If you’ve never had candied bacon, you’re in for a treat! Thick slices of bacon are slathered with a spicy, sugary beer sauce and roasted over a smoky campfire for breakfast heaven. Weaving bacon slices onto roasting sticks gives the perfect balance between crispy edges and chewy center; sauce gets caught in the folds so the bacon doesn’t dry out and all that delicious sweet-spicy-smoky goodness stays on the bacon instead of dripping into the fire.
This week’s recipes feature local craft beers to celebrate the Great American Beer Festival! GABF is the biggest beer festival & competition in the country, bringing the best of craft brewing together in Colorado. They’re pouring over 3,500 brews, so I’ve been chowing down on my pretzel necklace to keep going! I shared behind-the-scenes stories from opening night yesterday on Instagram and there’s more coming tomorrow.
IPAs are the darling of Colorado craft beer, so we’re wrapping up this week with Epic Brewing‘s Escape to Colorado IPA. This is a hoppy, fruity, super sippable beer, perfect for this sweet & spicy sauce. And of course beer + bacon is a classic love story.
Googling “why are IPAs so…” comes back with a great list: popular, bitter, hoppy, expensive, gross. IPAs definitely aren’t for everyone! It took me a while to find a few I really liked, but it’s a slippery slope. Some of the dark, dank brews are still too much for me, but I think there’s something about becoming a Coloradoan that practically requires acquiring a taste for IPAs. Drink local!
Prep this before you go camping by mixing the beer, sugar, and spices in a jar at home. You can just give it a good shake and drizzle the sauce over the bacon before roasting.
If you’re staying home, it’s easy to make beer-candied bacon in the oven: Weave the bacon slices onto metal skewers and brush with beer sauce. Lay on a wire baking rack set on a foil-lined baking sheet. Cook at 350° for 10 minutes, then brush with more beer sauce. Return to the oven until bacon is done, about 10-15 more minutes, and they’re ready.
Take advantage of this gorgeous October and head for the mountains this weekend! You’ll be happy to wake up outside with a sizzling campfire and spicy, sugary bacon.
Campfire Beer-Candied Bacon
- 1 lb. thick-cut bacon
- 1/2 cup IPA beer
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 1 t. black pepper
- 1 t. crushed red pepper flakes
- 1/2 to 1 t. cayenne pepper
- roasting sticks
- Build a campfire with a hot bed of coals.
- Weave bacon strips onto skewers, leaving a little space between folds.
- Shake beer, sugar, and spices in a jar until sugar dissolves. Brush mixture generously over bacon strips.
- Cook over the fire for 5 minutes, then brush with more beer sauce. Flames will flare up from the dripping grease.
- Continue cooking, rotating every 5 minutes & brushing with more beer sauce, until bacon is done.