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20 Best Baked Beans Ideas

Some dishes are perfect for any potluck or barbeque, and baked beans are one of those dishes. Baked beans are always a hit for both children and adults. Nobody can deny the delicious sweet and savory, saucy bean dish. They are perfect for serving any barbeque you may be having.

Even if you aren’t having a barbeque, these go great with any braised or roasted meats like prime rib or a pork roast. Baked beans are one of those dishes that can be served during any season. It fits well in spring and summer with outdoor barbeques, camping trips, and summer gatherings.

It also is perfect served in the fall and winter when it’s cold outside, and we all want a hearty and warm meal.

Regardless of when you serve them, there is a baked bean recipe here that you and your loved ones will love!

1. Brown Sugar and Bacon Baked Beans

What better way to start this list off than brown sugar and bacon? This delicious sweet and salty combination makes a mouthwatering topping for these creamy beans cooked down in barbeque sauce.

The diced onion and bell pepper add a wonderful texture and bright flavor that pairs with the sweetness from the sauce.

If you don’t have dry mustard, you can add wet mustard instead. The crispy bacon on top adds an amazing crunchy topping you can’t miss out on.

2. Anastasias Best Ever Baked Beans

You can almost always trust a decades-old family recipe, and this one proves to be the best-baked beans recipe!

What sets this recipe apart is the caramelized onion. It adds an amazing savory sweetness to your baked beans.

The sauce is straightforward, with brown sugar and molasses providing the sweet component. Instead of diced bacon, this casserole is topped with larger chunks of bacon that crisp up beautifully.

Make this next time you have a pork roast; these are a great addition!

3. No Soak Instant Pot Baked Beans

A lot of baked bean recipes use pre-made canned beans. But some people prefer to make everything from scratch where they know exactly what is going in. This is the recipe for you!

These baked beans are cooked from scratch in a pressure cooker to speed up the process.

This also allows for more control over how soft your beans turn out. Not having to soak your beans saves you even more time!

This recipe is simple and great if you want to dip your toes into scratch cooking.

4. Simple Baked Beans

This recipe for baked beans is ranked among the best, winning four barbeque competitions! I think that’s enough to convince anyone to make these beans.

Serve these beans alongside some coleslaw and potato salad at your next barbeque get-together for a sweet addition to the table.

My favorite part of this recipe is the mix of beans: pinto, butter, and kidney beans.

The hit of hot sauce adds the perfect amount of heat, and the bacon adds an amazing smokiness.

5. Southern Style Baked Beans

These baked beans are straight from the south. They are delicious, sweet, and salty.

If your bacon isn’t quite smoky enough, I would suggest adding the optional liquid smoke. If you like a bit of spice, try substituting the ketchup for spicy ketchup.

These will become a go-to recipe anytime you need to make a side dish. You’ll love these sweet and salty beans! Try serving them at your next barbeque for the perfect side dish to ribs and brisket.

6. Best Crockpot Cowboy Beans

If you’ve never had cowboy beans, you’re in for a treat! Cowboy beans are a great source of protein and provide healthy fiber when added to a full meal.

My mom used to make cowboy beans when we had a full, busy day because she could throw them on in the morning, and we would come home to a full meal.

Three types of beans are slow-cooked with ground beef, bacon, and sweet oniony barbeque sauce.

This is amazing served with buttery white rolls and a big tossed salad!

7. Smoky Baked Beans

If you’re looking for baked beans dinner ideas, look no further! These baked beans include spicy pork sausage, adding more protein to these beans, making them a great main dish in a meal.

The spicy pork sausage, smoked barbeque sauce, and liquid smoke adds an extra smoky flavor to these beans, giving them more depth.

Suppose you don’t have all five different types of beans, feely substitute whatever beans you have on hand. These beans are sure to spice up your weekly dinner rotation!

8. Sweet Pineapple Baked Beans

What a creative and fun take on baked beans! These beans utilize the sweetness and tangy-ness of pineapple to ramp up the flavor of the barbeque sauce.

This dish captures the essence of grilled pineapple, and it goes wonderfully with any grilled meats or vegetables.

The barbeque sauce uses pineapple juice as a base, adding to that fruity and zingy flavor profile.

This is an inventive way to prepare baked beans and if you’re a baked bean pro, give these a try!

9. Homemade Baked Beans

These baked beans capture the flavor from Heinz, but without all of those processed and artificial ingredients!

These beans are British style, which is different from American traditional baked beans.

These beans are stewed in a tomato sauce and are normally served at breakfast.

They aren’t as rich or savory as the baked beans from America and are often eaten on top of toast.

If you’ve never had British baked beans for breakfast, make a big batch of these beans and experience it for yourself!

10. Baked Beans

If you’re looking for side dish ideas for a party, baked beans are a great one.

They are always a hit and go with just about everything. These baked beans specifically I enjoy serving with hot dogs and hamburgers.

Something about the molasses and tomato-based sauce pairs perfectly with the other toppings for burgers and hot dogs: I’ll even put a big scoop of beans on top of my burger!

These beans will be popular amongst adults and children alike!

11. Boston Baked Beans

These Boston baked beans are everything you want in a baked bean.

They are sweet, savory, and rich. I love to serve these beans with cornbread. It plays off the tanginess of the beans perfectly.

If you don’t have molasses on hand, or can’t find it, swap it out for maple syrup instead. If you like a little kick of heat, try adding a teaspoon of cayenne or some finely diced jalapeno.

This recipe doesn’t require a slow cooker or instant pot, just a stove and casserole dish!

