Slow Cooker Barbecue Beans

Slow Cooker Barbecue Beans  \\

Baked beans are one of those things that seem pretty darned perfect right from the can with that long honored secret recipe locked away from us forever. So, when I set out to make my own batch of baked beans, Handsome asked why bother? One, I wanted too, two I wanted to see if a few hours of slow cooking and the geniuses over at Cook’s Illustrated could convince me that going back to a can was never going to happen again.

It didn’t. But that’s not to say these beans weren’t kicking, but when a good can of beans is at most $2, you really can’t beat it. The pro’s? This recipe can stand to be tweaked a lot. There’s a lot that could be done to really customize some flavors. Also, you know everything you put in it. Knowing what’s in your food goes a long way. So when I need something more then a weeknight quick fix side dish, these beans are totally worth the 11 hour wait.

 Slow Cooker Barbecue Beans  \\

Slow Cooker Barbecue Beans

Slow Cooker Barbecue Beans


  • 1 onion, minced
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tbs vegetable oil
  • 4 cups water, plus additional hot water as needed
  • 1 lb dried navy beans, picked over and rinsed
  • 1/2 cup plus 2 tbs barbecue sauce
  • 1/2 cup brewed coffee
  • 1/3 cup packed dark brown sugar
  • 4 slices bacon
  • 1 tbs prepared brown mustard
  • hot sauce
  • salt and pepper


Microwave onion, garlic, and oil in bowl, stirring occasionally, until onion is softened, about 5 minutes. Transfer to slow cooker.

Stir water, beans, 1/2 cup barbecue sauce, coffee, sugar, and bacon slices into slow cooker. Cover and cook until beans are tender, 9-11 hours on low, or 5-7 on high.

Discard bacon slices. Stir in remaining 2 tbs barbecue sauce and mustard and let sit until thickened slightly, about 10 minutes. Season with salt, pepper, and hot sauce to taste and serve. This dish can be held on warm setting for 1 to 3 hours before serving. Loosen with additional hot was as needed before serving.

Adapted From



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  1. Catherine Mae says

    Would it be ok if I omit the coffee? I’m just not a huge fan of it (even though i live in the city where starbucks was created) I just want to make sure that if I do that, it will not mess up the recipe. :)

    • Kita says

      Of course you can. I am not a fan of coffee myself. You can substitute a bit more water or barbecue sauce in it’s place.

    • Kita says

      Normally, I would agree with you. Why waste good bacon? But, going from uncooked to 11 hours in a slow cooker results in a pretty gross and stringy texture. If you would like, I would discard the bacon at the end, and add freshly cooked crisp bacon back to the slow cooker just before serving.

  2. says

    Mmmm….those would have gone so well with my grilled chicken with white bbq suace last night. never made beans from scratch before, I usually just doctor up the canned beans a bit. Looks tasty. Thanks for sharing.

  3. says

    I love homemade baked beans and these sound and look so good – and since they’re in the slow cooker, 11 hours is ok with me :) I’m featuring this post in today’s Food Fetish Friday (with a link-back and attribution). I hope you have no objections and thanks for sharing such amazing creations…

  4. Grimm Bone says

    These look great! I’ve just been out to buy the ingredients! Quick question – did you soak the beans overnight? The pack is making this look ‘Very Important’! :)

    • Kita says

      No. Normally that step is very important, but the elves over at Cook’s Illustrated said to just rinse and pick over for any small stones before dumping them into the crock pot. I didn’t soak mine over night. In a previous attempt with a similar recipe from another source, I did soak the beans, but things never came out quite right.

  5. Dee Johnson says

    I have been wanting a great recipe for homemade baked beans. I’m going to pin this to try later. My husband hates coffee with a passion, but I’m going to put it in and see if he tastes it. 😉 Thanks!


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