While you can always walk across to your nearest supermarket and grab some bacon, nothing beats the utter satisfaction and the flavor you get from smoking some cured bacon right in the comfort of your home. Curing not only preserves the bacon but also adds an array of flavors into it that pack a punch.
If you have ever tried smoking bacon right in your own backyard, you already know the experience and flavor are unmatched. If you have not, now’s the time. However, just before diving into it, it might be worth looking at this recipe for the best-wet cure seasoning for your bacon. The beauty of smoking some bacon at home is that you can try an endless combination of recipes and adjust the flavors according to your liking. Let’s take you through this incredible recipe that will leave your mouth watering.
You will need:
- 2-pound slab of pork belly (with or without skin)
- 2 cups of water
- 2.5 tablespoons of kosher salt
- 2 tablespoons of brown sugar
- 2 teaspoons of paprika
- 1 teaspoon chili powder
- 1/4–1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon pink curing salt/Prague powder*/curing salt
(*Keep in mind, this is different than Himalayan pink salt)
- Apple or cherry wood chips soaked in water
- Apple juice (optional)
- Start by rinsing the pork belly and patting it dry.
- If your pork belly has skin on it, use a thin knife and carefully remove it. This step might be a little tricky, depending on your knife skills. Nevertheless, be careful.
- Next, place the pork belly into an air-tight, ziplock bag.
- Start by mixing the water, kosher salt (the water and salt are all you need for a cure. The other ingredients will be used for flavor), brown sugar, paprika, chili powder, black pepper, and pink curing salt in a bowl.
- Once all the ingredients are in, stir everything until they’re perfectly mixed.
- Pour the mixture into the ziplock bag. Try to push out as much air as possible and then proceed to seal the bag.
- Place the bag in a bowl (in case it leaks) and then place it in the fridge. The pork belly stays in the fridge for 2 days.
- Flip the pork belly over, and let it rest another 2 days. Repeat this until 7 days have passed.
- Remove the pork belly from the bag and discard the liquid since the pork belly needs clean cold water for the next step.
- Remove salt from the pork belly by placing it in cold water and changing the water every 2 hours.
That’s it! You now have the perfect wet cure seasoning for your bacon! However, while we’re at it, it might be useful to explain how to smoke it a little more. Just so the next time you head out to the smoker in your backyard, you’re prepared. Here are some tips and steps to help smoke this delicious wet cured seasoned bacon.
Smoking the Bacon
- Preheat your smoker to 200°F (93°C)
- You can fill the water pan in your smoker with apple juice, water, or a mixture of both!
- Next up, place a thermometer into the thickest part of the pork belly. This will help monitor the internal temperature as accurately as possible.
- Put the pork belly into the smoker. Add in 1.5 cups of soaked applewood chips. This should provide you with an ample amount of smoke. However, for those who prefer more, you can always add in another half a cup of wood chips after an hour of cooking.
- Let it cook! Once the internal temperature of the bacon reaches 150°F (66°C), that means it’s ready to be devoured.
- Remove the bacon from the smoker and let it cool. After cooling, you can place it in an airtight container or a ziplock bag until it’s cold.
- And you’re done! Once the bacon is cool, you can use a long thin knife and cut off loads of bacon strips according to your desired thickness.
And that’s all! In a few short steps, we have shown you a delicious wet cure seasoning for your bacon, which is guaranteed to impress anyone over the weekend, or just sit back and enjoy mouth-watering loads of bacon in your own company. Try pairing it with some roasted vegetables, or simply add the bacon to a scrumptious beef burger to create an explosion of flavors.
Check out our entire catalog of articles on brining and curing your meat here:
What’s the Difference Between Pickling, Brining, Marinating, and Curing?
Curing and Smoking Meats for Home Food Preservation
Directions On Brining And Curing Your Meat For Food Smoking
These incredible flavors combined with the ease and practicality of smoking it in the comfort of your own home make this an ultimate recipe. For more great ideas on how to get the most out of your Bradley Smoker, check out the awesome articles on our Bradley Smoker Food Smoking Blog for more tips & tricks.