How to Fry Bacon Perfectly in a Cast Iron Skillet

Frying up crispy, delicious bacon is one of life’s simple pleasures. While you can cook bacon in almost any pan, using a cast iron skillet takes this breakfast staple to the next level. Cast iron’s superior heat retention allows the bacon to fry evenly while developing that perfect crunch we all crave.

If you’ve been hesitant to cook bacon in cast iron, this guide will provide you with a foolproof method. With a few tips and techniques, you’ll be frying diner-quality bacon in your own kitchen Keep reading to unlock the secrets of cooking flawless bacon in a cast iron skillet every time!

Why Choose Cast Iron for Frying Bacon?

Before jumping into the step-by-step method, let’s look at why cast iron is ideal for frying up sizzling strips of bacon:

  • Even heating Cast iron’s unmatched heat distribution prevents cold and hot spots This allows the bacon to cook through evenly.

  • Natural nonstick: Seasoned cast iron develops a natural nonstick patina, allowing the bacon to fry in its own fat without sticking.

  • Healthy frying: Cast iron requires less oil for frying compared to other pans. The small amount of bacon grease is enough for cooking.

  • Scrumptious fond: Those flavorful browned bacon bits that stick to the pan are called fond. Deglazing the cast iron skillet after cooking allows you to make a tasty sauce.

  • Heats and cools slowly: Cast iron maintains its temperature for longer. The slow heating and cooling prevents burning or undercooking the bacon.

With cast iron’s list of benefits, it’s easy to see why it’s the top choice for frying bacon. Now let’s get cooking!

Ingredients & Equipment for Frying Bacon

Frying delicious bacon in cast iron only requires a few simple ingredients and tools:


  • Bacon (8-12 slices depending on appetites)
  • Tip: Look for high-quality bacon without tons of added sugar. This prevents sticking and burning.


  • 10-12 inch cast iron skillet
  • Bacon press or splatter screen
  • Tongs
  • Spatula
  • Paper towels

That’s it! Cast iron, bacon, and a few essential utensils are all you need.

Step-by-Step Instructions for Frying Bacon in Cast Iron

Follow these simple steps for perfect bacon every time:

1. Preheat Cast Iron Skillet

Place your cast iron skillet on the stove over medium heat. Let it preheat for 5 minutes so it evenly heats up. Properly preheating is key for even cooking.

2. Add Bacon Strips

Once preheated, add enough bacon slices to fit in a single layer without overlapping. Overcrowding will steam the bacon instead of frying.

3. Fry the First Side

Let the bacon fry undisturbed for 2-3 minutes. Resist the urge to move it around. This allows the fatty edges to render and crisp up.

4. Flip and Continue Frying

Use tongs to gently flip each slice and fry 2-3 minutes more. Adjust heat if it seems to be cooking too fast or slow.

5. Remove and Drain

When the bacon reaches your desired level of crispness, transfer it to a paper towel-lined plate to drain.

6. Fry Remaining Batches

Fry additional batches if needed, leaving the savory bacon grease in the pan between batches.

7. Enjoy Warm and Crispy!

Devour the hot, crispy bacon right away! It’s perfect on its own or on burgers, sandwiches, salads and more.

Handy Tips for Frying Bacon in Cast Iron

Beyond the basic technique, applying these tips will help you fry perfect bacon every time:

  • Pat the bacon dry before cooking – this promotes even browning.
  • Use a bacon press or splatter guard to prevent curling and splattering.
  • Adjust heat as needed to prevent burning or undercooking.
  • Fry thicker slices longer than thin slices for the ideal texture.
  • Save leftover bacon grease for cooking other foods!

Common Bacon Frying Questions

If you’re new to frying bacon in cast iron, these frequent questions can help you out:

Should cast iron be preheated before frying bacon?

Yes, always preheat your cast iron skillet before adding bacon. This prevents sticking, curling, and uneven cooking.

Does bacon need oil in a cast iron skillet?

No additional oil is needed! The small amount of fat rendered from the bacon is enough to fry it up crispy.

Why is my bacon sticking to the cast iron?

If bacon sticks to an otherwise well-seasoned pan, the skillet likely wasn’t preheated. Always preheat before cooking for best results.

How can I clean my cast iron pan after cooking bacon?

Clean while the pan is still warm by wiping away any stuck bits with a spatula or paper towel. Give it a quick hot water rinse, then dry thoroughly.

Extra Crispy Oven-Baked Cast Iron Bacon

If you prefer extra crispy bacon, this oven-baked cast iron method is for you! The high heat of the oven takes the bacon from crispy to shatteringly crisp.


  • Bacon slices
  • Parchment paper


  1. Line a cast iron skillet with parchment paper and add bacon slices in a single layer.

  2. Bake at 425°F for 15 minutes.

  3. Remove from oven, flip bacon, and bake 10 more minutes.

  4. Let cool 1-2 minutes before serving for ultra crispy bacon!

The oven provides an easy mess-free way to achieve crispy browned bacon edges and crisscrossed centers.

Enjoy Your Crispy Cast Iron Bacon!

Now you’re ready to fry up the best bacon of your life in cast iron! With these simple steps and tips, you’ll enjoy diner-style bacon any day of the week.

Cast iron cooking allows you to experience bacon the way it was meant to be – with crisp, savory edges and melt-in-your-mouth centers. So grab your skillet and get sizzling!

The Best Way to Cook Bacon | How to Cook Perfect Bacon


Can I use bacon grease in a cast-iron skillet?

Lard and bacon are the best seasoning oils A proper seasoning fills in the tiny crevices and pores in the surface of your cast-iron pan with a hydrophobic, plastic-like layer. This layer prevents water-soluble proteins (eggs, meat and cheese) from sticking to the pan.

Do I put oil on pan before frying bacon?

Cooking Bacon on the Stove Lay the bacon strips in the cold skillet, then place the pan on the stovetop over medium heat. You don’t need to add any oil because the fat will render and help the bacon release from the pan as it cooks. Pan-fry the bacon until the strips are crisp and deeply brown, flipping as needed.

Leave a Comment