Backyard Baked Beans is a hearty and traditional dish that brings a touch of homemade comfort to any outdoor gathering or family meal. This recipe features a blend of savory and sweet flavors, combining the smokiness of bacon with the richness of beans in tomato sauce.

Key ingredients include bacon, onion, pork and beans, ketchup, Worcestershire sauce, brown sugar, dry mustard, and either sorghum syrup or molasses, each contributing to the dish’s deep, complex taste.

The preparation involves sautéing bacon and onions to create a flavorful base, then mixing them with the rest of the ingredients before baking everything to perfection.

The result is a deliciously thick and aromatic bean dish that serves as an excellent side for barbecues or as a warming meal on its own.

Backyard Baked Beans

Ingredients

  • 4 slices bacon
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 4 (15-ounce) cans pork and beans in tomato sauce, drained
  • 1/2 cup ketchup
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar, firmly packed
  • 1 teaspoon dry mustard
  • 1/2 cup sorghum syrup or molasses
Backyard Baked Beans 139

Directions

Step 1 -Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Step 2 -Grease an 11×7-inch baking dish with cooking spray.

Step 3 -In a skillet over medium-high heat, add the bacon slices until they begin to turn golden but not crispy, about 4 minutes.

Step 4 -Transfer the bacon slices to a paper-towel-lined plate, reserving 1 teaspoon of the bacon drippings in the skillet and draining the remainder.

Step 5 -Over medium-high heat, add the onions to the hot bacon drippings and cook, while stirring, until very tender, about 7 minutes.

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Step 6 -In the prepared baking dish, add the cooked onions, the pork and beans, the ketchup, the Worcestershire sauce, the brown sugar, the dry mustard, and the sorghum syrup and stir to combine.

Step 7 -Top the bean mixture with the bacon slices.

Step 8 -Bake until the bean mixture is bubbly and the bacon is crispy, about 45 minutes.

Step 9 -Serve.

FAQs for Backyard Baked Beans

1. Can I use a different type of beans instead of pork and beans?
Yes, you can substitute pork and beans with other canned beans such as navy beans or great northern beans. Be aware that this might alter the flavor slightly, as pork and beans typically come in a seasoned tomato sauce.

2. Is there a vegetarian option for this recipe?
To make this dish vegetarian, omit the bacon and use a tablespoon of vegetable oil for cooking the onions. You can also look for a vegetarian baked beans can as a substitute.

3. Can I make this dish ahead of time?
Yes, you can prepare Backyard Baked Beans in advance and refrigerate them. To reheat, simply bake in the oven at 350 degrees F until heated through, which may take about 20 minutes.

4. What can I use if I don’t have sorghum syrup or molasses?
If you don’t have sorghum syrup or molasses, you can use honey or maple syrup as a substitute. These will add a different but still delightful sweetness to your beans.

5. How long can I store leftover baked beans?
Leftover baked beans can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. Make sure to reheat them thoroughly before serving.

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6. Is this dish suitable for freezing?
Yes, Backyard Baked Beans freeze well. Cool the beans completely and store them in airtight freezer-safe containers. They can be frozen for up to 3 months. Thaw in the refrigerator overnight and reheat in the oven or microwave.

7. What dishes pair well with Backyard Baked Beans?
This dish pairs wonderfully with barbecue staples such as grilled meats, cornbread, coleslaw, and potato salad. It’s also great with a simple green salad for a lighter meal.