How To Render Bacon Fat

| July 8, 2018 | 132 Comments

How To Render and Save Bacon Fat

Step-by-step, photo illustrated instructions teach you how to render bacon fat, a Southern cooks secret ingredient for great taste.

How to render and save bacon fat.
How To Render Bacon Fat


How To Render Bacon Fat, slider.
Don’t throw that bacon grease away. It’s a great Southern seasoning.

I hope you’re saving your bacon grease after you cook your bacon.

It’s one of a Southern cooks favorites for seasoning pots of beans, greens, or other such things. It’s great to fry eggs in, great to add in your cornbread, and great for just greasing up a pan before baking. It’s got flavor!

Unlike plain lard or other cooking oils, bacon grease contains some of the flavor of the bacon from which it was rendered. It makes things you use it to cook with just taste that much better.

Mama use to keep a metal container with a lid on her stove top all the time. When she cooked bacon, she’d pour the leftover grease into that container and just let it sit on the stove until she needed it.

I keep mine in a refrigerator, mainly because I’m not using it as often as she did. I don’t cook as much as she did. But, I still enjoy the flavor of it in the vegetables and other dishes that I cook.

It’s especially good when you don’t have a ham hock, hog jowl, or a piece of side meat to season your vegetables with. It’s convenient to keep the rendered fat in the fridge until you need it.

Now, you probably already know how to cook bacon, so why did I even go to the trouble to add this to Taste of Southern?  Mostly because there are some people that are still just doing away with that fat once they cook their bacon. I’d like to change your mind on that.

The most important thing to remember while rendering bacon down to get the fat, is to cook it low and slow. Set the heat to about Medium-Low, and let the bacon brown slowly and render out all of it’s fat. You’re melting down the white strips in the bacon that you’re cooking, and saving it for seasoning.

My late wife would generally cook a breakfast of bacon, eggs, and grits for the family every Saturday morning when we weren’t trying to rush out to work or school.

She always saved the bacon grease, and she always saved it in the little container that you’ll see pictured below. I still do the same and I’m sure that little container has been in my refrigerator for well over 25 years. Smile.

So, if you’re ready to cook up some bacon and save that fat, then let’s get in the kitchen, and… Let’s Get Cooking.


How To Render Bacon Fat, you'll need some bacon.
Render and Save Bacon Fat:  You’ll need some bacon.

Just about any smoked bacon will do. Sometimes it seems the cheapest bacon will have more fat which yields more bacon grease once the bacon is cooked down.


How To Render Bacon Fat, slice it in half if desired.
You don’t have to, but I like to slice my pack in half. I can place the entire strip in the pan without the ends being folded up just so they will fit in the pan. Doesn’t matter which way you do it, just do what works best for you. Smile.


How To Render Bacon Fat, start with a warm skillet.
Start out with a warm pan.

I like to use my cast iron skillet. Start out by placing the skillet over Medium-Low heat and let the pan warm up before adding the bacon slices. If you start out with a cold skillet, the bacon will likely stick.


How To Render Bacon Fat, turn as needed.
Let the bacon cook until the bottom and edges start to brown. Turn the bacon slices over and let them brown on that side as well.

You want to cook this slowly to render the fat out. If you try to cook it too fast, the grease may burn and have a bad taste.

This takes about 8-10 minutes, but depends more on the temperature of the pan than anything else. Just keep a close eye on it, turn as needed, and don’t let it burn.


How To Render Bacon Fat, add more bacon as it cooks down.
Once it starts to cook and brown, it will also shrink up. Go ahead and add a couple of more slices. Remove the slices that have cooked, adding more bacon as you go. Keep the process going until you’ve cooked all of your bacon and rendered out the fat.


How To Render Bacon Fat, remove the bacon when it's cooked the way you like it.
As you go, remove the slices that have cooked. Place them on a paper towel, or brown paper bag, to cool.

Just cook the bacon to the crispiness that you prefer. Some like it almost burned, the rest of us don’t like it quite that browned. Smile.


How To Render Bacon Fat, save the grease.
When the bacon is cooked, carefully pour the remaining grease into a wide mouth container.

Mason jars are good for this, or a thicker plastic. The hot grease could melt a thinner plastic, so be sure it will hold the hot grease.

As mentioned, this container has been in use for saving bacon grease in my refrigerator for over 25 years. So far so good. Smile.

You can store it, covered, in the refrigerator for a couple of months.

Some folks like to strain the little bacon bits out of it, but I don’t worry about those. However, if you do strain them out, the grease will store for up to a year in your fridge without going rancid tasting.

Let it cool a bit before covering it with a secure top and placing in the refrigerator for storage.


How To Render Bacon Fat, store the fat and use as needed.

Grab a couple of slices of bread and use the cooked bacon to make yourself a great Bacon, Lettuce and Tomato Sandwich. Just don’t forget the Duke’s Mayonnaise. Smile.


I don’t have a printable recipe for this. It’s pretty simple on it’s own and super easy to do.

You’ll love the added flavor it adds to your recipes and you’ll see it used in many of the recipes that I’ve already posted here on Taste of Southern.


Your Comments:

So, here are the big questions. Do you fry your bacon in a skillet, or do you bake it in the oven. Most importantly, do you save the bacon grease and use it for seasoning?

I’d love to hear your thoughts. It will only take a minute or two for you to leave your comments in the section below.

Just remember, all comments are moderated.  That just means that I personally read each and every one before they are approved for viewing on our family friendly website. Thank you in advance for sharing.

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Be Blessed!!!


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Category: Tips & Techniques

About the Author ()

Award Winning Food Preservationist, Fisherman, Author of three cookbooks. "From Mama's Big Oval Table, From Mama's Big Oval Table - BOOK TWO and Carolina Christmas Sweets and Appetizers." Online Contributor to Our State Magazine Newsletter.

Comments (132)

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  1. Lance Higgins says:

    Just found your site.

