Slow Cooker Barbecue Beans

Slowcooker Barbecue Beans
Slowcooker Barbecue Beans. Steve Cohen/Getty Images
  • Total: 6 hrs 25 mins
  • Prep: 25 mins
  • Cook: 6 hrs
  • Yield: Serves 6 to 8

These hearty barbecue beans are slow cooked for several hours with some delicious ingredients.  Try this recipe the next time you have a cookout.  Not only are they flavorful and crowd pleasing, but will save you time to prepare other aspects of the meal. 

What You'll Need

  • 1 pound/450 g ground beef (85-90 % lean)
  • 1 pound/450 g bacon (chopped into bite-size pieces)
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 1 medium jalapeno, seeded and chopped finely
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 2 large cans pork & beans
  • 1 can  butter beans - drained
  • 1 can kidney beans - drained
  • 1 cup/240 mL ketchup
  • 1/2 cup/120 mL root beer
  • 1/4 cup/60 mL brown sugar
  • 3 tablespoons/45 mL white vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons/10 mL
  • Optional: liquid smoke
  • 1 teaspoon/5 mL salt

How to Make It

In a large skillet, cook bacon pieces over medium-high heat.  Once cooked through, remove and set on a paper towel-lined plate. Remove all but 1 tablespoon of rendered bacon fat from the skillet.  Add chopped onions and cook over medium heat for 3-4 minutes.  Add garlic and cook for an additional minute.  To that, add the ground beef and cook for 6-7 minutes or until meat is well browned. Meat should be almost done, but not overdone.

 It will continue to cook in the slow cooker.  Drain any fat from meat.  Add cooked bacon, and ground beef with onion and garlic mixture to slow cooker.  Add all four cans of beans, diced jalapeno, salt, and black pepper.  In a medium bowl combine ketchup, root beer, brown sugar, liquid smoke and vinegar. Pour over meat and beans. Stir a few times and cover slow cooker.  Cook barbecue beans over low heat for 6 hours. Once cooked through, open lid and give beans a good stir.  Set to warm and serve with your favorite barbecued meats and other side dishes.  These beans are actually hearty enough to be served on their own. If you are not a fan of root beer, then use your favorite cola instead.

Store leftover beans in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days after initial preparation. They can also be stored in the freezer for up to 3 months. 

You can make these beans a day or two beforehand and store covered in refrigerator until it is time to serve.  Simple add beans back into the slow cooker and set on low for 2-3 hours. You can also rewarm them on the stove top or oven if you're short on time. Add a little water to beans if the sauce has thickened too much.  About 1/4 cup/80 mL, should do the trick.  However, add more if needed.