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Sweet, salty, and beautifully crisp, this 3-ingredient Candied Bacon recipe is incredibly easy to make and super customizable using your favorite pantry spices. If perfect oven-baked maple glazed bacon candy sounds like your idea of a good time, this is the pork for you!

Photo of a crispy slice of candied maple bacon.

About this candied bacon recipe 

Maple sugar bacon, a.k.a. the salty-sweet crunchy goodness we all deserve in our lives. This quick and easy recipe is about to revolutionize everything from your weekend egg omelettes to your salad and dessert game, all with just 15 minutes of active prep time.

Why you’ll love this candied maple bacon 

As if that weren’t enough to love, the best recipe for candied bacon is also:

  • Made With Only 3 Main Ingredients – If you have bacon, maple syrup, and brown sugar on hand, this easy candied bacon is well within your reach.
  • Easily Customizable – Opening up your spice cabinet has never seemed so exciting. Whether you’re in the mood for a spicy-salty-sweet adventure, or want to infuse your brown sugar candied bacon with Tex Mex or Asian-inspired flavors, I’ve got you covered. Read on below for tons of tasty ideas!
  • Meal Prep-Friendly – Whip up a batch on Sunday and enjoy this sweet bacon all week long. It keeps well for up to 5 days in the fridge — but only if you have some serious willpower. 
  • Sweet & Salty & Oh-So-Versatile  – Honestly, is there a better flavor combination than salty sweet? Methinks not. Since this caramelized bacon swings in both flavor directions, it’s equally welcome on hot fudge sundaes and BLTs. It’s the new kitchen workhorse you didn’t know you needed!

Overhead photo of the four ingredients to make recipe for candied bacon.

What is candied bacon? 

Buckle up, buddies, because I’m about to take you on a joyride of flavor. Bacon, that sizzling superstar of breakfast tables everywhere, going on a delightful adventure through a magical Candyland. What emerges on the other side is none other than… drumroll, please 🥁… maple-candied bacon!

So, what exactly is this mysterious creation, you ask? Well, friends, maple sugar bacon is like regular bacon’s fancy cousin. Also known as million-dollar bacon, it’s got all the smoky, savory goodness you know and love, but with a little extra pizzazz. 

All that gorgeous smoked pig belly is sprinkled with some sweet magic—here, a delicious mixture of brown sugar, maple syrup, and your choice of spices—and then baked until it reaches crispy, caramelized perfection.

Just imagine the delightful collision of flavors happening here! You’ve got the salty, meaty richness of bacon dancing cheek to cheek with the sweet, sticky sweetness of the candied maple brown sugar bacon cure. 

Now, you might be thinking: “But why mess with bacon?” I get it. Salty, crispy bacon is already a gift from the heavens, so tampering with it might seem sacrilegious. But trust me on this one — the food gods will not be miffed. 

You’re basically upgrading bacon’s wardrobe from Steve Jobs’ boring ol’ turtleneck to a snazzy Tom Ford tuxedo, ready to dazzle your tastebuds like Frank Sinatra crooning at a supper club.

In short, candied bacon is the sweet and salty superhero of the culinary world. It’s the yin and yang of flavors, the perfect balance of sugar, spice, and EVERYTHING nice. Trust me, one taste, and you’ll be “bacon” for more!

Overhead photo of raw strip of bacon in a bowl of brown sugar.

Ingredients for maple candy bacon

As promised, you only need 3 simple ingredients for the base of this easy candied brown sugar bacon recipe. Here’s what to grab:

  • Bacon – You can’t have maple bacon candy without bacon! You’re welcome to use your favorite variety — thick or thin cut, maple or applewood smoked, organic or nitrate-free. So long as it’s bacon, you’re in business.
    • Substitution: While it’s definitely not AS good, you are free to swap in turkey bacon if you’re pork-free.
  • Brown Sugar – Feel free to use either light or dark brown sugar depending on how much molasses flavor you like. 
    • Substitutions: Other brown varieties of sugar like grated jaggery, piloncillo, or muscovado sugar are all perfect swaps.
  • Maple Syrup – Maple syrup and bacon go together like lox and bagels. This dynamic duo is tough to beat! 
    • Substitutions: You’re welcome to swap in another sticky-sweet substance like honey or golden syrup if you prefer.

