Better Than The Best! Baked Beans Recipe From Grandma's Kitchen!
Everyone's Favorite Baked Beans!
Homemade baked beans may be the original comfort food! Simmered for hours in a sweet sauce, flavored with onions and bacon, baked beans are a wondrous thing! This best ever baked beans recipe was originally made by my husband over thirty years ago and then modified by the both of us. The result was simple baked beans in a crockpot becoming the masterpiece of flavor that the dish is today! This recipe has now been handed down to my girls and they serve it at almost all of their parties and family gatherings. This recipe is a family favorite and I have met very few people that refuse second or third helpings. At family barbecues, I have been known to eat only the baked beans, quite willing to leave the steak, ribs or chicken for everyone else.
The Recipe That Will Become Your Favorite!
The following is written for a family meal, not in party measurements. If you are planning a party, you should double or triple the recipe. The crock pot I use is the one that I use for my family's normal everyday meals (3 quart size), not the larger 6 quart party-sized crockpot.
The Best Ever Baked Beans Recipe:
- 1 pound of great Northern beans
- 1 pound of bacon, chopped into bite-sized pieces
- 1 pound box of brown sugar
- 2 14 ounce bottles of Del Monte ketchup (or the ketchup brand you prefer)
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- 1 package of hot dogs, any variety (optional), sliced into one half inch pieces
- salt and pepper, to taste
It is important to use fresh beans in this recipe. If you are looking for a canned bean recipe, this is not the one for you. Rinse and drain the beans. Place the beans in a large stainless pot and cover with cold water. You can prepare the beans using the overnight soaking method or you can try it the way I do. I bring the beans to a boil and then turn the heat off. I cover the pot with a tight fitting lid and let the beans soften up for an hour. After the hour is up, I cook the beans at a full boil until they are soft. Make sure to add more water to the pot as it evaporates. Anytime you are using a crockpot for a fresh bean recipe, the beans must be soft because beans have a tendency to harden up in the crock pot. When the beans are finished cooking, remove them from the heat until you are ready to add them to your crockpot.
Crisp up your bacon in a skillet. Once crisp, remove the bacon to a plate with a few paper towels on it. Set aside. Add the chopped onion to the bacon grease and saute the onion until tender. Drain the beans in a colander. Pour them into the crockpot. Add the onions, bacon grease and bacon pieces to the crockpot and then add the brown sugar and ketchup. Gently stir to combine all of the ingredients. In the early days of making these beans, we used one bottle of ketchup, but two bottles will give you a better sauce consistency. Cover and cook on high for about 3-4 hours. You can leave the beans in longer, but turn the heat to low to make sure the liquid does not evaporate. During the last hour of cooking, I add the hot dogs if I have decided to use them. They are not necessary to the recipe, but are a nice flavor addition. Before serving, I test the beans for salt and pepper. I do not recall ever adding any salt or pepper to this recipe.
What! No Molasses?
You may notice that there is no molasses in this recipe. I have never really cared for molasses in too many things, so I use it as little as possible. This is the perfect recipe for others who are not so fond of molasses.