Easy Baked Beans

Here is a quick and easy baked beans recipe that tastes like it was slow cooked for hours. While this recipe uses a grill to give the easy baked beans a delicious, smoky barbecue flavor, directions for cooking the baked beans in an oven have also been included. For a more traditional slow-cooked baked beans recipe, check out our How to Make Boston Baked Beans guide.

Easy Baked Beans

4 thick-cut slices of bacon (about 4 ounces), cut into ¼-inch slivers
1 large onion, finely chopped
3 cloves garlic minced
1 tablespoon grated peeled fresh ginger
two 15 oz. cans great northern beans or kidney beans, rinsed and drained
¼ cup dark brown sugar, packed
¼ cup molasses
¼ cup barbecue sauce
¼ cup ketchup
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
1 tablespoon prepared mustard
1 tablespoon dry mustard
1 tablespoon cider vinegar
1-2 cups diced smoked or barbecued pork, ham, or brisket (optional)
1 tablespoon barbecue meat drippings (optional)
salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 cups wood chips, soaked for 1 hour in cold water

  1. In a large heavy pot over medium heat, cook the bacon until lightly browned, about 5 minutes. Discard all but 2 tablespoons of the bacon fat.
  2. Add the onion, garlic, and ginger. Sauté until the onion is golden brown, about 5-7 minutes. Remove the pot from the heat. Stir in the great northern beans or kidney beans, brown sugar, molasses, barbecue sauce, ketchup, Worcestershire sauce, dry mustard, prepared mustard, cider vinegar, pork (if using), and drippings (if using). Transfer the beans to a baking dish or aluminum foil turkey pan.
  3. Set up the grill. If you are using a gas grill, place the wood chips in the smoker box and preheat to high. Reduce the heat to medium when smoke appears. If you are using a charcoal grill, preheat to medium.  If you are baking the beans in an oven, bake them for 30 minutes at 350 F.
  4. When ready to cook, if using a charcoal grill, toss all of the wood chips on the coals. Place the baking pan with the baked beans in the center of the hot grate, away from the heat, and cover the grill. Smoke roast the beans until thick, about 30 min. Season with salt and pepper to taste and serve at once.

Yield:  Serves 6 to 8

This recipe was adapted from The Barbecue! Bible.

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