19 Delicious Ways To Incorporate Bacon Into Your Next Holiday Meal

If any of you love bacon as much as we do, we know you'll find every way you can to incorporate bacon into almost any dish you eat. When it comes to the holidays, most of us think of warm golden turkeys and hot juicy hams to help ring in the festivities -– but wait, there's more. Adding bacon to sundry holiday dishes can help amplify the flavor of otherwise mundane entrees and side dishes, making them that much more desirable –- if that's even possible!

From light eats to bold main entrees, we've rounded up all the ways we think you could use bacon to impress your guests at your next holiday dinner. We've even snuck in a few recipes that might make a good snack -– you know, just in case the host gets hungry while cooking for everyone else. Whether fried or baked, these holiday eats that make the most of bacon are lined up just for you. Let's jump in!

1. Brussels sprouts with chestnuts and bacon

Serving bacon over Brussels sprouts is a marvelous way to dish up an amazing side dish alongside your typical turkey holiday dinner, but it can also make an excellent complement to many other types of lean white meat. To prepare the dish, first parboil your Brussels sprouts and rinse them well before setting aside. Fry up your bacon, then your chestnuts, all before adding your previously rinsed Brussels sprouts back to the pan. Melt some butter over the sprouts, bacon, and chestnuts, and cook for a few minutes. Top with pomegranate seeds before devouring!

Recipe: Brussels sprouts with chestnuts and bacon

2. Bay, beer, and bacon crab soup

Adding bacon to crab, along with a little onion, celery, and cream, can really liven things up and make for a delectable soup this holiday season. To pull this recipe off, begin by cooking your bacon and removing it from the pan with a slotted spoon. To the remaining grease, add butter along with your onions, celery, and flour to make a roux. Add beer, broth, lemon juice, and cream. Cook this mixture before adding back in those delicious pieces of bacon, along with some savory crab meat, to finish the job. Sprinkle with chives. Voila, you have a perfectly warm soup to complement the chilly air of the holidays.

Recipe: Bay, beer, and bacon crab soup

3. Easy baked beans with bacon

Who doesn't love a good serving of baked beans, especially when simmered with nice, thick chunks of fried bacon? We certainly do. To make this bacon-y side dish come to life, start by frying your bacon in a large stockpot until crisp. Then add ingredients like canned pork and beans (gotta love the pre-cooked stuff), brown sugar, ketchup, barbecue sauce, and Dijon mustard. Stir the entire mixture until well incorporated before simmering for about 20 minutes. Serve alongside your holiday meat entree of choice, and watch your dinner guests go ga-ga over this winning side dish. You're welcome!

Recipe: Easy baked beans with bacon

4. Bacon-wrapped meatloaf

Bacon-wrapped meatloaf may sound fancy, and actually, it kind of is! Start by making a "bacon blankie" by weaving pieces of your bacon together to form a rectangle. Mix the ingredients that compose your meatloaf sauce in a bowl and set aside. Combine the needed ingredients to your meatloaf mixture, including chunks of cheese (...mmm), breadcrumbs, egg, garlic powder, and other goods in a large bowl. Form your meatloaf into a log shape and wrap with bacon that has been brushed with half of your meatloaf sauce. Place your bacon-wrapped meatloaf into an oven or smoker to cook before adding more sauce and cooking again until it reaches an internal temperature of 160 degrees Fahrenheit. Allow to rest before serving with all of your favorite traditional holiday sides.

Recipe: Bacon-wrapped meatloaf

5. Bacon-wrapped maple-glazed carrots

If you've never heard of using bacon to wrap carrots, then boy, do we have a surprise for you! Start by finding some large whole carrots to wrap in pieces of thin bacon. Place each wrapped carrot on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Brush each bacon-wrapped carrot with pure maple syrup before cooking in the oven for about 15 minutes. Brush again with more maple syrup before cooking 15 minutes more and garnishing with parsley or basil for aesthetics and added flavor.

Recipe: Bacon-wrapped maple-glazed carrots

6. Sweet and spicy bacon-wrapped chicken tenders

Sweet and spicy tenders wrapped in savory bacon? Yes, please! This holiday-worthy recipe starts with par-baked bacon that it is wrapped around chicken tenders that have been seasoned with garlic, onion powder, chili powder, cayenne pepper, and salt. You'll also use smoked paprika here, which is different from sweet paprika, so be sure to note the difference. Once wrapped, you'll coat these babies in brown sugar before using toothpicks to secure the bacon. Stick them in the oven to heat until cooked through, and serve along with your choice of veggies.

