Smoked Baked Beans (Take Your Beans to Flavor Town in 4 Steps)

It’s 2022. Say NO to regular bland beans.

Why not serve up that steak, brisket, pulled pork, or ribs with a yummy side of smoked baked beans?

The baked beans recipe is the perfect blend of tangy, sweet, and spicy!

Complete with a burst of that smokey flavor that we all love in barbecue.

This recipe is best enjoyed during summertime and is one of my favorite Texas BBQ sides. But before we go into this recipe, let’s go over some smoked baked beans basics. 

Smoked Baked Beans 101

Smoked baked beans can be made from scratch with raw beans.

You’ll need to pre-soak them overnight, or you can use already canned beans.

To shake things up a bit, you may use more than one type of bean; a great combo is Navy beans and Great Northern beans. It’s a meal that can speak to your creative side so go crazy!

Your beans can be cooked using any smoker – wood, pellet, or electrical – your choice.

Pellet smokers are especially great for cooking the beans with minimum effort. This means you don’t need to worry too much about temperature control.

For your pellets, I suggest you go for any mild or fruitwood like cherry, apple, or pecan to avoid overwhelming the taste and aroma of your meal.

This recipe is straightforward and doesn’t take up too much of your time when making. So, stay with me, will you?

Major Ingredients For Baked Beans

Beans: Canned beans of any brand will work

Brown sugar: Dark or light, I like dark brown sugar. Honey is another option.

Ketchup: If you don’t have ketchup on hand, substitute BBQ sauce instead.

Molasses: You can’t get a replacement for this one, but it keeps for a long time! 

Worcestershire sauce: For those who don’t have Worcestershire on hand, feel free to omit it.

Bacon: I like to fry a lot of it and store it in the fridge for later use in dishes. Precooked and crumbled store-bought bacon is another favorite of ours. Just make sure it’s made from real bacon!

Sausage or pancetta can be added if you’re in a real pinch.

Cloves: To get the best flavor, you’ll only need a small amount.

Type of Pan To Use For Smoked Baked Beans

In terms of convenience, disposable aluminum foil pans are my favorite. However: 

  • In a cast-iron skillet, the beans will have the most flavorful aroma and texture. It also retains heat and keeps the beans warm when you remove them from the smoker.
  • To avoid soot on the bottom of the pan, it is possible to use a glass baking dish.

How Long Should I Smoke The Baked Beans?

You want to cook your beans at 250°F

Cooking time for the beans ranges from two to three hours.

Smoked Baked Beans Recipe

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 2 hours

Total Time: 2 hours 10 minutes

Servings: 8 to 10 people

What You’ll Need for Smoked Baked Beans

  • 2 large canned beans
  • 10 to 12 thick slices of spicy bacon
  • 1 large yellow onion (diced)
  • 2-3 tablespoons garlic powder
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 red bell peppers
  • 1 green bell pepper
  • 1 yellow bell pepper
  • 2 tablespoon paprika powder
  • 3-4 jalapeno peppers (chopped)
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup molasses
  • 2 tablespoons Dijon Mustard
  • 3 tablespoons BBQ sauce
  • 1 cup water or broth
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • Cherry wood chips

Instructions for Your Smoked Beans

Step 1: Pre-soak your wood in water for a few hours before use and make sure your smoker is free from any dirt or grease from the last cookout.

Step 2: Preheat the smoker till it reaches between 225F and 250F. Using a wood smoker will take around 20 to 30 minutes for your wood chunks to fire up and reach your desired temperature. 

Note: In the case of electric smokers, just add pre-soaked wood chips to the chip compartment. The chips are only there for the smokiness they offer and not necessarily heat since the temperature is digitally controlled.

Step 3: To a large aluminum pan or Dutch oven, add your canned beans, including your canning liquid. Depending on the consistency you’re trying to achieve, you can add a cup of water later on.

Step 4: Place a cast-iron skillet on medium-high heat. Drizzle olive oil and cook bacon strips for 2-3 minutes on both sides and until edges turn a golden brown and they become crispy.

