Bacon on pizza - All your questions answered

Do you need to precook bacon for Pizza

In general it's best to pre-cook bacon before putting it on a pizza, especially if it's thick cut or the pizza cooks quickly otherwise you risk it not being fully cooked, If the bacon's really thin or the pizza is a slow cooked style then you can put it on raw as it'll cook while the pizza does.

In my particular favourite type of pizza, the thin and crispy style which cooks in around 2 minutes, it's incredibly hard to get anything other than wafer thin bacon to cook in time, that's why pre-cooking and then reheating on the pizza is the safest way. Alternatively you can part cook and then complete the cook for the last couple of minutes on the pizza but timing that is way harder and there's not much benefit.

If you're making a deep Chicago style pizza that cooks in the oven for over half an hour then there's no reason you can't just throw some uncooked bacon on there and it'll easily cook through in that time but there are other considerations too...

Other reasons to precook bacon

Another thing to think about is the amount of fat that bacon releases while it's cooking, do you want all that fat soaking in to your delicious fresh pizza or would you prefer to cook the bacon, place it on some kitchen paper to dry off and then reheat it on the pizza without all the grease. I know my preference!

Possibly the best reason to pre-cook your bacon is simplicity. You can batch cook a whole pack or the leftovers from another meal, cut it up and freeze it ready for when it's needed. Then it's just a case of getting it out of the freezer, letting it defrost, which usually takes half an hour and then simply chucking it on just before putting the pizza in the oven.

Will raw bacon cook on a frozen pizza?

Frozen pizza is kind of a dirty word round here and I don't really like to discuss it too much, but in the interest of completeness I will.

If you're looking to add some uncooked bacon to a frozen pizza, either because you have some leftover and want to use it or you simply want to add some extra flavour to a basic frozen pizza then you can just add the uncooked bacon directly on top. As long as the pizza is going to be in the oven for over 15 minutes on at least 400°F (around 200°c) then it'll be nicely cooked by the time the pizzas done. I'd still recommend pre-cooking the bacon to get rid of the grease though.

How do you precook bacon for pizza?

This will depend on the type of bacon that you have, streaky, rashers or lardons, we'll break it down in the next section.

Streaky Bacon (American style)

American style bacon is similar to what us brits would call streaky bacon with a thin slice that has fat running through the middle of the slice.

The easiest way to cook this is to lay it out on a baking tray that's covered in parchment paper, make sure the slices are not overlapping, heat the oven to 400°F (about 200°c) and leave it to cook for around 15 to 20 minutes. Just remember that if you make it too crispy at this point it may burn when being reheated on the pizza so aim to go a little under how you'd normally have it.

Bacon Rashers (British style)

Cooking bacon rashers is similar to streaky, another option to cook these is to use the grill on your oven. Simply set your grill to a high heat, cover the grill rack with tin foil and lay the rashers on top, again making sure they don't overlap. With this method you'll need to keep an eye on the bacon as it may curl up and needs to be turned often to stop it burning.

Bacon Lardons (Diced Bacon)

Cooking bacon lardons is best done in a pan on the stove rather than in the oven. Simply spread out the lardons around the pan, try not to pile them too high or they won't get the direct heat they need to crisp up and simply fry until they reach the desired texture, again, remember they are getting a second cook on the pizza so get them out a bit earlier than normal to avoid them burning.

How to freeze bacon to use on pizza

If you don't end up using all the bacon you cooked at the time then there's no issue with freezing the rest for next time. The best way is to place the pieces in a freezable container separated by a piece of parchment paper. That way it doesn't come back out as one big lump and you can easily take as much or as little as you need.

Tips for making great bacon pizzas

Bacon is a superb topping on it's own or as part of a meat lovers style pizza. Try adding it with some pepperoni and some thinly sliced sausage and you have a delicious meat feast.

Another option is a simple chicken and bacon pizza, grab some of that bacon and some pre cooked chicken breast broken up into small pieces. This works great with peppers and onions. Ranch sauce is a good option here too.

About Me

Hi, I'm Alan and I'm a pizza lover, I enjoy travelling, particularly to Italy having been to Rome, Venice and Florence in recent years. Whilst away I always try to find the best Pizza and then recreate it when I get home.

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