Crispy Air Fryer Bacon Recipe

Recently, a(nother) friend talked to me about going vegan. As I told her, “That’s great for you.” I don’t plan on going vegan this year though for various reasons but also… bacon. After that conversation, I wondered how easy it would be to make air fryer bacon. The answer: Very.

thick-cut air fryer bacon recipe

If (like me) you appreciate a little crispy bacon indulgence from time to time, read on. This recipe is for all of the thick-cut bacon lovers out there. (I eat regular bacon too, I just happened to have Smithfield thick-cut bacon in my refrigerator when I ran my tests.)

Here’s What I Found:

  1. Skip the Oil: Bacon makes its own grease, so you don’t need to pre-oil your air fryer basket. Just preheat the air fryer to 350 degrees.
  2. Four Pieces Fit: Place a single layer of four bacon strip halves in your basket.
  3. Flip The Bacon: Use tongs to turn over the bacon after three minutes.
  4. Six Minutes Is The Sweet Spot: Ninja AF101 users, please note that the cook times in their “Air Fry Cooking Chart” tend to be off. It says 8-10 minutes but I ended up with burnt bacon at 8 minutes. Six minutes ended up being the sweet spot for thick-cut bacon. (If I cook regular bacon in the air fryer in the future, I would decrease the time by a minute or two.)
bacon in air fryer Ninja

Air Fryer Bacon Recipe

Air Fryer Bacon

Air Fryer Bacon


  • 4 strips thick-cut bacon, cut in half


  1. Preheat your air fryer to 390°F for 3 to 5 minutes. 
  2. Place 1/2 of the bacon in the air fryer basket in a single layer.
  3. Air fry the bacon for 6 minutes, flipping the strips halfway through for even cooking.
  4. Remove the bacon from the air fryer and place the strips on a paper towel-lined plate.

    Air fryer bacon is delicious, but it’s not the fastest way to cook bacon. Cutting the bacon in half takes time. I prefer to cook more full-sized bacon slices in the oven. Just because you can cook bacon in the air fryer, doesn’t mean that it’s the best option. If I were to rank my bacon cooking preferences, they would be in this order:

    1. Oven
    2. Stovetop
    3. Air Fryer
    4. Microwave


    For a small batch of crispy bacon that is less greasy, the air fryer is a great option. If you prefer to prepare your bacon in the air fryer, consider investing in some reusable air fryer liners or air fryer parchment paper liners for easier cleanup.

    Enjoy and remember that there’s no shame in loving bacon. Life’s too short for food judgment.

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