Recipe: Sweet and spicy bacon-wrapped chicken tenders

7. Chicken bacon ranch casserole

A chicken bacon ranch casserole is perfect for incorporating bacon in a meal big enough to feed a large crowd. Start by preheating your oven and boiling your pasta. Once the pasta is cooked, saute your onions and garlic until fragrant. Set aside the onion and garlic mixture, and add your flour, butter, and milk to the same pan; this serves as your roux. Add the remaining ingredients in the recipe back to the pot, including your shredded chicken, bacon, and ranch seasoning. Stir until incorporated and top with cheese, then bake until golden brown. Serve alongside a simple salad to set off those yummy bacon and chicken flavors. Enjoy!

Recipe: Chicken bacon ranch casserole

8. Bacon jalapeño deviled egg

Deviled eggs are classic offerings during Thanksgiving, Christmas, and other holiday celebrations. What better way to incorporate bacon than to sprinkle it over your next deviled egg recipe? To make our version of deviled eggs, you simply need boiled eggs, mayonnaise, salt, pepper, mustard (optional), and toppings -– including bacon, of course. To start, take your boiled eggs and scoop out the yolk. To the yolk, add mayonnaise, salt, pepper, and optional mustard. Pipe this mixture into your leftover boiled egg whites, and top with chopped bacon, jalapeños, and chives. Serve alongside your favorite holiday entrees.

Recipe: Bacon jalapeño deviled egg

9. Loaded deviled egg pasta salad

We've already covered how to use bacon in your next deviled egg recipe, but why not turn this bacony-side dish into a delicious pasta meal? To pull off a loaded deviled egg pasta salad recipe, you'll need to use those boiled eggs we discussed in the last recipe and remove the yolks once again. To these yolks, you'll add a variety of ingredients to form a deviled egg dressing. In the meantime, cook your pasta. Combine the cooked and drained pasta with the dressing, the leftover egg whites (diced), pimentos, shredded cheddar, and the star of the show, the bacon. Serve up as a side dish or devour on its own.

Recipe: Loaded deviled egg pasta salad

10. Broccoli bacon salad

Yes, broccoli is healthy, but can we all agree that it tastes so much better when paired with bacon? To serve this delicious bacon salad at your next holiday get-together, start by frying up your bacon until nice and crispy. Use a sharp knife to cut a head of broccoli. Be sure to chop both the stalks and florets, making sure the stalks are finer since they tend to be more dense. Throw together some mayonnaise with some white wine vinegar and a few other yummy ingredients before stirring in the broccoli, raisins, white cheddar cheese, red onion, and sunflower seeds. Then add in that crispy bacon you fried up earlier. Yum!

Recipe: Broccoli bacon salad

11. Easy tater tot casserole

A tater tot casserole is a simple, comforting, and easy way to incorporate bacon into your next holiday meal. Begin by browning your ground beef along with onion in a large skillet. To this mixture, add cheddar cheese soup, along with sour cream, shredded cheese, and lots of chopped bacon, making sure to reserve enough to sprinkle over your tots at the end. Pour this cheesy meat mixture on the bottom of your baking pan, and layer your tater tots on top. Sprinkle with additional bacon and cheese before baking. Serve with chopped green onions as garnish.

Recipe: Easy tater tot casserole

12. Superb succotash

Succotash brings together the interesting flavors of lima beans, corn, and bacon to create a fiber-rich yet flavorful superstar of a dish. To make this succotash recipe, first fry your bacon until crispy in a large skillet. Remove the bacon from the pan, but allow the drippings to remain. From here, saute your onions before adding your lima beans and corn to the pan. Add seasonings, broth, and garlic, and cook until the lima beans eventually turn tender. Add butter and tomato before topping with ever-flavorful bacon. Now you're ready to dish this up to your loved ones to eat this holiday.

Recipe: Superb succotash

13. Warm spinach salad

If you've never sampled warm salad before, you don't know what you're missing. In the case of warm spinach salad, you'll start by frying your bacon to a crisp, leaving about 2 tablespoons of fat behind. To that, whisk together apple cider vinegar along with Dijon mustard and seasoning over low heat to combine. Remove the mixture from the heat, and place washed spinach, hard-boiled eggs, bacon, and bleu cheese crumbles into a bowl. Ladle the warm dressing over the salad and serve alongside a delicious holiday entree. Enjoy!

