Baked Beans Recipe

5 from 1 vote
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This baked beans recipe is packed with sweet and savory flavors making it the perfect side dish for summer cookouts or BBQs. A delicious combination of bacon, brown sugar, vinegar, and BBQ sauce, simmered together until perfectly tender. Ready in 40 minutes!

An overhead image of two bowls filled with baked beans.
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Why Make Baked Beans

There’s so many reasons to make homemade baked beans! The delicious blend of brown sugar, BBQ sauce, vinegar, and Worcestershire sauce paired with tender beans will give you a mouthwatering bite every time. It’s so easy to make and tastes ten times better than canned baked beans!

  • Make it ahead! You can make this in advance and keep it fresh in the fridge for up to three days.
  • Flavorful and tender beans in under 40 minutes. It’s a simple recipe that’s quick to make, and it comes out full of flavor with a soft and tender texture every time.
  • Perfect side dish for any BBQ or cookout. It goes well with dishes like BBQ Chicken Sliders, Turkey Smash Burgers, and Green Bean Casserole, and so many more, and is sure to be a crowd favorite.

Ingredient Notes

An overhead image of the ingredients of baked beans with labels.
  • Bacon. Any store-bought bacon will work.
  • White onion. Substitute with yellow onions.
  • Bell pepper. Use green or red bell peppers.
  • Garlic cloves. Use fresh garlic or garlic powder (cloves not pictured)
  • Pinto beans. You can substitute it with black beans.
  • Navy beans. If that’s not available, substitute it with white kidney beans.
  • Seasonings. Use a blend of paprika, chili powder, salt, and freshly cracked black pepper.
  • Vinegar. Use white vinegar. You can also use apple cider vinegar as a substitute.
  • BBQ Sauce. Use any store-bought BBQ sauce.
  • Ketchup and tomato paste. Both add a depth of flavor and acidity to the dish.
  • Dijon mustard. Use yellow mustard as a substitute.
  • Worcestershire sauce. To substitute, use soy sauce or tamari.
  • Water. Use any room temperature or water to blend the sauce together.
  • Brown sugar. You can also use honey. To adjust the sweetness, reduce sugar.
  • Green onions. Optional, for garnish.

Recipe Substitution & Variations

Make it vegan. Omit bacon from the recipe.

Make it gluten-free. Skip the BBQ sauce and use tamari for the Worcestershire sauce. Make sure you’re ketchup and mustard are labeled gluten free.

Steps To Make This Baked Beans Recipe

An overhead image of a collage of two photos. On the left side, bacon is being fried on a skillet. On the right side, the photo shows chopped onions, bell pepper, and garlic on a chopping board.

Step One. Preheat the oven to 400ºF. Heat a large oven-safe skillet over medium-low heat and add the bacon. Cook until it’s browned and crisp to your liking, and most of the fat is cooked. Take the bacon out and leave some grease in the skillet.

Step Two. On medium heat, stir in the onion, pepper and garlic. Cook, stirring often, until everything softens and sweats, about 5 minutes. Stir in the seasonings and give them a quick brown (about 1 minute). Add in tomato paste, stir in the vinegar, BBQ sauce, ketchup, mustard, Worcestershire sauce, water, and brown sugar until combined.

An overhead image of cooking the baked beans in a skillet.

Step Three. Add in the beans Bring the mixture to a boil, give it a taste to be sure you don’t want to add salt or more bbq sauce. Then turn off the heat.

Step Four. Place the skillet (or transfer to an oven-safe dish) in the oven and bake for 25 – 30 minutes or until bubbling and thick, stirring occasionally. Remove and let cool slightly before serving.

An overhead image of cooked baked beans, ready to be served.

What to Serve with Baked Beans

Recipe Tips

  • Simmer the beans slowly. Allow them to cook slowly to fully combine the flavors and achieve the desired texture.
  • Stir occasionally while baking in the oven. Stir the beans while baking to ensure that it’s cooked evenly and to prevent them from sticking to the bottom of the skillet.
  • Don’t overcook! Beans can turn mushy and lose flavor when overcooked. Cook them just until the texture is tender and slightly firm.

Make Ahead and Storage Tips

You can make this baked beans recipe ahead of time! Cook it in the skillet then let it cool to room temperature and cover, placing it in the fridge. Bake the next day (or whenever you’re ready!).

