I love finding new and exciting ways to use my Air Fryer and this is my favorite trick yet. This air fryer bacon is finished in under 10 minutes (even with thick cut bacon), and no greasy mess all over the stove! I also give tricks for insuring there is no smoke while making bacon in the air fryer. This recipe is perfect for cooking small batches of bacon. If you want to feed a crowd, I recommend cooking your bacon in the oven.
The air fryer is the new buzz worthy appliance and with good reason. Bacon in the air fryer yields crispy bacon that is ready in 8-10 minutes and with no mess on your stove top. I also notice that this bacon is more tender than bacon cooked on the stove top. It will become your go-to method for the crispiest bacon.
Like most people, I am a lover of bacon. I have tried different ways to make the best bacon over the years and I think I have found this method to be my new favorite way! Also check out my bacon wrapped asparagus for another bacon treat in the air fryer.
When cooking bacon in a skillet (traditional way) it splatters all over the stove. When making oven-baked bacon, it splatters all over the oven. I need a method with the less mess so now I air fry bacon for minimal mess and because it gives me perfectly cooked bacon slices every time.
Cooking bacon in the air fryer is the easiest way and will give you delicious bacon every single time! It truly is a total game-changer. I have a 6 quart air fryer and I can cook up to 7 pieces of thick cut bacon at a time. This method also works with smaller air fryers. The trick for fitting more bacon in your air fryer is to cut the strips in half, widthwise and then place them in the air fryer basket in a single layer. This also helps the bacon cook quicker!
Of course, with this easy air fryer bacon recipe, the cook time will depend on the thickness of the bacon. Thin bacon, regular bacon, and thick-cut bacon will all take different times to cook. No matter what type of bacon you have, this cooking process will be the best way to have tasty bacon in less time.
Is it safe to cook bacon in an air fryer?
It is important that you follow the directions and safety precautions of your particular air fryer. I have a Nuwave Brio 6 quart air fryer and their instructions do not prohibit the cooking of greasy foods.
You can also use an air fryer oven and cover the drip tray with aluminum foil for easy cleanup. The best part of this crispy air fryer bacon recipe is the clean up!
If you are cooking bacon in your air fryer and it starts to produce white smoke, that is the bacon grease oxidizing. This is probably because your air fryer is set on too high of a temperature, or it could mean you need to wipe out the inside of your air fryer (when it is room temperature) to remove any excess grease from the heating element.
We cook the bacon in the air fryer at 320 degrees F because the smoke point of bacon fat is 325F. This is the temperature at which bacon fat starts to oxidize and smoke. This is how we avoid smoke while cooking bacon! If you want to cook a second batch of bacon immediately after the first, you need to drain any grease from the basket and wipe it out so the fat doesn't oxidize.
Is cooking bacon in the air fryer healthier?
No, there is nothing different about cooking bacon in the air fryer than in the oven or in a skillet (if you drain your bacon on paper towels). The air fryer is essentially a mini convection oven. What would make bacon "healthier" as in less calories and fat, is to make it as crispy as possible which would render as much fat from the bacon as possible. If you cook your air-fried bacon to where it is not very crispy, it will have more fat, which means more calories.
Cooking times - thickness of your bacon matters
For this recipe, I set the air fryer to a lower temperature of 320F, and the time to 9 minutes. This is truly the best temperature to avoid smoke and for the best results. This is with thin bacon, so if your bacon is thicker, it will take a little longer. You can check on the bacon and add more time if you need to. This method also works with turkey bacon.
No matter the size of your air fryer, as long as you place your strips of bacon in a single layer, this air fryer method will work.
Leftover bacon? Try these great recipes:
- The Best Fried Cabbage with Crispy Bacon
- Crustless Quiche with Bacon and Spinach
- Cream Cheese Chicken with Bacon
- Keto Egg Salad with Bacon
Checkout these other air fryer recipes for the whole family:
- Air fryer crispy Brussels sprouts
- Air Fryer Chicken Wings
- chicken breast in the air fryer
- Air Fryer pork chops
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The Best Bacon in the Air Fryer - Thick or Thin Bacon!
- 3-7 Pieces Bacon, cut in half widthwise
- Lay the bacon in the Air fryer basket in a single layer. For the best air fryer bacon, it is important to not crowd the air fryer. If your air fryer is smaller, you may only be able to cook a few pieces at a time.
- Cook the bacon at 320F for 9 minutes (thick cut bacon) or shorter for thinner bacon. Check the bacon throughout the cooking time to make sure it isn't overcooking.
- This method also works with turkey bacon
- If you want to cook a second batch of bacon immediately after the first, you need to drain any grease from the basket.
- After cooking and the air fryer is cool, take a damp paper towel and wipe any grease that has splattered onto the inside of the air fryer...especially the heating element at the top. This will keep the bacon from smoking next time.
- Bacon smoking?: The smoke point of bacon fat is 325F. Since we are cooking this bacon at 320F, there should be no smoke. If there is smoke, that would be from leftover grease on the inside of the air fryer that has oxidized. When your air fryer is cool, wipe the inside with a damp cloth.
Nutrition per serving
Nutrition is provided as a courtesy only. Please re-calculate on your own with the ingredients and amounts you used for the most accurate data.