Almond bacon

Almond bacon

almond bacon

It’s salad season here (well, it should be anyway) so I have an exciting salad topping for you today – almond bacon. I love it and have been using it for years. I use to add excitement to salads, as well as simple pastas and plates of greens and more. Almond bacon uses 6 easy to get ingredients and is really easy to make too, yet can transform a simple dish into something super delicious.

I came up with the idea of almond bacon inspired by a popular vegan hack of making coconut bacon by marinating coconut shavings in a mixture of seasonings and baking it. It was 2018 and I lived on a small Greek island at a time and plain coconut shavings were hard to get while almonds are a Greek staple so I thought to myself, why not try it with flaked almonds. It worked a treat and I’ve been using it ever since. I actually prefer using almonds to coconut now as almond bacon does not have that coconutty flavour that you don’t always want in your savoury food and is crunchier in my opinion.

Initially, I used sliced almonds, but whole almonds cut in half also work a treat. The advantage of using flaked almonds is that they are quicker – all you do is open a packet and dump it in the marinade. While using whole almonds requires a bit of prep (5 minutes tops), they are more accessible, sturdier so provide more of a crunch, plus their texture is better at retaining flavour. Try either and I can guarantee you that almond bacon will become your favourite snack.

almond bacon ingredients


ALMONDS: You can make almond bacon with either flaked almonds (sometimes called sliced almonds or almond flakes) or you could use whole almonds too. Whole almonds require chopping in half so that’s a little but more work, but they also offer a little bit more crunch and make for a better snack. Pick whichever appeals to you more and based on what types of almonds have in your cupboards.

SOY SAUCE: All purpose soy sauce adds umami and of course a hefty dose of saltiness, which is so characteristic of bacon flavour. If you want to make this almond bacon gluten-free, be sure to use tamari instead of soy sauce.

OIL: A little oil is needed to keep this almond bacon nice and crispy. I used mild olive oil but any vegetable oil will work just as well, provided it doesn’t have a strong flavour.

TOMATO PASTE: A small squeeze of tomato paste gives this almond bacon a little bit of acidity, plus more umami and helps the marinade to adhere to the almonds.

MAPLE SYRUP: A little bit maple syrup adds some nice sweetness, which contrasts nicely with saltiness and smokiness. I only have ever made these using maple syrup, but any liquid sweetener will work provided its flavour doesn’t dominate.

SMOKED PAPRIKA: Smoked (sweet, not spicy) paprika adds a hint of smokiness to this bacon flavour inspired snack. You can use more if you wish, personally one teaspoon is perfect for me. If you don’t have smoked paprika, half of the amount of liquid smoke will work just as well.

almond bacon cut

If you want to use whole almonds, I suggest chopping them in half lengthwise prior to coating in the marinade. It increases surface area and gives them just the right amount of crunch. If that’s too much hassle, use shop-bought flaked almonds instead like I did below.


almond bacon marinating

almond bacon spreading

almond bacon before after

almond bacon tray

almond bacon side

almond bacon box side

While these almond bacon bits are most crunchy and delicious as soon as they cool off on a baking tray, you can store them in an air-tight jar for a few days. They will get a little less crispy as they contain a form of sugar, which tends to absorb moisture from the air. If you want to crisp them up again, you can spread them on a baking tray and whack into 100° C / 210° oven for a few minutes, just to dry them out again.

almond bacon box

1 cup
10 min
30 min
1 cup
10 min
30 min
  • 20 ml / 4 tsp soy sauce* (or tamari if GF)
  • 20 ml / 4 tsp oil (I use mild olive oil)
  • 20 ml / 4 tsp maple syrup
  • ½ tsp tomato paste*
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika (or ½ tsp liquid smoke)
  • 140 g / 1 cup almonds OR 100 g / 1 cup flaked almonds
  1. Pre-heat the oven to 120° C / 250° F (or 100° C / 210° F on a fan setting) and line a large baking tray with baking paper.
  2. If using whole almonds, hold each almond between your fingers and using a sharp knife, cut it in half lengthwise.
  3. Combine soy sauce, oil, maple syrup, tomato paste and smoked paprika in a medium bowl. Whisk together.
  4. Add almonds and stir well to coat.
  5. Spread the almonds on the prepared tray in a single layer. Bake for 15 minutes.
  6. After 15 minutes, give almonds a good stir and return to the oven for another 10-15 minutes. Carry on baking until almonds look more or less dry.
  7. Take the tray out of the oven and let almonds cool – they will appear soft initially but will crisp up when cold. They are best freshly made but can be stored in a air-tight jar for a week or so.

*SOY SAUCE: I find that 4 tsp of soy sauce is enough, but if you are a salt fiend you may want to use 1-2 more (30 ml / 2 tbsp in total).

*TOMATO PASTE: adds tanginess and thickens the marinade, you can sub it with 1-2 tbsp of nutritional yeast and a teaspoon of thick balsamic vinegar.

2 g
9 g
1 g
3 g
5 g
*per 1 out of 10 servings
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1 review, 1 comment
I tried this a few days ago and I'm literally obsessed. It turned out amazing, it's so tasty, perfect for salad topping, hummus, sandwiches and so many other things. I'll definitely make this again and again and again.
    Yay, thanks, I am really happy to hear this Dasa! Yes, it's most addictive - I have to ration it to myself or else I would eat the lot in one afternoon. Thank you for taking the time to let me know that it was a hit with you. x Ania
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