Vegetarian Baked Beans

Baked beans are nutritious and delicious.

In the past few years I have had many friends and family members convert to being vegetarians. Most of them did it to eat healthier for their diets and exercise routines. By doing this they had to give up some of their favorite foods, including bacon. In our home bacon was a staple in most of our cooking, so having to get rid of that and find alternatives was difficult. This recipe right here was our savior in getting a fixing for barbeque foods without all the meat. You can make them mild or spicy and use them for multiple dishes!

What You’ll Need:

1 pound dried small white beans or navy beans
Water for soaking beans
1 medium yellow onion, diced
1 medium green pepper, diced
1 cup vegetable broth or water
1/2 cup molasses (I use Grandma’s original)
1/2 cup dark brown sugar
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 teaspoons dry mustard
1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper (more or less to taste)
3 teaspoons kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 bay leaf
5-6 dashes Tabasco sauce (optional)

Instructions:

Rinse the beans and sort through them, discarding any beans that look “off” or any foreign objects. Place in Crock Pot and cover with 3-4 inches of water. Cover and let soak overnight or for at least 8 hours. Drain and rinse well. Set soaked beans aside.
Add onion, pepper, broth, molasses, brown sugar, olive oil, dry mustard, smoked paprika, cayenne pepper, salt, and pepper to Crock Pot. Mix until combined. Stir in beans. Add bay leaf.
Cook on high for 8-10 hours or on low for 12-14 hours. Note: Slow Cookers can vary, so the first time you make this, you may want check on it periodically and see if you need more broth or water after the first few hours. But don’t worry, your beans shouldn’t turn to mush! The molasses helps to prevent that.

You can use the leftover beans for lunches or tomorrow night’s side dish. This tasty dish can keep up refrigerated in an airtight container for three days or stick them in the freezer! Enjoy!