By Amy Gorin, MS, RDN
Wondering how to make homemade bacon? You'll love this salmon bacon recipe, which boasts heart-healthy omega-3s. The best part? It cooks up in the oven in just 20 minutes!
If you've been following my plant-based eating story, you know that I just recently started eating seafood. And I have to admit that I really miss the texture of bacon from way back in the day. So I decided to cook up a version that I can eat.
I was really amazed at how easy it is to make this oven bacon recipe. I love eating this salmon recipe as is, and it's also fabulous crumbled on top of mac and cheese or a salad, or alongside Brussels sprouts.
How to Make Homemade Bacon
When it comes to making this salmon bacon recipe, you really only need a few tools. You might be amazed, but you don't need even need any seasonings like salt and pepper, or brown sugar!
What do you need to whip up this oven bacon recipe? Grab an 8-ounce pack of lox, a nonstick baking tray, a cutting board, and a sharp knife. If you'd like, you can line the tray with parchment paper, but I chose to spray it with cooking spray.
The smoked salmon (aka lox) lends a wonderful smoked flavor, so you end up with a smoked bacon. Plus, you don't get any sodium nitrite that you might find in traditional bacon.
After you've sliced the lox into smallish pieces, place the pieces in a single layer on the tray to bake the bacon. Oh, and of course you'll want to preheat the oven to 400° F. After all, you can't cook the bacon in a cold oven!
Then pop the bacon salmon in the oven for 15 to 20 minutes. Flip it halfway through to yield perfectly cooked bacon. When you take the pieces out of the oven, you'll see the bacon fat shining at the top of each piece. That fat contains heart-healthy omega-3s!
You don't need any black pepper, kosher salt, or maple syrup to complete this recipe!
This oven recipe is so much easier than cooking up the salmon in a skillet over medium high heat or making air dried cured meat. The whole process, including prep time, will take you no more than 25 minutes.
The bacon has never lasted more than 24 hours in my house. But if you want to save any extra, you can place the pieces in a zip-top plastic bag.
Eating Omega-3s for Good Health
Omega-3s can do a lot to help your body function optimally. They can help keep lower your blood pressure and keep your heart
healthy, reduce your risk of cardiovascular disease, help your memory and eye health, lower your risk of depression, and decrease inflammation in your joints. That’s a whole lot of
But a study in the Journal of the American Heart Association shows that Americans aren't taking in enough omega-3s: Average daily intake of the two most important ones, EPA and DHA, is 80 milligrams for women and 40 milligrams for men.
That’s only a fraction of the 250 milligrams per day recommended by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to reduce risk
of death related to heart disease. The USDA recommendation is a minimum, as studies show benefits of taking up to 900 milligrams daily.
How much are you taking in, and do you need more? Take this quiz, developed by the Global Organization for EPA and DHA Omega-3s (GOED), to find out.
If you need to increase your intake, you can eat two 3.5-ounce servings of fatty fish (such as salmon, mackerel, herring, sardines and albacore tuna) you can take a daily supplement containing EPA and DHA. Look for a fish oil supplement. If you’re vegetarian, an algae-based supplement such as Ovega-3 will do the job.
“If you choose a fish oil supplement, make sure it specifically lists how much EPA and DHA are in each capsule—just because
it is fish oil doesn’t mean it contains any of these two omega-3s,” notes Elizabeth Somer, MA, RD, author of Eat Your Way to Happiness.
You may wonder about the omega-3s found in flaxseed, chia and walnuts; this is known as ALA. Your body very inefficiently converts ALA to the EPA and DHA it needs.
Only 8% of dietary ALA is converted to EPA, and 0 to 4 percent is converted to DHA. So while these foods are nutritious for
other reasons, you should look to fish sources or supplements to get your fill of omega-3s.
Seafood Guidelines to Follow
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released final advice on fish intake. I thought I’d share that information with you, especially since fish can be a very nutritious addition to your diet. FYI that baking, broiling, grilling, and steaming are all preparation methods that don't add fat to your dish.
This advice is specifically targeted toward women of childbearing age (ages 16 to 49) and for parents and caregivers of young children. The FDA and EPA advise eating a variety of fish. And if fish is caught by family or friends, check fish advisories and mercury levels for those fish—if there’s no advisory, have just one serving of that fish and no other seafood that week.
Commonly consumed fish are now sorted into three categories (based on mercury levels). You should aim to eat three servings from the “best” category weekly or one serving from the “good” category weekly for adults. You'll see that salmon is on the "best" list!
Children ages 2 and older should have one to two servings a week. A serving for adults is 4 ounces, and a serving for a child ages 4 to 7 is 2 ounces. Here are some examples:
Best choices (eat two to three servings a week)
- tuna (canned light)
Good choices (eat one serving a week)
- mahi mahi
- tilefish (Atlantic ocean)
- tuna (albacore, white tuna, canned, and fresh/frozen)
Fish to avoid
This blog post was updated in December 2020. A version of this content originally appeared on WeightWatchers.com.
I’d love to hear from you! Let me know how you're enjoying this bacon. Did you enjoy learning how to make salmon bacon? What are your other favorite salmon recipes?
Homemade Salmon Bacon
- 8 ounces smoked salmon
- Cooking spray
- Preheat oven to 400° F.
- Spray a nonstick baking sheet with cooking spray.
- Slice smoked salmon into small pieces. Place on baking sheet.
- Bake 15 to 20 minutes, until salmon browns. Flip halfway through.
Sat. Fat (grams)1
Did you make this recipe?
- Trends in Fatty Acid Intake of Adults in the Minneapolis‐St Paul, MN Metropolitan Area, 1980–1982 Through 2007–2009, Journal of the American Heart Association
- Are You Getting Enough Omega-3s?, Global Organization for EPA and DHA Omega-3s (GOED)
- Elizabeth Somer, MA, RD, author of Eat Your Way to Happiness
- Advice about Eating Fish, U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
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