Happy International Bacon Day! Celebrate with 18 recipes

Happy International Bacon Day! Celebrate with 18 recipes
candied bacon martini. (Ricardo DeAratanha / Los Angeles Times)

Bacon lover? If you're like me, you probably don't need an excuse to enjoy bacon. Still, even this most amazing of foods gets its own holiday, to be celebrated the Saturday before Labor Day. That would be today. So Happy International Bacon Day!

To celebrate, we've compiled 18 of our favorite recipes. From breakfast to dessert, main courses to sides, we've got you covered. Want to go all-out with bacon richness? Go crazy with our panzanella recipe (it uses both bacon and bacon fat). Want bacon with your pie? Go ahead and enjoy our pumpkin pie -- it's made in a bacon-and-bourbon-infused pie crust. We even include salads and vegetable dishes if you're looking for something a little more green.


And what better way to celebrate this holiday than with a cocktail? Toast this good day with a candied bacon martini. You can find the recipe below. Cheers!


Total time: 35 minutes

Servings: 4

Note: The candied bacon recipe is adapted from "The Gift of Southern Cooking: Recipes and Revelations From Two Great American Cooks" by Edna Lewis and Scott Peacock.


8 slices smoked bacon

1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons light brown sugar

Heat the oven to 400 degrees. Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil, shiny side up. Dredge the bacon on both sides in the brown sugar and arrange the slices so they do not touch on the sheet. Bake until the bacon is richly caramelized, 15 to 25 minutes. Use a pair of tongs to transfer the bacon strips to a cooling rack and allow the excess fat to drain. Serve warm as candy or cool until hardened for the martinis.


6 ounces premium vodka

4 ounces Applejack brandy

2 ounces amaretto liqueur

2 ounces maple syrup, preferably grade "B"

4 thin slices tart apple, such as Granny Smith

2 slices candied bacon, halved crosswise

Chill four martini glasses. In a large cocktail shaker, combine the vodka, brandy, amaretto and maple syrup with ice. Shake until combined and chilled. Strain the cocktail into the chilled glasses and garnish each with an apple slice and half a slice of candied bacon. Serve immediately.

Each serving: 284 calories; 1 gram protein; 21 grams carbohydrates; 0 fiber; 1 gram fat; 0 saturated fat; 3 mg. cholesterol; 78 mg. sodium.

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