    I’ve been rendering bacon fat for years and was just looking to see what others are doing with this commodity.

    At home, we cook bacon in the oven (not traditional…but soooooo much cleaner). When camping, we always use cast iron (no substitute). When at home we always save the fat. Use it for veggies and eggs. But it really shines when cooking game meat.

    Venison is so lean, getting good flavor from it can be a challange. If grinding your own, we mix about 25% bacon fat into the meat for some really great hamburger meat.

    When cooking whole cuts of venison, frying it in bacon fat in a cast iron pan delivers the most incredible meat EVER!!!

    Anyone whose cooking bacon and not reserving the rendered fat is wasting one of the most versatile and delicious culinary resources!!!

    Why would anyone not use this stuff!!!

    • Steve Gordon says:

      Hi Lance, I’m glad you found us. Welcome to Taste of Southern. Thank you for taking the time to share your comments with us. As one that doesn’t have the opportunity to work with any game type meats, I respect your suggestions and comments regarding such. It’s greatly appreciated. I happen to be cooking down some bacon at this very moment, and yes, why indeed would anyone not want to use the rendered fat. It’s so good. I hope you’ll visit with us again next time you’re in the neighborhood. Thanks again. Be Blessed!!! -Steve

  2. Jim Hall says:

    Steve, thanks for writing the newsletter every week. I never thought about the cost of owning/maintaining the website. I’m completely fine w/ the ads but also would be completely fine w/ paying to subscribe—maybe $20/yr?


  3. REBECCA CALL says:

    I fry bacon in a cast iron skillet and sometimes bake it in the oven. It really depends on how fast I want the bacon my husband prefers it baked. And yes being southern and raised on food seasoned with bacon drippins I always save the drippins. I would like to add that I love this website. I try a lot of your recipes with good results.

  4. Teddi Hocker says:

    I use different skillets to fry my bacon. I do love cast iron. Smile. I do not save the bacon grease as I am watching my waist-line. Smile big. Love your site!! Hugh smile!!!

  5. Thyra Phillips says:

    I always cook my bacon in a cast Iron skillet, a square skillet so I don’t have to cut the pieces like you did in your demo. Prefer to cook in the oven, but sometimes don’t want to heat the kitchen so I do on top of the stove, and I always save the Grease for seasoning, makes the best cornbread

  6. Hope Hill says:

    Hi Steve. I hope you are feeling better. I am keeping you in my prayers. To the issue at hand, I am a southern lady and love bacon! I have always fried it in a cast iron skillet and saved the grease in a jar in the fridge just like my mom did. She would have chastised you if you didn’t. Bacon grease can season so many things like hoe cakes, cornbread, beans, etc. And let’s face it bacon itself can enhance the flavor of almost anything! I have an incredible urge for an old fashioned BLT on the homemade bread. Heading to the kitchen now! Love your recipes and stories. Have tried many of your recipes with much success and happiness. Many have become a staple rotation in my home. God bless! Love forward to it next newsletter.

    • Steve Gordon says:

      Hi Hope, Thank you for your kind note and for the prayers regarding the bout with Vertigo. I do appreciate that. Thank you for subscribing to the Newsletter as well. Now I want a BLT. Smile. I’m glad you’ve tried some of our recipes and liked them. Makes it all worth while. I do appreciate your visits and I hope you’ll stop by again… real soon. Be Blessed!!! -Steve

  7. Marilyn says:

    I fry my bacon in a skillet and I do save the grease. You are correct, it is great for seasoning.

  8. Joyce Petrichek says:

    One of my favorite treats as a child was toasting a fat slice of homemade bread, then putting into the hot grease in the skillet and lifting it out quickly, so it wouldn’t absorb too much grease, then sprinkling it with salt. My mouth waters thinking about it. I may just make some homemade bread today and fry some bacon. I found a huge iron skillet at a garage sale for $5. I asked the woman why she was selling it and she said, “I can no longer lift it.” At 81 years of age, I don’t know how long I will be able to lift it, but when I can’t, I’ll get someone to do it for me.
    Another treat was heated kidney beans with chopped bacon, bacon grease and maple syrup. I still eat this as a special treat now and then.
    I enjoy the newsletter and the recipes so much.
    I’m so glad you are feeling better. I’ll keep praying for you.

    • Steve Gordon says:

      Hi Joyce, Thank you for the very kind note and for the prayers. It’s greatly appreciated. I love homemade bread, but don’t know if I’d like to dip it straight into bacon grease then eat it. Smile. It sounds interesting though. And, I would never have thought to add maple syrup to kidney beans. You certainly have some “acquired tastes.” Smile. Sounds like you got a great deal on a cast iron skillet. They are heavy even for me, but like you, I’ll cook on mine as long as I can. Thanks for sharing your comments with us. I do appreciate the visit and I trust you’ll visit with us often. Be Blessed!!! -Steve

  9. Diane Revell-Mumpower says:

    I use a skillet and I save the bacon grease.

  10. c. j. thomas says:

    Fry it in a cast iron skillet just like yours, pour the grease into a clean tin can and use it liberally on greens, green beans,cooked beans, in Spanish rice, cornbread, biscuits, tamales…there is nothing better. Excess grease has been known to be poured over seeds at the bird feeder in winter.

    • Steve Gordon says:

      Hi C.J., I love tamales. I keep telling myself I’m going to learn how to make them one day. Smile. There use to be a lady that would setup a table outside of my brothers grocery store and sell tamales. They were $1.00 a piece then. Haven’t seen her in a long time, but she made good tamales at home and would then bring them to sell outside the store. Can’t get them anywhere right around where I live that I’m aware of. Miss them. Thanks for sharing your comment and for your visit. I hope you’ll visit with us again… real soon. Be Blessed!!! -Steve

  11. I have fried bacon in the microwave, on the stove and in the oven. I love to use the oven. I save my grease for cooking other fry foods or seasoning my vegetables. I can eat bacon any time any where, love it.

