This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure policy.
This Southern Baked Beans Recipe makes the best baked beans! It’s a perfect side dish for so many meals and a family favorite recipe for years! So savory, scrumptious, and easy to make!
If you’re looking for a simple yet delicious recipe that’s perfect for any meal, baked beans are the way to go! We love it with hamburgers, grilled chicken, ribs, and more! This classic dish is a crowd-pleaser that’s easy to make and can be customized to your taste.
How to Make Baked Beans Recipe
Rich, smokey, and so delicious, my recipe comes together quickly and then bakes slowly so that all those flavors just meld perfectly together!
Be sure to see the recipe card below for the full listing of ingredients, instructions, notes, and estimated nutritional information.
- Beans – Use canned navy beans or soaked dried beans.
- Bacon – My recipe included diced bacon in the baked beans and then strips of bacon on top of the beans.
- Garlic – Use 1 to 2 cloves garlic, minced, or substitute with 1 teaspoon of Stone House Seasoning.
- Onion – Dice and include ½ of a medium sweet onion. If you do not care for onions, omit them. You can also use ½ teaspoon of onion powder instead of fresh onion if you prefer.
- Worcestershire sauce – Use Coconut Aminos if sensitive to soy.
- Unsulphured molasses – Adds a deep, smokey flavor to the cooked beans.
- Dark brown sugar – Dark brown sugar contains more molasses than light brown sugar. I prefer the richness of dark brown sugar in my baked beans, but you can use either. You’ll use brown sugar mixed in the recipe and a little sprinkled on top. You can also use brown coconut sugar as a replacement for brown sugar for a lower glycemic option.
- Ketchup – Use ¼ cup of ketchup in this recipe
- Yellow mustard – I have found that yellow mustard helps to round out the flavor in the baked beans.
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
- While the oven preheats, pour your navy beans into a medium stockpot set over medium heat.
- In a medium skillet, add diced bacon, onion, and garlic. Cook until the bacon is crisp and the onion is tender. Then, remove from the heat and add to the navy beans. Add Worcestershire sauce, molasses, brown sugar, ketchup, and yellow mustard and stir to combine well. Pour into the deep dish you plan to serve from or leave in a stockpot. Finally, top with the optional (but highly recommended!) bacon and sprinkle the top with brown sugar.
- Place into the oven and bake for 45 minutes. Increase temperature to 425º F for 10 minutes to crisp bacon. Remove from oven and allow to rest for about 5 minutes before serving.
Slow Cooker Baked Beans
- Add your navy beans to the slow cooker and set aside.
- In a medium skillet, cook your diced bacon, onion, and garlic until the bacon is crisp and the onion and garlic are tender. Add to the slow cooker. Add Worcestershire sauce, molasses, dark brown sugar, ketchup, and mustard. Stir to combine well.
- Cook on a low setting for 6-7 hours or on a high setting for 3-4 hours. If your baked beans are not as thick as you would like, remove the lid to the slow cooker about 30 to 45 minutes before serving and allow them to continue cooking until thickened. If too thick, you can stir in water a few tablespoons at a time until it reaches the desired thickness.
Optional: top with baked bacon strips before serving.
Make Ahead and Freezing Instructions
To make ahead. Cook and allow to cool. Wrap well or store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to a week.
To freeze. Cook and allow to cool completely. Store in an airtight freezer-safe container in the freezer for up to 3 months. Allow to thaw in the refrigerator overnight, then reheat and serve.
So, here’s my Southern Baked Beans recipe. Get ready to make it often!
Southern Baked Beans Recipe
- 2 (16-ounce cans) navy beans
- 3 strips bacon diced
- 1-2 cloves garlic minced
- ½ medium sweet onion diced
- 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
- ¼ cup unsulphured molasses
- ¼ cup dark brown sugar
- ¼ cup ketchup
- 1 teaspoon prepared yellow mustard
For the Top of Baked Beans (optional):
- 2 slices bacon halved
- 1 teaspoon brown sugar
- Preheat oven to 325º F.
