A bacon-lover's tips for better bacon

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Bacon's sizzle and smell alone can get you drooling. When it comes to cooking the best bacon for your buck, we asked a Buccaneer who loves bacon to tackle the task.

Former Tampa Bay Buccaneer Ian Beckles played in the NFL for nine seasons. Now he owns Flavor of Tampa Bay and a food truck featuring local products in the area.

"Bacon has been my love since forever," he laughed.  "This body has been made by bacon. You can't do this without bacon."

Beckles says bacon's all about the cut; the thicker the better.

He cuts his own slices of bacon, but says pre-packaged is fine. "That's OK. Bacon's bacon and bacon's love. But this is just taking it to another level."

The level of heat matters too. Beckles makes sure it sizzles when it hits the pan. "If you don't hear that it ain't hot enough." 

Other ways to save? Look for sales. Buy in bulk and freeze. Deli case bacon tends to be higher end and thicker. 

With packaged bacon, look at the back window. More fat means it'll shrink faster. To limit shrinking, coat bacon strips in flour, then cook on low heat in a frying pan.

In a hurry? Microwave bacon. Use an upside-down bowl on a plate. The grease rolls down the sides to make bacon crispy.

Need to cook a lot of bacon? Online hacks say to hang it over the rack with a tray to catch the fat.  But that didn't work so well for us.