Crispy Air Fryer Bacon

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Crispy air fryer bacon is cooked to perfection the easy way. No hovering over a skillet flipping the strips with grease popping and splattering everywhere. For a complete breakfast, pair it with air fryer French toast sticks, or air fryer egg bites and air fryer breakfast potatoes.

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Crispy air fryer bacon slices on a serving plate on tabletop.

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🧑🏼‍🍳 Why We Like Air Frying Bacon

Did you know? Crisp browned strips of bacon have a more complex flavor than fatty undercooked slices? Say goodbye to uneven results on stovetop. Enjoy the best flavor and texture with air fryer bacon. Here are more reasons why we love the air fryer cooking method.

  • It’s super fast to make, which saves time assembling your favorite bacon recipes. Like these bacon egg cups, bacon cheeseburger soup, or this savory bacon jam (by my friend Colleen Kennedy) which I love to slather over baking powder biscuits.
  • It’s a contained mess. Instead of dealing with bacon grease splattered over multiple surfaces in the kithen, air frying keeps the mess enclosed within the countertop machine.
  • Easy clean-up: After cooking, clean the basket and drip pan in sudsy water. Give the interior a quick wipe down with a damp kitchen cloth. Many air fryers now feature components that are dishwasher safe. [Check your owner’s manual.]
  • A smoke-free kitchen. Unlike pan frying, with this easy recipe and tips you’ll enjoy a smoke-free cooking experience.
  • Consistent results. Hot air constantly circulates around the bacon delivering evenly-cooked slices every time.
  • The bacon is leaner and a bit healthier. While air frying, the grease drips down and away from the meat into the outer basket. When cooking strips on stovetop, they sit submerged in their own grease.
Crispy strips of air fryer bacon on a serving plate.

🍽 What to Pair and Eat With Air Fryer Bacon

For breakfast and brunch, savory bacon is the meat of choice. For a quick hand-held meal, assemble breakfast burritos. Make everything in the air fryer: bacon, scrambled eggs and potatoes. Wrap them in flour tortillas. Here are more breakfast pairings for bacon.

Crispy air fryer bacon on a plate with scrambled eggs, avocado toast and cherry tomatoes.

🛒 Ingredients

  • Bacon: This recipe works with any kind of bacon. Select classic, thick or center-cut. You can find high-quality bacon at the butcher’s counter. If you like turkey bacon, you can use that too.
  • Black Pepper (optional seasoning): For a flavor boost with a touch of heat, add a pinch of black pepper to the bacon after flipping it over.
Uncooked bacon slices on a rectangle tray.

🥓 How to Cook Air Fryer Bacon

Bacon can be cooked in 2 countertop appliances. The basket-style air fryer (instructions below), and a convection-oven air fryer. For the oven type, use a small metal rack over a baking tray. Arrange the slices in a single layer. Cook in the center of the oven at 380°F using the “Air Fry” function.

📖 Recipe Steps

RECIPE PREP: Add 1 cup water to the bottom of the air fryer basket to help prevent the grease drippings from smoking. Preheat machine to 380°F. After preheating, line the bottom of the basket with parchment paper (optional).

  1. With tongs, arrange 4 slices of bacon in the basket. Lay them in a single layer – flat and straight. If needed, cut strips in half with kitchen shears. The slices should not overlap, but can be slightly touching.
  2. For thick bacon, air fry 8 to 10 minutes. For thin bacon, air fry 5 to 7 minutes. Halfway through the cook time, flip the slices over. Cook to your desired doneness – medium crisp or extra crispy.
  3. With tongs, transfer bacon to a paper towel-lined plate to drain off some grease. Important: Before prepping the second batch of bacon, carefully empty the grease from the outer basket. Pour it into a heat-safe container, like a Pyrex glass measuring cup.
  4. Air fry the remaining slices of bacon.

Expert Tip: Air fryers cook differently depending on size, make and model. Bacon comes in different thicknesses. Monitor the first batch of bacon during cooking. Notate the exact cooking time for future reference.

How to make crispy air fryer bacon, step by step.

👩🏻‍🍳 Recipe FAQ

These are the most commonly-asked questions for achieving the BEST air fryer bacon, and the most helpful answers for recipe success.

Should I grease air fryer basket before cooking bacon?