Recipe: Warm spinach salad

14. Easy seven-layer salad

If you're looking for something cool, creamy, and topped with bacon, try this easy seven-layer salad recipe. You'll start the same way most of these recipes start, and that's by frying small bacon pieces in a pan until crisp. Remove the bacon with a slotted spoon before setting it aside. In a large bowl, layer your salad ingredients, including your lettuce, peas, and other yummy additions, so they are each in their own uniform layer. Make the last layer the celery, and top it with a tasty combination of mayonnaise and sour cream. Sprinkle that crispy bacon over your mayonnaise mixture, then top with cheddar cheese. Place this bacon-essenced salad in the fridge for at least two hours before tossing it up and serving it alongside your main entree. Delish!

Recipe: Easy seven layer salad

15. Jalapeño poppers

Jalapeño poppers are a fun, yummy, and spicy snack that uses bacon to give just the right flavor nuisance to make these holiday grabs irresistibly delicious. To make them, simply fry up some bacon, drain it, and chop into tiny bits. In the meantime, slice open your jalapeños and remove the seeds and the pith. Combine cream cheese with milk and Sriracha sauce using a handheld mixer. Add in the bits of bacon and mix once again until incorporated. Stuff your jalapeño halves with the creamy bacon mixture before topping them with breadcrumbs and popping them in the oven. Allow to cool a bit before enjoying these deliciously easy treats to be served up at your next holiday meal.

Recipe: Jalapeño poppers

16. Baked stuffed jalapeños

If you loved using bacon in the previous jalapeño poppers recipe, then you'll really enjoy this slight variation. In this recipe, you can use regular store-bought bacon bits if you desire, but of course, it'll taste much better if you use the real thing. To begin, stir together bacon bits, cream cheese, Dijon mustard, salt, pepper, and cheddar cheese. Use this filling to add to already halved and seeded jalapeño peppers. In a separate bowl, add breadcrumbs and butter and stir well. Place the breadcrumb mixture over the stuffed jalapeños and bake. Allow to cool and top with green onions. Serve!

Recipe: Baked stuffed jalapeños

17. Instant pot loaded mashed potatoes

Use the instant pot to whip up these delicious bacon-topped mashed potatoes in a flash! To get it done, place your bacon in the oven, where it will cook and crisp. Drain the bacon, crumble, and set aside. Add roughly chopped potatoes along with some garlic, vegetable bouillon, and water to your instant pot and cook. Once cooking is complete, pull the potatoes out of the instant pot (leaving the water behind) and mash. Add in ingredients like milk, sour cream, butter, green onions, and lots of bacon and cheddar to set everything off. Lastly, sprinkle with additional bacon, cheddar, and a handful of green onions before serving.

Recipe: Instant pot loaded mashed potatoes

18. Bacon lovers grilled cheese

When you're cooking food for a large crowd of people, sometimes it's helpful to stop and make a bacon-laden snack for yourself during some down time. To make a bacon lover's grilled cheese, begin by placing several pieces of cheese in between two slices of bread the same way you would when making a grilled cheese. Next, lay five pieces of bacon down, put your cheese sandwich in the middle, and carefully fold the bacon strips up over each side of your sandwich. Repeat with five more pieces of bacon to cover the other side of the sandwich. Then just grill this bacon sandwich on both sides in your skillet until the bacon begins to crisp, using tongs to help you brown up the edges. Place it on a plate, open wide, and enjoy its flavor -– it's truly delicious!

Recipe: Bacon lovers grilled cheese

19. Bacon weave taco with mac and cheese filling

This is another snack-style meal you may consider making for yourself while cooking a big dinner for the holidays, but honestly, it isn't easy. To attempt this delicious bacon shell macaroni and cheese taco, first cook up the mac and cheese in a slow cooker according to directions specified in the recipe. Once the mac and cheese is cooked, make a weave design with your bacon, par-bake it, and cut it into a circle using a knife or pizza cutter. From there, finish cooking the bacon in your oven until nice and crispy. Use this bacon weave as a shell to hold your scrumptious mac and cheese. It may be a little tricky, but as far as we're concerned, it's well worth the effort!

Recipe: Bacon weave taco with mac and cheese filling