tasty addition to sandwiches and salads.
Why Choose Turkey Bacon Over Pork Bacon?
When it comes to choosing between turkey bacon and pork bacon, many people assume that turkey bacon is the healthier option. While it does have some advantages over pork bacon, it’s important to understand that both types of bacon are high in sodium and saturated fat, which can increase your risk of heart disease. However, if you’re looking to cut back on calories and fat, turkey bacon may be a better option for you.
For starters, turkey bacon has fewer calories per serving than pork bacon. A two-ounce serving of turkey bacon contains about 218 calories, while the same amount of pork bacon contains around 268 calories. Additionally, turkey bacon has less total fat than pork bacon, with only 14 grams per serving compared to pork bacon’s 22 grams.
Turkey bacon also has less saturated fat than pork bacon. While both types of bacon contain this unhealthy fat, turkey bacon has only 4 grams per serving, which is half as much as pork bacon’s 8 grams. This makes turkey bacon a better choice for those looking to reduce their saturated fat intake.
Another advantage of turkey bacon is that it may be easier to find low-sodium varieties. As mentioned earlier, both types of bacon are high in sodium, but some brands of turkey bacon offer reduced-sodium options. Choosing a lower-sodium variety can help you stay within the American Heart Association’s recommended limit of 1,500 milligrams per day.
Ingredients Needed To Make Homemade Turkey Bacon
To make homemade turkey bacon, you’ll need a pound of turkey breast that has been trimmed and cleaned. You’ll also need a bacon cure, such as Hi Mountain Buckboard Bacon Cure, or your preferred bacon cure. Additionally, you’ll need 1/4 cup of maple syrup and 1 tablespoon of pork bacon fat (optional).
You’ll also need a sharp knife, a large bowl, and plastic wrap or a tight-fitting lid to cover the bowl. A smoker or pellet grill is necessary for smoking the turkey breast, and a meat thermometer is needed to ensure the internal temperature of the turkey breast reaches 165F degrees.
Step-by-step Instructions For Making Turkey Bacon
If you’re looking for step-by-step instructions on how to make turkey bacon, here’s a detailed guide:
Step 1: Preparing the Turkey Bacon
There are several ways to prepare turkey bacon, but one popular method is baking it in the oven. Preheat your oven to 400F and line a baking sheet with foil or parchment paper. Place a baking rack on top of the foil or paper to help catch the grease and allow for even cooking.
If your turkey bacon is wet, pat it dry with a paper towel. Lay the turkey bacon out evenly on the baking rack, making sure not to overlap the slices. If you don’t have a baking rack, you can place the bacon directly on the foil or parchment paper.
Step 2: Cooking the Turkey Bacon
Bake the turkey bacon in the oven for 10 minutes. After 10 minutes, carefully flip the bacon over and continue baking for another 5-10 minutes depending on how crispy you like your bacon. Keep an eye on the bacon to make sure it doesn’t burn.
Alternatively, you can cook turkey bacon on the stovetop. Heat a nonstick skillet over medium heat and spray lightly with cooking spray or olive oil. Add the turkey bacon in a single layer and cook for 4-5 minutes before flipping. Continue cooking for an additional 4-5 minutes or until the bacon gets crispy.
Step 3: Draining and Serving
Once your turkey bacon is cooked to your desired level of crispiness, remove it from the oven or skillet and place it on a plate lined with paper towels to drain any remaining grease. The paper towels will help remove excess grease and keep your bacon crispy.
Serve your turkey bacon hot with your favorite breakfast foods, or use it as a tasty addition to sandwiches and salads.
Making homemade turkey bacon is easy and delicious. With these step-by-step instructions, you can enjoy crispy, flavorful turkey bacon in no time. Experiment with different cooking methods and seasonings to find your perfect recipe.
Tips For Achieving Crispy And Flavorful Turkey Bacon
If you’re looking to achieve crispy and flavorful turkey bacon, there are a few tips you should keep in mind:
1. Use a spot pan or skillet: A spot pan or skillet is the quickest and easiest way to make turkey bacon crispy. Cook the bacon over medium-low heat for about 10 minutes, flipping it halfway through, until desired crispness is achieved.
2. Add oil: If you’re using a skillet, add about 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil to ensure that the bacon makes constant, even contact with the heat, which allows for optimal crispiness.