  12. Steve Bailey says:

    I’ve fried bacon almost every way known to man. At our hunt club when I’m fixing breakfast for 40 or 50 hungry men , I cook it on a pig cooker. I used cookie sheets lined with tin foil with rectangular cake or cookie cooling rack. Place the bacon on the racks and set gas grill to 350. Works like a charm. Most of the older men want some of the bacon grease to carry home with them. I was the first person to cook your sausage and gravy and now it’s a staple for breakfast. Thanks for the great recipe. I love your website.

    • Steve Gordon says:

      Hi Steve, Thank you for sharing your comments with us. I don’t think we’ve ever cooked bacon on a pig cooker despite the fact that my brother has been selling them for years. Nice to know that works well also. That would be a lot of bacon for 50 guys. Smile. I’m really glad you enjoyed the sausage and gravy. Thank you for your visits and be sure to stop by again… real soon. Be Blessed!!! -Steve

  13. Sandra Lowry says:

    I do cheat sometimes and cook a couple of slices in the microwave but the best bacon is cooked in a cast iron skillet. Like you, I cut the package in half because I can fit the 1/2 slices in the pan better. (I usually freeze one of the halves too.) I was also raised with a container on the stove at all times that held bacon grease but I have to keep mine in the refrigerator. I cooked squash from the garden last week and used the grease. Umm, delicious! Love the picture this week. I just had a bacon and tomato (from the garden) sandwich for lunch. Didn’t have any lettuce but that was okay. Sorry though, I used Hellman’s mayo!

    • Steve Gordon says:

      Sandra, Sandra, Sandra, Will we ever be able to convert you over to Duke’s Mayonnaise? Smile. Thanks for sharing your comments and for your visit. I hope you’ll stop by again… real soon. I’ve got Duke’s!!! Be Blessed!!! -Steve

  14. Ann says:

    I’m bad and I cook my bacon in the microwave on paper towels, but I will try hard to remember to use an iron skillet next time and try to save for seasoning. (:

    • Steve Gordon says:

      Hi Ann, You’re not “bad” because you use the microwave. A lot of the Comments showing up are from others that use the microwave as well. I do hope though, that you’ll remember to use that skillet and save the grease next time around. I’ll be waiting to hear how you like it as a seasoning. Smile. Thank you for your visit to Taste of Southern, and I do hope you’ll visit with us often. Be Blessed!!! -Steve

  15. HARRY CARVALIS says:

    I fry my bacon in the cast iron skillet for a few slices & use the oven for more slices, and yes, being from the South, we’ve all been taught to save that grease! I strain the grease into a coffee can through a coffee filter & just leave the can on the stove, but I use the grease to cook with for a lot of dishes, including corn bread! I really enjoy your website, thanks!

  16. Wayne says:

    Hi Steve,

    Yes, I save my bacon fat to cook with and my wife uses it outside to feed the local birds in the Winter. I usually use a skillet, but wrap pork with it and bake in the oven (I’m making Stuffed Port Tenderloin wrapped in Bacon tonight). Ummm.

  17. Terry says:

    I bake it in the oven, unless we are camping. Avon over the campfire is a great way to start the day!! I do save the grease to use later. Moms baked beans would not be the same without it!

  18. Jo Beth Chittenden says:

    Hi Steve,
    This Midwest girl always fries her bacon in a cast iron skillet and save that glorious, flavorful grease and I put it in everything and on everything. My container is probably 40 plus years old, has a strainer on top but still some of those yummy little bits gets through ( smile). I keep mine in the fridge, also my container is ceramic never seen another one like it.
    I enjoy reading your website, keep it coming!
    God Bless you.

  19. Alene says:

    Hi Steve. Glad your vertigo is diminishing. My good friend suffers from it, and I know it is not fun. I fry my bacon in a frying pan, and I never save the rendered fat!! I’m from Connecticut, and my sweet mother couldn’t wait to get rid of it! I try to save it sometimes, but my husband cannot seem to figure out why I would do that! Us notherners know nothing!

  20. Margaret L says:

    I fry my bacon on top of a stove in a skillet. I really love bacon crispy & yes I save my bacon grease. I put it in the frig. I have tried cooking bacon in the oven but for me the skillet is best. My question is how much bacon grease to use in seasoning beans & such. I am scared of over seasoning. Is there a tip for that?? I want to try it in cornbread for sure. Thanks for your newsletters. I really appreciate the cooking down the Bacon Newsletter. You are spot on when you said to cook on low. Think I have been cooking bacon too fast on a higher temp as the grease tastes burned or funny. Thanks for the tip. >>Blessings to you from Emporia, Kansas

    • Steve Gordon says:

      Hi Margaret, I generally add about one Tablespoon to a pot of beans. You can always add more should you decide they need a bit more flavor once they are about cooked to your liking. Start out easy, work your way up. I do hope this will help. I’m glad to have you as a subscriber to the Newsletter and I appreciate your visits and support. Be sure to stop by often. Be Blessed!!! -Steve

  21. Doris says:

    I cook mine in the oven.I was raised on bacon grease,i save mine in a mason jar in the fridge,i also jar it up and store in the freezer.Thanks Steve for letting people know about using and saving bacon grease.

  22. Gail Alverson says:

    Hi Steve!

    I learned this trick from my mother in law way back when. I haven’t tried it in cornbread, but will next time I make it.

    I usually cook mine in a skillet, my son uses an electric grill. He did bake it for me once on Mother’s Day with brown sugar sprinkled on top. It was delicious!

  23. libby rouse says:

    Always cook my bacon in a cast iron skillet and couldn’t be without my bacon grease in the refrigerator!

  24. Dolores Fowler says:

    Hi! I fry the bacon in a frying pan if I’m making only a few slices. BUT if I’m making more, I love bacon cooked in the oven. It comes out nice and crisp and flat. I always save the grease for beans and fried eggs and potatoes. My daddy used to save the fat. I have a can with a lid and a strainer. But for my bacon grease I think the bacon bits are always a special treat in the cooked food.

