Homemade BBQ Baked Beans

by Susan Salzman
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BAKEDBEANSWhen ever we go out for barbque, I always, choose baked beans as one of my sides. There is something so satisfying and so comforting in eating a dish like this along with my tri-tip sandwich and a double portion of asian slaw.

I have had this particular recipe for baked beans in my repertoire for over 25 years. They serve a crowd – a very large crowd. Therefore, I only have a few opportunities through out the year to make this dish. Using only 5 ingredients, cooked slowly in the oven for about 5 hours, these baked bean are always the star of the evening.

This past July 4th, we celebrated the day with our good friends and 60 of their nearest and dearest. When I heard the number of people I asked if I could make my homemade baked beans. My friend, B, responded with, “my husband will love you and covet the whole pot, please do”.

The day before, at 6:30 a.m., I dumped all the ingredeints in my 7 1/4 quart Le Creuset, put the lid on, turned the oven on to 300* and forgot about them until they were ready 5 hours later. I let them cool before putting them in the fridge and the next day heated them on top of the stove when I arrived at the party. It is that easy.

At your next party, make these beans. One word of advice, make a double batch!

Homemade BBQ Baked Beans

Yield: a huge vat (6-8 cups)


3 large cans Vegetarian Beans
1 small can Vegetarian Beans
1 brown onion, diced fine
15 oz. ketchup (I used my homemade version)
8 oz. dark brown sugar (or Sucanat)
5 Tbsp. liquid smoke


Preheat oven to 300°F.

Toss all ingredients into a large, heavy duty stock pot. stir to combine. Cover tightly with lid, place in preheated oven for 5 hours. stir every hour. Remove from oven and serve.

* If I have the time, I like to make this recipe the day before. An hour before guests are to arrive remove from the fridge so it can come to room temperature. Then warm on top of the stove over medium heat. stir occassionaly to avoid burning.

Susan Salzman writes The Urban Baker blog to explore her dedication to good food in the hope of adding beauty to the lives of her family and friends.   


#2 Jennifer Fischer 2014-07-14 05:30
I wondered the same thing about the size cans of beans. Yes most beans ARE vegetarian, but a few have "bacon" in them. (I've yet to find any actual BACON in those varieties!) I know Ms. Salzman means the pre-made cans of baked beans and I'm GUESSING she means the 28- and 14-oz sizes but it would have been helpful to state in the recipe.
+1 #1 Cindy 2014-07-02 17:06
Hi there,
Two questions, hoping someone who has tried the recipe can help. What kind of beans are we talking about? Aren't most canned beans vegetarian? Cannellini beans? Or does it mean cans of pre-made vegetarian baked beans?
And, what size large and small cans? 28oz and 14oz? Or 14oz and 6oz?

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