Slow Cooker Baked Beans
Slow Cooker Baked Beans taste a million times better than what you get out of a can, and you can easily make them in your crock pot OR bean pot!
Homemade Baked Beans are tasty, inexpensive, and filling. They are great for parties and even the kids love them!
Traditional recipes made in the oven in a bean pot can take upwards of 5 hours to bake, though, and that’s just not happening during the summer months. Which of course is when I want these beans at every party!
So, I developed a Slow Cooker Baked Beans version which tastes just as good as the original, but you don’t have to run your oven all day long.
Which beans do you use to make baked beans?
Baked Beans are traditionally made with navy beans. Sometimes in my California grocery store, I can only find small white beans. They are not the same, but they are pretty darn close. In a pinch, you could super-size and go with Great Northern Beans, too.
How do you make Boston Baked Beans?
Boston baked beans are made from molasses and salt pork which means, depending on the recipe, my Slow Cooker Baked Beans are the same thing. You’d make them the same way.
How to Quick Soak Beans
Place 1 pound of rinsed beans in a large saucepan and cover with 3 inches of water. Bring to a boil. Boil rapidly for 5 minutes, then remove from heat, cover, and let stand for 1 hour.
I would also like to give a shout-out to my buddy and reader Dave who suggested I stop dumping all my soaking liquid down the drain (from both overnight soaks and quick soaks). It is just as easy to pour some of that water into a measuring cup and use it in your recipe.
In drought-stricken California, it’s always good to conserve resources. For anyone else, you just layer in more flavors when you do it that way.
How to Make Baked Beans in a Bean Pot
To make beans in a bean pot, you do not need to pre-soak the beans. Preheat the oven to 250°F. In a medium sauce pan, combine beans and 1/4 tsp. baking soda. Cover with water, bring to a boil, and simmer for 3 minutes. Drain the beans (reserving 3 cups of water) and place in a bean pot. Add remaining ingredients and bake for 5 hours.
Looking for a great slow cooker? Here is the one I use and love.
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Slow Cooker Baked Beans
- 1 pound dried navy beans picked over and soaked overnight (see notes)
- ½ pound bacon sliced into 1-inch pieces
- 3 cups water
- 1 cup celery diced
- 1 cup onion diced
- 1 cup ketchup
- ¼ cup brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons molasses
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Pour off and reserve 3 cups water from soaking liquid. Discard remaining soaking liquid.
- Add beans and reserved soaking liquid, bacon, celery, and onion to slow cooker (see notes for how to cook in a bean pot).
- In small bowl, whisk together ketchup, brown sugar, and molasses. Pour into the slow cooker and stir to combine.
- Cover and cook on HIGH for 4 to 6 hours or LOW for 8 to 10 hours, or until beans are tender. Season to taste with salt and pepper if desired.
To soak beans: Add 4 quarts water to a large bowl and add beans. Soak at least 8 hours or overnight.
To quick soak beans: Place 1 pound of rinsed beans in a large saucepan and cover with 3 inches of water. Bring to a boil. Boil rapidly for 5 minutes, then remove from heat, cover, and let stand for 1 hour.
To cook the beans in a bean pot: you do not need to pre-soak the beans. Preheat the oven to 250°F. In a medium sauce pan, combine beans and 1/4 tsp. baking soda. Cover with water, bring to a boil, and simmer for 3 minutes. Drain the beans and place in a bean pot. Add remaining ingredients and bake for 5 hours.
Adapted from Shirley's Hill of Beans recipe.
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