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Homemade Bacon Recipe. Low sodium & no preservatives.

Homemade Bacon Recipe with low sodium and no preservatives. A nitrate free, salt reduced way to enjoy bacon; plus you can add flavours like maple, pepper, brown sugar, honey and spices to make your own individual version.

Homemade Bacon with eggs and toast on white plate

Homemade Bacon

Originally published May 2016.

I’ve been making this Homemade bacon recipe using fresh, uncured pork belly for quite some time now. There are several different versions of it that I love.

Previously, I was a little reluctant to share this method because bacon can illicit strong reactions. You will hear everything from, “It’s the best thing on earth” to “How can you eat that salty, preservative filled junk?”

Sliced Pork Belly for uncured Homemade Bacon

Sliced Pork Belly for uncured Homemade Bacon

Well, I am of the opinion that there are no evil foods per se, but there can be an over indulgence in them for sure. A moderate amount of any indulgent food is always good advice.

Although I love bacon, probably more than most, I do not like the idea of huge amounts of salt or nitrates used in the curing and preserving during its production. More recently, I’ve turned to using fresh pork belly which can be very enjoyable as bacon without all the additives.

Homemade Bacon frying in cast iron pan

Homemade Bacon

You control the salt level.

Yes I do add salt, it’s pretty necessary to the flavour of bacon but I am the one who controls the amount. 

So many people enjoy the salty-sweet flavour combination and I think one of the things it comes together best in, is bacon. I think that’s why maple bacon is so popular…but again, many bands use artificial maple flavourings which I intensely dislike.

One of my favourite versions of this recipe, and the one I’m highlighting today with advice for variation, is maple bacon with pepper and smoked salt. That one is my absolute favourite version of this recipe with sweet, salty and smoky coming together in perfect balance. 

Homemade Bacon image with title text for Pinterest

Beyond this basic recipe.

Be sure to see the notes in this recipe for other suggestions of flavourful additions to this recipe. This recipe also uses a 2 stage cooking method but you can serve it straight from the oven if you want to . The second stage happens only if you reheat it.

Once baked in the oven, the bacon can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge to be fried in smaller batches throughout the week. It can also be frozen in individual portions to be thawed and fried at any time you like…and wait until you try it to replace regular bacon on burgers!

Now that’s a delicious addition to make your homemade burgers even more special!

For one unique version, try brown sugar with a sprinkle of our Smokin’ Summer Spice Dry Rub!

Homemade Breakfast Sausage

Homemade Breakfast Sausage

You may also want to try our very popular recipe for Homemade Breakfast Sausages.

Like this Homemade Bacon recipe?

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Homemade Bacon with eggs and toast on white plate
Yield: 8 servings per pound of pork belly

Homemade Bacon Recipe. Low sodium & no preservatives.

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 40 minutes

Homemade Bacon Recipe with low sodium and no preservatives. A nitrate free, salt reduced way to enjoy bacon; plus you can add flavours like maple, pepper, brown sugar, honey and spices to make your own individual version.


  • 1 pound pork belly
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 4 tbsp maple syrup


  1. Preheat the oven to 225 degrees F
  2. Slice the pork belly to the thickness you like. I prefer thick sliced bacon but if you want it thinner, you may want to ask your butcher to slice it for you. It takes a very sharp knife and a string steady hand to do it well. Pre-sliced fresh pork belly is also often available. If slicing it yourself, cut the pork belly slab in half to make shorter slices which are much easier to cut.
  3. Line an aluminum cookie sheet with parchment paper and lay the slices of pork belly on the paper.
  4. Brush the maple syrup on one side of the pork belly slices and sprinkle on a pinch or two each of salt and pepper. You are in control of the amounts here.
  5. Turn all of the pork belly slices over and repeat the brushing of maple syrup and the sprinkling of salt and pepper
  6. Bake in the preheated oven for 1 1/2 hours for thick sliced bacon and about an hour for thinner sliced bacon. This will fully cook the meat and soften it considerably. Turn the bacon once or twice during the cooking time.
  7. At this stage you can let it cool to room temperature before storing it in an airtight container in the fridge for later use.
  8. To serve the bacon heat a cast iron pan over medium low heat and add whatever amount of bacon you wish to serve.
  9. You do not want to cook this bacon over high heat. The lower temperature the better is advised for two reasons. First the sugar content of the maple syrup can burn on too high a heat and second, the slower it is cooked, the more fat will render out and the crispier your bacon will be. Thick sliced bacon can fry for 15 minutes or longer under well controlled heat.
  10. When crispy, drain on paper towels before serving.


There are many variations you can make with this recipe. Substitute a sprinkle of brown sugar or brush on honey in place of the maple syrup.
Spice up the bacon however you like. Smoked paprika, chili powder, cajun spice rub or Bbq spice rub can all be used to make you own unique version.

! These ingredients are for the Maple Pepper Bacon version.
1 lb to 2 of fresh pork belly, the outside rind should be removed. Look for pre-sliced.
A few tbsp maple syrup
freshly ground black pepper
sea salt or smoked sea salt, like the smoked salt best

Nutrition Information



Serving Size

1 grams

Amount Per Serving Calories 192Total Fat 12gSaturated Fat 4gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 7gCholesterol 48mgSodium 200mgCarbohydrates 7gFiber 0gSugar 6gProtein 13g

The nutritional information provided is automatically calculated by third party software and is meant as a guideline only. Exact accuracy is not guaranteed. For recipes where all ingredients may not be used entirely, such as those with coatings on meats, or with sauces or dressings for example, calorie & nutritional values per serving will likely be somewhat lower than indicated.

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Wednesday 7th of August 2019

Can you do this using a 4 lb pork belly on a smoker at 225 cooking it to165?

Barry C. Parsons

Saturday 5th of October 2019

Worth a shot. I'd probably love it.

Big Mike

Sunday 24th of February 2019

Can you eat it after 1.5 hours in oven or must it be fried first?

Barry C. Parsons

Tuesday 5th of March 2019

Frying is only for reheating. You can eat it straight from the oven.

Stacey w.

Monday 12th of March 2018

Excellent recipe! We used organic maple syrup, paprika, cayenne, garlic powder, salt and pepper. Slow baked per your suggestion for 1.5 hrs, it is soooo good. Savory and sweet.


Thursday 31st of August 2017

I love the idea of having bacon...without salt...can I do it without rhe salt....low sodium diet here

Barry C. Parsons

Friday 1st of September 2017

Im not sure zero salt would be advisable....but sure, adjust to your liking.

Diana Coady

Sunday 15th of May 2016

I've never heard of smoked salt. Where do you get it? Have tried many of your recipes between the two books & they've never failed me. Never thought I'd be makin' my own bacon though. Tks

Barry C. Parsons

Friday 19th of August 2016

I just got it in the spice aisle.

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