How to Make Perfect Crispy Bacon in an Air Fryer

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Want to enjoy crispy bacon without the mess? This guide will show you how to make perfectly cooked bacon in an air fryer. Say goodbye to greasy stovetops!

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This recipe is a Dined and Dashed Level 1 recipe, which means it takes 15 minutes or less to prepare and the cooking process couldn’t be easier.

The air fryer method of cooking bacon means you will have freshly cooked and crispiest bacon in a fraction of the time, but you may sacrifice flavor in exchange for convenience. Read on to learn why.

Can you put raw bacon in an air fryer?

Can you put bacon in an air fryer? The short answer is yes. The long answer is a bit more complicated. You can put bacon in an air fryer, but should you put bacon in an air fryer?

Should you put bacon in an air fryer?

The question of should you put bacon in an air fryer is a question you want to ask yourself before you decide to actually make bacon in an air fryer. Some people have strong feelings about air-fried bacon!

​Pros of cooking bacon in an air fryer:

  • Takes less time than traditional methods
  • It’s a really easy way to make bacon
  • Less mess and easy cleanup (kind of, maybe – see cons)

Cons of cooking bacon in an air fryer:

  • The fat drips away from the bacon into the bottom of the basket so it’s not cooked in the bacon drippings, which I think does impact the flavor (negatively though it’s bacon so still good)
  • Some people say that the bacon grease makes a mess in the air fryer leaving you with as much, if not more, cleanup that on the stove or in the oven. I did not personally find this to be true.
  • Unless you have a really large air fryer, it must be cooked in small batches and full length bacon strips may not fit and may need to be cut in half.
  • Can over-cook it quickly if you aren’t paying attention.

So, it’s going to be a personal choice whether you choose air-fryer bacon or the traditional way on the stove top or oven-baked bacon versions (I suppose some people microwave bacon as well). If you do try this easy air fryer bacon recipe, I’d love to know your thoughts about the flavor and if you will continue to air fry bacon or go back to one of the old ways. I do think my favorite method is the oven bacon recipe because I can control the excess grease left on the slices of bacon.

What temperature do you cook bacon in an air fryer?

There are a couple of schools of thought for the temperature you use to cook bacon in an air fryer. One of the concerns of a higher temperature would be that because of how quickly the air fryer cooks food, you have a better chance of burning your bacon.

Some people prefer to cook bacon in the air fryer at 350 degrees for a longer time, others use 400 degrees for a shorter time. Much like the age old debate of crispy vs soft bacon, it’s really just a matter of preference.

How long do you cook bacon in an air fryer?

The length of time needed to cook bacon in an air fryer varies based on a few factors:

  • The temperature you cook it at (for regular cut bacon) – air fryer bacon cooked at 350 degrees will require roughly 10 minutes to be medium crisp and air fryer bacon cooked at 400 degrees may only need 8 minutes for medium crisp. 
  • The thickness of your bacon – thick cut bacon will take longer to cook, thin bacon will take less time.
  • How crispy you like your bacon – crispier bacon takes longer to cook.

There are different types of bacon, I’m not sure they would all cook up the same, so this article is referring to traditional streaky bacon.

What you need to make bacon in an air fryer:

The most important thing you need to make bacon in an air fryer is, of course, an air fryer. The type of air fryer doesn’t really matter although if you are cooking bacon for a crowd, the bigger the better. Some air fryer accessories may allow you to layer your bacon in the air fryer allowing you to cook more bacon at one time. I used a rack in mine and had two layers of bacon and it did take longer to cook to my preferred level of thickness, so keep that in mind.

Some people recommend using aluminum foil in the bottom of the air fryer to collect bacon grease. I don’t see how that helps, as air fryers tend to be non-stick and super easy to clean. I don’t use it, but you could if you wanted to.

What is the best air fryer?

According to Amazon reviews, the Ninja AF101 Air Fryer is their highest rated Air Fryer. It’s only 4 quart so I’m not sure it’s the best bang for your buck. The Nuwave Brio 7 in 1 is 7.25 quarts for nearly the same price. 

How to cook bacon in an air fryer:

Cooking bacon in an air fryer couldn’t be simpler. Add bacon in a single layer, set temperature, cook. It’s that easy! Depending on the size of your air fryer basket, you may have to cut the bacon in half before putting it in the air fryer.

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How to Make Perfect Crispy Bacon in an Air Fryer

If you are looking to enjoy bacon but don't have much time, this crispy air fryer bacon recipe may just be the solution you need!
Note: this only saves time if you need a small batch of bacon. If you need to cook a full package, it's not really a time saver.
Prep Time 2 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Course Breakfast
Cuisine American
Servings 4
Calories 352 kcal

Equipment

Ingredients
  

  • 1 package sliced bacon
  • salt to taste
  • pepper to taste

Instructions
 

  • Add strips of bacon (seasoned before adding to air fryer if using salt and pepper) to air fryer basket in a single layer. You may need to cut it in half.
  • Set air fryer to 350 degrees with no preheat.
  • Fry for 8-10 minutes depending on desired level of crispiness.

Notes

I did try and do two layers of bacon in my air fryer by using the metal rack that came with it and lined up another layer of bacon strips on it. I feel like it took longer to cook and the layers didn’t cook evenly. For what it’s worth though, it pretty much worked in a pinch.
Nutrition disclaimer:
The nutritional data provided here is only an estimate and provided for information only. Verification using your own nutritional calculator is required to ensure accuracy. 

Nutrition

Calories: 352kcal
Keyword air fryer, keto
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Personally, I really do prefer oven-baked bacon because it’s not as messy as on the stove and the bacon still cooks in the grease, unlike in the air fryer. Air fryer is bacon is still good – I mean, it’s BACON, but I think I will stick with the oven method.

Stay tuned for more great air fryer recipes

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