  25. Carolyn L. says:

    I will take bacon grease anyway you want to give it. Who doesn’t like it. I sometimes fry mine in a spider. And when I need to fix alot I cook it on my sheet pan in the oven. I am a crispy bacon lover!! I will never forget the first time I ate baked cornbread seasoned with bacon grease. My friend from Alabama told me about that probably forty years ago. It is the best, so much better than oil or butter. My Aunt Cletha would season the grits as she was cooking with fresh bacon grease! Yum! Do you understand that bacon grease is Liquid GOLD! ( Yes, I save it in the fridge). Just wanted to say hi again and let you know that I enjoy your letter every week and Brunswick Berries is now selling fresh vegetables when available. I had my first tomato and dukes mayonaise sandwich last week and I was in heaven on Earth. Thanks for everything Steve, Be well, God Bless you.

    • Steve Gordon says:

      Hi Carolyn, I hope you’re enjoying all this lovely warm weather down at the coast. Smile. I’d love to visit with the fine folks at Brunswick Berries if I ever get back on the road again. Gotta love a good “mater” sandwich with some Duke’s Mayonnaise. Right? I do appreciate your visits and thank you for being a subscriber to the Newsletter. Be sure to stop by again… real soon. Be Blessed!!! -Steve

  26. Sarah says:

    Hi Steve, I use my cast iron skillet to cook bacon but I don’t usually save the grease.
    Thank you for your newsletter. I look forward to reading it every week!!

  27. BB Rhody says:

    Hey steve!
    I use my cast iron skillet 2 cook bacon. I use the grease in lots of things. 2 of my favorites: 1) cabbage and onions fried in bacon grease. 2) I first boil up some chopped red potatoes, dry them throughly then fry them in bacon grease till crispy. Take off heat & sprinkle with season salt & pepper, grated cheddar cheese, diced bacon & thinly sliced green onion. Also wld like 2 share my bacon purchasing secret. We purchase bacon at our local Sams club by the case. They don’t advertise it but they offer a case discount on their thick sliced bacon.
    Stay safe & keep cooking & posting! We love u out here!

    • Steve Gordon says:

      Hi BB, You have to be a real bacon lover to buy it by the case. Smile. We only did that when we were in the restaurant business. It would be way more than I could ever use now. But, thanks for sharing the tip. Perhaps it will be good news to some other bacon lover. Smile. I appreciate your comments and like your suggestions on how to use bacon grease. I appreciate your visit today and hope you’ll stop by again… real soon. Be Blessed!!! -Steve

  28. PC Simpson says:

    Love to cook my bacon in my 10″ cast iron skillet, And yes a true southerner will save the bacon grease for seasoning those great dishes, I always use my bacon grease to make my favorite meals taste better…:)

  29. Mary Elliott says:

    I usually cook my bacon in a George Foreman grill and save the grease. I also fry it in an electric frying pan when I pan fry chicken livers. I add bacon to them. They are so good. I add onions as well. I also use Robusto Salad Dressing on them giving them a tangy taste. I serve them with fried rice. Oddly, one of my favorite meals!

  30. Theda says:

    I cook my bacon in the oven, just like Mom did. And yes, I save the grease in an aluminum can with a strainer and lid. I keep it on my stove and I use it to fry and scramble my eggs, use it to flavor most of my veggies and I use it to grease my sweet potatoes just before I wrap in foil and bake…they’re so yummy . Sometimes Mom’s way is the best way!
    P.S. I made your recipe for the broccoli casserole for Christmas dinner and loved it, as did my sister and my son. Thank You.

  31. G Schuster says:

    I never thought to adding the bacon grease to a pot of beans! Thank you, Gordon!

    I love your newsletters, recipes and ever since I found you. The amount of work you put into the website shows and is definitely appreciated!

    • Steve Gordon says:

      Hi G, Thank you for the very nice compliments. I’m happy you found Taste of Southern as well. The bacon grease works great to season up beans, and it doesn’t take but a Tablespoon or so to add good flavor. Start out light, then add more if needed. I hope you get to try it soon. I do appreciate you being a subscriber to the Newsletter and for your visits. I hope you’ll continue to stop by often. Be Blessed!!! -Steve

  32. Cynthia says:

    I usually do it in a skillet, but sometimes use my George Forman Grill. I do save the grease. Great in green bean casserole.

  33. Karen Miller says:

    I usually cook bacon in a cast iron skillet on the stove as it renders better. If I’m in a hurry, I will cook bacon in the microwave. I’ve cooked bacon in the oven but it doesn’t seem as good. I’ve always saved my bacon grease. Lots of good uses including gravy, seasoning, or biscuits.

  34. I fry my bacon in the skillet and I don’t save my bacon grease

  35. Brian R. says:

    I cook my bacon several ways. Sometimes on the stove with a skillet or in the oven with a skillet. Sometimes I cook in the oven on a wire rack or straight on the pan. Depends on how I’m feeling at the time. Unfortunately, I don’t save my drippings. Maybe I’ll buy a container like yours and start a new tradition…smile.

    None the less…I enjoy your letters and the detailed instructions you provide. Stay Blessed 🙂

  36. Kathryn Ransom says:

    Hi Steve…… Thank you for asking these questions…. and by the way …I DID make your collard sandwich recipe just like you instructed and pictured but put Hormel Original style BACON on it instead of fatback ….and my husband LOVED IT !! ( You might remember I asked you why you didn’t have a recipe for Southern Hoe cakes and you directed me to your collard sandwich recipe) ….any whoo…… I USED to fry my bacon in a cast iron or other available skillet… until I learned I could microwave it…. so now … I have a special microwave bacon tray (with raised ridges on it) that drains the fat into a side collection area and I microwave for about 1 min each slice … I like mine crispy…but No I don’t save the bacon grease as I wouldn’t use it enough…. Thanks for asking and you are right Steve !! Jesus is the answer to any question OR problem !!