Remove the bacon onto a paper towel to allow any excess fat or oil to drain. Then cut them up into halves.

Step 5: To the same skillet, add your diced onions, peppers, and other veggies and sauté for a few minutes in the bacon fat until the onions caramelize.

Step 6: Add the contents of the skillet to the beans. Then throw in the brown sugar, molasses, garlic powder, paprika, mustard, BBQ sauce, and apple cider vinegar. Combine ingredients properly.

Step 7: Pop the aluminum pan in the smoker, leave it uncovered, so the beans get a maximal infusion of all that good smoke.

Cook for 2 to 3 hours until the beans bubble and thicken up to like a syrup or glaze consistency. Remember to stir from time to time (i.e., every hour), so the beans don’t burn.

Step 8: Once fully cooked, leave to rest for 10 minutes, then serve warm as an accompanying dish to any barbecue you like. However its one of my favorite sides for brisket.

Smoked Baked Beans

This baked beans recipe is the perfect blend of tangy, sweet, and spicy, complete with a burst of that smokey flavor that we all love in barbecue
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time2 hrs
Total Time2 hrs 10 mins
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: American
Servings: 6 servings
Calories: 225kcal
Cost: 8

Ingredients

  • 2 large canned beans
  • 10 to 12 thick slices of spicy bacon
  • 1 large yellow onion
  • 2-3 tbsp garlic powder
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 red bell peppers
  • 1 green bell pepper
  • 1 yellow bell pepper
  • 2 tbsp paprika powder
  • 3-4 jalapeno peppers (chopped)
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • ¼ cup molasses
  • 2 tbsp dijon mustard
  • 3 tbsp BBQ sauce
  • 1 cup water or broth
  • 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • cherry wood chips

Instructions

  • Pre-soak your wood in water for a few hours before use and make sure your smoker is free from any dirt or grease from the last cookout.
  • Preheat the smoker till it reaches between 225F and 250F. Using a wood smoker will take around 20 to 30 minutes for your wood chunks to fire up and reach your desired temperature. 
    In the case of electric smokers, just add pre-soaked wood chips to the chip compartment. The chips are only there for the smokiness they offer and not necessarily heat since the temperature is digitally controlled.
  • To a large aluminum pan or Dutch oven, add your canned beans, including your canning liquid. Depending on the consistency you're trying to achieve, you can add a cup of water later on.
  • Place a cast-iron skillet on medium-high heat. Drizzle olive oil and cook bacon strips for 2-3 minutes on both sides and until edges turn a golden brown and they become crispy. Remove the bacon onto a paper towel to allow any excess fat or oil to drain. Then cut them up into halves.
  • To the same skillet, add your diced onions, peppers, and other veggies and sauté for a few minutes in the bacon fat until the onions caramelize.
  • Add the contents of the skillet to the beans. Then throw in the brown sugar, molasses, garlic powder, paprika, mustard, BBQ sauce, and apple cider vinegar. Combine ingredients properly.
  • Pop the aluminum pan in the smoker, leave it uncovered, so the beans get a maximal infusion of all that good smoke. Cook for 2 to 3 hours until the beans bubble and thicken up to like a syrup or glaze consistency. Remember to stir from time to time (i.e., every hour), so the beans don't burn.
  • Once fully cooked, leave to rest for 10 minutes, then serve warm as an accompanying dish to any barbecue you like.

I promise you’ll have all your guests and family members coming back for seconds, even thirds!

You could also enjoy these smoked beans on rice, cornbread, toast, fried or poached eggs, or mashed potatoes.

Try it out, and let me know what you think of my recipe.

Smoke On!

Charlie

Author: Charlie Reeves
Hi, I’m Charlie, I am head taste tester at Simply Meat Smoking! I love it grilling, smoking, and getting out in the yard with the kids! The family also love to test all my recipes (especially my EXTRA CRISPY pulled pork, smoky pork loin, and ANY SEAFOOD I grill)

You will usually find me playing with the kids, perfecting my brisket bark, or sipping beers with boys around the fire. Can’t wait to share all my delicious smoking and grilling adventures with you!

You can read more on our About Us page.

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