Friday, May 27, 2011

Easy Gluten Free Boston Baked Beans Recipe

Does anything scream of a summer barbecue more than homemade baked beans? I LOVE baked beans. This obsession happened later in my life... apparently after becoming gluten free -- baked beans became a favorite food. They are incredibly easy to make. You really can't mess them up... and I think just about everybody likes them!

What's not to like? A sweet & sour combo of healthy northern and/or white beans with the additional of bacon (mmm Bacon!), onions, molasses, and spices. Super easy and naturally gluten free.

I love this recipe because it starts with plain 'ol cooked white beans. If you use a can of "already-seasoned" baked beans you cannot control exactly how they they are flavored. I also like the simplicity of just using a can of northern beans from the pantry and turning them into a beautiful dish.

Easy Gluten Free Boston Baked Beans
Free of gluten, dairy/casein, soy, and eggs
Adapted from an assortment of baked bean recipes found in old church cookbooks & at
Printer-friendly recipe 

This makes a large batch of beans which freeze beautifully if you happen to have any leftovers!

Bean Ingredients:
3 (15 oz.) cans white beans -or- northern beans, drained & rinsed
1/2 pound bacon
1 onion, finely diced

Sauce Ingredients:
3 tablespoons molasses
2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper (more or less to taste)
1/2 teaspoon dry mustard
1/2 cup gluten free ketchup
1 tablespoon gluten free Worcestershire sauce
1/4 cup brown sugar

These beans can be made in an oven or in a slow cooker. I've made them both ways basically following the same instructions: If using an oven set to 250 degrees. In a large casserole dish (or your slow cooker) layer beans with the onions and uncooked bacon. In a small saucepan whisk together the sauce ingredients over low heat until they are warmed through and mixed together. Pour the sauce over the baked beans. Add just enough water to cover the beans -- don't overdo the water! Cover the casserole dish with foil or a lid. If using the oven: cook beans for 3-4 hours at 250 degrees. Check periodically to see if you need add a little water if the beans get too dry. If using the slow cooker, cook on low heat for 4-6 hours. Again check it periodically to make sure the beans are not getting too dry. (They shouldn't in the slow cooker.) Makes a heck of a whole lot! We often make this recipe and freeze in portion sizes for lunches during the week! Baked beans are also delicious served hot or cold!

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  1. We always ask my Mom to make the baked beans, she puts sausage, mushrooms, green peppers and all kinds of other stuff in them, they are Deluxe Baked Beans. However, none of us have been able to duplicate them.:(

  2. Thank you for this recipe Carrie. Can't wait to try it this weekend!

  3. Hi Carrie,
    I have been making baked beans since I was married, many moons ago, as my mom before me and my grandmother before her. At gramma's house there was always a crock of beans sitting on the back of the old wood stove. A great staple. I make them in the oven as they just don't taste the same to me in a slow cooker. If you do them in the oven, bake them slow, 250 or so overnight, making sure there is enough water and they are even better. To avoid the beans becoming hard, Don't add the sugar or molasses till about 1 hr. before they are finished.

  4. I made these yesterday! They were out of this world yummy! They will be a staple now for all of our summer bbq's!

  5. I almost made this over the weekend (before seeing your post). Now I wish I had, they look good. I'll just have to make it this week.

  6. Hey Carrie - I made these on Memorial Day in a slow cooker. The flavor was wonderful, but I have to admit, I got overwhelmed by the onion - didn't really cook through after six hours in the cooker. Next time I think I am going to saute the onions briefly (and maybe the bacon too) before putting them into the slow cooker. Do you think that will help?

  7. Hi, Carrie,
    Do they taste the same whether you make them in the slow cooker or in the oven? Just wondering, since I'm sure you have made them both ways many times. :)

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  9. Finally getting around to answering comments! Sorry everybody! Thomas -- cooking the beans/bacon ahead of time is certainly helpful if you are not using a long cooking time -- I think in general my books cook for AGES like 8 hours or more (although it's not necessary -- but that may be why I've never noticed the onions being the main flavor -- I also use sweet onions, which never seem to overwhelm a dish to me... Nicole -- I think the best advantage to using the crock pot is that they do not "dry out" as easily as they do in the oven. Honestly, I can't remember the last time I made them in the oven! I use the crock primarily! :-)

  10. Desert Hen - THANK YOU! SO glad you enjoyed these beans, I just love how you really cannot over cook them in the slow cooker and I Think they are always better by the 2nd day! :-)

  11. I love good baked beans. Homemade is best. I think I will have to try these! Sounds like a great opportunity to make some BBQ chicken too...

  12. Do you need to add water at the beginning if using a crock pot?

  13. Made these for my son, who has a gluten, dairy and soy allergy. I didn't have northern beans, so I just used black beans. They were so good! He thought they were too spicy and wouldn't eat them, so I am making them today and just cutting the pepper to 1/2 tsp. I will just add pepper afterwards for the adults. I'm so happy he will be able to eat baked beans finally! I made them in the crockpot, very easy and yummy!