Our Bacon Wrapped Chicken is sweet, smokey and crazy delish! A great appetizer and a family favorite for dinner! It’s Over The Top with an amazing sauce!
Our bacon wrapped chicken recipe is perfect to serve as a hearty appetizer for Football Sunday, or at your next tailgate, but that’s not all! This an often requested headliner at our dinner table. My kids’ love it and hubby goes crazy for it! I love family friendly meals that bring everyone to the table in a hurry.
If you love bacon wrapped chicken, try our Chicken Bacon Ranch Pasta, ♥
SAVE THIS BACON WRAPPED CHICKEN
TO YOUR CHICKEN OR DINNER BOARD FOR LATER
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Make Ahead Of Time:
This recipe will keep in the fridge for a few days. You may want to broil again briefly before serving to re-crisp the bacon. Alternatively, you can put all of the ingredients together one to two days or several hours in advance, store (raw) in an airtight container, and then cook a half hour before serving. Just make sure the chicken is still well coated in spice and sauce before placing in the oven. You may want to set the sauce aside in a separate container and drizzle just before baking.
How To Freeze:
The finished dish will not freeze very well given the nature of the sauce and the texture of the bacon. If you want to prepare the meal well in advance, however, there is something you can do.
Spice and wrap the chicken, and mix the sauce. Store the two components separately in airtight containers in the freezer for months at a time. Thaw completely in the fridge the night before you plan to make the dish. Then combine and bake as described in the recipe.
What To Serve With This:
This makes a wonderful appetizer and goes well with any other type of appetizers. If you’re serving this as a main dish, which is how I serve it nine times out of ten, then rice and easy Roasted Broccoli is how I put this together for dinner. You could also serve with buttered noodles or Make Ahead Mashed Potatoes . Try my favorite Strawberry Salad or any green vegetable would be great options.
Bacon Wrapped Stuffed Chicken Is Great Variation:
Bacon Wrapped Stuffed Chicken, which requires only a few extra steps and elevates the dish to gourmet status!
If You’re Craving Dark Meat, Make Bacon Wrapped Chicken Thighs!
Bacon Wrapped Chicken Thighs is every bit as easy to make as this version the only adjustments you’ll need to make are the amount of bacon you’ll use and the cooking time!
How Do You Make Bacon Wrapped Chicken?
After preheating the oven and blending the spice mix, you coat the chicken in seasoning and wrap each tenderloin with par-cooked bacon until fully covered. The next step is to smother the chicken in a homemade sauce before baking until the chicken is done and broiling until the bacon is browned.
Step By Step: How To Make Bacon Wrapped Chicken
1. Preheat oven and spray a baking dish with nonstick cooking spray. Set aside. In a bowl, mix all the ingredients for the spice mixture.
2. Evenly sprinkle both sides of the chicken.
3. Gently press the spice mix onto chicken to adhere.
4. Par-cook the bacon in batches on a paper towel.
5. Wrap the chicken with bacon until well covered.
6. In a small bowl, add all the ingredients for the sauce.
7. Whisk until well combined and brown sugar is dissolved. Pour sauce over wrapped chicken. Brush sauce onto chicken.
8. Bake each side of the chicken for 6-7 minutes. Then broil each side until bacon crisps. Insert and check chicken with a thermometer for doneness. (complete instructions below)
Recipe Notes For Bacon Wrapped Chicken Breast:
Why Chicken Tenders: I prefer chicken tenders in this recipe instead of chicken breast. I like the smaller piece of chicken because you get more of the rub and bacon in relative to the chicken. When I first started making these years ago, I made them with chicken breasts. I always found that I wanted less chicken and more of the good stuff so chicken tenderloins became the star of the show!
Par-cooking The Bacon: Guys, this may seem like a bother but it’s really an essential step for the cooking time of the chicken and bacon to be in sync. If you add the bacon when it’s raw, you will have to cook the assembled piece longer to get the bacon cooked and the chicken will be overdone and dry! Same goes for chicken breast. Now, if you use chicken thighs, you don’t need to par-cook the bacon because that piece of chicken needs to cook longer so the timing is better.