    • Steve Gordon says:

      Hi Kathryn, I’m glad to hear you made the Hoe Cakes and the Collard Sandwich. Happy to hear your husband liked it. I appreciate the reply and your visit and do hope you’ll visit with us often. Be Blessed!!! -Steve

  37. Judi Goodrich says:

    Hi Steve,
    I fry my bacon in a non stick frying pan, which is a lie. I just made BLT’s and wound up peeling the bacon off the bottom of the pan and it tore up to fringed pieces. I have a cast iron skillet but it is SO heavy I hate use it. My Mom use to save the bacon grease, but because of health concerns (Diabetes) I try to eliminate fats. Doesn’t mean I gave up bacon. Never happen!!!
    Have a good day,

  38. Danny Brumfield says:

    I always fry my bacon in a skillet over med heat. And I always save the grease for seasoning. My mother did this when I was growing up and it just seems like the normal thing to do. Not to mention how good it makes some of those southern dishes taste.

  39. Jody says:

    Yes, I fry my bacon and save the grease, it’s like liquid gold.

  40. Lisa Brewer says:

    I fry my bacon in a skillet.I haven’t saved the grease,but plan to the next time I fry bacon! My mom always saved it and used it for a lot of things she cooked,so I am familiar with how good it is to flavor all kinds of foods.She also poured it over lettuce and onions.

  41. Cheri says:

    I fry the bacon in the same kind of pan my daddy, my grandma, and others down the line did – a good old-fashioned cast iron skillet. Can’t fail with cast iron. But, I do not save the bacon grease. My hubby doesn’t like the taste of foods prepared with bacon grease.

  42. Linda Smith says:

    I cook my bacon in a skillet, but I keep pressing it down to get a lot of the grease out of it. I cook it slow to mid heat to keep it from burning. I do not keep the bacon grease. I don’t think it is good for my body.

  43. Connie Carroll says:

    I usually cook bacon in the oven and I don’t save the grease for anything later.

  44. nora says:

    I bake mine in the oven. I save every bit of it and store in fridge.

  45. Beatrice Boschulte says:

    I love cooking my bacon in a cast iron skillet. I do save my bacon grease to put in green beans with potatoes and smoked neck bones. I put bacon grease into my mixture of collard, mustard and turnip greens with my smoked ham hocks and smoked turkey legs.

    There is nothing greater and simpler than fresh cooked bacon on a piece of bread.

  46. Carissa says:

    I cook mine in the oven since I tend to get distracted and burn it in the pan. I always save my bacon grease, I won’t make cornbread without it!

  47. Paul P. Smith says:

    I have a special microwave bacon cooker. It has raised ridges to keep the bacon from lying in the grease that cooks out. It holds 5 or 6 full length slices and takes about 5 min. to get bacon to a medium crispness. I definitely save the drippings for later seasoning of beans, greens, cornbread, etc. I really appreciate your newsletter and recipes.

  48. Donna R. says:

    I usually fry bacon on top of the stove in a deep skillet to help with splatters, but I have done it in the oven too. My husband hates it cooked in the oven. Why, I am unsure! Guess he just likes the old time ways! Ha Yes I definitely keep the bacon grease, as we always called it, for seasoning green beans, other beans and some vegetables. The flavor of bacon can’t be beat!

  49. Beverly Jenkins says:

    I cook my bacon in a frying pan and save the grease sometimes. There is usually more grease than I can use but it is great for seasoning greens. Thank you so much for your great recipes and precise directions for cooking.

  50. Lori A Dom says:

    I fry my bacon, and save the fat. It makes the best cooked salad dressing. God bless.

  51. G Warren says:

    Hi Steve –
    I usually use the skillet since the oven is hard for me to reach into to clean, and I can easily clean the stovetop surface with a sterilizing wipe.

    I do save the grease when I have an upcoming recipe. The small apartment three-quarter size refrigerator is just too small to save everything in it that I need (want?) to.

    Thanks for your weekly email brightener with the newsletter.

  52. Recently I have started cooking bacon in the oven. I have not mastered it yet but it seems easier. I find when I do cook in the skillet it comes out perfect. So I enjoy doing both. And heck yeah, I save my bacon grease! I use it for a ton of things!!! Amen to bacon!!!

  53. Kathy says:

    I like to cook my bacon in the oven. It comes out crispy and delicious.
    My grandmother kept her bacon grease in an aluminum can with a lid
    On it so I had fond memories after reading your bacon article……

  54. Anita says:

    I fry bacon in a skillet. I tried it in the oven, but it didn’t taste as good to me. I save the bacon grease and keep it in a Mason jar in the refrigerator .

  55. Kathleen says:

    I always fry bacon in my grandma’s cast iron frying pan
    She called it an “iron spider “. I guess that’s from back in the day when they cooked in the fireplace over the coals and pots and pans had little legs to keep them up out of the ashes.
    I always save the bacon grease and so do my children.

  56. Rachel says:

    Fry in a non stick skillet (I need to buy a cast iron)
    I save some of the grease to fry eggs in

  57. Shirley Nemeth says:

    I always fry my bacon in a non-stick skillet but I don’t heat the skillet first because I read a long time ago that it would cause the bacon to “curl up”. I always cut my package in half before removing the bacon, then take a few slices from each half to make three separate portions. Wrap each portion in plastic wrap, put all three in a gallon size freezer bag and put in freezer. It is so much easier to cook the half slices than whole slices. I always save my grease to use for seasoning. I put it in a Smart Balance container with a wide rubber band around it so we’ll know which container has bacon grease in it and which one really contains Smart Balance. I do this so I can just throw it in the garbage can if it gets full and start a new one.

  58. Danny says:

    In my mama’s cast iron skillet….it’s the only way to fry! Save the grease to season all kinds of vegetables.

  59. Cheryl Fread says:

    Being raised by a Southern Grandma, I always cook my bacon in cast iron skillet.

