The 3FW (FED Fun Food of the Week): Bacon Fat

Do you love bacon?  (I'm assuming your response was something like "BACON, BACON, BACON!")  Did you know that bacon loves you too?  (Seriously, bacon really does love you.)  And, bacon brothers and sisters, have you ever wondered how you can keep on loving bacon long after breakfast?

You see, bacon is really two foods in one.  First, it is a porky, crispy, salty, meaty, makes-mouths-happy kind of food.  Second, bacon exudes something magical when you cook it.  Drippings

Yes drippings, all that stuff that you thought was "grease".  The by-product of cooking quality uncured pork bacon is another high-quality porcine product.  Technically bacon-flavored lard, this highly stable source of fat (mostly of the saturated and monounsaturated variety) can be used in all sorts of wonderful ways.  But, before you get cooking you need to, well, get cooking.  

Step 1: Fry up some bacon.

I recommend keeping the heat set to low and to let the process take some time.  This will help minimize the the amount of burnt (oxidized) material in the end product.  I also recommend using a organic or at least hormone-free variety of uncured, thick-cut bacon that will give you plenty of fat.  Additionally, I would avoid using a Teflon-coated or "non-stick" pan.  There is a good possibility that the "non-stick" chemicals will get un-stuck and end up in your food.

It's like a "happy face" times five.

Step 2: Strain

Once you've cooked your bacon down to crispy goodness, remove the bacon strips and pour the grease through a strainer.  (I would say "before going any further, nom several strips of bacon," but you already know that.)

Step 3: Solidify

The final step is to put your strained bacon fat into the fridge.  Once it hardens, you are ready to get cooking.

Step 4: Start cooking

To get your bacon-infused juices flowing, here are a few recipes, one savory and one sweet, that make good use of bacon fat...

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About Unknown

Tony is the host of the Paleo Magazine Radio podcast, author of "Paleo Grilling: A Modern Caveman's Guide to Cooking with Fire", and Cofounder of Powerful PT, an innovative information resource for Fitness Professionals. He has appeared on numerous local and national television and radio broadcasts and regularly hosts healthy cooking workshops and informational lectures. He is also a full-time Personal Trainer and Wellness Consultant who lives in Jacksonville Florida with his wife Jamie.
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  1. how long can you safely keep fat for?

  2. If you keep bacon fat covered and refrigerated, it can last months without spoiling. Because the fat is a mix of saturated and mono-unsaturated (with only a small amount of polyunsaturated fat), it is very stable, much more so than vegetable oils.

  3. I cook almost everything in bacon fat... nummy, nummy!!