Baked beans are the sh*t, am I right? My favourite part of going out for brunch, aside from the feeling of indulgence I get when having someone else make breakfast for me, is getting to order baked beans. I’ve made them on my own before using an oven, but found I could never get them to be as thick, creamy, and velvety as they are when I order them in a restaurant. Baking them also means you have to be present for the whole affair, and who has time to watch beans for two hours?
This recipe was born of two fortuitous life circumstances which happened to coincide. Firstly, my naturopath suggested I try avoiding raw food for two weeks to see if cooked foods prove easier on my digestive system. Secondly, Conor and I received a dinner invitation for a weeknight that was breakfast themed – which is the best idea I’ve heard in a long time! – and I had zero minutes, never mind an hour or two, between work and dinner to actually cook. Enter the slow cooker, a working girl’s best friend. These beans are the easiest thing in the world to make, but taste like they took some serious effort. I just love when that happens.
The night before I literally threw all the ingredients into a bowl (and the veggies into a separate bowl and into the fridge), and covered the beans with water. In the morning before work I emptied my two prep bowls into the slow cooker with the beans and vegetable stock, turned it on, and left the house.
The smell when I got home from work was UNREAL.
I felt bad for my neighbours who had to walk by and wish they were eating with us!
Slow Cooker Boston Baked Beans (serves 6)
~ Gluten free, vegan, nut free, soy free ~
- 1 lb dried white beans
- 2 tsp apple cider vinegar
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 2 cups vegetable stock
- 1 large onion, diced
- 1 green pepper, diced
- 1/2 cup tomato sauce
- 1/2 cup molasses
- 3 tbsp dark brown sugar
- 2 tsp dried mustard
- 1 tsp cayenne
- 1/2 tsp smoked paprika
- 3/4 tsp liquid smoke
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 tsp sea salt
- freshly cracked black pepper
- hot sauce (optional)
- The night before, soak the beans in your crock pot along with the baking soda and apple cider vinegar, ensuring there are several inches of water covering the beans. The acidity from the vinegar and baking soda will really help break down even the oldest beans.
- The next day, drain the beans and add them back to the crock pot along with all the other ingredients, then give everything a good stir. Turn on high and let the slow cooker work its magic for 6-8 hours – the length of time will depend on how old the beans are and just how soft you’d like them to be. I like mine to really melt in your mouth.
- Once the beans are cooked to your liking, check the liquid levels. If the sauce is still on the watery side, simply strain it into a pot and then reduce on medium-high for a few minutes, stirring frequently. It will thicken up very quickly.
- Serve with avocado toast sprinkled with chilli flakes and eggs for an awesome breakfast (or breakfast for dinner!).