Food & Drink

The 13 Best Bacon Dishes in LA

Danny Jensen Published On 04/14/2015 Published On 04/14/2015
Courtesy of Charcoal BBQ 

Some people say the “bacon craze” should have jumped the shark a while ago, but those people 1) are idiots, 2) ARE IDIOTS, or 3) IDDDDIOTTTTTTS. Since you're clearly not, though, you get this: the 13 best bacon dishes in LA.
 

Bucket of bacon

Charcoal BBQ (address and info)
Silver Lake
It's not just any bacon: this bucket (available at Silverlake's welcome new entry into LA’s growing BBQ rolodex) is actually a mason jar packed with long strips of brown sugar- and chili flake-coated bacon that has been baked and then flash-fried to crispy perfection.

Grub Restaurant

"Crack" Bacon

Grub (address and info)
Hollywood
If you mention that you’re heading to this super-friendly neighborhood favorite to anyone who has been there before, the first words out of their mouth are bound to be “Crack Bacon,” usually followed by “Trust me.” And you should. A killer blend of spicy, salty, and sweet with a dusting of fresh herbs, Grub’s candy bacon goes well with any of the brunch, lunch, or dinner options (including The Kevin Bacon Breakfast).
 

Bacon Chocolate Crunch Bar

Animal (address and info)
Fairfax
No doubt, the Animal dudes love their porcine products -- from ears to bellies to ribs -- but your trip to the altar of meatiness would not be complete without a final bow to the famed Bacon Chocolate Crunch Bar. A perennial favorite, this Kit-Kat-inspired slice of heaven features layers of hazelnut chocolate, peanut-studded chocolate ganache, and chocolate mousse, finished off with a generous crumble of crispy Nueske’s bacon and a side of salt and pepper ice cream. 

Courtesy of Acuna Hansen

Crispy bacon toast

Tipple & Brine (address and info)
Sherman Oaks
You may have rolled up to this barely-a-year-old SFV spot for its amazing oyster selection, braised short rib, and solid cocktail selection -- and that's totally fine, just make sure you add the crispy bacon toast to your "why I rolled up to this barely-a-year-old SFV spot" list. A foundation of thick-cut toast is topped with sautéed leeks, fresh burrata, a dusting of bee pollen, all presided over by three hefty slices of tender lovin’ bacon.

Coolhaus

Brown butter candied bacon ice cream

Coolhaus (address and info)
Culver City/Pasadena/Trucks
Both Coolhaus' brick-and-mortar locations and roving trucks offer a lot of ridiculously clever ice cream options (chocolate-covered churro! Spiked coffee and donuts!! Fried chicken and waffles!!!), which you can and will sandwich between two equally awesome cookies (peanut butter Cap'n Crunch! S'mores!! Nutella!!!). But the one flavor-must is the one that helped put them on the frozen treats map: the sweet/savory combo of brown buttered candied bacon ice cream, which features a brown butter base studded with big chunks of sweet, sweet Applegate bacon.

Nickel Diner

Maple bacon donut

Nickel Diner (address and info)
Downtown
This Downtown haven for comfort fare serves up a serious selection of homemade desserts, but the one that sells out the quickest? This brilliant combination of maple-glazed donuts and crunchy bacon flakes. You’ve likely seen imitators, but none quite measure up to this instant classic original.

BACON MANia

KC Dog

Bacon MANia (address and info)
Huntington Beach
For too long, you had to chase down the Bacon MANia food truck around the OC if you wanted some of its pork-on-pork action, but now that it's opened up a storefront in Huntington Beach, you chase no more. Be sure to order up the KC Dog: a bacon-wrapped hot dog, topped with pulled pork, crumbled bacon (Double Bacon Bonus, +2pts), pickles, and BBQ sauce.