To store leftovers, transfer the dish to an airtight container and store them in the fridge for 3-4 days. When reheating the baked beans, reheat them gently over low to medium heat on the stovetop, oven, or microwave until heated through.

To freeze baked beans, transfer them to a freezer bag for up to 3 months. When you’re ready to serve it, thaw it in the refrigerator overnight before reheating.

Recipe FAQs

Can I freeze baked beans?

Yes, baked beans freeze well! Make sure they’re completely cooled before transferring them to an airtight container or freezer bag. You can freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw it in the refrigerator overnight before reheating.

Do I need to soak beans before cooking?

If you’re using canned beans, you can skip the soaking process. But if you’re using dried beans, soaking them overnight can definitely help reduce cooking time.

Can I use dry beans instead of canned?

Yes, you can use dry beans, you just need to soak them overnight to rehydrate and make them easier to cook. However, dry beans will usually still have a longer cooking time than the canned version, so check for doneness and cook them until they reach the right tender texture.

Other delicious Side dishes

An overhead image of baked beans in a pot with a wooden spoon in the middle.
5 from 1 vote

Baked Beans Recipe

This baked beans recipe is packed with sweet and savory flavors, making it a perfect side dish for any meal. Ready in 40 minutes!
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 40 minutes
Total: 40 minutes
Servings: 6

Equipment

  • large oven safe skillet

Ingredients 

  • 4 slices of bacon, raw, half will be for topping.
  • cup white onion, diced
  • 1 small bell pepper, diced
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced, or garlic powder
  • 1 30 oz can of pinto beans *light in color/drained
  • 1 15 oz can navy beans *drained

Seasonings

  • ½ tsp smoked paprika
  • ½ tsp chili powder
  • ½ tsp chili powder
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp freshly cracked black pepper

Baked Bean Sauce

  • 3 Tbsp BBQ Sauce
  • 3 Tbsp ketchup
  • 1 ½ Tbsp Dijon mustard, or yellow mustard
  • 2 Tbsp Worcestershire
  • 1 Tbsp white vinegar, or apple cider vinegar
  • 1 Tbsp tomato paste
  • cup water
  • 3 Tbsp brown sugar, or honey
  • crispy cooked bacon, for topping

Instructions 

  • Preheat the oven to 400º F. Heat a large oven safe skillet over medium-low heat and add the bacon. Cook until it’s browned and crisp to your liking and most of the fat is cooked. Take the bacon out, leave some grease in the skillet.
  • On medium heat, stir in the onion, pepper and garlic. Cook, stirring often, until everything softens and sweats about 5 minutes. Stir in the seasonings, give them a quick brown (about 1 minute). Add in tomato paste, stir in the vinegar, BBQ sauce, ketchup, mustard, Worcestershire sauce, water, and brown sugar until combined.
  • Add in the beans Bring the mixture to a boil, give it a taste to be sure you don’t want to add salt or more BBQ sauce. Turn off the heat.
  • Place the skillet (or transfer to an oven-safe dish) in the oven and bake for 25 – 30 minutes, or until bubbling and thick. Remove and let cool slightly before serving.

Notes

    • Simmer the beans slowly. Allow them to cook slowly to fully combine the flavors and achieve the desired texture.
    • Stir occasionally while baking in the oven. Stir the beans while baking to ensure that it’s cooked evenly and to prevent them from sticking to the bottom of the baking dish.
    • Don’t overcook! Beans can turn mushy and lose flavor when overcooked. Cook them just until the texture is tender and slightly firm.
  • You can make these ahead of time – cook them in the skillet then let cook to room temperature and cover, placing in the fridge. Bake the next day (or whenever you’re ready!).
Store leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days. You can freeze these for up to 2 months.   

Nutrition

Serving: 1 cup | Calories: 386kcal | Carbohydrates: 93g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 3g | Saturated Fat: 0.3g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 1834mg | Potassium: 1077mg | Fiber: 6g | Sugar: 71g | Vitamin A: 4678IU | Vitamin C: 17mg | Calcium: 172mg | Iron: 5mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Author: Bailey
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: American
Servings: 6
Calories: 386
Keyword: Baked Beans Recipe
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