Homemade BBQ Baked Beans for a Crowd

When ever we go out for barbque, I always, choose baked beans as one of my sides.  There is something so satisfying and so comforting in eating a dish like this along with my tri-tip sandwich and a double portion of asian slaw.

I have had this particular recipe for baked beans in my repertoire for over 25 years. They serve a crowd – a very large crowd. Therefore, I only have a few opportunities through out the year to make this dish. Using only 5 ingredients, cooked slowly in the oven for about 5 hours, these baked bean are always the star of the evening.

This past  July 4th, we celebrated the day with our good friends and 60 of their nearest and dearest. When I heard the number of people I asked if I could make my homemade baked beans.  My friend, B, responded with, “my husband will love you and covet the whole pot, please do”.   The day before, at 6:30 a.m., I dumped all the ingredeints in my 7 1/4 quart Le Creuset, put the lid on, turned the oven on to 300* and forgot about them until they were ready 5 hours later.  I let them cool before putting them in the fridge and the next day heated them on top of the stove when I arrived at the party.  It is that easy.

At your next party, make these beans.  One word of advice, make a double batch!


Homemade BBQ Baked Beans


3 large cans Vegetarian Beans
1 small can Vegetarian Beans
1 brown onion, diced fine
15 oz. ketchup (I used my homemade version)
8 oz. dark brown sugar (or Sucanat)
5 Tbsp. liquid smoke


• preheat oven to 300*.
• toss all ingredients into a large, heavy duty stock pot.  stir to combine.
• cover tightly with lid, place in preheated oven for 5 hours.  stir every hour.
• remove from oven and serve.

* if I have the time, I like to make this recipe the day before. and hour before guests are to arrive remove from the fridge so it can come to room temperature.  then warm on top of the stove over medium heat.  stir occassionaly to avoid burning.

The Urban Baker / SusanSalzman.com


Lots of Yummy Party Recipes:
Baked Potato Chips – Busy Mommy
The Best Cabbage Salad Ever – The Urban Baker
Israeli Couscous with Asparagus + Red Peppers – First Look then Cook
Olive and Herb Focaccia – Technicolor Kitchen
Cucumber Zucchini Carpaccio Salad – White on Rice Couple
Summer Vegetable Torta – All Day Long I Dream About Food
Carmelized Black Bean Butter – Tidy Mom
Cherry Mojito – Deliciously Organic
Dill Pickles – Scrambled Side Up

Showing 22 comments
  • Georgia Pellegrini

    I’ve been eating baked beans all week here in Arkansas. SUCH wonderful comfort food.

    • Susan

      So right, Georgia! Arkansas – it’s on my places to see list!

  • Reply

    Wow. This looks so smokey and satisfying. I like that it doesn’t contain pork, too. I’ll have to give this a whirl soon!

  • B

    They were the yummiest baked beans I ever had!!!

  • Kim

    These beans looks good!

  • Reply

    Susan, a double or triple batch for certain. These beans look GREAT 🙂

  • TidyMom

    I just want to reach into my screen and pour some on my plate!!

    I LOOOOVE baked beans, but no one else in my house does, so the only time I get them is parties, or I will buy a small can and eat it myself! these sound fantastic

  • Deborah

    I’m definitely going to remember this recipe for the next time I need to feed a crowd. So easy!!

    • Susan

      oh, please do Deborah! And let me know how you like them!

  • Kristen

    Oh my goodness… that picture makes me swoon!

  • Emily

    I love Baked Beans. My mother-in-law introduced me to baked beans with a little ground up hamburger (ground very small) and it is surprisingly delicious. Might try this recipe with a little beef. Thanks for the link to my Potato Chips 😉

  • Holly

    Do you think you could make these in the crockpot?

    • Susan

      Hi Holly, Good questions. I do not see why this wouldn’t be a perfect crock pot dish. I would give it a try and if it does work out, please come back and tell me about it! Thanks!

  • Robin mccamnent

    How many ounces are in each large can of beans? What about the small can? I’m making these for the 4th of July but I am now wondering if my cans add large enough. Thanks!

    • Susan

      Hi Robin, I am pretty sure the can of beans are either 14 – 15 ounces. I usually double this recipe and it goes super fast! Let me know how it comes out. Happy 4th!!

  • Carla

    How many will this serve and is it okay to sauté the onions?

    • Susan

      This recipe serves a lot of people. I would say 8 – 10 servings. In terms of the onions, you really don’t have to saute them as this slow cooks for so long in the oven, the onions tend to get very soft. This is a really good recipe – enjoy!

  • Carla

    I’m sorry, I do have one more question. On the liquid smoke, do you use the hickory or the mesquite?

    • Susan

      I use the hickory, but you can choose what works best for you.

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