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Bacon Wrapped Scallops (Paleo + Whole30)

Bacon-Wrapped Scallops – These tender scallops are wrapped in smoky bacon for a double-dose of flavor. They’re the perfect paleo appetizer or special occasion dinner! (Gluten-Free, Paleo, Whole30)

Bacon-Wrapped Scallops Recipe from One Lovely Life

I love going out to eat.

I cook for my job, love mastering new recipes, think about food in my spare time, read cookbooks like novels, and I also really love going out to eat. Michael and I love trying new places (and going back again and again to old favorites), and it was always something we looked forward to sharing with kids.

For several years, it was…less than magical. Our little ones had VERY little patience for waiting, we had some serious struggles with sensory overload, classically wiggly babies/toddlers, and lots of pickiness. (If you’re in the middle of this stage, I see you, and it gets better!)

Now that my kids are a little older, it’s been REALLY fun to take them to restaurants. Sophie, especially, really loves the atmosphere, trying new foods, reading menus, and asking the server to “give my compliments to the chef!”

A few months back, Michael’s work gave him a big family dinner out as a thank-you, and we went to a really fancy (for us!) restaurant. The kids were THRILLED. We ordered all kinds of fun things we wouldn’t normally order to share, trying crab legs, lobster, shrimp, gorgeous salads, incredible side dishes, etc., but the biggest hit of the night was the bacon-wrapped scallops.

Somehow, I made it to my 30s before trying scallops! I. HAVE. BEEN. MISSING. OUT.

We went back again in December to celebrate our “family birthday” (our anniversary), and ordered double the scallops. We finished every last one.

For Valentine’s Day, I wanted to surprise the kids with our own homemade version of this restaurant fave, and I think I’ve nailed it! These bacon-wrapped scallops are the perfect combination. The light, tender scallops are wrapped with savory, smoky, salty bacon and seasoned simply with some salt, pepper, and fresh herbs.

They’re CRAZY easy to put together and make a fun appetizer or fancier at-home meal, perfect for special occasions! Here’s how easy they are…

Bacon-Wrapped Scallops Recipe from One Lovely Life Bacon-Wrapped Scallops Recipe from One Lovely Life

HOW DO YOU MAKE BACON-WRAPPED SCALLOPS?

WITH JUST 2 MAIN INGREDIENTS! You literally only need scallops + bacon to get started. (Check here for sustainably-caught scallop options) I like to add salt and pepper for some extra flavor,

  1. Par-cook the bacon so it gets more crispy on the scallops, then cut in half lengthwise so it’s easier to wrap the scallops
  2. Pat the scallops dry
  3. Season the scallops with salt & pepper
  4. Wrap a strip of bacon around each scallop and secure with a toothpick
  5. Broil till they’re done!

I’ll walk you through each step in detail, so never fear!

Bacon-Wrapped Scallops Recipe from One Lovely Life Bacon-Wrapped Scallops Recipe from One Lovely Life

WHAT TO SERVE WITH BACON-WRAPPED SCALLOPS:

Bacon-Wrapped Scallops make an awesome appetizer on their own, but if you’re turning them into a full meal (which we usually do), you’ll want a few good side dishes to round things out. Here are some ideas.

CHIPOTLE MASHED SWEET POTATOES. Chipotle Mashed Sweet Potatoes are a delicious and more colorful twist on standard mashed potatoes. These have a smoky vibe that’s LOVELY next to bacon-wrapped scallops.

MEDITERRANEAN CAULIFLOWER RICE. This yummy Mediterranean cauliflower rice is a great lower-carb option to pair with your scallops. Plus, it’s got LOTS of color and flavor!

CRISPY SMASHED POTATOES. Keep the steakhouse vibes going with some crispy smashed potatoes! They’re crispy and golden on the outside, soft and fluffy on the inside. SO GOOD.

A FRESH GREEN SALAD. A light green salad goes a long way! Top it with our favorite paleo ranch, Italian Dressing, or this light balsamic dressing.

GREEN VEGGIES. These pretty green beans with balsamic pepper relish are great for a fancy feel, or some simply dressed asparagus or broccoli are delicious with scallops.

FRESH BREAD OR ROLLS. If you’re not paleo or doing Whole30, some warm rolls (or gluten-free focaccia) is lovely next to bacon-wrapped scallops!

Bacon-Wrapped Scallops Recipe from One Lovely Life

Bacon-Wrapped Scallops Recipe from One Lovely Life

FAQ + TIPS & TRICKS FOR PERFECT BACON-WRAPPED SCALLOPS

HOW TO GET CRISPY BACON WITH BACON-WRAPPED SCALLOPS. I’m not a fan of floppy bacon, so I like to pre-cook the bacon a bit before wrapping the scallops. You can do this on the stovetop or in the microwave.