It’s not necessary to oil the basket as bacon is very fatty and will shed off grease. And the bacon strips should not be touching the sides of the basket – only the bottom. If the strips are too long, cut them in half. After preheating, line the bottom of the basket with parchment paper.

What temperature to air fry bacon?

Air fry bacon at 380°F. It’s the optimal temperature for browning and crisping. The bacon cooks quickly and evenly without burning.

How to prevent air fryer bacon from smoking?

The smoke point for bacon is 400°F. To prevent smoking, air fry bacon just below that. Before cooking, add 1 cup water to the bottom of the air fryer basket to prevent hot drippings from creating smoke. Some people line the bottom of the basket with slice of sandwich bread to absorb grease. Between batches, empty grease from the outer basket.

How to flavor bacon?

For sweet/savory bacon, brush the strips with maple syrup (or a brown-sugar-butter mix) after flipping them while cooking. To increase the savory flavor, season with a blend of cumin and paprika. To add heat, sprinkle the slices with black pepper or chipotle chili powder.

How long will cooked bacon last?

When stored in the fridge in an airtight container or zip-top bag, cooked bacon can stay fresh for up to 3 days. For the crispest results, reheat slices in the air fryer, a conventional oven, or in a skillet on stovetop.

A breakfast plate with bacon, scrambled eggs, toast and cherry tomatoes.

🥘 More Ways to Use & Enjoy Bacon

Crunchy bacon is a versatile ingredient. It’s not just for breakfast. Add a few crispy strips to cheeseburgers. Crumble it up and fold it into a casserole. Use it as a topping for bacon cheese burger soup, salads, and veggies.

Here are some easy appetizers and sides to pair with bacon. Print them out. Add them to your recipe arsenal.

Rate This Recipe ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Flavor testers rated this BEST air fryer recipe for beautiful crispy bacon. The crispness, color and texture is perfect. The taste is amazing.

If you agree this recipe’s a keeper, give it a 5-star rating in the comments. Then be a recipe hero. Share it with friends. 📌 Pin it to Pinterest.

Gold Line: Sprinkles of Inspiration | confettiandbliss.com

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Air fryer bacon slices on a serving plate on tabletop.

Crispy Air fryer bacon


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Description

Crispy air fryer bacon is perfectly cooked, like savory bacon from a breakfast diner. Make this easy recipe in just a few minutes. Enjoy while warm. It’s so delicious.


Ingredients

Scale
  • 8 bacon slices (thick or thin), divided
  • Black pepper – optional

Instructions

RECIPE PREP: Add 1 cup water to the bottom of the air fryer basket to help prevent the bacon grease from smoking. Preheat machine to 380°F. After preheating, line the bottom of the basket with parchment paper (optional).

  1. With tongs, arrange 4 slices of bacon in the basket. Lay them in a single layer – flat and straight. If needed, cut the strips in half with kitchen shears. Slices should not overlap, but can be slightly touching.  
  2. For thin bacon, air fry 5 to 7 minutes. For thick bacon, air fry 8 to 10 minutes. Halfway through the cook time, flip the slices over. Cook to your desired doneness – medium crisp or extra crispy.
  3. With tongs, transfer bacon to a paper towel-lined plate. Carefully empty the grease from the outer basket. Pour it into a heat-safe container like a Pyrex glass measuring cup.
  4. Proceed with air frying the remaining slices of bacon. 

Notes

Important note: Air fryers cook differently depending on size, make and model. Bacon comes in different thicknesses. Monitor the first batch of bacon while it’s cooking. Pull out the basket and check on it. Notate the exact cooking time for future reference.

How to cook bacon in an air fryer/toaster oven: Use a small metal rack over a baking tray. Arrange the slices in a single layer. Cook in the center of the oven at 380°F using the “Air Fry” function. Flip the strips once – halfway through the cooking time.

  • Prep Time: 1 Minute
  • Cook Time: 14 Minutes
  • Category: Breakfast
  • Method: Air Fryer
  • Cuisine: American
Gold Line: Sprinkles of Inspiration | confettiandbliss.com

Crispy Air Fryer Bacon 👉🏻 Join the Convo

What level of doneness do you prefer for your bacon? Lightly crisp and bendable, straight and crispy, or extra crispy? What are your favorite breakfast dishes to pair with bacon? Share your thoughts in the comments below. I’d love to hear from you.

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