Optional variations

Now that you know the basics of maple brown sugar bacon goodness, it’s time for your creativity to shine! Here are some of my favorite millionaire’s bacon flavor mash-ups to try:

  • Chey’s Perfect Candied BaconSpices are optional in the recipe, but I find they contribute to a more well-balanced candied bacon flavor. Cayenne, Cinnamon, Salt & Pepper are all it takes to make my personal penultimate version of this pig candy.
  • Spicy Candied Bacon – Mmm, the only thing better than sweet n’ salty is sweet-salty-spicy. If you’re among the some who like it hot, use extra cayenne or chipotle to set your tastebuds ablaze with flavor.
  • Black Pepper Candied Bacon – A slight variation on spicy candied bacon calls for just freshly cracked black pepper as your add on. Not only does it add heat, but also some lovely crunch. Opt for Sichuan or Tellicherry peppercorns for the zippiest flavor.
  • Herb Bacon – Add a few shakes of your favorite dried herbs (e.g. rosemary, thyme, or sage) to create a pinky’s out version of candied bacon that’s perfectly primed for cheese plates and sandwich salads.
  • Asian Bacon – Add a generous dash of Chinese 5-spice powder for a delectable treat. Bonus points if you chop it up into bits and sprinkle it on fried rice or beef stir-frys.
  • Tex Mex Bacon – Add a few dashes of ground cumin, ground coriander, smoked paprika, and chipotle powder for a fantastic flavor combo that’ll have you yelling YEEHAW! Use the spiced and sugared bacon in your next BLT salad or sandwich to achieve Top Chef marks with very little effort.

Photo of seven strips of raw bacon brushed with maple syrup and sprinkled with brown sugar on a wire rack.

How to make candied bacon in the oven

Wondering how to easily make candied bacon in the oven? This recipe for sugared bacon comes together with just 15 minutes of active prep. Here’s how:

  1. Preheat Oven: Preheat the oven to 375-degrees Fahrenheit. Next, line a large baking sheet with aluminum foil for easy clean up. Then place a wire rack insert directly onto the baking sheet and set aside.
  2. Combine Sugar and Seasonings: In a shallow bowl or pan large enough to hold a slice of bacon, combine the brown sugar with the cayenne, cinnamon, salt, and black pepper.
  3. Brush Bacon with Maple: Working with one slice of bacon at a time, use a pastry brush to brush a small amount of maple syrup on one side of the bacon.
  4. Coat Bacon in Sugar Spice: Transfer the slice of bacon, maple side DOWN, to the bowl with the brown sugar mixture. Press and rub the sugar-spice mixture onto the bottom side of the bacon.
  5. Arrange on Baking Sheet: Transfer the sugared bacon slices to the wire rack, placing the bacon sugar side UP and in a single layer on the wire rack. Repeat coating the remaining slices of bacon and arranging them evenly spaced on the wire rack.
  6. Bake: Transfer the bacon to the preheated oven and cook on the middle shelf, rotating the pan halfway through baking, for 20-25 minutes, or until the bacon is crisp and the sugar is caramelized.
  7. Cool: Remove the baking pan from the oven and let the bacon cool on the wire rack for 2 minutes. Then, use tongs to transfer the bacon to a parchment paper or wax paper-lined surface and allow to cool completely to room temperature.
  8. Enjoy: Enjoy candied bacon whole, cut into little bacon candies, or crumble and enjoy!

Expert tips for the best candied bacon in oven

Making this candied bacon with maple syrup and brown sugar is pretty darn simple. That said, I’ve learned a few tricks to keep in mind:

  • Line your baking sheet with parchment or foil to make cleanup a breeze, then place the wire rack on top of it so the hot air can circulate and cook the bacon to crispy perfection.
  • Don’t let the bacon cool on the wire rack for too long or it’ll stick. Nothing is sadder than losing bits of candied maple bacon to inattention. 
  • Use high-quality bacon in this easy candied bacon recipe. This should go without saying, but the better your bacon is plain, the tastier it’ll be when it’s candied.
  • Keep your eye on the salty snack prize. Different ovens cook at different temps and different rates. On top of that, different people like different levels of crispiness. I have friends who prefer their bacon floppy (I know, it’s weird), and others who prefer to to be so crisp that it shatters. I personally am the Goldilocks of this situation and like mine somewhere in the middle. Leave your oven light on and keep your eyes and nose peeled until you learn the perfect timing for your version of sweet bacon success!

Close-up photo of six slices of maple candy bacon.

FAQs: maple bacon candy

How long does maple candied bacon last? 

In our house, mere minutes!!! All jokes aside, though, you can store the maple candy bacon for up to 5 days in the fridge.

Is candied bacon a dessert?

YES! It’s also a side dish, a garnish, and an interesting element in nearly any meal.

Is candied bacon shelf-stable?