  • ON THE STOVETOP: Cook 3-4 strips of bacon for 3-4 minutes on medium heat, just till the bacon is opaque but before it’s browned. It should still be flexible. Repeat with remaining bacon.
  • IN THE MICROWAVE: Line a plate with paper towels and place 3-4 strips of bacon on the paper towels. Cover with another paper towel (to prevent splatters) and microwave 1 minute on HIGH (regular setting). Repeat with remaining bacon.

LOOK FOR THE LITTLE FLAP on the side of your scallops. This little flap (where the scallop attaches to its shell) can sometimes be tougher than the actual scallop. If you like, you can pinch this little flap and pull it off easily with your fingers before wrapping with bacon. If you forget, it’s honestly not a big deal.

HOW TO THAW FROZEN SCALLOPS. For best results, place the bag/package on a plate or in a bowl of cold water in your refrigerator for at least 4-6 hours (up to overnight) before cooking. If you’re in a hurry, I recommend transferring the frozen scallops to a zip-top bag and placing it in a bowl of cold water on the counter for 30-40 minutes, rotating regularly to help them thaw.

DON’T SKIP THE PATTING DRY STEP. Patting the scallops dry helps salt and pepper stick, and helps the bacon adhere better and tighter. If you skip this step, sometimes the scallops are too wet and the bacon slips off or doesn’t crisp as well.

WHY DO YOU SLICE THE BACON LENGTHWISE? You can slice the bacon lengthwise (the long way) or width-wise (the short way), but I’ve found the most consistent results slicing the bacon lengthwise. That way, I’m positive the bacon can wrap all the way around the scallop. If you cut it the short way, you run the risk of coming up short on some of your scallops.

HELPFUL TOOLS FOR THESE BACON-WRAPPED SCALLOPS: 

p.s. Seafood Watch is a great resource for knowing which kinds of seafood have been sustainably caught. 

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Bacon-Wrapped Scallops Recipe from One Lovely Life

Bacon Wrapped Scallops (Gluten-Free, Paleo + Whole30)


  • Author: One Lovely Life
  • Total Time: 35-40 minutes
  • Yield: 4 Servings 1x

Description

Bacon-Wrapped Scallops – These tender scallops are wrapped in smoky bacon for a double-dose of flavor. They’re the perfect paleo appetizer or special occasion dinner! (Gluten-Free, Paleo, Whole30)


Ingredients

Scale
  • 1 lb. large jumbo scallops (Mine are 1620 size*)
  • 810 slices bacon** (You’ll use 1/2 a slice per scallop)
  • 1/41/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/41/2 tsp. pepper

Optional, for garnish: fresh herbs, like parsley, basil, dill, or cilantro. 


Instructions

  1. Place 16-20 toothpicks in a small bowl or cup of water (helps prevent scorching in the oven)
  2. Arrange a rack in the center of your oven. 
  3. Line a baking sheet with foil (optional, to catch the drippings) and top with a metal cooling rack (to promote more even cooking and crisper bacon).
  4. Preheat the broiler.
  5. Working in batches, par-cook the bacon slices for 2-3 minutes in a pan on medium heat on the stovetop (just till opaque, but not crisp) or place on a plate lined with paper towels and microwave 3-4 slices at a time for 1 minute. Repeat until all bacon is par-cooked. It should still be flexible.
  6. Optional: sprinkle par-cooked bacon slices with a bit of pepper.
  7. Use a sharp knife or kitchen shears to cut all bacon strips in half lengthwise (the long way).
  8. Pat scallops dry with a paper towel or clean kitchen towel. Sprinkle scallops generously with salt and pepper.  
  9. Wrap the scallops with bacon. Take 1 strip of bacon (remember to cut it in half lengthwise first) and wrap tightly around the outside of the scallop. Secure the end by pressing a toothpick through the loose end all the way through the scallop. Repeat until all scallops are wrapped.
  10. Arrange scallops on the wire rack on the baking sheet, spaced evenly apart to allow for good air circulation.
  11. Place on middle rack in the oven and broil 8-10 minutes, or until the scallops are opaque and the bacon is crisping. (For even cooking, rotate pan halfway through the cook time)
  12. Garnish with additonal salt, pepper, and fresh herbs as desired.

Notes

*16-20 refers to how many scallops per pound. If you’re buying frozen scallops, the bag will give you a size range. If yours are smaller (meaning a higher number per pound), you may need more bacon and/or a shorter cook time. 

**If you’re following Whole30, be sure to use program-approved bacon (sugar free, nitrate-free/uncured)

  • Prep Time: 15-20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Category: Main Dish, Appetizer
  • Method: Broil
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: Bacon Wrapped Scallops, Bacon-Wrapped Scallops, Bacon Scallops, Broiled Scallops

Bacon-Wrapped Scallops Recipe from One Lovely Life Bacon-Wrapped Scallops Recipe from One Lovely Life

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