Tag Archives: bacon

bacon candy

Bacon candy – A sweet meat treat for brunch, snack, or cocktail hour

Like most everyone who enjoys a treat now and then, we here at ButcherBox have a bit of a sweet tooth.

It might be a bit odd to hand out candied bacon — or pig candy as it’s known in different parts of the country — to the kiddos who come to your door on Halloween. And some people might think it strange to keep some sweet candied bacon strips in the refrigerator. But here, you are among bacon lovers.

We don’t judge. We also know our taste buds don’t care if they are treated to thick-cut bacon with eggs for breakfast or at a sugar-laced version at a cocktail party in the evening.

Which is what makes bacon candy so fantastic.


The rise of candied bacon

So let’s dig into the sweet and savory dish that is bacon candy.

These days, the traditional breakfast meat has developed a bit of a cultish following. Bacon is everywhere from the Bacon and Beer festival in Boston — which sells out very quickly each year and has expanded nationally — to bacon-themed food trucks to a featured role at almost any Bloody Mary-heavy brunch.

More and more, bacon is breaking out on its own as a singular dish, most often as bacon candy. Stop into any hip (or hipster, if you see it that way) restaurant, and you might find a glass filled with candied bacon adorning the bar.

The flavor of bacon candy combines the already savory taste of bacon and adds brown sugar or pure maple syrup and maybe a touch of chili powder. The fact that it can sit out at room temperature for hours or be kept chilled for weeks makes bacon candy the perfect snack food.

This phenomenon isn’t just occurring at trend-setting locales either; you are as likely to find candied bacon replacing the usual bowl of mixed nuts everywhere from your local steakhouse to a high-end hotel bar.

Bacon candy springs from the cocktail party circuit

So how did this trend start?

According to author Fred Thomspon, who chronicles all sorts of bacon-themed culinary delights in his cookbook “Bacon,” the history of this delicious snack is a bit of a mystery.

Bacon candy is believed to have first gained popularity in Washington, D.C.’s party circuit. But Thompson speculates that pig candy was most likely an import to the nation’s capital brought from the kitchen of an unknown Southern hostess.

The rise in the treat’s current popularity as bar food is linked, by a number of different people, to a small wine bar in California. According to lore, Lou’s on Vine in Hollywood began offering their take on pig candy to patrons as an alternative snack, and the buzz — and bacon — spread from there.

How to cook bacon candy

After all this talk of sweet bacon, you might be wondering how you can make it on your own. Worry not, the recipe is quite simple. Many candied bacon recipes call for baking the pork with a garnish of light brown sugar and/or maple syrup.

Twists on the dish include adding some spices, like ground black pepper, crushed red pepper flakes or chili powder to create the ultimate cocktail party snack, brunch side, or anytime food.

Check out the video below of ButcherBox Head Chef Yankel Polak making some bacon candy with maple syrup, sriracha, brown sugar, ground black pepper, and coconut aminos:

Here is another great bacon candy recipe that is one of the more popular recipes found at AllRecipes. It is made even better using ButcherBox bacon that comes from heritage-breed pigs.

Bacon Candy Recipe


1/4 cup brown sugar, packed

2 tablespoons rice vinegar

2 tablespoons maple syrup

Ground black pepper to taste

1 pound ButcherBox bacon


1. Preheat oven to 350 F.

2. Mix brown sugar, rice vinegar, maple syrup and ground black pepper in a small bowl.

3. Place bacon slices on a cooling rack set over a baking sheet.

4. Cook in the preheated oven for 10 minutes, turn slices and bake another 5 minutes.

5. Remove bacon and brush both sides with brown sugar mixture. Return bacon to the oven and bake another 5 minutes. Repeat basting every 5 minutes until bacon is browned and crisp, a total cooking time of about 35 minutes.

6. Let sit on a cooling or wire rack at room temperature.

After letting it rest, eat and enjoy the sweet, bacon goodness!

Photo by James Harris on Unsplash

The ultimate brunch food with a unique history – Quiche

Check out one of our favorite breakfast recipes, our bacon and Swiss quiche from Head ButcherBox Chef Yankel Polak, below.

Quiche is the ideal brunch food. Yes, better than French toast, cinnamon rolls, and even any combination of fried eggs and cheeseburgers. 

It is a delicious, easy to make brunch dish that is a veritable opera of European appropriation. I mean, the word ‘quiche’ carries with it the assumption that it is a culinary dish derived from some famous French culinary experiment.

Quiche has a pretty extensive history, with recorded dishes going back to the 12th century. Although back then, it went under a different name.

