Amazing Ways To Use Bacon

We all know everything's better with bacon. Sure, you might stack it on your hamburgers, sprinkle it on your pizza, and even pile it on your plate at breakfast, but have you ever tried using it in a cocktail? Or how about in jams and jellies? There are a ton of ways you can use bacon, and while some of these ways may seem weird, they're also guaranteed to be a major hit.

In cookies

Use bacon in your cookies, and the combination of sweet and salty is guaranteed to be a new favorite. Everyone loves a chocolate chip cookie, and Baking Beauty has reimagined them into a bacon and chocolate chip cookie. How can you beat the combination of chocolate and bacon? Actually, you might be able to, because The Cozy Apron has created these pancake and bacon cookies that taste exactly like pancakes and bacon in a cookie form. The maple glaze completes the package, and you might as well just print this recipe and put it in a special place in your kitchen.

If oatmeal cookies are more your thing, Created by Diane has you covered with these delicious oatmeal, maple, and bacon cookies that are great on their own, and even better dipped in maple syrup. And what about shortbread? Shortbread on its own can be a little boring, but step it up with these bacon and maple cookies from Closet Cooking and you'll never look at shortbread the same way again.

For pancake dippers

If you've never made pancake dippers, your breakfast game is about to be changed. Not only are they a fun way to combine pancakes and bacon, but they're almost a grab-and-go breakfast that's all the deliciousness with a fraction of the mess. 

Lady Behind the Curtain has a super-easy way to make pancake dippers using everything you already have ready for your Sunday breakfast. Just cook up your bacon, mix up your pancake batter, pour the mix over the bacon, and you have your dippers. 

For bite-sized appetizers

Whether you're having a party or attending one, there's one sure-fire way to make sure your dish is a hit — and that's to use bacon. You can't go wrong with delicious, bacony, one-bite appetizers, and let's face it, no one's going to take just one. Small Town Woman uses pineapple as the center of these one-bite appetizers, covering the whole thing with a sweet Asian sauce to take this from "win" to "complete win." You can use peaches, too, as long as they're fresh and in season. Go Go Go Gourmet found that out the hard way when they grilled up some bacon-wrapped peaches, but if the season's right this is a guaranteed hit.

Apple smoked bacon is a wonderful thing, and you can totally capitalize on wonderful apple flavor with these apple, cinnamon, and bacon bites from Sprinkle Some Fun. Maple is the other brilliant flavor made more perfect by bacon, so check out these maple, caramel, and bacon bites from The Domestic Rebel. There's a reason these little pastry cups filled with goodness are called "crack bites," and you won't' be able to make enough of these.

For jams

You don't need a special occasion to start your day with something delicious. Every morning can be special with a little bacon jam. Start with this bacon jam from Brit + Co., because it's got sweetness from brown sugar, heat from paprika, and a full, dense body from a heavily malted dark ale. The Gold Lining Girl uses whiskey for this whiskey, maple, and bacon jam, that's perfect with some cheese and crackers.

For the best brittle ever

Peanut brittle is a staple of the holiday season, and let's not take anything away from that. It's delicious, but like so many things, it can be improved with bacon. If you have any doubts, just take a look at the Pastry Chef Online's recipe for a hard cider peanut brittle with maple and bacon. No more doubts, right?

For another boozy brittle that's sure to be a hit, check out What Molly Made and her bourbon bacon brittle. Love the idea but don't love bourbon? Try this beer and bacon brittle from Brooklyn BrewShop, who recommends using a your favorite brown ale for a winning combination. And don't worry, you don't have to go boozy. 4 You with Love has a delicious brittle recipe that calls for bacon, maple, and pecans.

For dips

It doesn't matter if it's game time, movie time, party time, or just Netflix time, you can't go wrong with some dip. Check out this easy recipe for a bacon horseradish dip from Rants From My Crazy Kitchen. You only need a few ingredients — including center cut bacon — and you'll have a snack that might not be healthy, but is definitely delicious.

Bacon makes great hot dips, too, like this cream cheese, sour cream, and bacon dip from Kitchen Meets Girl. For something hot and gooey with a completely different flavor profile, try this hot bacon dip from Spicy Southern Kitchen. This one gets its goodness from mayo, Gruyere cheese, sweet onions, and just a bit of sherry, along with the bacon. There's supposed to be six servings, but no one's judging you if that turns into one!

