Bacon Jam

This sauce is chunky, but if you want a smoother sauce either chop the bacon into smaller pieces, or pulse the finished jam it in your food processor to reach the desired consistency.

  • Prep time: 10 minutes
  • Cook time: 1 hour, 8 minutes
  • Yield: 2 cups; 16 servings


  • 1 pound thick sliced bacon, cut into 1-inch pieces (see Recipe Note)
  • 1 large yellow onion, diced small
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled and smashed
  • 1/3 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 1/3 cup packed brown sugar, packed


1 Cook the bacon: In a large skillet over medium heat, cook the bacon in two batches so as not to crowd the pan. (If your pan is large enough, it's fine to cook all the bacon at once.)

Stir occasionally, until the fat is rendered and the bacon is browned, but not burned or overly crispy. Scoop out the first batch of cooked bacon with a slotted spoon, and drain it on a paper towel-lined plate. Cook the remaining batch.

This should take about 25 to 30 minutes total for both batches.

Onion Bacon Jam fry the bacon

2 Cook the onions and garlic: Drain all but 2 tablespoons of fat from the pan. You can eyeball it. Add all the bacon back to the skillet.

Add the onion and garlic to the skillet and cook until the onions are translucent, about 6 minutes.

Best Bacon Jam Recipe cook the onions and garlic

3 Reduce the jam: Add the vinegar and brown sugar to the skillet, and bring to a boil. Cook stirring and scraping up browned bits from the skillet for 2 minutes

Reduce the heat to medium low, and simmer uncovered, stirring occasionally, until the liquid turns syrupy and almost completely evaporates—this should take about 30 minutes.

4 Store and reheat if needed: Use immediately, or spoon it into an airtight jar and refrigerate for up to four weeks. Serve warm.

To reheat, zap it in the microwave for about 45 seconds or warm it in a small saucepan on the stove over medium heat, stirring occasionally until heated through, about 10 minutes.

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  • Gail

    I used this jam on asparagus. I could have eaten the entire pound. I will definitely try a few things like pineapple juice & some red pepper flakes the possibilities are endless.


  • Terri

    A question. The directions say cook the onion and garlic. Do you cook it in the bacon grease. It doesn’t indicate as it says add the onion and garlic back to the skillet, as if it had been cooked separately before.
    Thank you

    • nola2chi

      Hope no one minds if I jump in here. Don’t know how many times I’ve said, “this would be vegan ‘cept I started it by cooking the onions in bacon fat”. btw I use jowl bacon to render fat to cook with, for us, it’s the best.

      Putting the bacon on paper towels cuts down on the fat, and all but 2 tablespoons are poured off. (I’d say save that!) The bacon is added “back”, the onions and garlic are added to the pan. ..and so forth.

      It’s fantastic as a condiment for grits, with or without cheese, or baked potato, or, or, or. lol

    • Emma Christensen

      Hi, Terri! In Step 2, you drain all but 2 tablespoons of bacon fat from the pan, and add all the bacon back to the pan. Then add the garlic and onions, and cook everything together in the bacon fat until the onions are translucent. Hope this helps!