    Unfortunately, I no longer save the grease-I used to-but alas my
    Family does not like the taste. Two of my daughters do not even like bacon!–I know, what’s wrong with them, right!
    Sometimes, after making bacon, I will use the grease to make Myself a shredded potato hash brown–but usually when no one is at home–so I don’t have to hear Eww–what stinks? Sometimes I think these girls were switched at birth! They like Nothing I grew up Loving! I console myself with the knowledge-2 more years–they will be college bound, and I will be Free–to eat my bacon whenever and however I see fit!!

  60. Henry says:

    Hi Steve, I use both the cast iron pan (when I only cook a few slices) and then the oven when there’s more too cook. My Mama used to save the grease in a special can growing up. I use a Pyrex bowl to save mine in. Love the flavor it imparts to whatever I’m cooking. Thank you for always helping me come up with good ideas when it’s my turn to cook.

  61. Wayne Robey says:

    I fry my bacon in a 12 inch skillet on low heat and turn it several times during the process. I also use an ancient round aluminum bacon press because I like my bacon crisp and flat. I have always saved my bacon grease to use as a seasoning, especially for squash with green onions and collards.

  62. Mary Barnett says:

    Fry bacon in oven (when I need a large amount), cast iron skillet or microwave when I only do 4 slices. Save the bacon grease in a small jar in my freezer and use it to season vegetables, some soups, scrambled eggs, and in my cornbread as a replacement for the oil in the recipe–in a cast iron pan, of course.

  63. Beth Jackson says:

    Always cook my bacon in a skillet; I’ve tried the oven but it didn’t seem the same. I always save the grease in a little glass dish in my refrigerator. It is wonderful seasoning. Thanks for your insight!

  64. GARY WOOD says:


  65. Sylvia M. says:

    I used to fry it in the iron skillet, but haven’t in a long time. If I am in a hurry, I microwave it. Other times, I bake it in the oven. The grease always gets saved in the refrigerator. My mom and sister always fry theirs in an iron skillet.

  66. Joan Graef says:

    I usually fry my bacon in my cast iron skillet. I have baked it in the oven with good results too. We were raised with a bacon grease jar in the fridge and I have continued the tradition. Cooking or baking with a touch of bacon grease can enhance almost any recipe.

  67. John Lapitsky says:

    Cast Iron Skillet Only!!! My grandparents always saved it and it has become a family tradition. I also keep mine in the fridge, although my grandparents used to keep it in a metal can on the stove. Sometimes I put a dab or two in my grits.

  68. Jan says:

    I cook bacon both ways – sometimes in the oven and sometimes on the stovetop. Either way, it’s delicious! And I save the grease in a glass jar that I keep in the refrigerator.

  69. Marilyn Allison says:

    Good Morning Steve;

    I cook bacon in the in skillet and in the oven depending on how much I need. And I have a mason jar in the fridge filled to the brim with bacon drippings.

    I hope you will continue to improve, and hope your friends are doing better too.

  70. Betty Goodman says:

    Cook my bacon in toaster oven and always save the grease in a “grease can” to use later for seasoning.

  71. Kathy B says:

    I cook my bacon in a skillet – usually cast iron. I save all my bacon grease.

  72. James M Button says:

    Good morning. I am a 70 yr old grandpa in Louisiana and use your recipes exclusively. We have triplet 19 yr old grandsons
    living here that we help feed. Your recipes are easy and economical and most of all very tasty. I both fry and bake my bacon and always save the grease in an empty green bean can in the freezer. I always add some to most everything I cook. Learned that from mom and grandma long ago.God bless and keep well. Jim.

  73. Page Morden says:

    I fry my bacon, don’t always use iron skillet, like it very crisp. Also save it in small canning jar in the refrigerator. Mama saved her on the stove in small cannister. Don’t cook a lots of bacon most of the time, so have to cook some up if going to use if for vegetables, etc. with a touch of sugar.

  74. Jennifer says:

    I fry bacon in a skillet or pan and save the fat. If there seems to be a lot of bits in it, I strain it and store in fridge. We don’t eat much bacon on its own, but cook with it often – a few years ago I found bacon pieces at Winn Dixie – odd cuts and ends – much less expensive, freezes well and I just slice off what I need for making beans, greens or whatever else.

  75. Debbie says:

    I do both, fry in a skillet and bake in the oven. I still have enough bacon fat from baking in the oven to save for seasoning my veggies, the only way to season veggies in the south when I do not have any ham hocks.

  76. Herb says:

    I fry my bacon. When I was in the USN as a young guy, they did it in the oven and it had a “different” taste that I didn’t care for so I have never done it in the oven. It never dawned on me that the taste came from the type of bacon they used. Doh!

    And yes I save and use the grease. Never tried it in cornbread though. Do you have a recipe for that?

    • Steve Gordon says:

      Hi Herb, Thank you for your service to our country. We will always be grateful and thankful for that. It does make a difference, at least to me, as to whether you use a smoked bacon or not. I love the smokey flavor. I do have a cornbread recipe but it doesn’t utilize the bacon. You could follow that and just add some bacon grease in place of the stick of butter called for. It gives a good flavor to the cornbread. Perhaps we can do a bacon version one day. I appreciate your comments and your visit today. I hope you’ll stop by again… real soon. Be Blessed!!! -Steve

  77. Joanne Childs says:

    Fry in skillet!

    Save bacon grease!

  78. Clara Smith says:

    I cook my bacon in the microwave oven and I save my bacon grease in a small mason jar in the fridge.

    • I always save my bacon grease. I love to use it to make breakfast gravy. Nothing better than the taste of bacon in the milk gravy. I do not use it for anything else. I fry or sometimes bake my bacon. I like it really crispy so actually baking in oven for about 20 min. does the trick just perfect.

