Vegetarian Boston Baked Beans With Molasses

Vegetarian Boston Baked Beans With Molasses

The Spruce / Stephanie Goldfinger

Prep: 10 mins
Cook: 75 mins
Total: 85 mins
Servings: 6 servings
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
363 Calories
1g Fat
75g Carbs
16g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 6
Amount per serving
Calories 363
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 1g 2%
Saturated Fat 0g 1%
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 391mg 17%
Total Carbohydrate 75g 27%
Dietary Fiber 20g 70%
Total Sugars 28g
Protein 16g
Vitamin C 12mg 60%
Calcium 196mg 15%
Iron 7mg 37%
Potassium 1555mg 33%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

Homemade vegetarian baked beans is a great and traditional addition to picnics, outdoor vegetarian or vegan barbecues, or other potluck gatherings, like Super Bowl parties. Our recipe for vegetarian beans makes a dish that suits many dietary needs, like gluten-free and dairy-free diets, and that is easily adjustable to fit your needs as it doubles well, keeps beautifully when refrigerated, and makes excellent leftovers. Making baked beans at home guarantees no hidden ingredients, additives, or unwanted saturated fats in it, just wholesome, delicious and nutritious legumes and veggies. It's easy to make, with very little preparation required, and can use home-cooked or canned beans.

Molasses, the secret to true Boston-style baked beans, adds the right amount of sweetness to our dish. Nonetheless, you might find that this recipe isn't quite as sweet as similar ones. However, you can adjust the sweetness level if you prefer an extra touch in the beans. We recommend using low-sodium vegetable broth and to double-check the label if you need the dish to be gluten free, as many store-bought broths and stocks contain wheat ingredients—likewise with the soy sauce, or use tamari instead.

Serve homemade baked beans with other classic sides like coleslaw, corn on the cob, or potato salad. Cornbread, vegan or dairy full, is also a delicious accompaniment.


  • 3 cups navy beans, or pinto beans; homemade or canned and drained

  • 1 medium yellow onion, diced

  • 1 cup vegetable broth

  • 1 cup tomato paste

  • 1/2 cup molasses

  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce, or tamari or liquid aminos

  • 1 teaspoon mustard powder

  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

  • Salt, to taste

  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Vegetarian Boston baked beans with molasses ingredients

    The Spruce / Stephanie Goldfinger

  2. Preheat the oven to 350 F. In a large casserole or baking dish, combine the beans, onion, vegetable broth, tomato paste, molasses, soy sauce, mustard powder, and garlic powder, then gently mix.

    beans, onion, vegetable broth, tomato paste, molasses, soy sauce, mustard powder, and garlic powder in a Dutch oven

    The Spruce / Stephanie Goldfinger

  3. Cover and bake for 1 hour. If baked beans are too saucy, bake uncovered for an additional 15 minutes.

    Vegetarian Boston Baked Beans With Molasses in a Dutch oven

    The Spruce / Stephanie Goldfinger

  4. Let cool for a few minutes before serving. Taste for seasoning, adding salt and pepper as needed.

    Vegetarian Boston Baked Beans With Molasses, salt and pepper added

    The Spruce / Stephanie Goldfinger

  5. Enjoy.

How to Include Beans in Your Weekly Menu

Beans are a budget-friendly and nutritious ingredient that is easy to include in your weekly menu without having to work too hard. They are high in fiber, low in fat, and contain high amounts of key minerals like manganese and iron and vitamins like folate and thiamine. Eating beans regularly is a great and cheap way of guaranteeing adequate intake of protein, especially if you are vegan or vegetarian.

One cup of navy beans, like the ones in our recipe, has close to 20 grams of protein, 13.4 grams of fiber, and 162 micrograms of folate—the equivalent of 40 percent of the recommended daily intake of the vitamin—at just 300 calories.

Here are a few ideas on how to incorporate beans into your menu:

  • Buy dry beans in bulk, as they are cheaper than their canned counterpart. If buying canned, choose organic and low sodium.
  • Add beans to soups, stews, and salads.
  • Make faux burgers and serve them with your favorite sides, such as vegetables, cheese, and mustard and ketchup.
  • Use beans as the base for dips and spreads to use on sandwiches and wraps or to eat with crudités.

How to Cook Beans at Home

If you want to cook your beans from dried, here's an easy method:

  • Soak the beans in water overnight. Alternatively, do a quick soak by placing the dried beans in a pot and covering them with water; bring to a boil and boil for 2 minutes. Turn off the heat and cover. Let sit for 1 hour. Drain the soaked or quick-soaked beans.
  • Add the soaked or quick-soaked beans to a pot and cover with fresh water or broth. If desired, add a bay leaf and/or a quartered onion. Add salt to taste. Bring to a boil over medium heat and then reduce the heat to a low simmer and cover. Cook for about 1 hour or until the beans are tender.
  • Use the homemade beans in our recipe by draining them and measuring 3 cups.
Article Sources
The Spruce Eats uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.
  1. Navy Beans, Canned. FoodData Central. United States Department of Agriculture.