Homemade Bacon Jam

With the economy circling the drain, home canning and preservation has seen a huge revival in the last few years. And while I’m all for homemade jellies and jams, I can’t help but notice that they usually are made with worthless, inedible fruit. After storming around the kitchen in a blind rage, throwing all of our homegrown raspberries and blueberries into the garbage, I set to work on this recipe, which you can customize with additional spices, bourbon, or chiles. Later in the week, we’ll incorporate it into a sandwich, but for now, whip up this sweet-salty-spicy-porky bit of heaven, and spread it onto thick, crusty bread. Just be sure to save a little.* You’ll be glad you did.

Homemade Bacon Jam

Homemade Bacon Jam
Adapted from a recipe on The Delicious Life; Makes about two cups

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb bacon
  • 1 medium yellow onion, chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup brewed coffee
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper

Method:

Homemade Bacon Jam

In a large, deep skillet over medium heat, cook bacon until brown and crisp.

Homemade Bacon Jam

Remove cooked bacon to a paper towel or paper bag-line plate to cool and drain.

Homemade Bacon Jam

When cool, cut bacon into 1-inch pieces.

Homemade Bacon Jam

Pour off all but one tablespoon of bacon fat from pan. Add onions, garlic, and cayenne.

Homemade Bacon Jam

Cook until onions begin to turn translucent.

Homemade Bacon Jam

Add vinegar, brown sugar, and coffee. Bring to a boil.

Homemade Bacon Jam

Add cooked chopped bacon.

Homemade Bacon Jam

Turn down heat to low, and allow to simmer for about 45 minutes, stirring every few minutes, until most of the liquid has evaporated and what is left is syrupy.

Homemade Bacon Jam

Transfer the cooked mixture to the bowl of a food processor, and pulse until the consistency of a chunky jam.

Homemade Bacon Jam

Serve spread on crusty bread.

*Store in the refrigerator. It should keep a few weeks, but there’s no way it will last that long.

Malcolm Bedell is co-author of the critically acclaimed “Eating in Maine: At Home, On the Town, and On the Road,” as well as the taco-centric blog “Eat More Tacos,” and the junk food-centric “Spork & Barrel.” His contributions include Serious Eats, Down East, L.A. Weekly, The Guardian, and The Huffington Post and his food truck, “‘Wich, Please,” was named “Hottest Restaurant in Maine” for 2015 by Eater. Finally, he finds it very silly to be trying to write this in the third person.

18 Comments

  1. Oh hell yes. I made some for the second annual Champagne Jam this past weekend; for a coupla years now, we’ve hosted my birthday party as an all-day brunch buffet with mimosa bar. One of the features, of course, is the array of jams to put on biscuits. After the party, I noticed that the bacon jam jar was scraped clean.

    One change: this time, I left out the coffee, replacing it with reduced Lambrusco and some maple syrup. AMAZING.

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      1. Hi Malcolm, i have been reading/watching the recipes of making bacon jam & i noticed that brewed coffee/bourbon is added into most of the recipes! Would like to find out why…

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  2. There is no place open this time of night where I can go buy food processor and bacon. I wish I had waited till morning to read this. I’ll be up all night in anticipation of the store doors unlocking at 10am!

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  3. Ummmm this may just be the best recipe I’ve found all year. I was all set to try a different one that had me simmering for 4 hours and refrigerating overnight yada yada…when I stumbled upon yours and one hour later I am wondering how Im going to keep myself from eating this whole jar tonight!! Thanks so much!!! Will be making these for xmas gifts for the guys in my family! 🙂
    ps OH! So…. Im a blockhead, and wasnt paying proper attention when grabbing from the pantry and added RED WINE vinegar instead of apple cider, DOH! Realized it just as I set to simmer. Added about 1/8 of ACV and even with my mistake it still tastes amazing. Cant wait till next time when I actually make it correctly!! Thanks again! 🙂

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  4. Just made this this past weekend. I have tried several versions–none of them suck, of course–but this was really fantastic. The coffee flavor is very subtle. I served this spread on crusty bread as a side to a meal-sized arugula/grilled chicken/candied pecan/dried cherries/blue cheese salad, and oh, my!! Thanks for another winner!

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    1. Hi Amy! So glad to hear it turned out well and that you liked it. I agree…the coffee adds a little something that you can’t quite put your finger on. And with some dried fruit and blue cheese? Oh my.

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