People don’t love Mom’s Famous Southern-Style Baked Beans, they love them. Some people, my husband included, might even say they live for these beans.
How good are they? Let’s say we invited you to come for a BBQ at our house, but you had another commitment. Once you knew these baked beans were on the menu, you’d call and tell your Grandma a great big lie and dink out—then come and enjoy a plateful of Mom’s beans with barbecued chicken and grilled corn. Even that annoying friend with incredible self-control will go back for seconds. Thirds. When we ask people if they’d like to take a Tupperware-full home, they don’t say, “Aw, no thanks.” They shriek, “Yes, please!”
This is ‘last meal’ request territory, folks. You might want to add them to your Memorial Day menu. Just sayin’!
Simple Southern-Style Baked Beans
Serves up to 18 (but more like 12!)
If you like thick beans, you can continue to bake them. I’ve cooked mine up to 3 hours. They just keep getting thicker and richer. I’ve also used Bush’s canned baked beans in place of pork and beans and they’re really good too.
8 slices bacon, halved
1 medium onion, cut into small dice
1/2 medium green pepper, cut into small dice
3 large cans (28 ounces each) pork and beans
3/4 cup barbecue sauce
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup distilled or cider vinegar
2 teaspoons dry mustard or 2 tablespoons Dijon
Adjust oven rack to lower-middle position and heat oven to 325 degrees. Fry bacon in large, deep sauté pan skillet until bacon has partially cooked and released about 1/4 cup drippings. Remove bacon from pan and drain on paper towels. Add onions and peppers to drippings in pan and sauté until tender, about 5 minutes. Add beans and remaining ingredients bring to a simmer. (If skillet is not large enough, add beans and heat to a simmer then transfer to a large bowl and stir in remaining ingredients). Pour flavored beans into a greased 13-by 9-inch (or similar size) ovenproof pan. Top with bacon, then bake until beans are bubbly and sauce is the consistency of pancake syrup, about 2 hours. Let stand to thicken slightly and serve.