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How To Reheat Bacon – I Test 5 Methods [Pics]

This article was updated on 8th September 2023 for freshness and to incorporate new insights.

Bacon is the undisputed king of the breakfast buffet, but what do you do with your leftovers? Can you restore bacon’s crispy, just-fried taste after storing it in the fridge or freezer?

Hang tight. I experimentd with five different ways to reheat bacon to find out!

The best way to reheat bacon is in a skillet. Warm a skillet over medium heat before placing the bacon in and frying on one side for 2-3 minutes. Flip the bacon and fry the other side for 1-2 minutes. You can also use the oven, broiler, or air fryer.

How I tested reheating bacon

In my house, we take our bacon seriously, which is why I almost always end up cooking too much.

This time around, I used my leftovers in a series of bacon reheating experiments, which included:

  • In a skillet: Fresh-tasting results.
  • In the oven/toaster oven: Good for large portions.
  • Under the broiler: Hot, crispy bacon.
  • In the microwave: No crisp, and a little rubbery.
  • In an air fryer: Hot and delicious.

My goal was to get my bacon as crispy and fresh-tasting as possible.

Bacon reheating tip

If you’re cooking bacon in preparation for later use, cook it to one level below your desired crispness. This will ensure you end up with perfect bacon that crisps when reheated rather than drying out.

Reheating bacon in a skillet

Time: 3-5 minutes

  1. Warm a skillet over medium heat on your stove (no need to add oil or butter).
  2. Spread the leftover bacon out in the skillet making sure none of the rashers overlap.
  3. Heat on one side for 2-3 minutes.
  4. Flip the bacon, and warm it for a further 1-2 minutes or until hot and crispy.
  5. Serve immediately.

The exact heating time will depend on the thickness of your bacon slices.

The bacon will release its own fat, so there’s no need to add additional grease or butter to the pan. That being said, using a non-stick or cast-iron skillet is advisable.

This is an excellent method for a breakfast fry-up because you can fry other things in the pan at the same time (i.e eggs). You just need a big pan!

Results: This reheating technique is fast and convenient and delivers crisp bacon that tastes freshly fried. The minor downside is that you can only warm up a limited number of pieces at a time, and of course, you need to monitor the entire process.

Related: Can Non Stick Pans Go In The Dishwasher?

Reheating bacon in the oven/toaster oven

Time: 5-10 minutes

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C).
  2. Spread the bacon out over a cooling rack with a drip tray (or a foil-lined baking sheet).
  3. Heat for 5-10 minutes, or until crispy. Flip the bacon halfway through heating if you’re using a baking sheet.
  4. Once hot, serve immediately.

If you’re using a toaster oven, you can reduce the heating time. The smaller space means the bacon will warm up faster.

Using a wire rack is ideal because it allows the bacon to crisp up from all sides. If you’re using a foil and a baking tray, you can crumple the foil a bit to elevate the bacon. This will help air circulation and stop the bacon from resting in its own fat.

Pro tip: Don’t throw away the excess fat that collects in the tray. Collect it and use it to fry some eggs!

Results: This is one of my favorite methods purely because of how effortless it is. You can heat loads of bacon at once and end up with fantastic results. My one caution is that you need to be mindful of overheating the bacon and drying it out.

Reheating bacon under the broiler

Time: 2-3 minutes

  1. Set the broiler to a high heat setting.
  2. Spread the bacon out on a wire rack over a drip tray (or a foil-lined baking sheet).
  3. Place it under the broiler for 1-2 minutes.
  4. Flip the bacon over and return it to the broiler for a further minute until crispy.
  5. Serve immediately.

Using a wire rack allows excess fat to drip off the bacon, making this a slightly healthier option.

Flipping the bacon is a crucial part of this method, or else it will burn on one side. With such a strong direct heat, you need to keep an eye on the process to avoid burning the bacon.

Results: This method delivers super crispy results and fast. I’d recommend this method if your bacon is slightly undercooked for your liking or if you like it extra crispy. But if it’s already overcooked, the broiler might be too harsh.

Reheating bacon in the microwave

Time: 30-45 seconds

  1. Line a microwave-safe plate with a piece of paper towel.
  2. Spread the bacon out on the plate in a single layer, avoiding overlaps.
  3. Heat the bacon for 30-45 seconds, or until hot.

Spreading the bacon out on the plate helps it heat evenly and the paper towel base soaks up any extra grease, so the bacon isn’t swimming in it.

