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Bacon Wrapped Water Chestnuts are salty, sweet, and incredibly addictive (in the best way). Top with 2-ingredient barbecue sauce and broil for a crowd-pleasing party snack recipe in just 20 minutes.

Bacon wrapped water chestnuts on a baking rack after being baked.

These Bacon Wrapped Water Chestnuts are my absolute favorite snack recipe each and every Christmas. For all of those who don’t dig water chestnuts quite as much as me, I make Bacon Wrapped Smokies and Bacon Wrapped Shrimp too.

But I’m firmly on Team Water Chestnut. They’re crunchy texture and mild flavor plays nicely with the crunchy, savory bacon and almost-too-easy 2-ingredient homemade barbecue sauce.

Table of Contents
  1. Recipe ingredients
  2. Ingredient notes
  3. Step-by-step instructions
  4. Recipe tips and variations
  5. Recipe FAQs
  6. Bacon Wrapped Water Chestnuts Recipe

Recipe ingredients

Labeled ingredients for bacon wrapped water chestnuts.

At a Glance: Here is a quick snapshot of what ingredients are in this recipe.
Please see the recipe card below for specific quantities.

Ingredient notes

  • Brown sugar and ketchup: Or up the ante with your favorite store-bought or homemade barbecue sauce.
  • Bacon: Slice each piece into thirds to wrap nicely around each water chestnut.

Step-by-step instructions

  1. Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil and set an oven rack on top. In a small bowl, mix brown sugar and ketchup. Set aside.
Barbecue sauce and toothpicks in small glass bowls next to a baking sheet with with a cooling rack on it.
  1. Wrap each whole water chestnut in a piece of bacon and secure with a toothpick.
Someone wrapping bacon around water chestnuts and poking toothpicks through them to hold them together.
  1. Dredge each in sauce mixture (or brush sauce on with a pastry brush).
Someone brushing bacon wrapped water chestnuts with barbecue sauce.
  1. Arrange in a single layer on rack set over baking sheet.
Bacon wrapped water chestnuts with barbecue sauce on a baking rack.
  1. Broil on HIGH 4 to 6 inches from broiler for 5 to 7 minutes per side (flipping halfway), about 10 to 15 minutes total. Remove from oven and serve warm.
Bacon wrapped water chestnuts with barbecue sauce on a baking rack after being baked.

Recipe tips and variations

  • Yield: This easy appetizer recipe makes 24 Bacon Wrapped Water Chestnuts. I usually estimate about three bites per person, so this creates enough snacks for about eight adults.
  • Storage: Store leftovers covered in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.
  • Make ahead: The water chestnuts can be wrapped in bacon and skewered a day in advance.
Bacon wrapped water chestnuts on a gray plate.

Recipe FAQs

What are water chestnuts, exactly?

Water chestnuts are totally unrelated to chestnuts you roast over an open fire come holiday time. Water chestnuts are actually tuber vegetables that grow in aquatic environments like ponds, marshes, and shallow lakes. They’re native to certain parts of Asia, Africa, and islands in the Indian and Pacific oceans and the crunchy white flesh can be enjoyed raw or cooked.

More bacon-boosted recipes

Bacon wrapped water chestnuts on a gray plate.

Bacon Wrapped Water Chestnuts

Bacon Wrapped Water Chestnuts are salty, sweet, and incredibly addictive (in the best way). Top with 2-ingredient barbecue sauce and broil for a crowd-pleasing party snack recipe in just 20 minutes.
5 from 2 votes
Cook Time 20 mins
Total Time 20 mins
Servings 8 servings (3 pieces each)
Course Appetizer
Cuisine American
Calories 59

Equipment

  • 24 toothpicks Soaked in water for at least 30 minutes

Ingredients 

  • 1 cup brown sugar (see note 1)
  • 1 cup ketchup
  • 1 (8 ounce) can whole water chestnuts drained, cut into 24 pieces if necessary
  • 8 slices bacon cut into thirds (24 pieces, see note 2)

Instructions 

  • Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil and set an oven rack on top. In a small bowl, mix brown sugar and ketchup. Set aside.
  • Wrap each whole water chestnut in a piece of bacon and secure with a toothpick. Dredge each in sauce mixture (or brush sauce on with a pastry brush).
  • Arrange in a single layer on rack set over baking sheet. Broil on HIGH 4 to 6 inches from broiler for 5 to 7 minutes per side (flipping halfway), about 10 to 15 minutes total. Remove from oven and serve warm.

Recipe Video

Notes

  1. Brown sugar and ketchup: Or up the ante with your favorite store-bought or homemade barbecue sauce.
  2. Bacon: Slice each piece into thirds to wrap nicely around each water chestnut.
  3. Yield: This easy appetizer recipe makes 24 Bacon Wrapped Water Chestnuts. I usually estimate about three bites per person, so this creates enough snacks for about eight adults.
  4. Storage: Store leftovers covered in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.
  5. Make ahead: The water chestnuts can be wrapped in bacon and skewered a day in advance.

Nutrition

Serving: 3piecesCalories: 59kcalCarbohydrates: 12gProtein: 1gFat: 1gSaturated Fat: 1gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 3mgSodium: 139mgPotassium: 57mgFiber: 1gSugar: 11gVitamin A: 52IUVitamin C: 1mgCalcium: 10mgIron: 1mg
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I’m the Executive Chef and head of the Culinary Hill Test Kitchen. Every recipe is developed, tested, and approved just for you.

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Meggan Hill

I’m the Executive Chef and head of the Culinary Hill Test Kitchen. Every recipe is developed, tested, and approved just for you.

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Comments

  1. Do you really need the barbecue sauce for this recipe? Wouldn’t the bacon on it’s own provide enough flavor considering the neutral taste of the water chestnut? Just wondering………

    1. Hi Sara, I bet you could, but likely will be bland and dry versus the ketchup/brown sugar combo or using your favorite barbecue sauce. If you do try it, please let me know how it turns out! – Meggan

  2. Can’t really beat bacon-wrapped anything! Was also a great way to introduce chestnuts to the family!5 stars