  79. Tricia Braswell says:

    I always fry all my bacon. I have to admit that I do not save my bacon grease. Whenever I need a seasoning for my green beans or my fresh corn off the cobb, I just fry me some bacon to season it. Now, you have me thinking that maybe I should save it and refrigerate, as to have whenever I need. Thanks for all your wonderful recipes, as I look forward to seeing every Monday morning, what is in store for me to try. I am retired, so I have lots of time to try the all.

  80. Brad Corn says:

    Hi Steve,
    We fry our bacon out in a skillet and yes we save the drippings for seasoning!!

  81. Elaine says:

    I fry and bake with it. My Grandmothers, Aunts and Mother, plus my sister and I have always used bacon fat. There’s not a better flavor, I especially lovvveee to make fried potatoes, garlic and onions in it. The SMELL alone while frying is to die for let alone the taste…yum! As a matter of fact we just had a breakfast burrito stuffed with fried potatoes, onions, bacon and salsa’s for breakfast fried in bacon grease, so good!

  82. Donna Eliasen says:

    I too use my cast iron skillet to fry bacon. My husband likes to cook the bacon on the outdoor Grill to avoid smelling up the house. I personally love the smell of bacon . Also, I keep every single drop of the precious drippings with the browned bits, and store my container in the fridge.

  83. Helen C says:

    I fry my bacon in a skillet. I used to save and use the fat, as most everybody I knew used to, but stopped because of all the bad press. Think I’ll start again.
    Also, my mother did the same, kept a metal container on the stove for the bacon fat. Hadn’t thought of that in years, because later in her life, she stopped saving the fat, as a lot of us did.

  84. Dara says:

    Yummy, yummy! I certainly save my bacon fat to use in other dishes!

  85. Gail says:

    I have always saved bacon grease for seasoning. Don’t know how to cook without it. I use a skillet to cook the bacon and for many years used my grandmother’s metal container with the strainer and lid to save the grease. Have only myself to cook for now and on a low salt diet, so I rarely cook bacon any more. (No, I will NOT eat low salt bacon.) I use a small plastic container to store the grease in the refrigerator.

    • Steve Gordon says:

      Hi Gail, I forgot about the strainer in the metal container. Mama had one in hers now that you mention it. It would collect the bigger bits that might be left in the pan. Thanks for reminding me of that. I do appreciate your comment and visit today. I hope you’ll stop by often. Be Blessed!!! -Steve

  86. cynthia m scipione says:

    I prefer to cook bacon in the oven, less spatter that way, and yes I’ve always kept the grease to cook with later. As a matter of fact I have some in my fridge right now.

  87. Roselyn Clary says:

    Hi, Steve. I most of the time I cook bacon in a cast iron skillet like you did here. I start with a COLD skillet though, and cook the bacon on low heat. I sometimes cook it in the oven and even in the microwave. But either oven or microwave doesn’t give me much drippings. I save the drippings in a cute little enamelware teapot that sits on the stove. Makes it easy to add a dollup to whatever I’m cooking. Almost all of the time I add drippings to whatever other fat I’m using to cook with–just for a bit of flavor.
    Happy to hear your vertigo problem is getting better–prayer works!

  88. Linda says:

    I save my bacon grease and have for many years, even here, in Idaho! My grandma was from Tennessee so I guess I came by it from her. I have been baking my bacon for about 5 years now, I can do a big Costco package on two baking sheets and have it for many uses.

  89. Lucinda S Reams says:

    Do you fry your bacon in a skillet, or do you bake it in the oven. I have done both. However, most times I fry in a skillet for the quick convenience in the morning for breakfast. Baking in the oven is also great for an evening meal if I am cooking pancakes and having breakfast for supper.

    Most importantly, do you save the bacon grease and use it for seasoning? Yes! I absolutely do save the bacon grease for seasoning. I use it to season veggies but also to add to my vegetable oil when frying to add that wonderful bacon taste to my fried chicken or other fried foods.

  90. Irma Duncan says:

    I always fry mine in a skillet just like my mother use to do, I still save the grease because it is so good in greens my mom would make cornbread and used the bacon fat and I still do this for my family. just love your recipes

  91. Jim Ross says:

    I cook my bacon in the oven on parchment paper to make clean up easy .

    I save the fat to use on many things.also save duck fat for my potatoes

  92. Rich Marchant says:

    I also like frying my bacon in a cast iron skillet. I like to buy the thick cut bacon and I also store my bacon fat in the refrigerator. I use it to fry veggies for flavor and the like not to cook other meats. I do not add it to steamed veggies. I do try to control the fat in my foods I cook.
    Thanks for the posting.

  93. Susan Barnes says:

    Hi, Steve.
    I’ve recently starting baking the bacon in the oven. Beautiful long, uncurled strips that are crisp. I save the bacon fat for my son, whose girlfriend is using it in paleo recipes.
    I do appreciate your newsletter and have tried many of the recipes. I also enjoy reading about your travels through the country while delivering pig cookers!

  94. Stephen Greenfield says:

    Do you fry your bacon in a skillet, or do you bake it in the oven.

    Skillet. Cast-iron.

    Do you save your bacon grease to use as a seasoning later on? Yes.

  95. Terresa Wood says:

    Good morning. I love oven fried bacon but do not save grease, guess I will start. My greatgrandpa saved his on the back of the stove like your mama. He dunked his toast in it and he lived to 101.

  96. Joyce Moore says:

    I fry my bacon in a skillet.
    Sometimes i save the grease to use for seasoning.

  97. Linda says:

    My mother and grandmother always saved their bacon grease so I learned from them. I fry my bacon, like you, in a cast iron pan (I inherited the pan from my grandmother)and refrigerate with a date using masking tape on the jar. I toss after a month as I wasn’t sure how long it would keep. Good to know it will last longer. Love your e-newsletter as it reminds me growing up in NC. I am not sure what to put in the box marked “website” as I don’t have a website.

