Elevate your dishes with this easy-to-make Bacon Jam with Bourbon. This thick spread is sweet and savory perfection.
What is Bacon Jam?
Bacon jam is a thick, spreadable condiment made with bacon and onions. But it's so much more than just chopped-up bacon, the way it is cooked develops a ton of flavor and complexity and makes this bacon jam exceptional.
Why you will love this bacon jam
This bacon jam is the perfect addition to your holiday appetizers. It is a bacon lover's dream! This savory jam with a hint of sweetness if perfect to add to a burger, a grilled cheese sandwich or a cheese board.
This jam, also known as Bacon candy, is easy to make and you can use it in multiple ways; as a spread, dip, condiment, or topping.
This recipe uses simple ingredients. Whether you have them on hand or need to go shopping for them, there is no fancy or hard-to-find ingredients in this list.
- Thick-cut bacon: The star of the show! Use your favorite kind, I like using maple bacon for an extra layer of sweetness.
- Brown sugar: For the perfect balance of sweet and savory.
- Vinegar: Adds acidity and brightness. Choose sherry, red wine, or balsamic vinegar. I used balsamic vinegar for this recipe.
- Onions: I like yellow sweet onions for this recipe as they compliment the richness of the bacon.
- Bourbon: I used Maker's Mark for this recipe to deglaze the pan and add even more flavor to the jam. You only need a splash of good bourbon, the alcohol will cook down but the flavor will stay.
How to make bacon jam
This recipe is a great make-ahead recipe. Bacon jam keeps very well in the fridge for up to two weeks. So if you are planning on entertaining, this recipe is great to help you speed up the prep process.
Another great thing about this recipe is that there a few shortcuts you can make, such as buying pre-chopped onions.
How to cook the bacon
Start by slicing the bacon into thin strips. You don't need to be precise about it.
Add the cut bacon to a frying pan and cook until the fat has rendered and the bacon is slightly crispy.
Drain the fat and reserve 2-3 tablespoons to cook the onions.
Cook the onions
Add the chopped onions to the skillet with the 3 tablespoons of bacon grease.
Stir them constantly until they are browned. If they get too brown they will be bitter, so keep an eye on them at all times.
Deglaze the pan with Bourbon
Add the bourbon to the pan and scrape the caramelized bits from the bottom. Cook until the liquid is mostly evaporated (1-2 minutes).
Caramelize the onions
Add the balsamic vinegar, brown sugar and maple syrup to caramelize the onions. Cook until the mix starts to thicken.
Add the cooked bacon, mix well and transfer to a mason jar.
Blend the jam
This step is important to achieve a smooth, jam-like consistency. If you don't blend the jam you will have some chunks of bacon and some bigger pieces of onion.
I like to use an immersion blender for this step and just pulse the jam a few times until it is mostly smooth.
How to serve bacon jam
This jam is a great addition to sandwiches, burgers and toast.
You can use it as a spread in a charcuterie board with crostini, baguette or crackers.
One of my favorite ways to serve it is with a spreadable cheese like this Boursin appetizer.
Store the bacon jam in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a week.
Frozen bacon jam will keep for up to 6 months.
Tips for Freezing bacon jam:
- Use freezer-safe containers.
- Allow the bacon jam to cool completely before freezing.
- Thaw the bacon jam in the refrigerator.
Bourbon Bacon Jam
- 2 Cups Yellow onion chopped
- 1 Lb. Bacon
- ¼ Cup Balsamic vinegar
- ¼ Cup Brown sugar
- 2 Tablespoons Maple syrup
- 1 Ounce Bourbon
- Cut the bacon into thin strips and add to skillet.
- Cook on medium for about 10 minutes until the fat renders and the bacon is slightly crispy.
- Reserve 2-3 tablespoons of the bacon grease and drain the rest.
- Add the onions to the skillet with the 3 tablespoons of bacon grease and cook until the onions start caramelizing, about 5-10 minutes.
- Add the bourbon and scrape the caramelized bits from the bottom of the skillet. Allow the alcohol to cook down for 1-2 minutes.
- Add the balsamic vinegar, sugar and maple syrup.
- Return the bacon to the bacon to the skillet and cook for about 10 more minutes, reducing the heat to medium-low.
- Remove from the heat and add to a mason jar and blend the jam using an immersion blender, pulsing 2 to 3 times.
- Serve with crackers, cheese or add to your favorite sandwich or burger.
- Store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to one week.