Manhattan Beach Post

Bacon cheddar buttermilk biscuits

M.B. Post (address and info)
Manhattan Beach
There are a lot of tasty directions you can go on the ever-evolving menu of David LeFevre’s M.B. favorite (which includes plenty of killer porky options), but your first direction has to be toward the top of the menu and his signature bacon cheddar biscuits. The perfect balance of meaty-cheesy-buttery magic, these fluffy bad boys feature crispy Nueske’s bacon from LeFevre’s home state of Wisconsin, and come with a side of maple butter, which you should use generously. Oh, do you also want a side of that bacon that has been candied with rosemary, brown sugar, and chili? Yes, yes, you do.
 

Bacon and braised leeks tartine

Canelé (address and info)
Atwater Village
There are a lot of delicious reasons to hit this bring-a-date-charming Atwater spot, but the massively thick, house-cured bacon is one that you can’t afford to ignore. Throw that crisp, smoky goodness in the braised leek tartine with fried eggs at brunch and you’re ready to tackle the rest of the weekend.

Courtesy of Nicole Quihuis

Double B-LTA

The Sycamore Kitchen (address and info)
Mid-City
There are tons of fantastic BLTs around town that we would gladly devour (and do), but this always-reliable brunch and lunch spot takes the classic to the next bacon-y level. Here you'll be hit with a double dose, with crispy slices of Applewood bacon AND thick cuts of braised pork belly, all skillfully balanced by butter lettuce, fresh tomatoes, avocado, mayo, and fluffy country bread. Bring. It. On.
 

Bacon cheddar scone

Farmshop (address and info)
Brentwood
This artisan-centric upscale joint crushes brunch on the regular and turns out some mighty fine fried chicken, but it’s an understated breakfast treat that leaves many craving a return visit. Probably not suitable for the Queen’s high tea service (unless she’s cooler than we think), the bacon cheddar scone features applewood-smoked dry-cured bacon from the lauded Zoe’s Meats in Petaluma, plus aged smoked cheddar from Fiscalini Farms.

Slater's 50 50

B'B'B' Burger

Slater's 50/50 (address and info)
Pasadena
While we’ve obviously steered clear of LA's many excellent bacon-topped burgers for this list -- as they were more burger than bacon -- the B’B’B’ Burger at Slater’s is the pork-centric exception. Packed with more bacon than a Footloose marathon, this monster features Slater's signature half-bacon/half-burger patty, piled high with bacon American cheese, sunny side-up bacon egg, bacon-Island dressing, bacon ketchup, and, what’s that other thing... oh yeah, bacon.

Courtesy of Umami Burger

Maple bacon Old Fashioned

Umami Burger (address and info)
Multiple locations
Whiskey and bacon in the same glass? Thank you Umami gods. It may come as no surprise that the smoky wonders of bacon pair well with bourbon, and thankfully you can sip those savory pleasures at the Umami on Broadway. There, the maple bacon Old Fashioned features bacon-washed Evan Williams, maple syrup, and orange bitters, plus it's topped with a thick slice of house-made, candied bacon.

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Danny Jensen is a regular Thrillist contributor and would like to thank all the bacon for his achievements thus far in life. You can find him dry curing on Twitter and Instagram.

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1. Charcoal BBQ 2611 N Hyperion Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90027 (Silverlake)

Charcoal BBQ has a dolled-up interior (nudie wallpaper! Stuffed boar's head!) and a killer menu, including classics like citrus-smoked pork ribs, as well as a bucket of bacon. Which, maybe, we should have told you about first.

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2. Grub 911 Seward St, Hollywood, CA 90038 (Hollywood)

If you mention you’re heading to this super-friendly neighborhood favorite to anyone who's been, they will almost definitely say, “Crack Bacon,” followed by, “Trust me.” And you should. A killer blend of spicy, salty, and sweet with a dusting of fresh herbs, Grub’s candy bacon goes well with any of the brunch, lunch, or dinner options, including, of course, The Kevin Bacon Breakfast that will make you the opposite of a Hollow Man.

