Sweet, creamy, filling and so simple to make, these Old Fashioned Baked Beans are the perfect companion to your morning eggs and will make any morning that much brighter! Try them once, you’ll never reach for the canned stuff ever again!
Ever since I can remember, I’ve always had a soft spot for baked beans and I believe that they will always have that special place in my heart.
You see, my love for baked beans comes to me from my dad. He didn’t use to cook all that much, but baked beans are something that he’d like to whip up once in a while and when he did, the whole house smelled soooo deliciously good, it almost felt like Christmas to me. And I can’t tell you the number of times that I saw him grab a container of leftover baked beans straight from the fridge and dig right in, then exclaim with such a passion in his voice: “Is there anything better than baked beans, I ask you?”
Funny thing is he would say the exact same thing every time he’d have mashed potatoes!
He was very adamant on adding lard — a total must for most purists — to his baked beans though, so I’m not sure that he would’ve approved of my “lardless”, vegetarian version… Personally, I never cared for it much and to be honest, I don’t miss the jiggly pieces of soft fat one bit!
Besides, these baked beans they taste so amazingly good, I’m sure my dad would’ve exclaimed just the same about how delicious they were with every new bite.
Of course, you’ll need to soak your navy beans in cold water overnight first; then, you’ll want to pre-cook them a little bit, before you send them in the oven.
Drain the soaked beans and place them in a medium saucepan, then add enough water to cover the beans by about 2 inches, cover loosely and bring to the boil, then simmer for about 30 minutes or until the beans are almost tender.
While the beans are simmering away, preheat your oven to 350°F and then heat some olive oil (or use your favorite cooking oil) in a 7 quart Dutch oven set over medium heat. Add the onion, apple, savory, salt and pepper to your Dutch oven and cook until softened and fragrant, about 5 minutes. Kill the heat and set aside.
When the beans are cooked to your liking, i.e. tender and almost but not quite cooked all the way, drain them and add them to the Dutch oven…
Then throw in the canned diced tomatoes, molasses, Dijon mustard, Bay leaves and water.
Give everything a good stir, put the lid on and cook in the oven for about 6 hours, stirring from time to time…
…until the beans are super soft, have taken a beautiful dark brown color and the cooking liquid has turned into a thick and luscious sauce. Ideally, you’ll want to let the beans rest at room temperature for about an hour before serving.
Honestly, I think they’re even better the following day… so don’t hesitate to make them ahead of time! As in, make them on the week-end to last you all through the week, why not? Your finished baked beans will keep for at least that long if not more, if properly stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
I wouldn’t recommend freezing them, though; I find they tend to turn to mush once thawed.
These guys, they’re the absolute best alongside a couple of pan fried eggs in the morning: talk about starting the day right!
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Old Fashioned Baked Beans
- 1.3 lb white navy beans soaked overnight in cold water
- 1 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 medium onion finely chopped
- 2 apples peeled and finely diced
- 1 tbsp dried savory
- 1 tbsp salt I use Himalayan salt
- 1 tsp ground black pepper
- 1 large 28oz can diced tomatoes
- 1/2 cup blackstrap molasses
- 1 tbsp Dijon mustard
- 3-4 bay leaves
- 8 cups water
Drain the beans and place them in a medium saucepan; add enough water to cover the beans by about 2 inches, cover loosely and bring to the boil, then simmer for about 30 minutes or until almost tender.
Meanwhile, preheat your oven to 350°F and heat the olive oil in an 7 quart Dutch oven set over medium heat. Add the onion, apple, savory, salt and pepper and cook until softened and fragrant, about 5 minutes. Kill the heat and set aside.
- Drain the beans and add them to the Dutch oven, followed by the tomatoes,
Add bay leaves, tomatoes, molasses, mustard, Bay leaves and water. Stir, put the lid on and cook in the oven for about 6 hour, stirring from time to time, until the beans are super soft, have taken a beautiful dark brown color and the liquid has turned into a thick and luscious sauce.
- Let the beans rest for about an hour before serving.