Bacon: Avoid thick cut varieties of bacon. Thin sliced and center cut bacon will wrap around the chicken more easily and brown more evenly. The amount of bacon you need depends on the size of your chicken tenders. An average tender will take one or two pieces of bacon.
To make with chicken breast: If you want to make this recipe with chicken breasts, here are the proportions to use: six ounces of chicken breasts will likely only require two slices of bacon to wrap it completely. An eight-ounce piece of chicken will need 3 slices.
Making Bacon Wrapped Chicken Bites: If you would like to make chicken bites instead of tenders, all it takes is a little extra knife work. Cube chicken breasts into one-inch pieces, and slice your bacon in thirds. Then proceed with the rest of the recipe as described, covering each bite with a strip of bacon and securing the bacon diagonally with toothpicks. Cooking time is closer to 10-14 minutes, but generally you do not need to turn the chicken or use the broiler.
The exact cooking time for Bacon wrapped chicken bites, of course, depends on the type and size of the chunk of chicken you use and the exact preparation. Are you using chicken thighs or chicken breast? How thick is the piece of chicken? Are you partially pre-cooking the bacon? Generally, if you’re scaling down the size of chicken in our recipe, to make chicken bites, I’d reduce the cooking time by a couple of minutes overall. Just check for doneness using a meat thermometer or an instant-read thermometer (or cut one piece open) to check for doneness.
Make it spicy: Add cayenne powder to the spice mix to heat things up! Use ½ to 1 teaspoon of the pepper, or add to taste. If you want an even more fiery flavor, supplementing the sauce with your favorite liquid hot sauce is the perfect way to go.
Sauce variation: For a quicker version of the recipe, omit our sauce and use a prepared BBQ sauce to coat the chicken.
Wrap It Up: This process is not as difficult as it may sound! Simply start with one end of the bacon at one end of the chicken tender, and twist a single slice around the circumference of the tender in a spiral fashion until you reach the other end.
You may find that you need to use a few toothpicks along the way to secure the bacon in place if it keeps sliding. Toothpicks are best positioned along the edges of the bacon to ensure proper browning. They are best inserted at a diagonal to prevent slippage. You can see in our pictures we did not use toothpicks. It’s totally up to you.
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Bacon Wrapped Chicken
- 1 Tablespoon Vegetable Oil
- 1 Tablespoon Chili Powder
- 1 Tablespoon Garlic Powder
- 1 Tablespoon Onion Powder
- 1/4 Teaspoon Black Pepper
- 1 Tablespoon Dried Italian Seasoning
- 2 1/4 Teaspoon Salt
- 2 Teaspoon Brown Sugar Packed
- 16-24 Slices Bacon
- 2 Pounds Chicken Tenderloins
- 1/2 Cup Dijon Style Mustard
- 1 Teaspoon Dry Mustard
- 1/4 Cup Cider Vinegar
- 1/2 Cup Light Brown Sugar Packed
- 1/2 Cup Honey
- 1-2 Tablespoons Brown Sugar
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Spray a 9X13 inch baking dish with nonstick cooking spray. Set aside.
- Spice Mix: In a small bowl, mix together chili powder, garlic powder, onion powder, dried Italian seasoning, brown sugar, salt and pepper. Sprinkle both sides of chicken evenly with spice mixture. Gently press spice mixture onto chicken to help it adhere.
- Parcook the bacon in batches, on a paper towel lined plate, in a single layer for 1 minute. continue until all bacon has been cooked.
- Wrap: Wrap each piece of chicken with 1 slice of bacon covering as much surface of the chicken as possible. Add a 2nd piece of bacon, if needed for coverage.
- Secure bacon as needed with toothpicks, placing them on edges so browning is easier. Place wrapped chicken on the prepared baking dish.
- Sauce: In a small bowl, whisk together all the ingredients for the sauce until well combined and brown sugar is dissolved. Pour over wrapped chicken pieces coating each one evenly. Brush sauce from baking dish onto chicken to get complete coverage.
- Bake for about 6-7 minutes, flip the chicken pieces and cook on the other side for 6-7. Turn on broiler and broil on brown each side 1-2 minutes (watch closely because the sauce can burn very easily!), or until bacon crisps up a bit. Check for doneness by inserting an instant-read thermometer into the thickest portion of the chicken tender. It should register 155°F.
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