MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – Do you crave breakfast simply because it usually involves bacon? Well, now you don’t have to limit yourself to morning meals!

Bacon has gone beyond breakfast and has become a key ingredient in many tasty dishes.

Every week WCCO is highlighting easy recipes to try at home. On Tuesday, Le Cordon Bleu Chef Ashley Mendel is cooking with WCCO.

Ali Lucia spent some time in the Cambria Kitchen with Chef Mendel cooking up bacon brownies.

Bacon Brownies

Ingredients for chocolate squares:
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1/3 cup bacon fat
4 eggs
2 cups white granulated sugar
1 tsp. baking powder
1 1/2 cups flour
1 lb. bacon
2 tbsp. brown sugar

Ingredients for ganache:
1 1/3 cups semisweet chocolate chips
1 cup heavy whipping cream

Method of preparation:
Cook fat off bacon and sprinkle brown sugar on top. Reserve fat in a separate container.
After the bacon has cooled, chop into fine pieces.
Combine all wet and dry ingredients.
Fold in bacon.
Pour mixture into a 9” x 13” baking dish and bake for 25 minutes.
Meanwhile, heat heavy cream in a double broiler until it starts to steam.
Pour the heavy cream over the chocolate chips and let sit for five minutes.
After five minutes, slowly whisk mixture in 2 tbsp. of bacon fat to create the ganache.
Pour ganache over finished brownies.
Chill brownies, serve with a drizzle of maple syrup and enjoy!

Beef Bacon Sliders
Makes 6 sliders

Ingredients:
1 lb. ground beef
1 tbsp. Worcestershire Sauce
1 tbsp. fresh sage, minced
6 strips bacon
1/4 cup barbecue sauce
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. pepper
1 tbsp. chili spice
6 pieces cheddar cheese
6 slider buns

Method of preparation:
Preheat oven to 425°F.
Combine ground beef and Worcestershire sauce, sage, salt, pepper and chili spice in  a mixer.
Using an ice cream scoop, form small to medium sized balls of the mixture.
Cut slices of bacon in half lengthwise and wrap each half around a ground beef ball. Smooth to secure seam.
Spray a baking pan with a drip tray with nonstick cooking spray.
Place patties – with the bacon seam side facing down – on baking pan.
Refrigerate patties for 25 minutes to firm.
Brush each patty liberally with barbecue sauce.
Bake for 20 minutes, or until bacon is cooked.
Remove from oven and assemble sliders with a cheese shaving on each patty.
Serve and enjoy!

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