Caramelized Onion & Bacon Jam

Are you guys ready for one of the most addictive appetizers ever made? Of course you are! Why else would you be here? Tis the season for yummy appetizers!

One thing I love the most about this jam is that it can be used so many different ways. I feel like a very southern (maybe this is a thing everywhere I don’t know) way is to have it on top of softened cream cheese. Which – is there anything cream cheese can’t do? It’s like a super hero. I also love it on top of goat cheese if you want to feel fancy or on top of a baked Brie (uhhh hello decadence!?). You could also serve this on top of a baked chicken or beef dish. A small dollop on top of mashed potatoes. Put it on top of a pizza. Just on top of a cracker while you sit on your couch and binge watch Murder on Middle Beach – really the options are endless!!

This recipe has only a handful of ingredients and can be made all in the same pot – but it does take just a little bit of time. Hey – you can’t have everything.

First – get yourself some bacon. I prefer a hickory or applewood smoked bacon myself but feel free to change it up. Get a large deep pot/pan (or Dutch oven – that’s my go to) and crank the heat to medium/medium high. Slice your bacon into small pieces and add to pan. While the bacon is cooking thinly slice 2 yellow onions. Cook until you reach your preferred bacon texture and remove from pan – for this recipe I think just barely crispy is the best. I prefer my jam to not be crunchy. Now depending on the fat content of your bacon you may need to drain out a bit but around 2 tbsp of grease is fine.

Next, turn the heat down to medium/medium low and add 2-3 tbsp of butter to your pan and add your thinly sliced onions and stir to coat all the onions in your yummy greasy butter mixture. Now here is where the time consuming part starts. Caramelizing onions can take a while! Typically I’ve found they Caramelize faster the less you mess with them. Every 4-5 minutes give a quick stir to the onions until they reach a nice golden brown caramelized color. Some folk will caramelize further until they are a deep brown color – but I personally don’t enjoy that taste so I stop a little early. This can take around 30 minutes or longer depending on the color you want to achieve. Now add your balsamic vinegar and stir. This helps deglaze your pan and pick up any yummy bits stuck to the bottom. Now add your brown sugar, garlic, salt/pepper, thyme, and water. Stir to combine and let simmer and bubble for around 8-10 minutes until it begins to thicken. Now add your crumbled bacon back in and stir to combine then remove from heat.

Yay! You’re done! And ready to put this delicious bacon jam on anything and everything! Store any (completely cooled) leftovers in the fridge in an airtight container. Leftovers will stay good for around 3 weeks

Caramelized Onion & Bacon Jam

  • 1 lb hickory smoked bacon, roughly diced
  • 2-3 tbsp butter
  • 2 yellow onions, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • Salt/pepper, to taste
  • 2 tbsp fresh thyme
  • 1 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup water

Over medium/medium high heat cook your bacon until just crispy and remove from pan. Add your butter and thinly sliced onions and stir to coat. Stir your onions every 4-5 minutes until they reach desired caramelization – around 30 minutes. Add your balsamic vinegar to deglaze your pan. Add remaining ingredients and stir to combine. Summer for 10 minutes until your jam begins to thicken then add your bacon back in. Remove from heat and enjoy!


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