12. World’s Best Baked Beans

This is a great recipe to start with if you’re looking for baked beans recipe ideas.

There are instructions for oven-baked, crockpot, pressure cooker, and stove top methods, all in one place!

These baked beans are straight forward but simply delicious. They are great to take to your next potluck.

Pro tip: take them in your crockpot and plug them in when you get there. Your beans will never get cold, and everyone can enjoy the warmth like they should be enjoyed!

13. Slow Cooker Bourbon Baked Beans

Bourbon is a wonderful addition to any baked bean or barbeque sauce; its notes of caramelized sweetness and slight smokiness pair perfectly.

The bourbon is happily welcome in this recipe. It adds a more complex flavor. The Northern and navy beans add a creaminess, and the Worcestershire sauce brings a nice level of umami.

I love to make these baked beans with ribs cooked in a bourbon barbeque sauce! Serve that alongside a fresh salad and some cornbread, and you have a delicious barbeque meal!

14. Trisha Yearwood’s Baked Beans

Trisha Yearwood’s baked bean casserole is famous, and for a good reason!

This recipe is not only easy but delicious as well. There are only six ingredients in this dish, making it one of the simplest on this list. But the ratios of those ingredients combine to create a wonderfully savory and creamy baked bean that you’ll want to eat again and again.

By cooking the onion in bacon fat, you absorb all those meaty flavors into the base of the beans.

All of it is slowly baked until it reaches the perfect texture, finishing it uncovered to get bubble and crisp on top!

15. Easy Ultimate Baked Beans

These beans have the title “ultimate” for a good reason. They are filled with flavor and are hearty enough to serve as a main dish or a rich side dish.

These beans scream summer and spring when we gather outdoors and eat our favorite barbeque dishes.

Pro tip: if you’re going camping, make a big batch of these beans and heat them in a cast-iron pot over an open fire.

This is one of my favorite ways to enjoy baked beans. The smokiness from the fire plays perfectly with the barbeque-based sauce and bacon!

16. The Best Baked Beans

These baked beans use navy white beans instead of the traditional pinto or kidney bean, which leaves the finished product slightly creamier.

In this recipe, the beans are cooked in water, and the ingredients make the sauce, so all those sweet and tangy flavors are soaked up by the beans.

These beans are perfect anytime you are preparing for a big meal. You just mix all the ingredients in your slow cooker and let it do its thing!

17. Slow Cooker Vegetarian Baked Beans

This baked bean recipe is for those of you who eat plant-based or vegetarian. This packs plenty of flavor without the pork, thanks to the tasty sauce and the mix of beans.

The secret to the sauce is the vegan Worcestershire sauce. It adds the umami baked beans needed.

There are freezing instructions included here, so I recommend making a large batch and storing some in the freezer to thaw and heat for a quick side dish or lunch.

18. Mom’s Famous Southern Style Baked Beans

This recipe only has eight ingredients making it easy to throw together. Even though it’s relatively simple, when you eat this, you will feel like you’re eating your mom’s cooking, filled with warmth and comfort.

If you like the flavor of molasses or maple syrup, you can substitute half of the brown sugar for one of those.

The best part about these beans is the sauce gets thick and syrupy, which is signature for a good dish of baked beans. Serve these with corn on the cob and your favorite barbeque meat!

19. Old-Fashioned Baked Beans

This is a very simple and straight forward recipe, as many old-fashioned recipes are, but often simple and basic is also delicious.

Before there were instant pots that sped everything up, people primarily used slow cookers for things like beans.

This makes this recipe perfect for throwing on in the morning and letting cook all day. It turns out with beans that aren’t mushy or over-soft in a bath of sweet and salty sauce, perfect to eat alongside burgers or hot dogs at your next picnic!

20. Bourbon Maple Slow Cooker Baked Beans

This baked beans recipe uses the delicious combination of bourbon and maple!

These two ingredients were made to go together. They both bring notes of vanilla, caramel, and oak.

When combined with brown sugar and molasses, you have a complex sweetness that provides the base of your sauce.

These beans have a little kick of heat and acid, making them balanced.

I love to serve these with freshly baked rolls that you can use to dip into the sauce at the bottom of your bowl or plate.

20 Easy Baked Bean Recipes

20 Best Baked Beans Ideas

Ingredients

  • 2 c navy beans
  • 1 onion, finely diced
  • 3 tbsps molasses
  • 2 tsp salt
  • ¼ tsp ground black pepper
  • ½ pound bacon
  • ½ c ketchup
  • 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • ¼ tsp dry mustard
  • ¼ c brown sugar

Instructions

    1. Add dry beans to a large container and fill with cold water. Soak overnight. The following day, add beans and their soaking water to a large pot and bring up to a simmer. Cook until tender, between 1 and 2 hours. Drain the beans while reserving the liquid.
    2. Preheat your oven to 325 degrees F.
    3. Pour your beans into a large casserole dish and spread evenly, layer bacon and onion on top.
    4. In a small saucepan add the molasses, salt, pepper, dry mustard, ketchup, Worcestershire sauce, and brown sugar. Slowly bring the sauce up to a boil, simmer for a minute or two. Pull sauce off the heat and pour over the beans. Pour in reserved cooking water from the beans until beans are just covered. Tightly cover the casserole dish with aluminum foil.
    5. Bake in preheated oven for 3 to 4 hours. Remove the aluminum foil halfway through cooking time and add in a small amount of extra liquid if the beans start to get dry. Remove from the oven once beans are tender, cool, and serve.

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