Learn how to cook bacon from frozen more easily so that you don’t have to wait for it to thaw out. There are better ways to do it than the microwave!
Everybody loves bacon, right? It can take the most simple dishes and make them feel rich and indulgent. You don’t have to just eat bacon in the morning, I love it in sandwiches, on burgers, and I even love to wrap proteins in bacon, like this bacon-wrapped pork tenderloin.
The problem with bacon is that I often buy a few pounds of it when it goes on sale, and then freeze it. Or, I only want a few pieces for breakfast and I end up freezing the rest in a freezer bag for later. I’ve learned how to cook chicken breasts, shrimp, and fish from frozen, so why not bacon?
There are several ways to cook or thaw bacon from frozen, and some ways are better for certain dishes than others. Let me tell you what I learned.
Slicing frozen bacon into lardons
A lardon is just a strip or cube of bacon sliced and then cooked. If you have a very sharp knife (this is the one I used) carefully slice horizontally across your frozen block of bacon and place the little slices in a skillet to cook. They’ll separate into lardons as they thaw and cook up perfectly.
This is my favorite way to cook bacon from frozen. It’s fast and the bacon cooks evenly. It’s perfect if you want to top a salad with bacon or add bacon to a bake, casserole or quiche.
Thawing frozen bacon in water
If you’re wanting whole strips of bacon, the best way to evenly and quickly thaw it is to submerge bacon that is still in packaging or a zip-top bag into cool water. Change the water frequently because the frozen bacon will act like an ice cube and chill it. You don’t want the water too warm, the bacon may cook on the outside and it can spoil. Once the bacon is thawed, you should cook all of it right away.
It will take an hour or two for you to be able to defrost and separate all of the pieces.
Thawing frozen bacon in a skillet
If you forget to thaw bacon and you realize you want to cook some up, the best thing to do is to plop the whole pound or a piece right into a large skillet over medium heat. This skillet is big enough.
To thaw more quickly, cover it with a lid or foil and the steam will speed up the process. As the bacon thaws in the pan, you will be able to pull apart the strips. Make sure to flip the bacon over to thaw from both sides. It will be crispy in 15-20 minutes. If the outer pieces crisp up first, just remove them from the pan.
Thawing frozen bacon in the microwave
I really don’t like thawing meat in the microwave. Whenever I seem to try, the outside of what I’m defrosting seems to start cooking and the center remains frozen. This doesn’t work well for bacon because the center pieces stick together and the pieces on the ends start to cook and shrivel. There’s nothing worse than microwaved bacon if you ask me.
But, if you must use it, decrease the power to about 30%, and I find it takes about 5-6 minutes per pound. It’s always a good idea to check on the bacon halfway through and flip it so you do your best to cook it evenly.
There you have it, these are the best ways to defrost or cook bacon from frozen!