Nope. It should keep well at room temp for about 2 hours, but after that it should be stored in the fridge to prevent spoilage.

Close-up photo of two strips of candied bacon fresh from the oven.

Serving maple glazed bacon 

Wondering what to serve with candied bacon? The best part about this magically morphed meat is that you can enjoy it in all sorts of ways:

I’m curious to hear: what are YOUR favorite ways to enjoy the magic of candy maple bacon with brown sugar? Let me know in the comments below or tag me in your IG posts (@nospoonnecessary) so I can cheer you on!

Bacon party!

If you are a lover of crisp, salty pork bacon, throw a party in its honor and serve up all your favorite bacon recipes. Here’s mine:

Storing this recipe for candied bacon

  • Once the candied bacon brown sugar goodness has cooled to room temp and hardened into proper candy, it can be transferred to an airtight container or resealable bag. It should keep well in the fridge for up to 5 days.
  • If you want to reheat it, I suggest using the toaster oven and a parchment-lined sheet. 

Overhead photo of two strips of maple candied bacon.

Alright, my bacon-loving buddies! Now that you’re armed with these sizzling tips, you’re ready to rock the candied bacon world! Don’t go bacon my heart and leave this recipe on the shelf — get your apron on, unleash your inner flavor artist, and let the magic happen. Until next time, stay crispy, my friends!

Cheyanne

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More candy recipes!

How to candy bacon in the oven👇

Photo of six slices of candied bacon with maple syrup and brown sugar.

How to Candy Bacon in Oven

Total Time: 35 minutes
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Servings: 4 servings
Sweet, salty, and beautifully crisp, my 3-ingredient Candied Bacon recipe is incredibly easy to make and super customizable using your favorite pantry spices. If perfectly crispy maple-glazed bacon candy sounds like your idea of a good time, this is the pork for you!
Recipe can be scaled up or down by using the slider if you hover your mouse over the number of Servings.

Equipment

  • 1 Large Rimmed Baking Sheet
  • 1 Wire Rack
  • 1 Small Bowl

Ingredients 

Instructions

  • Preheat Oven and Prep Baking Sheet: Preheat the oven to 375-degrees Fahrenheit. Line a large, rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil for easy clean up. Next place a wire rack insert directly onto the baking sheet and set aside.
  • Combine Sugar and Seasonings: In a shallow bowl or pan large enough to hold a slice of bacon, combine the brown sugar, cayenne, cinnamon, salt, and black pepper.
  • Brush Bacon with Maple: Working with one slice of bacon at a time, use a pastry brush to brush a small amount of maple syrup on one side of the bacon.
  • Coat Bacon in Sugar Spice: Transfer the slice of bacon, maple side DOWN, to the bowl with the sugar. Press and rub the sugar-spice mixture onto the bottom side of the bacon.
  • Arrange on Baking Sheet: Transfer the sugared bacon to the wire rack, placing the bacon sugar side UP. Repeat coating the remaining slices of bacon and arranging them evenly spaced apart on the wire rack. (Note: Do NOT overlap the bacon on the pan. It’s okay if they are touching slightly though.)
  • Bake: Transfer the bacon to the preheated oven and cook on the middle shelf, rotating the pan halfway through baking, for 20-25 minutes, or until the bacon is crisp and the sugar is caramelized.
  • Cool: Remove the baking pan from the oven and let the bacon cool on the wire rack for 2 minutes. Then, use tongs to transfer the bacon to a parchment paper or wax paper-lined surface and allow to cool completely to room temperature.
  • Serve: Enjoy candied bacon whole, cut into little bacon candies, or crumble and enjoy!
    Photo of six slices of candied bacon with maple syrup and brown sugar.

Notes

  • Bacon: You can candy whatever bacon variety you love - thick-cut bacon, regular bacon, center-cut, lean, etc. Please note that leaner, thinner cuts of bacon will get more crispy in the oven, while thicker cuts will be more chewy in texture. 
  • Don’t let bacon cool on a wire rack for more than a couple minutes or it will stick like glue.
  • Storage: Airtight container or resealable bag in the fridge for up to 5 day
Nutritional information is an estimate based upon 4 servings. Exact information will depend upon the brands of ingredients and precise measurements used.

Nutrition

Calories: 185kcal    Carbohydrates: 30g    Protein: 12g    Fat: 2g    Saturated Fat: 1g    Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.01g    Monounsaturated Fat: 0.003g    Sodium: 1142mg    Potassium: 51mg    Fiber: 0.1g    Sugar: 30g    Vitamin A: 52IU    Vitamin C: 0.1mg    Calcium: 29mg    Iron: 0.2mg

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