Fat and grease heat up very quickly, so the bacon won’t need much time in the microwave. Be very mindful of overheating the bacon by leaving it in the microwave for too long. It will turn dry and unappetizing.

Results: This definitely wasn’t my favorite method. The bacon turned out rubbery, chewy, and with zero crisp. Avoid using the microwave if you can.

Reheating bacon in an air fryer

Time: 2-4 minutes

  1. Set the air fryer to 350°F (180°C).
  2. Optional: Line the fryer basket with foil.
  3. Spread the bacon out in the basket, not touching.
  4. Heat the bacon for 2-4 minutes, checking it regularly.
  5. Once crispy, serve immediately.

To avoid cleaning a greasy fryer basket, line it with foil or parchment paper before adding the bacon.

Given the harsh direct heat of an air fryer, it’s best to check the bacon regularly to make sure it doesn’t burn or dry out. Depending on size and cut, the bacon can heat up really quickly, so watch it closely.

Results: This is the method I’d recommend for guaranteed crispiness. However, it’s not ideal if your bacon is already verging on overcooked, as it will only serve to dry it out more.

How to store bacon

You can store cooked bacon in the fridge for up to five days. After cooling it to room temperature, dab away excess fat with a paper towel and store the bacon in a sandwich bag or a shallow, airtight container. Alternatively, wrap the bacon up tightly in foil or plastic wrap before placing it in the fridge.

Although the bacon will remain safe to eat for up to 5 days, it may start to dry out after 3-4 days. 

Protecting it from air exposure by (for example) sucking the air out of the sandwich bag will help prevent this.

Related: Does Cooked Bacon Need To Be Refrigerated

Can you freeze bacon?

You can freeze cooked bacon for up to 6 months. The best way to go about this is to flash freeze the bacon on a baking tray first so that the slices don’t end up clumped together. You can also freeze raw bacon, but be aware that it can still go rancid in the freezer, so try to use it within 1 month.

How to freeze cooked bacon:

  1. Cool the bacon to room temperature.
  2. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and spread a layer of bacon out on top of it, not touching. If you have more bacon, cover the first layer with a second piece of parchment paper and lay the extra bacon out on top. Repeat the process until all the bacon is accounted for.
  3. Pop the baking sheet in the freezer for up to an hour. Then transfer the bacon pieces into zip-lock freezer bags.
  4. Remove any excess air while sealing.
  5. Label each package clearly and use within 6 months.

To remove the air from your freezer bags, submerge them partially in water while zipping them closed to force out any extra air. You can also use a straw to suck out any extra air. Removing the air helps to prevent premature freezer burn.

Flash freezing the bacon first means it won’t stick together in the freezer bag, and you can easily take out a few slices at a time. If you don’t want to do this, you can separate the bacon with parchment paper in the freezer bag. Or wrap portions of bacon in plastic wrap before putting them in the freezer.

How to thaw and reheat frozen bacon

You can thaw bacon overnight in the fridge or by leaving it out on the counter for up to 2 hours. Alternatively, hold the frozen bacon under running water or use the defrost setting on your microwave. Once defrosted, you can reheat the bacon in the skillet, oven, or microwave.

You can also reheat bacon straight from frozen. Given how thin it is, it won’t take long to defrost when subjected to heat. You may just need to adjust your reheating times slightly.

Psst… if you’ve read this far you must love bacon, so here’s a neat hack to ensure you get perfectly cooked and crispy bacon everytime.

How To Reheat Bacon [Tested Methods]

In this short recipe, I show you the best way to revive and reheat your leftover bacon.
4.34 from 3 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Ingredient
Cuisine: American
Keyword: bacon, reheat bacon
Prep Time: 0 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 5 minutes
Servings: 1 person
Calories: 541kcal


  • 1 portion bacon
  • 1 portion American bacon


  • Warm a skillet over medium heat on your stove (no need to add fat).
  • Spread the leftover bacon out in said skillet without overlap.
  • Heat on one side for 2-3 minutes.
  • Flip the bacon, and warm it for a further 1-2 minutes or until hot and crispy.
  • Serve immediately.


The bacon will release its own fat, so there’s no need to add additional grease or butter to the pan. That being said, using a non-stick or cast-iron skillet is advisable.
Spreading out the bacon will allow it to crisp up deliciously and evenly.
This is an excellent method for a breakfast fry-up because you can fry other components, like eggs, at the same time.


Serving: 100g | Calories: 541kcal

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