Homemade Baked Beans

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Homemade Baked Beans: Dive into the heart of comfort food with a classic side dish that’s a surefire hit for any occasion.

This old-fashioned recipe for Homemade Baked Beans transforms simple ingredients into a smokey beans delight, making it the perfect side dish for your next BBQ, picnic, potluck, or family dinner.

By crafting baked beans from scratch, you embrace an American staple that’s not just delicious but also a gluten-free side dish that complements almost any meal.

This homemade baked beans recipe is not just a budget-friendly meal but a family-friendly comfort food that promises to be a highlight at any gathering.

Oven-baked beans in a large baking dish, showcasing a blend of navy beans, apple juice, and spices, perfect for complementing any BBQ picnic or family gathering.

Why Homemade Baked Beans are a “Must-Try”

Homemade baked beans offer a depth of flavor and satisfaction that canned versions can’t match.

Here’s why this recipe deserves a spot in your meal prep repertoire:

  • An American Staple: A classic side dish that’s become an integral part of our culinary heritage.
  • Great at Your Next BBQ: The perfect complement to burgers, hot dogs, and other grilled favorites.
  • Make-Ahead Dish: Ideal for easy meal prep ideas, this recipe can be prepared in advance, saving you time.
  • Family-Friendly Comfort Food: A budget-friendly meal that’s sure to be a hit with both kids and adults.
  • Gluten-Free Side Dishes: A safe and hearty option for those avoiding gluten.
  • It’s a make-ahead dish: Epitomizes the essence of summer picnic recipes and easy meal prep ideas, ensuring that your next BBQ, picnic, potluck, or family dinner is both memorable and delicious.
Close-up of a bowl of homemade baked beans, featuring navy beans and bacon, garnished with fresh parsley, perfect for comfort food recipes and gluten-free side dishes.

Homemade Baked Beans Ingredients

(See below for full ingredient list with quantities & instructions)

  • Navy Beans: The base of this summer meal staple.
  • Bacon: Adds a rich, smokey flavor.
  • Yellow Onion: For a touch of sweetness.
  • Tomato Sauce: The tangy backbone of the sauce.
  • Molasses, Brown Sugar, Maple Syrup: A trio of sweeteners that give these beans their iconic taste.
  • Salt, Dry Mustard: For seasoning and depth.
  • Apple Cider Vinegar, Apple Juice: Adds a subtle tang and sweetness, enhancing the overall flavor profile.
A steaming baking dish and bowl filled with homemade baked beans, topped with a rich, tomato-based sauce and garnished with fresh herbs.

Made from Scratch Baked Beans Instructions

  1. Preparing the Beans: Start by soaking the navy beans overnight to ensure they’re tender and ready to absorb the flavors.
  2. The Sauce: In a pan, cook the bacon and yellow onion before adding the tomato sauce, molasses, brown sugar, maple syrup, salt, dry mustard, apple cider vinegar, and apple juice to create the rich, flavorful sauce.
  3. Combining and Baking: Mix the beans with the sauce, transfer to a baking dish, and cook slowly in the oven to allow the flavors to meld beautifully.
  4. Serving: Enjoy these oven-baked beans as a hearty side dish that’s perfect for any summer picnic.
Homemade baked beans in a baking dish, rich with navy beans, bacon, and a molasses-based sauce, ready for a cozy family dinner or a BBQ side dish.

What to Eat with Baked Beans?

Wondering what goes with baked beans?

Baked beans are a heartwarming classic that pairs wonderfully with a variety of dishes, especially comfort foods that bring warmth and satisfaction to any meal.

  • Coleslaw: This adds a crisp, refreshing contrast to the rich flavors of baked beans, offering a delightful crunch with each bite.
  • Cornbread: A slice of soft, buttery cornbread next to the savory baked beans is a match made in comfort food heaven, bringing sweetness to balance the smoky flavors.
  • Chicken Wings: Whether spicy or sweet, chicken wings bring a flavorful kick that complements the deep, savory notes of baked beans perfectly.
  • Fried Chicken: The ultimate comfort food, fried chicken’s crispy exterior and juicy interior alongside the soft, hearty baked beans create a truly satisfying meal.
  • Macaroni and Cheese: Combining creamy, cheesy macaroni with savory baked beans offers a cozy, comforting dish that’s hard to resist.
Top view of a bowl filled with made from scratch baked beans, showcasing the rich, savory sauce and tender beans, perfect for a comforting meal.

FAQ Section

What kind of beans are baked beans?

Traditionally, navy beans are used for their size, texture, and ability to soak up flavors.

Can I cook baked beans in the slow cooker?

Can this recipe be adapted? Absolutely, preparing slow cooker baked beans is a great way to make this dish with minimal fuss.

How do I store leftover baked beans?

Cool the beans to room temperature, then refrigerate in an airtight container for up to 4 days. For longer storage, freeze for up to 6 months. Thaw in the fridge and reheat on the stove or in the microwave before serving.

The Best Home-Cooked Baked Beans

A baking dish filled with savory homemade baked beans, slow-cooked with tomato sauce and maple syrup, embodying classic comfort food for summer meals.
Yield: 10

Homemade Baked Beans

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 3 hours
Total Time: 3 hours 10 minutes

Delicious homemade baked beans made from scratch, simmered in a savory tomato sauce with molasses, brown sugar, and a hint of maple syrup. Perfect as a hearty side dish for family dinners and BBQs. Rich, flavorful, and comforting - a true homemade delight.


  • 1 ⅓ cups dried navy beans
  • 3 slices thick bacon chopped
  • ¼ cup yellow onion chopped
  • ½ cup tomato sauce or ketchup
  • ¼ cup molasses
  • ¼ cup brown sugar
  • ¼ cup pure maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 teaspoons dry mustard
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • ½ cup apple juice
  • ½ cup water


  1. Soak the Navy Beans: Begin by soaking the navy beans overnight in water to ensure they become tender.
  2. Prepare the Sauce: In a skillet, cook diced bacon until crispy. Add chopped yellow onion and cook until translucent. Stir in tomato sauce, molasses, brown sugar, maple syrup, salt, dry mustard, apple cider vinegar, and apple juice. Simmer the mixture for a few minutes to combine the flavors.
  3. Combine Beans and Sauce: Drain the beans and mix them into the sauce. Transfer the mixture to a baking dish.
  4. Bake: Preheat your oven to 325°F (163°C). Cover the baking dish with foil and bake the beans for about 2-3 hours. Check periodically; if the beans seem dry, add a little water. The beans are done when they are tender and the sauce has thickened.
  5. Serve Warm: Let the beans stand for a few minutes after removing them from the oven, then serve warm as a comforting side dish.joy these oven-baked beans as a hearty side dish that's perfect for any summer picnic.

Nutrition Information



Serving Size


Amount Per Serving Calories 156Total Fat 2gSaturated Fat 0gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 1gCholesterol 3mgSodium 264mgCarbohydrates 31gFiber 5gSugar 18gProtein 5g

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