LightLife Smart Bacon Review
Plant-Based Meat 

LightLife Smart Bacon Review

Craving bacon in the morning? LightLife Smart Bacon has you covered. Crispy, smoky, and sweet, this easy-to-prepare meat-free bacon alternative might be your new morning go-to.

EV Rating
star rating

Craving bacon in the morning? LightLife Smart Bacon has you covered. Crispy, smoky, and sweet, this easy-to-prepare meat-free bacon alternative might be your new morning go-to.

Taste

Plant-based bacon has never tasted so good. I’ve never had a plant-based bacon that I want to sit and snack on. Yet, LightLife has created an irresistible smoky, salty bacon alternative that crisps up so nicely that it really satisfies all my bacon cravings.

Price

For a 5-ounce package, expect to spend about $5.00. This price is on par with LightLife’s plant-based competitors, such as Tofurkey and Morningstar Farms, which range in price from $4.00 to $6.00.

Texture

Depending on how you cook LightLife’s Smart Bacon, you can get an extra crunchy or chewy texture that will tickle the tastebuds of all the bacon enthusiasts in your home.

EV’s Take: A Plant-Based Bacon that’s Easy to Cook and Even Easier to Eat

Bacon is often viewed as a pillar of a balanced morning meal. If you are on a vegan journey and feel a void in your breakfast routine, LightLife is one product worth adding to the freezer.

The bacon is vacuum-packed. It can easily be frozen for up to a year as long as it’s frozen before the best-by date. Like regular bacon, you simply peel off however many strips you want, fry them up, and call it a day. There is a little nuance to this, which I’ll explain below. Following the package instructions will yield crisp-edged, slightly-chewy-center bacon that tastes like the real deal.

A few minor hiccups didn’t negatively impact my review, but peeling off the bacon to cook it was a little frustrating. If you aren’t careful, the bacon tends to want to break apart, particularly around the ends.

Beyond that, though, LightLife Smart Bacon is a reasonably priced, tasty bacon alternative that I want to crumble on soup, eat with my eggs, and pile on BLTs.

LightLife Smart Bacon

What is LightLife Smart Bacon Made of?

Like seitan, LightLife bacon relies on wheat gluten as its primary protein source, with soy protein as its secondary protein source. Two slices of LightLife Smart Bacon will give you 5 grams of protein, which is in the same ballpark as animal-based bacon. The full ingredients are below:

Water, Wheat Gluten, Soy Protein Isolate, Soybean Oil, Salt, Sugar, Natural Smoke Flavors, Spice Extractives, Contains 2% Or Less Of The Following: Soy Protein Concentrate, Carrageenan, Yeast Extract, Vegetable Oil, Natural Flavor, Red Rice Flour, Smoked Sugar, Oleoresin Paprika (Color).

plant-based bacon

What is the best way to cook LightLife Smart Bacon?

I have a hard time following the rules, but I try my hardest to follow package directions for these reviews to give you the full picture of the product as it was intended to be eaten by the manufacturer. But ad-libbing is in my bones, so I’ll give you two methods for cooking LightLife Smart Bacon: their way and the rogue way.

How to Cook LightLife Smart Bacon:

According to package instructions, simply brush a skillet with a little oil. Turn the heat to medium and add the strips in a single layer. Cook for about 3½ minutes, flipping once.

If you cook the bacon this way, you will likely be unable to crumble it on anything because the center stays chewy. If you like that texture or plan to use the bacon as strips on a sandwich, this method will work perfectly for you.

how to fry lightlife smart bacon

Suppose you want to use this bacon on soup or salads. In that case, I recommend cutting each slice of bacon into thin strips–similar to lardons to borrow from the animal-based bacon vocabulary–and then heat 1 or 2 teaspoons of neutral oil in a skillet over medium-high. Add the bacon and cook for about 4 minutes, stirring occasionally, until very crisp. Transfer to a paper towel-lined plate. I will warn you: do NOT attempt to make a stack of bacon and cut them into strips altogether. Remember how I told you they fall apart when you try to peel them off each other? It’s even worse when working with twenty little stacks of thin strips. Trust me.

Can I bake or air-fry LightLife Smart Bacon?

Yes! If you want to bake LightLife Smart Bacon, simply brush a baking sheet with a little oil, arrange the bacon on top in an even layer, and bake at 450ºF for about 5 minutes. When you remove it, you want to use a fork to lift from the center of each piece of bacon and gently shimmy it off the baking sheet.

To air-fry LightLife Smart Bacon, lightly spray the air fryer basket and add the bacon in an even layer. Air-fry at 375ºF for 3–4 minutes. Flip and air-fry for an additional minute or two until it reaches your desired level of crispiness.

Where Can I Buy LightLife Smart Bacon?

I’ve found LightLife Smart Bacon in pretty much any major retailer, like Target, Giant, Safeway, and Wegmans. You can use LightLife’s store locator to find a retailer closest to you. You can also purchase LightLife Smart Bacon on Amazon.

Did you try this product? Love it? Hate it? Let us know what you think by leaving a comment below!

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Comments

  • I love the product, but I find it very difficult to separate the strips without them coming apart into tiny shreds. Is there some trick to separating them? Or is it the result of prior freezing (before purchase)?

    • I had the same issue when I reviewed this product! I think they need to put a small sheet of wax paper between each slice, but I realize that creates additional waste…

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