3. Don’t preheat the oven: Unlike traditional bacon, you don’t want to preheat the oven when cooking turkey bacon. Instead, set a skillet over medium heat and fry the bacon in about 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil for about 8-10 minutes per side.
4. Use a wire rack when baking: If you’re baking your turkey bacon in the oven, use a wire rack to allow air to flow around every side of the slice and result in faster, more even crispiness.
5. Flip the bacon: Whether you’re cooking your turkey bacon on the stovetop or in the oven, make sure to flip it every few minutes to avoid burning and ensure even crispiness.
6. Let it cool: After cooking your turkey bacon to your desired level of crispiness, let it cool for several minutes before serving. This will help it retain its crispiness and prevent it from becoming soggy.
By following these tips, you can achieve perfectly crispy and flavorful turkey bacon every time!
Serving Suggestions And Recipe Variations For Homemade Turkey Bacon
Now that you have successfully made your own homemade turkey bacon, it’s time to explore some serving suggestions and recipe variations. Here are some ideas to get you started:
1. Breakfast Sandwich: Layer your turkey bacon on a toasted English muffin with a fried egg and avocado for a delicious breakfast sandwich.
2. Turkey Bacon BLT: Use your homemade turkey bacon in place of traditional pork bacon in a classic BLT sandwich. Add some sliced avocado for an extra twist.
3. Turkey Bacon Quesadillas: Make a quick and easy lunch by layering shredded cheese, diced tomatoes, and chopped turkey bacon between two tortillas. Cook in a skillet until the cheese is melted and the tortillas are crispy.
4. Turkey Bacon Carbonara: Use your homemade turkey bacon in place of traditional pancetta in a creamy carbonara pasta dish. Add some peas for a pop of color and flavor.
5. Turkey Bacon Caesar Salad: Top your favorite Caesar salad with chopped turkey bacon for a protein-packed twist on a classic dish.
6. Turkey Bacon Wrapped Asparagus: Wrap asparagus spears with your homemade turkey bacon and bake in the oven for a delicious side dish.
7. Turkey Bacon Soup: Add chopped turkey bacon to your favorite soup recipe for an extra burst of flavor and protein.
Experiment with different recipes and serving suggestions to find your favorite way to enjoy your homemade turkey bacon. Don’t be afraid to get creative and try new things!
Storing And Reheating Homemade Turkey Bacon.
Once you’ve made your delicious homemade turkey bacon, it’s important to store it properly to maintain its flavor and texture. To store cooked turkey bacon, place it on a paper towel-lined plate and cover with foil or plastic wrap. The paper towel will absorb any excess grease and moisture, helping to keep the bacon crispier. You can safely store cooked turkey bacon in the refrigerator for around 4 to 5 days if you follow these instructions for its storage.
If you want to keep your homemade turkey bacon for longer than 5 days, you have the option of freezing it. Double wrap your bacon in either aluminum foil or cling wrap and make sure it’s airtight or as close to it as possible. Place the wrapped turkey bacon package inside a heavy-duty freezer bag, a resealable one would be best. If you have multiple servings of turkey bacon, it is best to wrap the servings separately but you can place them in the same freezer bag. Be sure to mark your bag with the date of freezing. From this date, you have up to 8 weeks to use your turkey bacon with the date of freezing.
When thawing your cooked and frozen turkey bacon, it is best practice to thaw it in the refrigerator and this may take up to 24 hours. Thawing it on the countertop or at room temperature is a bad idea as that puts your cooked turkey bacon at risk of rapid bacterial growth. In extreme cases and if your cooked turkey bacon was wrapped with foil, you can throw the frozen package into a 180 degrees Celsius oven and heat for 20 to 30 minutes. If you used cling wrap, you can reheat your frozen package in the microwave. How long it will take depends more on the size of the package but it is best to use a two or three-stage heating process allowing the package to rest at intervals to spread the heat evenly.
Remember, always refrigerate cooked bacon within two hours of cooking. If you leave your bacon at room temperature for longer than two hours, you risk causing bacteria growth. Refrigerating it afterward won’t kill the germs; it’s just bad bacon at that point and needs to be discarded. Only take out the bacon portions you’re going to eat, and thaw frozen bacon in the fridge for food safety reasons.
Now that you know how to store and reheat your homemade turkey bacon properly, you can enjoy this delicious and healthy alternative to traditional pork bacon any time!