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Baked Beans with Bacon

Easy homemade baked beans recipe using canned beans, with brown sugar and bacon on top, baked long and slow in the oven.  The quintessential summer BBQ side dish!

Overhead in casserole dish.

Let me start off by saying baked beans are my husband’s all time favorite side dish, he’ll even crumble potato chips on top if he can, or I let him!  I never make them from scratch but with summer grilling season upon us, I decided to dust off my super easy baked beans recipe.

Close up of spoonful of baked beans.

I’d say these are semi-homemade, mostly from scratch except I use canned pork and beans as the base.  You know the ones I’m talking about.  Just need to doctor them up with a few ingredients and bake ’em.  Super easy.

WHAT’S THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN PORK AND BEANS AND BAKED BEANS

Canned pork and beans and ingredients on white board.

Canned pork and beans are usually navy beans stewed in tomatoes and pork fat and/or a piece of salt pork.  Baked beans, canned or homemade, have more seasonings and are sweeter and thicker in consistency from adding brown sugar or molasses.  Canned pork and beans are convenient, cheap and so great for making homemade baked beans.
 

HOW TO MAKE THIS EASY SIDE DISH

Three photo process shot of three steps of layering ingredients.

  1. Start by dumping one can of pork and beans into bottom of a greased casserole.
  2. Sprinkle with some chopped onion and then with brown sugar/dry mustard mixture.
  3. Top with another can of pork and beans.  Sprinkle remaining brown sugar mixture, bacon pieces and catsup over top.  Bake long and slow in the oven, 2½ hours at 325º

Baked beans just out of the oven, before stirring to mix.

No need to stir during baking, just let them do their thing.  The beans will thicken, bubble and brown and your kitchen will smell glorious.  I let them rest a bit and then stir to combine everything.  Delish.

RECIPE NOTES AND TIPS

Close up in casserole with wooden spoon.

  • Start with canned pork and beans as your base, spooning off excess liquid at the top of the can.  That’s just what I do, you don’t need all that extra liquid.
  • If you want to be adventurous, try using pork belly instead of bacon.  I have and love it!  Cubed sous vide pork belly I got at Costco, it was delicious and very similar to bacon, practically melts in your mouth!
  • Don’t rush things, let them cook for a long time in a slow oven.  Just leave them alone, they will do their thing.
  • No need to stir during baking, let the bacon brown on top.  Stir to combine when done.
  • Let them rest, thicken and cool down.  I actually like them best barely warm, room temp even.

Did I mention that Meathead puts crushed potato chips on his baked beans?  Yep, a childhood thing he’s never outgrown and his six brothers still razz him about it.  Regardless, and yes, I think that’s weird, these easy baked beans need to make an appearance more often in our house.  Yours, too!!  Enjoy, Kelly

In casserole dish, with wooden spoon showing thick texture.

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In casserole dish, with wooden spoon showing thick texture.

Baked Beans with Bacon

Easy homemade baked beans with bacon and brown sugar.
5 from 2 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 2 hours 30 minutes
Servings: 10
Calories: 346kcal
Author: Kelly | the hungry bluebird

Ingredients

  • 2 (28-ounce) cans pork and beans spoon off excess liquid from top
  • ½ medium sweet onion, roughly chopped
  • ¾ cup dark brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon dry mustard I like Colman's
  • 6-8 slices (about ½ pound) thick cut bacon, cut into 1-inch pieces or pork belly!
  • ½ cup catsup

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 325º and grease a large 2½ to 3 quart casserole dish with bacon fat, just rub some bacon pieces around the dish.
  • Empty one can of pork and beans (excess liquid skimmed off) into bottom of casserole dish. Combine brown sugar and mustard in small bowl. Sprinkle half the brown sugar/mustard mixture over beans. Scatter chopped onions over beans and brown sugar mixture.
  • Empty second can of pork and beans over top. Sprinkle with remaining brown sugar mixture. Scatter bacon pieces evenly over top, followed by catsup.
  • Bake in slow oven (325º) for 2½ hours. Stir to combine and let rest at least 15 minutes before serving.
Keyword: easy baked beans recipe, brown sugar and bacon, homemade baked beans with bacon, baked beans with bacon on top
Did you make this recipe? Please comment, rate it and share! And mention me on Instagram @thehungrybluebird or tag #thehungrybluebird so I can see!
 


 

 

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Recipe Rating




Bonnie Donnelly

Thursday 3rd of September 2020

Do you think I need to cook the bacon first if using a crock pot?

Kelly

Friday 4th of September 2020

Hi Bonnie. I’ve never done them in a slow cooker so I’m not sure. I don’t think it would hurt to cook the bacon first or you cook maybe mix it in the beans before cooking.

Sue

Wednesday 26th of August 2020

If I’m doubling the recipe, should I double the baking time as well?

Barbara

Sunday 9th of August 2020

I have uncooked pork belly strips, would that work in this recipe and if so should I lay all the strips on top or put some in the middle? Thanks!

Kelly

Sunday 9th of August 2020

Yes, cut up into pieces like bacon and scatter across the top as per directions.

Sue

Sunday 26th of July 2020

These beans are to die for! Made them for a gathering and everyone went nuts. So easy to make. But I made them in my slow cooker, and baked the bacon first. Let them cook on low for 6 hours.

Kelly

Tuesday 28th of July 2020

Glad you liked them and the slow cooker worked so well!

Lisa

Saturday 4th of July 2020

Is the bacon or pork belly pre-cooked?

Kelly

Saturday 4th of July 2020

No. But the pork belly I bought was sous vide, already cooked. The recipe calls for uncooked bacon.

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