These tasty beans make an excellent side dish for a barbecue or cookout, or serve them with freshly baked cornbread wedges for an everyday meal. The beans are great with coleslaw and potato salad on the side.
With or without the ground beef, the beans are a great choice for a pulled pork meal or alongside burgers or steaks. Put the beans in the slow cooker and take them along to a party or potluck dinner.
I like chopped bell pepper in the beans, and I sometimes use black beans instead of kidney beans. Great northern beans, navy beans, or small red beans are some of the many possibilities. See the tips and variations for more ideas!
- 8 strips bacon
- 1 can (16 ounces) pork and beans
- 1 can (16 ounces) red kidney beans
- 1 can (16 ounces) pinto beans
- 1 pound lean ground beef
- 1 cup chopped onion
- 1 1/2 cups ketchup
- 1 tablespoon prepared mustard
- 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1/2 cup brown sugar, or more, to taste
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- Heat the oven to 350 F (180 C/Gas 4).
- In a large skillet over medium heat, fry the bacon until just crisp. Remove it to paper towels to drain; set aside.
- Remove all but a few teaspoons of drippings from the skillet. Add the ground beef and chopped onion and place back over medium heat. Cook, stirring and breaking up the beef until the onion is tender and the beef is no longer pink.
- In a large bowl combine the ground beef mixture with the drained and rinsed beans.
- In another bowl combine the ketchup, mustard, Worcestershire sauce, and the brown and granulated sugars; mix well to blend. Pour over the bean mixture and stir to blend.
- Spoon the bean mixture into a 2 1/2- to 3-quart baking dish. Sprinkle the crumbled bacon over the top.
- Bake in the preheated oven for about 1 hour.
Tips and Variations
- Mix the beans up with different varieties along with the baked beans. Use black beans, great northern beans, small red beans, black-eyed peas, lima beans, or white kidney beans.
- Replace the ketchup with chili sauce or barbecue sauce.
- Add 1/2 cup of chopped green bell pepper or a combination of red and green bell pepper.
- Double the ground beef for a heartier main dish bean bake.
- Add about 1/2 pound of ground pork or sausage to skillet with the ground beef.
- Jazz the beans up with 2 teaspoons of chili powder and about 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon of crushed red pepper flakes or cayenne.
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