Bacon Explosion — I finally made it!

I first encountered the Bacon Explosion when it became popular about three years ago. There were online references and early morning show commentaries and a plethora of health care professionals decrying it as a calorie and cholesterol laden nightmare. And for the most part it is.

I found a recipe from the NY Times in 2009, read it and held onto it. I thought it was mostly a joke and not something worth the effort. Every once in a while I would mention it and my wife would say “So, when are you going to make it?” Well, I decided it would finally became a reality this past weekend at a family Fourth of July gathering at our cabin near Kaw Lake, Oklahoma. Hey, bacon explosion and fireworks explosion!

There are some variables in regard to making it. First, the recipe I had calls for barbecue rub and barbecue sauce. I am well aware that the flavor of either could alter the taste. But I relied on two personal creations: the All-Purpose Spice Rub and BBQ 3. I will include the recipes for each at the end.

There are really only four ingredients: 2 lbs. thick cut bacon, 1 1/2 lbs. Italian sausage, barbecue rub and barbecue sauce.

The first thing is to create a weave of five slices by five slices. One recipe I read called for doing this on foil. Believe me, that made it so much easier.

The recipe indicated to sprinkle with a certain amount of barbecue rub. I just eyeballed it. When it comes to something like this, measurements seem too limiting.

This was an idea I got from another recipe: rolling out the sausage between two sheets of plastic wrap alongside the bacon weave. In this fashion, the sausage is at the correct thickness and you can more easily gauge the size relative to the bacon weave.

Six slices of the thick cut bacon, cooked until crisp, coarsely crumbled (or in this case chopped), and sprinkled liberally.

My barbecue sauce called BBQ 3 because that’s how many tried it took me to perfect it to my satisfaction. Again, the recipe calls for a particular amount but good coverage is all I was seeking.

More All Purpose Spice Rub.

The first step in creating the Bacon Explosion is to roll the sausage layer away from you. It is important that it be a tight roll. Since it is served as thick slices, you do not want the pinwheel to fall apart.

The rolled sausage portion is then folded back toward you in the bacon weave.

More All Purpose Spice Rub. There are two ways of cooking the Bacon Explosion: smoking or baking. I was pressed for time and did not have the smoking option available to me. I read an idea to place it on a rake while baking to allow the grease to come clear of the roll. Based on my time constraints and using an older gas oven whose temperature I could not accurately control. I cooked it at 300 degrees for 1 hour and twenty minutes and 400 degrees for twenty-five minutes, until the internal temperature was 165 degrees.

I glazed it with more BBQ 3 and let it rest for about 10 minutes
The finished product. The only photo not included is the satisfied faces of my family.

My friend and co-worker, Eric Jarman (whose family makes this every year at Super Bowl time) recommended serving these on Grands biscuits and with either Provolone or Mozzarella cheese. We used homestyle yeast buns and extra BBQ 3. The thing is that this recipe is not set in stone. It’s a barbecue addicts delight, with enough variety to satisfy anyone.

We had but one pinwheel left the next morning for breakfast. Now I know why Eric says he and his family always make two.

1 jar each: Paprika, Oregano, Black pepper, Garlic Powder.
This is great on chicken and pork, in ground beef, in stews and soups. I don’t use it too much on meats like steak because it lacks salt. It worked great for this recipe.

1 6 oz. can tomato paste
1 8 oz. can tomato sauce
2 capfuls of liquid smoke
1/4 cup cider vinegar
1/4 tsp. Tabasco sauce
1 Tbs. brown sugar
2 Tbs. Worcestershire sauce

Simmer for 30 minutes. Cool and refrigerate in a glass jar.
This sauce comes out more red than most barbecue sauces because I don’t overdo on the sweet aspect. It is richer in tomato taste and doesn’t taste too tart, too spicy, or too hot. It has the right balance for many uses.


18 thoughts on “Bacon Explosion — I finally made it!

  1. Ummmm….umm, that looks sooooooooo good, H. B.

    Bonnie J.–


    1. Please make sure your cholesterol meds before even considering consumption.


  2. Shelia Hammer July 9, 2012 — 9:34 pm

    Thank you, honey, for FINALLY making the Bacon Explosion! While it was worth the wait, I hope I don’t have to wait too long for a repeat performance.


    1. What else can I say to my wife but “Yes, dear!”


  3. Looks great


    1. Looked great. Tasted great. Not enough made. Bad looks the following morning. A promise made of more to be made.


    1. Yes. And, contrary to popular belief, quite healthy! (Okay, I turned fifty and lost complete control of my faculties.)


  4. You should send this to Leon Smitherman with KSN. He’s a certified golly-bacon-aholic.


    1. I did. I’m hoping to be a part of the early morning show in some ridiculous fashion.


  5. I can vouch that this was absolutely wonderful! And the presentation was quite impressive as well. Loved your homemade BBQ sauce on it too!


    1. You know, I really think the bbq sauce and spice rub gave it a special flavor and i was very glad for that.


  6. Hoping my cholesterol medication works because I HAVE TO HAVE THIS. A friend of ours is a bacon freak like I am and this will no doubt make a baconaliac out of the both of us. I bet this smelled and tasted as good as it looks.


    1. It’s the real McCoy. Baking it on a rack to allow for grease run off makes this a tasty, meaty dish that won’t get you sick. Even better if you have a smoker.


  7. RB "Rico" Mayer July 12, 2012 — 6:08 pm

    HB and the Bacon Explosion was the name of my band in high school.


    1. I hung with a group called Cellular Banana.


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