When I graduated from college (good heavens 10 years ago... yeesh!) I rented an upstairs room from Mrs. Betty B. The first meal Betty made for me was Beans Galore. I remember moving my stuff into Betty's house, a bit nervous, not sure what the future held. I didn't have a job yet, wasn't sure where life was taking me (do you ever stop wondering that?)... but I knew it was a good decision to become Mrs. Betty's roommate after tasting that wonderful bowl of Beans Galore.
No matter what you may think when you graduate from college, you're still a kid. There's a lot of growing up to be done. In that sense, Betty will always be kind of like a 2nd mom to me. She was nurturing, she cooked many meals, she put up with my dating and first job frustrations... she was and still is a great friend. She still cooks us meals and Betty's home is still a peaceful haven to me.
I'm beyond blessed to have met Betty and still have her in my life. For another awesome recipe from Betty, check out this gluten free french bread casserole!
This recipe is an old favorite. It's one of the few recipes with beans that Michael will actually ask for. He'll eat 3rd helpings. It's sweet and savory and nothing but simple. You can simmer it all day in a crockpot or you can make it on the stove and have it on the table in 30 minutes. This dish might also be known to you as glorified baked beans, chuckwagon beans, or just simply as "baked beans" depending on how your family makes it.
Every time we eat this meal it reminds me of Betty's simple & loving hospitality. Make a big pot and generously share a bowl with your friends and neighbors. Laugh, smile, and let them know how much you appreciate them!
Mrs. Betty's Beans Galore
created by Betty B., shared by Carrie @ gingerlemongirl.com
free of gluten, dairy/casein, soy, and corn
1/2 pound bacon (optional - I only use if it I have it -- last night I didn't have it!)
1 pound ground beef
1 medium onion, chopped
1/3 cup brown sugar (I only use 1-2 tablespoons)
1/4 cup white sugar (we leave this out)
1/4 cup ketchup
1/4 cup of your favorite gluten free barbecue sauce
1 teaspoon dry mustard
2 tablespoons molasses
1/2 teaspoon chili powder
1/2 teaspoon ground pepper
1 teaspoon salt
2 (15 oz.) cans pork & beans (I just use a 28 oz. can of baked beans)
1 (15 oz.) can lima beans
1 (15 oz.) can light red kidney beans (I use northern beans)
Fry bacon in a large dutch oven. Drain off grease, crumble bacon and set aside. Brown ground beef until it's cooked through and there is no pink showing. Add chopped onions and saute until soft -or- translucent. Add remaining ingredients to dutch oven. Cook beans galore over medium heat for about 15-20 minutes until completely heated through and simmering. You may need to stir often to prevent the beans from burning on the bottom. Serve hot with a nice green salad and gluten free french bread. (Of if you're like us, just eat a small bowl... it'll do ya for a few hours! This is a delicious and filling sweet & sour chili!)
Slow Cooker Directions:
Fry bacon in a large pan. Drain off grease, crumble bacon and set aside. Brown ground beef until it's cooked through and there is no pink showing. Add chopped onions and saute until soft -or- translucent. Add crumbled bacon, browned ground beef & onions, and all other ingredients to the slow cooker. Cook on high for 4 hours, or on low for 8 hours. Allow to cool a bit before eating.
- To watch the sugar content in this recipe (the original has a LOT!) I don't add any white sugar, and I only add about 2 tablespoons of brown sugar. We use low sugar ketchup and low sugar barbecue sauce...so our version is not super sweet... if you make this using Betty's recipe, be prepared for a SUPER sweet and sour treat!!
- To cut the salt content of this recipe, I rinse and drain both the lima beans and the northern beans/red beans. I don't drain the can of baked beans, since it's flavoring is in the sauce. If you rinse & drain your beans you may need a little bit more liquid, so add a can or so or warm water to make the texture like a thick stew/chili.
- Optional Bacon: If you know me, you know I'm not going to skip the bacon if I don't have too! But this recipe is still absolutely delicious without the bacon. I didn't have any on hand tonight and it still turned out just fine!