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3. Animal 435 N Fairfax, Los Angeles, CA 90036 (Mid Wilshire)

Vinny Dotolo and Jon Shook's OG restaurant is a stone-cold classic in Los Angeles known for a constantly changing menu that's always creative and never stale. As the name suggests, Animal specializes in head-to-tail eating and meat-centric plates; past and present hits include a bacon crunch chocolate bar, a barbecue pork belly sandwich, and a short rib and bone marrow-blended burger.

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4. Tipple & Brine 14633 Ventura Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 91403

This Sherman Oaks seafoodery not only doles out quality fare from the sea (oyster bar!), but they also mix up tasty 'tails in a sophisticated and comfy ambiance.

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5. Nickel Diner 524 S Main St, Los Angeles, CA 90013 (Downtown)

The home-made jam, classic diner dishes, and maple-bacon donuts at this revered diner located in downtown LA are worth a visit.

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6. BACON MANia 21351 Pacific Coast Hwy, Huntington Beach, CA 92648

For too long, you had to chase down the BACON MANia food truck around the OC if you wanted some of its pork-on-pork action, but now that it's opened up a storefront in Huntington Beach, you chase no more. Be sure to order up the KC Dog: a bacon-wrapped hot dog, topped with pulled pork, crumbled bacon (Double Bacon Bonus, +2pts), pickles, and BBQ sauce.

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7. Manhattan Beach Post 1142 Manhattan Ave, Manhattan Beach, CA 90266 (South Bay)

Chef David LeFevre kickstarted Manhattan Beach’s restaurant revival by opening MB Post back in 2011, and locals still flock here for the killer brunch menu, which includes the savory (famously flaky bacon cheddar biscuits) as well as the sweet (sticky buns and pumpkin skillet cake). This spot rocks an an upscale-barn vibe with exposed rafters and bleached-wood common tables. The menu's divided under whimsically named sections like "Eat Your Veggies,” "Meat Me Later" and "A Spoon Full Of Sugar…".

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8. Canelé 3219 Glendale Blvd, Los Angeles, 90039 (Atwater Village)

This cozy Atwater restaurant is a go-to for brunch -- just watch out for the sizable weekend crowds. It's worth the wait, though, for ultra-fresh dishes like chilled gazpacho, sweet and savory favorites like thick-cut French toast and baked pancakes, and some seriously tasty house-cured bacon. The chefs here keep things super-seasonal when it comes to ingredients, but no matter when you stop in, their fried chicken sandwich is a must.

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9. Sycamore Kitchen 143 S La Brea, Los Angeles, CA 90036 (Mid Wilshire)

A reclaimed red brick house in La Brea, Sycamore Kitchen is a breezy, calm breakfast and lunch spot fitting for king- and queen-sized appetites. Upscale takes on standard brunch fare -- like honey- and sherry-glazed eggs benedict atop fluffy english muffins and their signature Double B-LTA, a balsamic, avocado-stuffed BLT flaunting crispy, fatty pork belly -- make the rounds between recently awoken diners in the barely-decorated inside and lazy Sunday brunch groups on the sun-drenched patio.

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10. Farmshop 225 26th St, Santa Monica, CA 90402 (Brentwood)

Located inside the Brentwood Country Mart, this Thomas Keller-backed New American restaurant serves up savory and refined dishes all day long. Its market-driven, egg-centric menu makes FarmShop a natural brunch pick. Standouts include a roasted broccoli rabe frittata, deviled eggs with trout caviar, and poached chicken salad with baby kale. Definitely peruse its attached marketplace as well, which sells everything you could ever want for a gourmet picnic, like wine, artisanal cheese, and cured charcuterie.

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11. Slater's 50/50 61 N Raymond Ave, Pasadena, CA 91103 (Pasadena)

Slater's 50/50 is a burger restaurant with a serious mission: burgers made from 50% ground beef... and 50% ground bacon. A stunning array of burger options and an impressively long beer list keep the experience fresh after every visit. This is, by far, one of our favorite chains in Los Angeles area.

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