While bacon is perfectly sublime all on its own – the experience of biting into a perfectly crispy rasher of bacon is simply beyond compare – there is no question that bacon is one of the most versatile foods out there when it comes to novel combinations. Bacon is suited equally well as a breakfast or dinner food, and works brilliantly as an appetizer, main course, or dessert. No matter where it is found, bacon has an alluring, distinctive taste that nonetheless has the ability to blend well with other flavours rather than overwhelm. When bacon is used as an accent or garnish, it always improves the dish in question. No wonder cooks love using bacon so much!
For all of these reasons, bacon is an absolutely ideal pizza topping. Pizza in the quintessential takeout food, and bacon adds flavour and depth to any dish that it is added to, so naturally this is a match made in heaven. There is great debate, however, about what exactly the best way to get a heaping amount of bacon onto a pizza is. Luckily, we here at the Republic of Bacon are willing to risk life and limb to make sure that you have the most accurate bacon information out there. So, we have tested out some theories, and here are the results!
If you’re wondering exactly how much bacon to put on your pizza, the answer, of course, is ALL the bacon. However, the shape and size that the bacon is in when it goes on the pizza does matter. Whole slices of bacon don’t cover the pizza fully, leading to clumping, overlap, and uneven topping distribution. Very small crumbles of bacon, the size of bacon bits, can also be unsatisfying, and the bacon is broken down too far in impart a very satisfying crispy-soft bacon texture. After laborious experimenting, we found that cutting strips of bacon into one- to two-inch pieces was ideal.
To Pre-Cook or Not To Pre-Cook
We definitely recommend pre-cooking the bacon you would like to top your pizza. When we topped our pizza with raw bacon, we found the results were simply too greasy, as all the bacon fat pooled on the surface of the cheese. Pre-cooking your bacon gives you the opportunity to fully drain the bacon before adding it to your pizza. It also lets you control how crispy the bacon on your pizza is, ensuring that you get the texture that you want. We do recommend slightly undercooking the bacon, so that it will finish crisping in the oven and be the perfect texture when the rest of your pizza is ready.
What Kind of Bacon to Use
We’ve used a lot of different kinds of bacon on our pizzas over time, and have developed of few preferences. After careful experimenting, we found that normal, regular cut bacon tends to make the best topping. Bacon on a pizza should taste of bacon, because it is generally being used in combination with a bunch of other toppings and needs to stand out. Maple bacon tends to be a bit too sweet and complex for the already complicated taste of pizza. Also, thick-cut bacon can sometimes be a bit overwhelming. If anything, a low-sodium bacon can be a good choice, because there is always so much salt in the cheese, pepperoni, and pizza sauce before the bacon is even added.
Bacon is a brilliant addition to any pizza. The next time your mushroom and caramelized thin-crust is somehow looking just a little bland, throw some bacon on top and we promise you’ll be thrilled with the results!