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America has been overrun by a bacon epidemic, but rising from the ashes of bacon frosting and bacon vodka comes a selection of makers who nailed the application of the nation’s favorite breakfast vice. Explore six degrees of bacon from some of the nation’s most talented indy food acts.

Maple Bourbon Bacon Jam // TBJ Gourmet // West Chester, PA

Leave it to this Philly-based team of food scientists, chefs, and engineers to crack one of life’s eternal quests: spreadable bacon. OK, we admit, this is one of those food “inventions” that, well, gilds the lily. Or rather, butters the pork. A fatty strip of crispy pig is pretty damn close to perfection. Still, this spread moves it one step closer. It’s simple: bacon — a half pound in each jar — sugar, onions and vinegar. And it’s best used simply, spread on a burger or the morning’s toast.

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1 lb. fresh ground chuck

TBJ Gourmet Bacon Jam

¼ cup Charleston Burger Marinade

cheddar cheese

salt + pepper

fixins’ (sliced pickle, lettuce, thin sliced onion etc.)

  1. Combine chuck with 1/4 cup of marinade.
  2. Mix well and let sit for a few minutes or overnight for a bolder burger.
  3. Heat vegetable oil in a cast iron skillet (let it get hot), brown patties on both sides, add cheese, cook to preference.
  4. Toast the bun and smear with Bacon Spread
  5. Layer patty and fixins’ on bun, pour a beer, enjoy.

Pro Tip: Remove ground beef from the fridge an hour early for more even cooking.

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The Original Gourmet Burger Marinade // Charleston Gourmet Burger Company // Charleston, SC

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Who are these sauce Bosses?

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Chevalo, Monique and their four children arrived in Charleston in 2008. A Long Island native, Chevalo worked for the New York City Fire Department EMS medical team and was a first responder on 9/11. Monique, an entrepreneur, was born and raised in a small town in New Jersey. Quickly falling in love with the Holy City, the husband and wife duo set out to create their beloved burgers and burger marinade with all local Low Country ingredients. Now a staple in grocery stores throughout America, you’ll find Chevalo, Monique and their family making sure their spreading the word about their products in grocery chains across the country and beyond.

“Our signature product that started all the “buzz”. Considered the best ever burger seasoning and awesome marinade for burgers. It’s This Easy — Just pour on hamburger meat before grilling for the juiciest hamburgers ever recipe. Makes tender, juicy, and flavorful burgers every time. Simply the best hamburger recipe. All natural, gluten free, low sodium, low sugar, low cal, high in FLAVOR. Also great with chicken, steak, turkey, venison, seafood, pork, tofu, or stir fry veggies. 12.5 oz bottles”

  1. Combine 1/4 cup of marinade with 1 pound of ground meat.
  2. Mix well and let sit for a few minutes or overnight for a bolder burger.
  3. Form into patties and grill to perfection.

Chipotle Paste // Olo Food // Mercer Island, WA

Sure, you can buy the dried peppers, toast them in cast-iron, heft out the molcajete, mash them till your manos ache — and then avoid touching your eyes for the rest of the night. Or you can crack a tube of Olo’s. Dial in the heat — two teaspoons is about a full can of chilies — smear it straight, or mix a dollop with mayo to spread on fresh-grilled ears for a classic elote.

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Bacon Chipotle Guacamole

Bacon Chipotle Guacamole Recipe:

3 avocados, ripe

1 tbsp Olo’s Chipotle Paste

12 oz. Bacon, cooked until crispy and crumbled

1/2 red onion, finely diced

2 roma tomatoes, diced

cilantro, chopped

1 lime, juice

1/2 tsp sea salt

crumbled cotija or feta cheese

  1. Slice the avocados in half, remove the pit and skin and place in a mixing bowl.
  2. Mash the avocado with a fork and make it as chunky or smooth as you’d like and add the remaining ingredients and stir together.
  3. Serve with fresh lime, chips and cold beer.
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4 ears shucked corn
½ cup mayonnaise
1–2 tablespoons Olo’s Chipotle Paste
1/2 cup finely crumbled cotija or feta cheese
fresh lime
red chili powder (such as ancho or guajillo)

1) Grill corn until cooked through and charred in spots on all sides.
2) Mix mayonnaise, Olo’s, crumbled cheese and spread on corn.
3) Sprinkle with chili powder, serve with fresh lime.

  1. Vegan Pumpkin Linguine
  2. Crockpot chili modified with Olo’s
  3. Chipotle Tomato Soup

Korean BBQ Bacon Jerky // Mission Meats // Decorah, IA

Bacon + Jerky is a match made in heaven but throw in a great mission (hence the name) and you have a special product.

Via Mission Meats:

“Our mission is to provide good food and help foster positive relationships to ourselves, each other, and nature. That’s why we source only the finest grass-fed beef for our meat sticks, and it’s also why we give 10% of our profits to social good organizations.”

We love the salty, sweet combo of the Korean BBQ flavor. Kudos to Mission meats for thinking outside the bacon box.

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Original Savoury Snack Mix // Bubba’s Snack Foods // Loveland, CO

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The description from their website nails it.

“Are you sick of fake snacks full of artificial ingredients you can’t pronounce? Or, maybe you just can’t find a healthy snack that tastes more than seasoned cardboard. Bubba takes the frustration out of your snacking with mouthwatering, real-food snacks. With low-sugar, green bananas and real-food seasonings, Bubba finally combines healthy ingredients with big, bold flavor.”

Not sure if it’s because of the nutrient rich green Saba bananas, the coconut oil or the adorable top hat touting monkey as a mascot but we are all about Bubba’s. The world needed to rethink the crappy banana chips found in the bulk food aisle and the team at Bubba’s has thankfully fought the good fight and peeled back a winner.

Potato Chip Tastes. Banana Benefits.

PS: It’s a toss up on the most handsome primate on the planet but our finalists are:

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2. The reigning chimp and worldwide sensation Shabani the Japanese Gorilla

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Bacon Brittle // Brittle Brothers // Goodlettsville, TN

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There’s testimonials and then there are TESTIMONIALS…

What can we say? We agree. Brittle Brothers has been banging out brittle perfection for years and although we were late to the party we’re glad we showed up. The salty, sweet bacon-y combination provides the perfect after meal bite, midday snack or morning coffee counterpart.

We are not alone, even Youtube King Casey Neistat loves this brittle…

And for good measure, a couple Bacon gifs…

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Thanks for reading! :) If you enjoyed it, share this page. Would mean a lot because it helps other people discover the makers.

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