A Continental brunch dish

Quiche, you see, is actually believed to have originated in Germany. According to foodreference.com, the savory breakfast food was first concocted in the medieval German kingdom of Lotharingia, which stretched across France, Germany, Luxembourg, Belgium, and the Netherlands. The area where the dish is believed to have derived was called Lothringen in German — it was a German kingdom at the time— but was later annexed by France and renamed Lorraine. The word ‘quiche’ itself comes from the German word for cake, ‘Kuchen.’

According to history, the original ‘quiche Lorraine’ — as it is called — was “an open pie with a filling consisting of an egg and cream custard with smoked bacon.” Over time, cheese was added to the dish that we now call quiche Lorraine.

According to Chef Yankel, it was “traditionally made in a more delicate version, similar to a tart.”

As a brunch food, the quiche, or breakfast pie, gained popularity in France over a long period of time; however, it really grew in esteem in the US during the 80’s and 90’s, as a way to prepare breakfast ahead of time. As an easy-to-make “breakfast casserole,” it became a suburban cuisine staple; sometimes.  Quiche even appeared at holidays — think back to whether or not you recall a quiche featured prominently at a past Easter brunch — as well as, strangely, cocktail parties and other gatherings.

Breakfast pies are popular in various forms

But we are most familiar with it as a brunch food in pie form. 

And, while both pie-like, a quiche is also not a frittata, just to set the record straight. A frittata is an Italian egg dish — this is also quite popular as a brunch dish — similar to an omelet. It is actually, more of a crustless quiche which combines scrambled eggs, a meat — like ham or bacon — and some vegetables. 

On the opposite side of the breakfast food equation is the dutch baby, which is a popover or bread pudding that can be filled with fruits or maple syrup. Bascially, like a frittata is a quiche with out a crust, a dutch baby is like a quiche without the egg filling.

A love it or hate, quiche is the perfect brunch food

Knowledge of the dish’s rich history is not where the story ends for ButcherBox’s Chef Yankel.

“Personally, I have a love/hate relationship with eggs,”Chef Yankel says.

“I was an egg cook for some time at Eastern Standard, working brunch two days a week. During each shift, I would cook at least 150 omelets to order — and we could not serve an omelet if it had even a tiny bit of brown on it. We also had to do 200 to 300 orders of scrambled and fried eggs as well,” he explains. “I’d end each shift covered in eggs.”

And for Yankel and his team, quiche became the balm. “Quiche became one of those pre-made items we could serve to take some of the heat off my station.”

“So while I’m really freaking good at cooking a ton of fried eggs at the same time, and I totally enjoy eating them with a nice cut or ham or some maple sausage, the combination of eggs and brunch is one of those nightmarish experiences anyone who’s put some time into the service industry is familiar with.”

But rest assured, our delicious quiche recipe, with our amazing heritage-breed pork bacon, pays the proper homage to the historical origins of the dish. 

Plus, it’s easy to make.

“Quiche is a set-it-and-forget-it kind of dish, really simple to put together, and easy to cook well,” said Chef Yankel. “It has a great shelf life in the fridge and is totally customizable in terms of what you want to flavor it with, it is really one of the best brunch ideas.” So you can put it together really quick in a casserole dish or pie pan and spend more time on the bloody mary mix, hash browns, and coffee cake.

So skip the homemade buttermilk pancakes, eggs benedict, or any other complicated and challenging to make breakfast foods. Give Quiche Lorraine or our own gluten-free recipe below. You won’t be disappointed by the amazing brunch dish, and you’ll likely have 

Chef Yankel’s quick “Bacon and Swiss Quiche” recipe:

The crust and the filling can be made the night before a brunch or cooked the night before and reheated. This is one of Chef Yankel’s favorite brunch recipes and serves six and takes 20 minutes to prepare and 60 minutes to cook. This version is healthy and gluten-free, with almond flour making a fabulously nutty crust.

  • Quiche Dough:
  • 2 c almond flour
  • ¼ tsp sea salt
  • 2 Tbsp coconut oil
  • 1 egg
  • Quiche Filling:
  • 6 slices ButcherBox bacon diced into ½ pieces
  • 3 Eggs1 ½ c heavy cream
  • 1 tsp chopped sage
  • ¼ tsp fresh ground black pepper
  • ¼ tsp nutmeg
  • ⅛ tsp salt
  • ¼ c grated swiss cheese


  1. Preheat oven to 375°F.
  2. In a food processor, pulse to combine salt and flour. Add coconut oil and egg and pulse to form a ball.
  3. Press dough into 9.5” pie dish and bake 8 to 12 min or until lightly browned, set aside.
  4. Sauté bacon until crispy, drain, pat dry and sprinkle on bottom of quiche crust. Sprinkle Swiss cheese on top of the bacon.
  5. Whisk together remaining ingredients and pour into quiche crust.
  6. Bake on middle rack of oven for 35 to 40 min or until golden brown and set.
  7. Let rest at room temperature for 20 more minutes before slicing and serving. Happy eating!


bacon-wrapped filet mignon

A bacon-wrapped filet is one of life’s simple joys

Why bring bacon and filet mignon together?

