So there was that one time on Instagram when I was all like “oh sure I’ll post the recipe to these amazing homemade baked barbecue beans tomorrow” and then life happened and I totally flaked and here it is a week later and if you’re starving, I’m sorry. I was distracted by Jason Mewes, OK?
Some would say they’re worth waiting for and I’d totally agree. I’m not averse to throwing some tinned baked beans in a pot with smoky barbecue sauce, a pinch of sugar and a squirt of mustard (that’s actually how I lived circa 2004-2008, for real) but sometimes you’ve just got to go the whole hog. It’s also worth hunting down dried navy beans to make it, as they’re just the right bean size (and what the canned beans are made of), but cannellini or some other kind of mild white bean would be pretty legit also.
You can also used canned beans of any sort, though I’ve never found canned navy beans, it will reduce your cook time dramatically. Couple of hours in the oven and they’re all yours.
I also like to make regular baked beans with either canned tomatoes or tomato passata, some finely diced onion and garlic, and whatever herbs and spices are to hand. Super awesome for a big breakfast fry-up or with crusty bread and butter.
I usually have these beans as a side or with some toast, but they’re extremely good over a baked sweet potato with sour cream and chopped fresh tomato, in quesadillas, in tacos, as a dip with corn chips… basically anything.
The recipe makes 4 side serves, but is easily doubled or tripled and can also be frozen for those days when you just absolutely have to have beans IMMEDIATELY.
super sweet, smoky, little-bit spicy beany goodness. So good!
- 1 cup dried navy beans
- 2 cups water
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup tomato passata (or one can diced tomatoes)
- 1 tablespoon brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon mustard or mustard powder
- 1/4 cup molasses (if you don’t have it, add a little more brown sugar and worcestershire sauce, I wouldn’t really substitute with any other syrup, but you do you.)
- 1 teaspoon worcestershire sauce (check out Spring Gully brand if you’re in Australia for a fish-free option)
- 1 teaspoon liquid smoke (if you don’t have any, go a tablespoon smoked paprika or chuck in a chipotle chili in adobo sauce)
- 1 cup water
- Soak the beans in the 2 cups water overnight.
- The next day (get a move on early, these take forever!) simmer the beans 2-3 hours with the teaspoon of salt over low heat. They should be reasonably tender. You may need to keep topping up the water. When done, drain.
- In a baking dish, add beans, tomatoes/passata, molasses, mustard, sugar, worcestershire sauce, liquid smoke and water. The mix should be quite liquidy, but add a bit more water to fully cover the beans if it isn’t already.
- Bake at 100C for about 8 hours or 180 for 3-4 hours, topping up the water as needed. I cover the beans with foil for the first few hours and leave the foil off for the last hour. I also check the flavour in that last hour – sometimes you need a little mustard, sometimes an extra splash of worcestershire or liquid smoke.
- Bake until the beans are soft and the sauce has reduced to a thick, smoky-sweet sticky coating. Add a little water to loosen as you stir, and get stuck in!
Keywords: homemade baked beans, easy beans, diy baked beans, vegetarian baked beans,