In candied bacon

Candied bacon makes a great gift, and what about serving up a slice in a champagne glass alongside dessert? Or making it a part of the place settings at one of your inevitable holiday meals? Talk about starting things off right! It's easier to make than you might think, too. Just start with thick-cut bacon, and then follow this recipe from The Suburban Soapbox for a candied bacon equal parts sweet and spicy. Made By A Princess has a slightly different version that uses onion and garlic, and why would you not want to be snacking on a whole plate?

It's undeniable, just how well maple and bacon go together, and Closet Cooking has whipped up a candied bacon with only three ingredients: Bacon, maple syrup, and brown sugar. It's ready in around 35 minutes, too, and we know everyone loves quick, easy, and tasty. This is definitely all three.

In fudge and toffee

We can all agree there's something magical about the right combination of sweet and salty, so let's talk about the perfect way to mix the two. That would be in bite-sized pieces of goodness, like this maple bacon fudge from Ashlee Marie. After making up a batch of candied bacon, you'll have the star of this amazing maple, not-too-sweet fudge that no one's going to judge you for cutting into really, really large pieces. Even NPR gets in on the bacon fudge action, with this peanut butter and maple bacon fudge full of all the chocolatey goodness you expect from a traditional fudge.

Since no dessert spread is complete without some toffee, take a page out of the recipe book of Forks and Folly for this salted caramel and bacon toffee. It's literally layered with goodness: graham crackers, smooth caramel, pecans, chocolate, and bacon. We know, right? For those adults-only parties, whip up a batch of this whiskey caramel toffee from The Kurtz Corner. They use saltines, but you can swap out any base you like for this sweet-and-salty treat that's sure to be a favorite.

For popcorn

Popcorn is an awesome snack, and popcorn with bacon is even better. Next time you queue up a movie, don't settle for boring old butter. Plan a bit ahead — about an hour — and make a batch of this maple bacon popcorn from Supermum. With candied bacon sprinkled over popcorn and covered with a healthy dose of brown sugar, this one's packing all kinds of winning flavors. For something with more spice than sweetness, check out this bacon and jalapeno popcorn from Foodie Girl Chicago. As an added bonus, there's no butter... so it's as healthy as you're going to get with bacon.

We couldn't forget including a boozy option, either, and that's this bacon, bourbon, and caramel popcorn from The Endless Meal. There's something amazing just about that combination, and anyone who agrees is sure to find a new Friday night favorite right here.

To make brownies ever better

If you've already perfected your candied bacon game, you're ready for bacon brownies. Take this recipe from Bakerita — it's filled with the deliciousness of chocolate, candied bacon, and caramel layered up and down these incredible brownies. Seriously, just make a couple pans, because they're not going to last until dessert. Neither will these bacon salt brownies from Take Two Tapas, and you mean you've never sprinkled some salt on your brownies? It works in ways you won't believe.

In cocktails

Any time you're looking for a cocktail that's going to impress the most demanding connoisseur, break out the bacon. The Marvelous Misadventures of a Foodie put together this version of an Old Fashioned with bacon and a brown sugar simple syrup as well as the standard bitters and bourbon. 

You can also infuse vodka with all the tasty, tasty flavors of bacon, and it's easier than you think. Cooks with Cocktails gives you the basics here, and suggests you use bacon vodka in a Bloody Mary. Or... pretty much anything! We're also going to give you the best way to drink your bacon-infused vodka cocktail, and that's with a bacon straw. Use the easy instructions over at Supercall, and impress your guests.

For cheesecake

Cheesecake is an incredibly versatile dessert, and now you have every reason in the world to perfect your cheesecake technique. Trying to make one for the first time might be a little intimidating, but take a look at this maple, bacon, and praline cheesecake from Mrs. Happy Homemaker, then just try to tell us you're not already committed to trying it.

Then, there's this bacon, chocolate, and caramel cheesecake from Bacon Concentrate, and it looks as good as it tastes. If you want something that's going to get some serious attention from the second it's set out on the table, this is definitely it. (As an added bonus, the creamy caramel topping will cover any potential cheesecake breakage.) Just as gorgeous is this bacon, bourbon, and caramel cheesecake from Kleinworth & Co. It's ideal for a special occasion but simple enough you can justify making this "just because", and let's be honest. We all need more of those types of desserts.