Similar to the beef and bean dish called cowboy beans, these slow-cooked beans and beef are hearty fare, perfect for a busy weeknight or even to bring to your next picnic or cookout. Combining ground beef with canned pork and beans, this recipe is a twist on a traditional chili but feels more like summer than the colder months when we all crave a good bowl of the beef and beans. The beans and pork, along with the brown sugar, mustard, Worcestershire sauce, and ketchup, bring to mind the flavors of an outdoor barbecue, making this a great dish to "set it and forget it" before the big party.
- 1 pound lean ground beef
- 1/2 cup chopped onion
- 1 green pepper (chopped)
- 3 medium cans (approximately 16 ounces each) pork and beans
- 3/4 cup brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons prepared mustard
- 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
- 1 1/2 cups ketchup
- In a large skillet over medium heat, brown the ground beef with onion and green pepper.
- Place meat mixture in slow cooker and add remaining ingredients, mixing to combine.
- Cover and cook on HIGH for 3 hours, stirring occasionally.
Variations and Additional Recipes
This is the type of recipe that is open to interpretation, so feel free to add or swap out an ingredient here or there. For example, simply use a mixture of green and red bell pepper instead of just green, use barbecue sauce in combination with the ketchup (for a total of 1 1/2 cups), or replace the ground beef with ground turkey meat.
Similar to a chili, you can garnish with chopped green onion and serve with shredded sharp cheddar cheese on the side.
If this recipe has become a family favorite or one that is requested at the neighborhood cookouts, but you'd like to try something different next time, there are several other similar recipes that successfully combine meat and baked beans. Beefy barbecue beans are much like this recipe but with a slightly different barbecue flavor. Bean and sausage casserole features kielbasa and beans, while beans and hot dogs takes the two summertime favorites and marries them in one dish. A Texas bean bake is much like a cowboy bean dish featuring three different types of beans along with Southern barbecue flavors.
Why Lean Ground Beef?
When it comes to grilling a hamburger, you want there to be fat in the meat to assure that you will get a juicy burger since some of the fat will "melt off" and drip into the base of the grill. But when you are cooking ground meat loosely on the stovetop, you don't want there to be too much fat in the mixture or the final dish will end up being greasy. For this recipe, look for a lean ground beef, either chuck, round, or sirloin. Chuck will be the fattiest (at about 80 percent lean), followed by round (about 85 percent lean), and then sirloin which is the leanest at 90 to 95 percent lean.
|Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)|
|Total Fat||6 g|
|Saturated Fat||2 g|
|Unsaturated Fat||2 g|
|Dietary Fiber||22 g|