Of course, it makes sense. It seems like a question that does not need to be asked by any sane person. Crispy bacon and a delectable, tender steak together?

But, have you ever paused, mid-savory bite, and just momentarily think, who thought of THIS?

Believe it or not, there is a pretty good reason why it’s a good idea to wrap a filet in bacon.

Why do we wrap filet mignon in bacon?

Filet mignon comes from one of the least fatty parts of a cow, which is the reason it is so tender. However, this can also be a reason why some folks don’t like filets as much as, say, a well-marbled ribeye. The lack of fat also means a lack of some of the flavors that we — as a steakhouse-packing public — have come to love.

Wrapping a filet in bacon allows for some of the savory, smokey goodness inherent in bacon to seep into the filet when cooking. The fat also burns off the bacon, creating a crispy sear when grilling or cooking in a cast iron pan, or other stovetop methods.

Filet mignon, a lean cut from the little-used tenderloin section of a cow. It has little to no marbling, or intramuscular fat, due to its lack of use. Grass-fed cattle, however, do produce filets with some unique marbling and depth that isn’t found in grain-fed and finished cows. Butter, ghee, or some other fatty dairy product like blue cheese is often added when cooking to up the fat content and flavor.

As filets are often grilled, seared, or roasted, adding fats is vital to keeping the cut moist and tender. If it is cooked without added fats like butter or bacon, a filet can quickly dry out.

No one wants to waste a spectacular — and pricey — cut of beef like filet mignon by cooking it wrong.

How to cook a bacon-wrapped filet mignon

A grilled bacon-wrapped filet is a spectacular treat and is relatively easy to pull off — cook on high-heat for between four to six minutes on each side, and let it rest for 5- 10 minutes to get a perfect medium-rare finish.

However, searing and roasting is — in many people’s minds, including our ButcherBox Head Chef Yankel Polak —  the best way to approach a filet mignon to get the most delicious results.

According to Chef Yankel, a meal centered on a filet mignon wrapped in bacon is, “Romantic and luxurious.” 

“It is the perfect dinner for an indulgent night in,” he adds.

Below is the recipe for Chef Yankel’s bacon-wrapped filet recipe with buttermilk mashed potatoes and a mushroom wine sauce. Yankel’s recipe calls for wrapping a couple of ButcherBox filet mignons in ButcherBox bacon, which you can do with either a toothpick or butcher’s twine. You can also watch Chef Yankel lead you through this bacon and filet delight at the bottom of the page.


Bacon-Wrapped Filet with Buttermilk Smashed Potatoes and Mushroom Wine Sauce

This recipe serves two people. It takes five minutes to prep and 40 minutes to cook. 


  • 2 ButcherBox filet mignons
  • 4 strips ButcherBox bacon
  • 2 c small multicolor potatoes
  • 3 Tbsp salt for boiling potatoes
  • ¾ c buttermilk
  • ¼ c butter for potatoes
  • ¼ c chives
  • ½ c dry red wine
  • 1 cup assorted mushrooms, cleaned and quartered
  • ½ c heavy cream
  • ghee or avocado oil for searing
  • 2 Tbsp butter for basting
  • salt and pepper to taste


  1. Place potatoes in a pot, cover with salted cold water and bring to simmer. Cook until fork-tender.

  2. Drain water and add buttermilk, butter, chives and gently smash potatoes until buttermilk and butter are fully absorbed. Season with salt and pepper.

  3. Season filet mignons on both sides with salt and pepper.

  4. Preheat oven to 375°F. Lay two strips of bacon side by side with a tiny bit of overlap. Lay filet on top of bacon as though it was a wheel and roll up bacon around the filet. Secure with two small pieces of string each tied around one strip of bacon. Repeat for the second filet.

  5. Preheat cast-iron pan, add ghee or oil, and sear filets on all sides, 2-3 min per side. Add remaining butter and baste for additional 2 min on all sides. Place pan in oven and roast for 8-10 min.

  6. Remove pan from oven when the thermometer inserted into the center of filet reads 120°F. Set steaks aside.

  7. Place pan on stove top on medium heat. Add mushrooms to pan and sauté in pan juices for 3 min.

  8. Add red wine and cook until liquid is reduced by half.

  9. Add heavy cream and cook until liquid is reduced by half again, stirring every min or so.

  10. Serve filet over potatoes and top with mushroom wine sauce.

Happy Eating!