How To Defrost and Thaw Bacon

Raw Bacon

There’s no doubting it; bacon is one of the most delicious foods on the planet. Nothing compares to the inviting aroma of bacon being grilled or fried in a skillet. Your mouth literally salivates in anticipation of tasting this salty, delicious, crispy bacon.

However, bacon is not limited to breakfast. Bacon is such a versatile ingredient that you can wrap meatloaf with it or place it on top of a BBQ burger.

Whether you buy bacon in bulk or cure your own bacon at home, there’s no way you can eat all of that bacon. Therefore freezing is the best way to store and preserve bacon.

Nevertheless, to free bacon, you must know how to defrost it, so you can maintain the delicious flavor of your bacon.

What Is Bacon?

Bacon is known for its crispy, salty, and fatty taste. Therefore, everyone has tasted bacon at least once in their lives, but do you know what bacon is or where it comes from?

Bacon is a variety of pork that is cured with salt and has a sizeable ratio of fat. Bacon is usually carved from the belly, rear, or side of the pig. It is usually cut into thick or thin slices and can be smoked to enhance its flavor.

Multiple types of wood, such as hickory or apple woods, are used to smoke bacon. Smoking bacon imparts the flavor of the wood into the bacon. Smoked bacon has a rich pink color along with a golden rind.

How To Freeze Bacon

Before you attempt to defrost bacon, you must store it. In short, bacon should be stored in the fridge or freezer in its original packaging. If your bacon is open, place the remaining unused strips of bacon into a resealable ziplock bag.

Freezing bacon is a relatively easy process. Simply leave it in its original packaging, then wrap it tightly with aluminum foil. Next, place the bacon into a freezer-safe resealable bag.

Press as much of the excess air out of the bacon as you can before placing it into the freezer. The foil and ziplock bag will prevent the bacon from becoming freezer-burned.

Tips For Thawing Bacon

Before you remove your bacon from the freezer and thaw it, there are a few factors you must consider to end up with evenly thawed bacon.

Furthermore, you should never defrost bacon at room temperature. If you thaw bacon at room temperature, it is guaranteed that it will enter the danger zone where bacteria multiply rapidly. Whether you are defrosting steak, shrimp, or bacon, if it enters the danger zone, harmful pathogens that cause food poisoning will grow on the surface of the food.

In the same way, you should not thaw bacon at room temperature, do not defrost bacon in the garage, basement, outdoors, or anywhere that is not your kitchen.

In addition to this, do not deviate from the defrosting techniques listed below, as your bacon may become riddled with bacteria. Cook your bacon immediately after it has thawed.

Lastly, do not use hot water to defrost bacon. Hot water will not only cause your bacon to thaw unevenly, but it will also increase the risk of food poisoning occurring.

Can I Cook Frozen Bacon

In the same way, you can cook steak from frozen; you can cook frozen bacon. However, you may not get the same results as cooking thawed bacon.

If you cook bacon from frozen, your slices may not cook evenly. Moreover, your bacon may not crisp up as the bacon will release a lot of water instead of rendered fat which makes the bacon crispy.

Nevertheless, if you must cook frozen bacon, place the bacon into a skillet, cover it with the lid and cook it over medium heat until the bacon slices start to separate. Next, separate the bacon using tongs and continue cooking them uncovered until they are crispy. You may want to place a grease screen over the bacon to keep the grease splatter at a minimum.

Can I Refreeze Defrosted Bacon?

Of course, you can refreeze bacon. However, there are specific conditions associated with refreezing bacon.

The only way you can refreeze bacon is if it was thawed using the refrigerator method. If you thawed your bacon using another method such as the microwave or air fryer, it must be cooked once it is thawed. In addition to this, you must refreeze your bacon within 3 days after it was thawed.

How To Defrost Bacon

There are multiple ways to thaw bacon. I recommend trying each defrosting once if you have all of the equipment on hand before settling on one method of defrosting bacon.

How To Defrost Bacon In Cold Water

Defrosting bacon in cold water is a fairly quick method. Simply place your bacon into an airtight container that is free of cracks or a ziplock bag.

Place the bacon into a bowl full of cold water. If the bacon floats to the top of the water, anchor it with a plate or mixing spoon. You can also place the bacon into the sink and run cold water over it.

Depending on how much bacon you are defrosting, estimate 20 minutes for every pound of bacon. Cook the bacon immediately once it is defrosted.

How To Thaw Bacon In The Microwave

The microwave is the best and fastest way to defrost bacon if you are on a time crunch. Remove your frozen bacon from its packaging and place it onto a paper towel-lined microwave-safe plate. The paper towels will absorb any liquid released by the bacon.

Place the bacon into the microwave and use the defrost setting to heat it in 1-minute increments until it is thawed. If your bacon is rock solid, use a butter knife to separate the bacon slices from each other between each increment.

Use tongs to separate the bacon into individual slices. Cook the bacon as soon as it is thawed.

Alternatively, you can also defrost bacon in its original packaging. Simply puncture the bacon’s wrapping to prevent steam from accumulating and causing the package of bacon to explode.

If you do leave the bacon in its packaging, do not heat it for an extended period of time. The plastic could melt and become a food hazard.

How To Defrost Bacon In The Refrigerator

Thawing bacon in the fridge overnight is by far the best thawing method. Yes, it is a long time, but it will be worth it as you will end up with perfectly thawed bacon.

To defrost bacon in the fridge, remove it from the freezer and place it into a container. Allow the bacon to thaw overnight in the fridge.

How To Defrost Bacon In The Oven

I know what you are thinking; who defrosts bacon in the oven? But don’t knock it until you try it.

To defrost bacon in the oven, heat it to 300°F. Remove the frozen bacon from its packaging and place it onto a parchment-lined cookie sheet.

Place the bacon into the oven for 5 minutes, then use tongs to separate it into individual slices. Cook the thawed bacon immediately.

How To Defrost Bacon In The Air Fryer

I know what you must be thinking; as if defrosting bacon in the oven wasn’t crazy enough, you are suggesting thawing bacon in an air fryer. Although it seems far-fetched, defrosting bacon in the air fryer is very similar to thawing it in the oven. Best of all, it takes the same amount of time, so you do not have to heat up your entire house by using the oven.

To defrost bacon in the air fryer, heat it to 375°F and let it run for 5 minutes. Remove the frozen bacon from its packaging and place it into the air fryer’s basket. Thaw the bacon for 5 minutes, then use tongs to separate the bacon into individual slices. Remove the thawed bacon from the air fryer and cook it immediately.

How To Defrost Bacon On The Stove

Yes, it’s a bit unorthodox, but if you can cook bacon on the stove, why can’t you defrost it on the stove? Simply remove the bacon from its packaging, place the bacon into a cast-iron skillet, and set it over medium-low heat.

You can also place a piece of heat-safe aluminum foil in the skillet before adding the bacon. The foil will prevent the bacon from cooking.

Cook the bacon for 2-3 minutes, then turn it over and cook it for another 2-3 minutes. Separate the bacon into individual slices, then cook it immediately.

Final Thoughts

Who doesn’t love the delicious, crispy flavor of bacon? Our addition to bacon causes us to pick a few extra packages every time we go to the grocery store. Therefore we have to freeze the bacon. Luckily, you have 6 tried and true methods to defrost bacon.

Whether you eat bacon for breakfast, lunch, or dinner, you can defrost bacon without having to worry about overheating or becoming exposed to foodborne pathogens. Happy defrosting!

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