  98. David says:

    I tend to cook bacon in the microwave when it is just 4 pieces for me. A larger amount would necessitate use of the oven. I have of course used the stove top too in the past. I have a new 12″ cast iron skillet from Victoria that would work nicely especially with a trivet. I tried saving the grease like my grandmother did, but used it so seldom it was not worth the effort. I kept it in a jade green glass container with lid intended for the purpose.

  99. Emily C Hazelwood says:

    Fry and sometimes save grease.

  100. D Hopewell says:

    Hello Steve, first love your newsletters. Like momma used to,fry on the stove and cut the back in half. Thanks for your suggestion to keep the drippins in the frig. I was keeping in a cabinet but like you not using enough and would get moldy! Will start again and frig. So is it safe to use a mason jar? wouldn’t it bust? Thanks again. Later days….

  101. Elizabeth Ferguson says:

    Bacon fried in skillet. Definitely save in gray metal container with mesh strainer like my grandmother did. She cooked 24/7 and kept bacon grease by the stove. I don’t cook as much so I save mine in the refrigerator. I like how you cut bacon in half. I’ve always sliced 2 or 3 in half at a time. I like your way better and will start doing that, saving the extra in a Ziplock bag. Thanks:)

  102. Ms Jimi says:

    You are right on! Love, love your site!
    Duke mayo, Hormel bacon, yep, yep yep!
    Grinnin’ like a Cheshire!

  103. Joyce Harris says:

    I bake my bacon in the oven. I save my bacon grease.

  104. Cheryl says:

    Watching my waistline and cholesterol level, so I don’t save the fat, but I do cook my bacon low and slow to get as much fat out as I can, and I like it pretty crispy. Plus as I’m eating it, I pinch off the bits of remaining white parts – I’m weird that way LOL.
    Hey, you forgot the lettuce on that sandwich! But you converted me to Duke’s after being a lifelong Miracle Whip eater – how about that!!! I even like their lite version with olive oil added. Keep on sharing and get over the dizziness!

    • Steve Gordon says:

      Hi Cheryl, It didn’t really show up in the photo, but I do have lettuce on the sandwich. You have to look really close on the side next to the Duke’s Mayo to see just a bit of lettuce. I should have done better but the sandwich was looking to good. Smile.

      Congratulations on switching over to Duke’s. It’s the absolute best in my opinion. I haven’t tried their new mayo with Olive Oil but plan to do so very soon, when the Vertigo decides to move on. Thanks for being a subscriber to the Newsletter. I greatly appreciate your support. Keep enjoying the Duke’s and be sure to visit with us often. Be Blessed!!! -Steve

  105. Lillian Rayner says:

    Good morning, I am glad to hear that you are doing much better. To God be the Glory!!
    Well, I do both. I fry in the skillet and if I am preparing for a large crowd, I use the oven. Either way, I just love my bacon. And of course, I keep the fat for my greens!!!
    Have a wonderful day!!

  106. Robert says:

    Fry mine in a skillet and ALWAYS save the grease for seasoning/use later on!

    I look forward to you emails and recipes!

    Stay well my friend.

  107. Dianna McCullough says:

    I cook my bacon in the oven. It gives me more time to cook the other things on top of the stove, grits, eggs or whatever. Sometimes I put the bacon and biscuits in at the same time and brush the bacon grease on the finished biscuits instead of butter, yummy.

  108. Terry says:

    Bacon in the oven is the way to go for me – so much easier and way less mess. And keeping the fat? Definitely!!

  109. Vivian Reeser, Hillsborough County, FL says:

    I always use oven when cooking a pound or more for a large crowd. Use my cast iron for just a few slices.
    I do save (refrigerate) the bacon fat; mostly for seasoning but especially to add a large spoon full to pure (corn, canola, etc.) oil for frying chicken, okra, green tomatos, etc. I think it adds more BROWNING component to the pure fat. Hope you know what I mean by this.

    • Steve Gordon says:

      Hi Vivian, You’re absolutely right about the “browning” effect of the fat. When I worked with my brother at his seafood restaurant, we fried all the seafood, hushpuppies, and fries in pure lard. We had to clean out the deep fat fryers very often and to replenish the lard that had cooked away. We would always add a portion of the old lard back in with the new lard we just added just to help the first batches of food that came out to be browned. If you start with completely new oil or lard, the first batch or two is never browned enough. I do know what you mean. Thanks for mentioning it. I appreciate your comments and hope you’ll visit with us again… real soon. Be Blessed!!! -Steve

  110. Susan Hines says:

    Hi Steve,
    I enjoy your website so much! Thank you for your insight, inspiration, and cooking tips. I fry my bacon in a skillet. I save the bacon fat if I have a dish to make in the next day or so.

  111. Dora says:

    I have saved bacon grease and hog jaw grease for over 40 years in the fridge. I just use a canning jar to put it in. After years of frying on stove I’ve switched to the oven method. I put bacon on aluminum foil on baking sheet in cold oven and set at 350 degrees. It cooks more evenly and less fuss, no more watching it constantly. I use the grease for seasoning beans, slow frying potatoes and frying chicken livers. Wonderful seasoning for lots of things.

  112. Walt Caudle says:

    Although the wife and I use a skillet to fry bacon, we also bake bacon in the oven from time to time. We keep the bacon grease in a glass container with a tight fitting lid in the fridge and have for over 40 years. It really does help season eggs and veggies when cooking.

  113. Barbara Jenkins says:

    I usually cook my bacon in the oven. Don’t save the bacon grease but this article reminded me why I should! My grandmother and mother-in-law always saved it and it sure makes greens taste better! Thanks for reminding me!

  114. Barbara B. says:

    Good morning. I fry bacon in my iron skillet and YES, I definitely save that yummy bacon grease for seasoning. Fried green tomato season is here. Bacon grease is needed!!!

  115. Nancy Cassell says:

    I cook my bacon in a cast iron skillet. I think the bacon cooks more evenly.

    I save all bacon grease since I use it for cooking. I found a Grease can in a 2nd hand store. I had been looking for one a long time. Now I wouldn’t want to be without it.

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