These Bacon Wrapped Water Chestnuts are a delicious one-bite appetizer that’s always a hit at parties. They’re crunchy, savory, salty, and meaty!

This recipe is proof that some of the simplest things are also the most delicious. Only 4 ingredients are involved here, but there are so many different flavors and textures going on.

Bacon Wrapped Water Chestnuts - On White Platter

What’s funny about this recipe is that I ate probably a thousand of these growing up, but I had no idea that they have a special name.

Many people refer to Bacon Wrapped Water Chestnuts as Rumaki, though there’s quite a bit of variation in how people prepare it.

The version I’m sharing today is how my mom made them when I was a kid. Bacon water chestnuts were one of her party staples, and people always raved.

And I always wanted to eat the entire tray before the guests arrived, hah.

Rumaki on White Platter with Bacon and toothpick

What’s nice about these is you can assemble them in advance and store them in the fridge, then pop them into the oven before you want to serve. I love make-ahead appetizers!

How to Make Bacon Wrapped Water Chestnuts:

Start by mixing together brown sugar and a high quality, grainy Dijon mustard:

Spoon Full Of mustard and brown sugar in bowl

Spread half bacon slices with the brown sugar and mustard:

Spreading Mustard on Bacon Slice with Spoon

Then wrap each half bacon slice around individual water chestnuts, and secure with a toothpick.

Water Chestnuts and Bacon on Toothpicks on Sheet Pan

At this point, you can either bake them right away, or if you want to make the bacon wrapped water chestnuts ahead of time, you can store them in the fridge for several hours. Bake them fresh about 30 minutes before you want to serve them.

Can Bacon Wrapped Water Chestnuts be reheated? Yes, re-warm in a 300F oven for about 10 minutes, until the bacon is crispy again.

Can they be frozen? Canned water chestnuts sadly do not freeze very well, so I don’t recommend it.

Bacon Wrapped Water Chestnuts On White Platter with Toothpicks

Bacon Wrapped Water Chestnuts

These delicious one-bite appetizers are always a hit at parties. They're crunchy, savory, sweet, salty, and meaty!

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  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 2 tbsp whole grain dijon mustard
  • 10 strips bacon
  • 8 oz can whole water chestnuts drained and rinsed*


  • Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
  • Soak some toothpicks in water as you prepare the other ingredients so they don’t burn in the oven. 
  • Mix together the brown sugar and mustard until combined. Set aside.
  • Cut the bacon strips in half (right in the middle), and spread evenly with the brown sugar and mustard. It's okay if it's a little messy.
  • Wrap each water chestnut with a half bacon strip and roll it up, securing the bacon with a toothpick. 
  • Place all of the bacon wrapped water chestnuts onto a baking sheet and roast for 20 minutes, until the bacon has cooked through and the brown sugar has caramelized. Serve and enjoy!


*Look for the biggest water chestnuts you can find. Look for words like “jumbo” or “fancy” on the can.


Calories: 62kcal, Carbohydrates: 4g, Protein: 1g, Fat: 4g, Saturated Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 7mg, Sodium: 91mg, Potassium: 40mg, Sugar: 2g, Vitamin A: 5IU, Vitamin C: 0.2mg, Calcium: 4mg, Iron: 0.2mg

Nutrition is estimated using a food database and is only intended to be used as a guideline for informational purposes.

Post updated with more tips and writing in July 2018. Originally published May 2013.