Smoky, Crispy Coconut Bacon
I may be in the minority here, but I'll be glad when the fixation on bacon-wrapped EVERYTHING begins to wane [woven bacon taco shells that use 1.5 lbs of bacon for two shells... bacon-wrapped sushi... bacon-wrapped mac 'n cheese... bacon-wrapped pickles... you get the picture]. I'm not holding my breath though. Instead, I've created some alternatives that I love... I'm betting you will too!
When I'm looking for a delicious bacon replacement my top three choices are:
• large flake coconut
• marinated eggplant
• smoked tempeh
All three have different levels of "bacon-ness". For any dish where crispy, crumbled bacon is preferred, this Smoky, Crispy Coconut Bacon is PERFECT! This version is adapted from The Minimalist Baker. I started tweaking this last year and finally LOVE it... and it's SO freakin' EASY! -greasy splatter clean-up not included!
Let's get started.
Total Time: 18 minutes Prep Time: 5 minutes Bake Time: 11-13 minutes
Here's what you'll need to make 2 cups:
• 2 cups large flake unsweetened coconut
• 1 Tbsp toasted sesame oil (optional)
• 2 Tbsp tamari
• 1 tsp Dijon mustard
• 2.5 Tbsp maple syrup
• 1/2 tsp liquid smoke, any flavor (I prefer mesquite)
• 1.5 tsp smoked paprika
• 1/2 tsp fine smoked salt
• 1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
I've tried this recipe both with and without the liquid smoke (which I usually don't care for) and think this small amount of liquid smoke does make a difference in the final product. Either way it's delicious, but I think it tastes more like bacon with the liquid smoke included, just don't add any more than the half teaspoon (unless you really love this flavor).
1. Preheat oven to 325 F. Combine all ingredients in a medium bowl, toss to thoroughly coat.
2. Spread evenly onto a baking sheet, parchment paper is optional. Bake for 6 minutes, toss, then bake for another 5-7 minutes until evenly browned and crisp. Watch it carefully during that last couple of minutes to prevent burning (which can happen quickly!).
3. Cool for 10 minutes. It will become crispier as it cools.
4. If not using right away, cool completely and store in an airtight container at room temperature or in the freezer. If you're making this ahead, you may want to hide it... it's THAT good!
Nutrition information is for 2 Tbsps.
Here are some ideas for where to use these Smoky, Crispy Coconut Bacon crumbles:
• on top of Roasted Brussels Sprouts
• on top of avocado toast
• sprinkled over a salad
• on top of baked potatoes
• sprinkled over sautéed greens
• tucked inside a wrap
• sprinkled over bean dip
Be sure to show me what you make! Tag me #chefcatherinebrown - I LOVE seeing what you make!
DISCLOSURES: None. This post was not created in affiliation with any product or brand. The opinions expressed are my own. I will only write about products I use and trust.
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