I made these delicious baked beans for the 4th of July bash we have at our house every year. Everyone said they were the “best darn baked beans,” so I decided to call them that. They started more as a “creation” and morphed into these deliciously sweet and tangy baked beans that our guests were begging to take home. I hope you enjoy them!
Best Darn Baked Beans
- 1/2 pound bacon OR 1/2 pound ground pork not sausage
- 1 medium onion roughly chopped
- 2 teaspoons minced garlic cloves
- 1 Tablespoon dried mustard
- 2 cans tomato paste divided (for thickening)
- 1 can condensed tomato soup
- 1 can regular root beer not diet
- 2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
- 2 Tablespoons yellow prepared mustard
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 2 Tablespoons locally sourced honey
- 1 large can Bush's baked beans country-style
- 1 regular can chili beans with sauce drained but not rinsed
- 1 regular can Northern beans drained but not rinsed
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Brown pork or fry bacon with onions in pan until pork is done or bacon is desired crispness. Drain grease.
- Prepare crock pot by spraying with cooking spray.
- Place all ingredients in the crock pot, except tomato paste, stir to combine thoroughly.
- Allow to cook on low for approximately 3-4 hours, stirring occasionally.
- About an hour prior to serving, check consistency of the beans. If it is too thin/soupy, add one can of tomato paste and stir to incorporate. Allow to heat for 10 minutes or so. If still thin/soup, add the second can of tomato paste. In the rare instance the beans are too thick, stir water OR root beer 1/2 cup at a time until desired consistency is reached.
- Taste test before serving to adjust tangyness or sweetness to your desired flavor. More tang: add more yellow mustard. More sweet: add more brown sugar.
- Serve with hot sauce, if desired
If you are a vegetarian, feel free to substitute the pork or bacon with soy crumbles or omit the meat all together.