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Articles by Meredith Bethune

Meredith Bethune is a freelance food writer and blogger. Her work has appeared on Culinate and Farm to Table. Read more at

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Homemade smoked bacon

All photos by Meredith Bethune.

Early man probably just dangled meat over a fire to preserve it, but today smoking is needlessly complicated. The modern process is full of jargon and gear and often discourages some would-be meat-smokers from trying at all.

But there is another way. In fact, I’d recommend trying it with this bare-bones equipment before spending a fortune on a smoker. You won’t win any barbecue competitions with this beginners’ method, but it’s more than sufficient to produce delicious homemade bacon and charcuterie with locally raised meat.

What you’ll need

Charcoal grill: A charcoal grill is an adequate vessel for smoking. Large grills with two grates are best because the meat can be placed further away from the heat source, but you should experiment with a small grill if that’s what you have. If your grill doesn’t have a built-in thermometer, you can place a meat thermometer in the hole in the top.

Wood: Consider using fallen wood from your yard or neighborhood. It’s environmentally responsible and free. Try hardwoods like oak, pecan, and  mesquite, but don’t use r... Read more

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