- Pour navy beans into medium stockpot.
- In a medium skillet, add diced bacon, onion, and garlic. Cook until bacon is crisp and onion is tender. Remove from heat and add to navy beans.
- Add Worcestershire sauce, molasses, brown sugar, ketchup, and yellow mustard. Stir to combine well. Pour into deep dish you plan to serve from or leave in stockpot. Top with bacon and sprinkle top with brown sugar.
- Place in oven and bake 45 minutes. Increase temperature to 425º F for 10 minutes to crisp bacon. Remove from oven and allow to rest about 5 minutes before serving.
Slow Cooker Baked Beans
- Add navy beans to a slow cooker.
- Cook bacon, onion, and garlic in a medium skillet until the bacon is crisp and the onion and garlic are tender. Add to the navy beans in the slow cooker.
- Add Worcestershire sauce, molasses, brown sugar, ketchup, and yellow mustard. Stir to combine well.
- Cook on LOW setting for 6 to 7 hours or HIGH setting for 3 to 4 hours. If the baked beans are too thin, remove the lid to the slow cooker for the last 30 to 45 minutes of cook time until the beans have thickened to desired consistency. If too thick, stir in water a tablespoon at a time until it reaches the desired consistency. Top with optional baked bacon for serving.
Store baked beans in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to a week. Freezer Friendly:
Allow the baked beans to cool. Store in a freezer-safe, airtight container for up to 3 months. To reheat, allow to thaw in the refrigerator overnight and then reheat in a 350ºF oven for 15 – 20 minutes until heated throughout. Vegetarian/ Vegan:
To make these baked beans vegetarian and vegan friendly, simply omit the bacon from the recipe as well as the optional topping.
Did you make this recipe?
Mention @addapinch or tag #addapinch!
Share it with the world!
From the Add a Pinch recipe archives. Originally published 2013.
If u use dried beans is 16 oz of dried beans the same amount as 16 oz. canned?
Marge, you would need about 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 cups of dried beans for the 2 cans of beans in the recipe. Hope this helps.
trying them this weekend. did i miss the temperature for the first 45 min somewhere?
Lisa, sorry you missed it but it is in Step 1: Preheat the oven to 325ºF. I hope you enjoy these beans.
Hi! I am planning to make this on Monday our Canadian Thanksgiving. Do I drain and rince the canned beans
Joyce, the brand I use is very thick and does not have extra liquid, but if yours has a lot of added liquid you may want to drain. I don’t rinse them, either. I hope you enjoy!
I am going to try this Recipe this weekend with my ham I could not find Canned navy beans so I I am using dried. How much water should I use if I am doubling the recipe for these dried beans and should I drain them before I use them. Also if I am going to double the recipe do I double the amount of bacon as well
As I listed in the post, Carole, if you use dried beans make sure they are soaked thoroughly, then drained before following the recipe. One cup of dried beans should equal the 2 16-ounce cans of navy beans. I would double the bacon if you double the recipe. You may need to cook the baked beans a little longer than the recipe instructions; just make sure the beans are tender.
Made these with canned northern beans.
Wow, I brought this to a potluck cookout and they were the first dish to disappear.
Thanks, Susan. So glad everyone loved these baked beans.
Are the beans drained or undrained . And can I use dark Karo instead of molasses? Please ans.ASAP. TY
Marilyn, the brand of beans I use is very thick, so I don’t have to drain them as there is no extra liquid to speak of. I would suggest if there is a lot of extra liquid in your beans, you may want to drain some of it off. I haven’t tried this recipe with dark Karo so I can’t tell you from experience how it would be. I hope you enjoy!
TY for your timely reply—much appreciated
Question: I just put these into the slow cooker. The sauce is so good and so is the smell. I am pretty sure these are going to be enjoyed by our crew tomorrow. Thank you!
Thanks, Marcy. I love these beans cooked in the slow cooker, too. I hope your crew love them, too.
These are amazing. The only baked beans I make.
Thanks, Chris. I”m so glad you like this recipe.