Pan fried calves liver and bacon recipe

Liver, bacon and onions - Rick Stein's Food Stories

As featured in Rick Stein’s Food Stories on BBC Two, a trip to Bury Market inspired Rick to share his liver and bacon recipe. Good honest British food which, perhaps, doesn’t grace enough menus anymore. A good plate of iron-rich liver, crispy bacon, buttery savoy cabbage and some mash is to us, very comforting indeed.

Ingredients for Rick’s pan fried calves liver and bacon recipe


  • 15g butter
  • 1 large onion, thinly sliced
  • A pinch of sugar
  • 1 ½ tsp balsamic vinegar
  • 6 rashers thinly sliced, rindless, streaky bacon
  • 300g calves liver thinly sliced
  • 15g flour, for dusting
  • 1 tbsp sunflower oil
  • Salt and pepper

For the Italian-style greens

  • 200g savoy cabbage or spring greens/kale, shredded
  • 20g butter
  • 1 shallot, finely chopped
  • Salt and pepper
  • Small handful flat leaf (Italian) parsley, chopped

How to make Rick’s pan fried calves liver and bacon recipe

  1. Melt the butter in a large frying pan and fry the onions and the sugar over a medium heat, stirring frequently for 7-8 minutes until nicely browned. Season with salt and pepper and add the balsamic vinegar and allow it to bubble up for a few seconds. Take off the heat and keep warm.
  2. Heat a grill or a griddle pan to high and cook the bacon until crisp at the edges and then keep warm.
  3. Season the slices of liver with salt and pepper and then dust with flour. In another large frying pan add the oil and cook the slices of liver over a high heat for about 30 seconds on each side, it should be browned on the outside and pink and juicy in the middle. Lift the liver onto warmed plates and serve with the bacon and onions and serve with mashed potato and Italian style greens.
  1. For the Italian-style greens – Heat the butter over a medium /high heat and add the shallots, fry for a few minutes until softened then add the cabbage and put a lid on the pan and allow it to wilt in the heat for a couple of minutes and then stir through salt and pepper.

Happy cooking


Charlie Stein’s wine pairing

The classic match for Liver? Well Chianti according to Dr Lecter. However I think seared calf’s liver, bacon and onions goes extremely well with Barbera d’asti.

Rick Stein’s Food Stories

Rick’s new book, Rick Stein’s Food Stories, accompanies the BBC Two TV series of the same name which celebrates his favourite recipes from recent travels around the UK – including Cumbria, Belfast, Bristol and Birmingham. Pre-order a signed copy from our online shop.