These decadent bites are not the pretties appetizer, but they are one of the most popular that I serve.  People talk about them for days after the party.  I can understand the draw – they are sweet, sticky and salty bites of deliciousness.  What doesn’t taste good wrapped in bacon?

Bacon-wrapped dates are a great make-ahead appetizer.  Pit the dates up to a week in advance, stuff them with Parmesan up to 2 days in advance (refrigerate until ready to wrap in bacon), wrap in bacon up to 1 day in advance and pop these in the oven right when your guests arrive.

Bacon-Wrapped Dates Stuffed with Parmesan

24 Medjool dates

½ lb. Parmesan cheese, cut into 24 pieces

12 slices bacon, cut crosswise in half

Arugula, for garnish (optional)

Preheat oven to 450 degrees, with rack in middle of oven.  Cover rimmed baking sheet with foil and coat with non-stick spray.  Cut dates lengthwise to remove pit, then place Parmesan inside.  Seal by pinching the sides together over cheese.  Repeat with remaining dates.  Wrap each date in bacon and place on prepared baking tray, about 1” apart, seam side down.  Bake for 5 minutes; turn dates over to continue cooking until bacon is crisp, about 5 minutes more.  Remove from oven and drain on paper towel.  Serve over bed of fresh arugula, if desired.

  • Be sure to use a rimmed baking sheet or a shallow baking dish.  The bacon will render some fat into the pan.
  • If you cannot get the bacon to hold in place use a toothpick to secure it.