Bacon is pork belly that has been cured with salt, sugar and nitrate. It is also often smoked. Traditional bacon should not be confused with Canadian bacon, also called back bacon, which is cut from the back of a pig and contains less fat. If you love bacon but would like less calories, try microwaving instead of pan-frying.
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Traditional cured pork bacon cooked in the microwave has 25 calories per slice, while pan-frying the same product yields bacon with 42 calories per slice, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
The total fat per slice of microwaved bacon is 1.86 grams. The total fat in pan-fried bacon is 3.18 grams. Microwaving bacon between paper towels allows for fat absorption during the cooking process, which may account for the lower fat content of this cooking method.
Points to Consider
Microwaving tends to make bacon crispy, both the meat and the fat, according to Cooking for Engineers. On the other hand, pan-frying will give you a more traditional bacon texture, with crispy fat and chewy meat.
- USDA National Nutrient Database: Pork, Cured, Bacon, Cooked, Pan-fried
- USDA National Nutrient Database: Pork, Cured, Bacon, Cooked, Microwaved
- Cooking for Engineers: Bacon
- University of Missouri Extension: Home Curing Bacon for a Mild Flavor
- Pittsburgh Post Gazette: The Real Deal
- Canadian Bacon: Canadian and Canadian Style Bacon