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Better Than Bush Baked Beans May 30, 2011

Posted by nrhatch in Food & Drink, Vegetarian Recipes.

Medieval_kitchenYou’ve been lounging around all weekend.  Later today,  you’re planning to attend a Memorial Day Potluck to honor War Veterans who have served our nation.

Ack! What should I make?
I don’t know what to take
I don’t have much bread
And I feel half dead
I know . . . let them eat cake

As you scan the pantry, you spot a lone can of baked beans hidden behind three boxes of stale cereal.


No.  Not the stale cereal . . . the beans.

Better Than Bush Baked Beans

1 28 oz. can of Bush Vegetarian Baked Beans (or your favorite)
1 Tbsp. leftover black coffee
1-2 Tbsp. Heinz ketchup
1-2 Tbsp. chopped onion
1-2 Tbsp. finely chopped green pepper
1-2 Tbsp. Vermont Maple Syrup (or brown sugar)
1 tsp. minced garlic (or 1/2 tsp. garlic powder)
1-2 tsp. mustard
dash of Worcestershire sauce

Pour baked beans into an oven-proof casserole dish.  Stir in any of the other ingredients that you have on hand.

Bake at 350 degrees for 30-60 minutes until bubbling.

Baked beans are an inexpensive way to get some healthy and delicious fiber into your diet!  They go great with almost anything that comes off the grill, and pair nicely with grilled cheese sandwiches or subs.

Sausage, Bean and Apple Bake:  Sauté a pound of Hot or Sweet Italian Sausage with a chopped green pepper and 4-5 chopped apples.  Add the sautéed ingredients to a 28 oz. can of beans.  Bake 1-2 hours at 300 degrees.  Accompany with hot out of the oven Cornbread.

If you prefer a “from scratch” recipe:  Boston Baked Beans (Rufus’ Food & Spirits)


1. Tilly Bud - May 30, 2011

That sounds good enough to eat 🙂

nrhatch - May 30, 2011

It’s a terrific dish for potlucks and buffets because it can be eaten hot, cold, or at room temperature.

2. Cindy - May 30, 2011

Coffee? Really? Now I just have to try this!

nrhatch - May 30, 2011

That’s exactly why I tried this recipe the first time! 🙂

Like most of my recipes, I rarely follow this to the letter any more, but I do doctor up canned baked beans with at least a few of these ingredients each time.

3. Rosa - May 30, 2011

Yum! I wish I was going to a bbq today!!!

nrhatch - May 30, 2011

We have a pool party potluck this evening which is what prompted the post. 😀

4. Tammy McLeod - May 30, 2011

Geez Nancy. Seems that the holiday weekend has you cooking up a storm.

nrhatch - May 30, 2011

Well, more like “thinking about cooking” than actually cooking. 😉

The toughest thing I’ve made so far . . . Bloody Mary’s.

5. Penny - May 30, 2011

Love Bush baked beans, thanks for the recipe. I will be spending time with my family at a local restaurant, and enjoying the peace and quiet of the day. Happy Memorial Day !

nrhatch - May 30, 2011

Enjoy the day, Penny. I’m enjoying the “peace and quiet” too.

6. Rufus' Food and Spirits Guide - May 30, 2011

Oh, I really like the idea of using some coffee!

nrhatch - May 30, 2011

Experimenting in the kitchen is FUN. Enjoy!

7. Rufus' Food and Spirits Guide - May 30, 2011

Aww shucks, thanks Nancy!

nrhatch - May 30, 2011

You’re welcome. I’ll check out more of your posts soon.

If you haven’t stumbled across The Only Cin’s blog (on my blogroll). . . you might want to take a peek. She blogs from South Africa, often covering food and wine.

8. kateshrewsday - May 30, 2011

That sausage and apple bake sounds fabulous, Nancy 🙂 Tomorrow’s lunch sorted!

nrhatch - May 30, 2011

It’s a terrific casserole. I’ve even made it with vegetarian sausage patties with good results.

9. barb19 - May 30, 2011

Sounds a good way to spruce up a can of baked beans.

nrhatch - May 30, 2011

It is, indeed. 😀

One thing I wondered before posting is whether Baked Beans are a world-wide dish. It seems so ~ from SA to USA to Australia to England to France.

10. souldipper - May 30, 2011

My Bush Beans see me through some dark and stormy nights when I’m too tired to do anything more than open a tin and toast some great bread.

nrhatch - May 31, 2011

Delicious bread and beans . . . perfect together!

