Bacon wrapped water chestnuts are a simple but elegant appetizer. Watch them disappear at your next party!

Bacon wrapped water chestnuts on a white platter.

Crisp whole water chestnuts, wrapped in smoky bacon and simmered in a tangy homemade barbecue sauce, are a standout appetizer. They hit all the buttons: crunchy, salty, sweet, tangy. Anything bacon makes a great appetizer, right?

Have you tried pig candy yet? Talk about an addicting finger food: crisp strips of bacon baked with a sugary spicy crunchy coating. And low-carb bacon guacamole appetizers combine two of my favorites! And of course, everyone’s had bacon wrapped dates, with various goodies stuffed inside. I think you’ll really love this recipe, bacon wrapped dates stuffed with fontina cheese and coated with a delicious brown sugar spice rub.

One bacon wrapped water chestnut cut in half, on top of a pile of whole ones with toothpicks.

Bacon wrapped water chestnuts are always super popular at parties, partly because they’re so tasty, and partly because they’re just such a perfect finger food.  Grab one by the nice little toothpick handle and pop the whole thing in your mouth. Crunch! Nothing messy about that!

Serve the water chestnuts on a fancy serving tray, or keep them warm in a crockpot, immersed in the sauce, and let everyone help themselves.

A water chestnut, wrapped with bacon, on a plate with others.

About these bacon wrapped water chestnuts

This is such an easy appetizer to make. You’ll only need five ingredients and a baking dish.

Simply wrap the whole water chestnuts in a half a strip of bacon and secure with a toothpick.

How to wrap bacon around a water chestnut.

That’s the hardest part and it’s not very hard at all.

Toothpick being stuck into an uncooked bacon wrapped water chestnut.

Bake the bacon wrapped water chestnuts for ten minutes so the bacon browns and crisps up.

Bacon wrapped water chestnuts, not fully cooked

Take the pan out of the oven and pour an easy three ingredient sauce over the water chestnuts.

Baking dish, sauce and toothpicks visible.

Pop the pan back in the oven for half an hour. This appetizer smells so good! Downright appetizing!

Three saucy appetizers on a plate.

You can keep them warm in the oven for a while if you’re not quite ready to serve them, or put everything in a slow cooker on warm. Just watch them disappear! Yup, you probably should have made a double batch!

What’s in this recipe:

  • Bacon – I always reach for center cut but regular ol’ bacon works great here. We don’t recommend thick cut because it will be harder to wrap, and it will take longer to cook.
  • Water Chestnuts – Make sure to grab the whole ones, not sliced!
  • Brown Sugar – This will get so caramelized and delicious when it bakes!
  • Ketchup – It’s part of the easy bbq sauce and lends so much flavor to these little bites.
  • Worcestershire Sauce – It’s hard to say, hard to spell, but great in recipes.
Overhead view of ingredients: bacon, water chestnuts, ketchup, brown sugar, worchestshire.

Make it your own:

With only five ingredients, it’s hard to change the recipe up much without changing the total character of the end product. The sauce is the wild card. Make additions to this easy sauce like chili powder, sriracha, soy sauce, or other seasonings. 

Piles of appetizers on a long thin white platter.

Make ahead tips:

Wrap the chestnuts with bacon up to a day ahead and put the pan in the fridge, covered tightly. Mix the sauce up and store it separately. When it’s time to entertain, it’s so easy to bake them up. 

Someone grabbing an appetizer from a plate.

More yummy (easy) appetizers

Close up of a water chestnut that is wrapped in bacon and covered in sauce.

Bacon Wrapped Water Chestnuts

Yield: 32 appetizers
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Total Time: 55 minutes

Bacon wrapped water chestnuts are a simple but elegant appetizer. Watch them disappear at your next party!

Ingredients

  • 1 pkg. (16 oz.) bacon
  • 2 (8 oz.) cans whole water chestnuts
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 cups ketchup

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 375°F. Prepare baking dish (9x11") by spraying lightly with cooking spray.
  2. Cut the bacon slices in half and wrap each water chestnut with half a strip of bacon. Secure with tooth pick and set evenly in baking dish. Bake for 10-15 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, combine ketchup, brown sugar, and Worcestershire in a small bowl.
  4. Remove baking dish from oven, and pour off excess fat. Pour sauce over water chestnuts and return dish to oven. Bake for 30 minutes more.
  5. Place on a platter and serve immediately or put appetizers in a crockpot the last 30 minutes and let everyone serve themselves directly from the crock pot.
Nutrition Information:
Yield: 16 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 213Total Fat: 10gSaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 6gCholesterol: 28mgSodium: 779mgCarbohydrates: 21gFiber: 0gSugar: 18gProtein: 10g

RachelCooks.com sometimes provides nutritional information, but these figures should be considered estimates, as they are not calculated by a registered dietitian. Please consult a medical professional for any specific nutrition, diet, or allergy advice.

Did you make this recipe?

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This recipe was originally contributed via a guest post from Carrian of Sweet Basil when I was expecting my second child. It has since been updated and new photographs have been added.