Homemade Bacon

Smoked meat and dads go together in my family, which is why homemade bacon to celebrate Father’s Day just makes sense. Making bacon at home takes a little time, but once you try your own, you’ll only use commercial bacon when you’re in a pinch. You can change the spice profile any way you’d like—just keep the pink salt and kosher salt ratios in order with the weight of the raw belly.


I love bacon, but probably not as much as my pal and The Chew cohost, Michael Symon. It doesn’t need to be in every single dessert or savory dish I eat. But homemade bacon with eggs and pancakes for a late breakfast with my boys and wife on Father’s Day is my absolute jam.


The best version of this I ever made was with pork belly from a farmer featured in my last cookbook, America Farm to Table. Rebecca Krassnoski is the owner of Nature Delivered Farm near Tampa, Florida. She’s a minimalist farmer who lives in a tiny, off-grid house utilizing passive systems, repurposed materials and other sustainable methods to economically raise pigs for restaurants.


Curing salt, also known as Prague Powder No. 1 or pink salt, is key in food preservation to prevent or slow the process of spoilage by fungus or bacteria. Pink salt usually contains sodium nitrite, helpful in preserving the color of cured meat. Curing salt is not to be confused with Himalayan pink salt, which is regular table salt with trace elements that give it a pink color.


After Father’s Day celebration, use your homemade bacon in recipes as simple as a BLT or as complicated as duck scaloppine with warm bacon lentils.


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