11. adeeyoyo - May 31, 2011

Great dishes, Nancy. Haven’t had baked beans for years. I think it’s about time…

nrhatch - May 31, 2011

We often round out our meals with baked beans . . . quick, easy, inexpensive, and healthy.

12. eof737 - May 31, 2011

I haven’t had baked beans in ages…. might be time to buy some vegetarian version and tuck in… 🙂

nrhatch - May 31, 2011

Enjoy, E!

13. flyinggma - May 31, 2011

Sounds wonderful especially with the Maple syrup in it. I’ll have to give it a try for the 4th of July get together.

nrhatch - May 31, 2011

Baked beans are perfect for the 4th of July!

14. suzicate - May 31, 2011

Hmmm…sounds like something I should have made when we grilled out yesterday!

nrhatch - May 31, 2011

It’s a great side dish ~ winter, spring, summer, and fall.

Our favorite summer meals often are simple components, like baked beans served with the bounty of the season: corn on the cob, fresh tomatoes, baby potatoes, string beans, watermelon, zucchini. Yum!

15. William D'Andrea - May 31, 2011

Have you ever tried Mexican Burritos, French Fried Potatoes and American Baked Beans. Eaten together, you have a truly international meal.

nrhatch - May 31, 2011

We often put out a burrito or taco bar, with refried beans, grilled veggies, grated cheese, black olives, lettuce, sour cream, tomatoes, peppers, and salsa ~ every one can mix and match! Ole!

16. crumbl - August 22, 2011

I used to spend a LOT of time in Boston for work, and while I like Greg’s recipe, nothing tops the original Durgin Park Market’s baked beans in my eyes (okay, my mouth) … you could mix it up a bit and add the coffee … works for me.

Boston Baked Beans in Bean Pot – Durgin-Park
By Nana Lee on May 17, 2006

Prep Time: 30 minsTotal Time: 6 hrs 30 minsYield: 7 cups

“These, of course, are the ultimate Boston Baked Beans! Please take into account they need to soak overnight. You will need a 2 1/2-quart bean pot or covered casserole.

Recipe By: Durgin-Park Restaurant, Boston, MA”

1 lb dried navy beans ( see NOTE)
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 lb salt pork
1/2 medium onions ( peeled and uncut)
4 tablespoons sugar
1/3 cup molasses
1 teaspoon dry mustard
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper

NOTE: Use navy beans, California pea beans, or small white beans.
Soak beans overnight.
In the morning, preheat oven to 325°F Place the baking soda in a Dutch oven and fill half way with water.
Bring to a boil, add the beans & boil for 10 minutes.
Drain beans in a colander and run cold water through them. Set aside.
Dice the salt pork (available in the bacon section of the grocery store) into 1-inch squares.
Put half of the salt pork on the bottom of the bean pot, along with the onion.
Put beans in the pot.
Put the remaining salt pork on top of the beans.
Mix the sugar, molasses, mustard, salt and pepper with 3 cups of hot water and pour over the beans.
Cover pot with lid and place the pot into the preheated oven.
Bake for 6 hours.
Check pot periodically to make sure the amount of liquid is okay.
Add water to the beans slowly as needed to keep them moist; DO NOT FLOOD THEM. Just “top them up”.
Remove the pot from the oven and serve.

NOTE: The Durgin-Park, a Boston restaurant whose origins date back to the American Revolution, is famous for its Boston baked beans, baked Indian pudding and apple pan dowdy. Durgin-Park cook Tommy Ryan has prepared this recipe at the restaurant for the past 37 years.
Durgin-Park serves 1,000 diners on an average Saturday evening. The waitresses have a reputation for their long memories: the second time you come in, you get the same thing you ordered the first time–unless you speak fast.

nrhatch - August 22, 2011

I love Boston Brown Bread with beans! And also Indian Pudding (hot out of the oven) with ice cream.

Thanks for sharing your recipe!

17. crumbl - August 22, 2011

Yep, gotta make it in a coffee can in a water bath … so good. Makes the dish. Beans and cornmeal also go together like peas in a pod … nice finish to the meal, Nancy … never made Indian pudding, but I shall.

nrhatch - August 22, 2011

My mom always made Boston Brown Bread in a coffee can. 😉

She also used a coffee can for “Deacon Porter’s Hat” ~ which is like “Plum Pudding” (the steamed Christmas Pudding that Tiny Tim reveres in Dickens’ A Christmas Carol) but made in a different shape or mold.

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