If you're looking for a dish for a barbecue, potluck supper, or game day party, slow cooker baked beans are an excellent choice. But don't wait for a special occasion; make the beans a main dish and serve them with cornbread for a fabulous lunch or dinner. Add pulled pork for sandwiches or hot dogs along with coleslaw, and you have a hearty and delicious crowd-pleasing meal. Double the recipe ingredients if you are cooking for a large family or group.
You will love the simplicity of the recipe; it takes just minutes to mix everything in the slow cooker, and you'll have a tasty, no-fuss dish in a few hours. It's a great set-and-forget dish!
The beans are adaptable as well. Just use your favorite brand of baked beans and add onions, peppers, or meat to the pot. Or add a few teaspoons of Worcestershire sauce and some liquid smoke for tangy barbecue flavor. The variations below the recipe will give you more ideas for possible substitutions and additions.
- 6 to 8 strips bacon (cut in 1/2- to 1-inch pieces)
- 3 (16-ounce) cans baked beans
- 1/4 cup brown sugar (packed)
- 1/2 teaspoon mustard powder
- 1/2 cup ketchup (or use chili sauce)
Gather the ingredients.
Arrange the bacon in a skillet and place it over medium-low heat. Fry the bacon until it is browned and crisp, stirring and turning frequently.
Remove the bacon to paper towels to drain.
Pour the beans into the slow cooker and add the bacon.
In a bowl, combine the brown sugar, mustard powder, and ketchup or chili sauce. Add the sauce mixture to the beans and stir to blend.
Cover and cook on LOW for 4 to 5 hours or on HIGH for about 2 hours.
Serve and enjoy!
- Cook the bacon the night before and this dish will take about 5 minutes to throw together.
- Double the recipe for a party or tailgating event and serve them right from the crock pot.
- Add about 1/2 cup to 1 cup of diced raw onions to the dish. Or saute the onion in a skillet in about 1 tablespoon of vegetable over medium heat until browned. Add the onions to the beans.
- Add about 1/2 cup of green or red bell pepper to the beans or a combination of both colors.
- Add sausage or ground beef to the beans. To brown the sausage, place a large skillet over medium heat and add about 1/2 pound to 1 pound of sausage or ground beef. Cook the ground meat until it is no longer pink; drain well and then add to the beans.
- Add 1 to 2 cups of diced cooked ham to the beans.
- Slice spicy or mild smoked sausage or hot dogs into 1/2-inch rounds. Add the sausage or hot dogs to the beans and cook as directed.
- Make them extra spicy with 1 tablespoon of chili powder, a few tablespoons of minced jalapeno peppers, and 1 teaspoon (or more) of crushed red pepper flakes.
- Add two 8-ounce cans of pineapple tidbits (drained) to the beans along with 1/2 cup of bell peppers and 1 cup of onion. Use barbecue sauce instead of tomato ketchup.