Baked beans may not be the sexiest dish to grace a picnic table. But, we are going to change that today, friends! These Bourbon Bacon Baked Beans (say that three times! LOL!) are to-die-for!! Seriously, they are highly addictive! And, you won’t find many dishes this delicious that take such little time to prepare! The recipe starts with a can of baked beans. You could just dump the beans and heat them in the microwave. But that would just be sad! Let’s take that can of baked beans and add smoky hickory bacon, paprika, and bourbon! Also, brown sugar, ketchup, dijon mustard, and a few more delicious ingredients to elevate this humble dish to new heights! I promise this dish of Bourbon Bacon Baked Beans will come home empty from the next picnic you attend!
My childhood memories are filled with family reunions and the 4th of July picnics! My family would always go to a park on the shores of Lake Erie. We could hear the low volume of an FM radio. Hot dogs and hamburgers sizzled on grills cloaked in thin plumes of gray smoke. My mom always organized tons of games for my cousins and me! After a few hours of running around laughing and shrieking, we would gather around long splintery picnic tables draped with vinyl tablecloths topped with various contributions from family members. There were always creamy deviled eggs, tangy potato salad, a bucket of spicy fried chicken. What I remember the most is my mom’s baked beans! Creamy beans swimming in ketchup, brown sugar, and mustard sauce studded with nuggets of chewy bacon and softened diced onions!
My mom would have never added bourbon to her baked beans! Her daughter, however, oh yes! Let there be bourbon in our beans! The notes of vanilla, smoke, and caramel the bourbon lends to this dish make it amazing! The bacon and smoked paprika combine with the bourbon to make these beans taste as if they cooked over a crackling campfire!
We could always take the long route to make baked beans. We could rinse and soak dried beans overnight, rinse and drain them again, and then cook them! But why would we waste our sunny summer days doing that? There’s no shame in starting with a can of prepared baked beans and making them fancy! In case you’re curious, I used these. And, not because they are paying me! They are just plain delicious and make an excellent canvas for this dish! And, it gets us out of the kitchen and at the picnic table in no time!
If you are looking for more delicious recipes for the 4th of July try these!
Blackberry & Herbed Goat Cheese Crostini with Hot Honey Drizzle is so gorgeous! They’re almost too pretty to eat! Toasted slices of baguette are topped with a rosemary and chive flecked goat cheese spread. Garnish with a juicy blackberry and drizzle with a spicy homemade hot honey for an appetizer you won’t soon forget!
The 4th of July is the perfect time to get crazy, making berry recipes since the indoor and outdoor markets are overflowing with them! You’ll find me making Blueberry Lemon Coffee Cake for breakfast! Sipping more Triple Berry & Ancho Chile Sangria than I should be! And churning batch after batch of Blueberry & Oatmeal Creme Pie ice cream! The ice cream uses blueberry jam instead of fresh berries, so if you find your pantry overflowing with homemade (or store-bought!) blueberry jam, this is a delicious way to use it up!
Greek Tuna & Pasta Salad is a portable all-in-one dish that we love to enjoy al fresco on hot summer nights!
And since no meal is complete without a little something sweet!
Try one (or all!) of these recipes!
I wish you all a fantastic holiday weekend! Enjoy the sunshine! Stay safe! Eat well!
Bourbon Bacon Baked Beans! Hickory smoked bacon, a nip of bourbon, brown sugar, and smoked paprika elevate this picnic standard to a new level! Prepare to take an empty dish home!
28 ounce can vegetarian baked beans
1/3 cup ketchup
1 Tablespoon Dijon mustard
2 Tablespoons packed brown sugar
1/4 cup bourbon
4 thick slices hickory smoked bacon, cooked
1 small onion, diced
3/4 teaspoon smoked paprika
2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
- Preheat the oven to 350°.
- Chop the cooked bacon into small pieces.
- In a large bowl combine all of the ingredients.
- Pour into an 8×8 baking dish.
- Bake for 35-40 minutes, until hot and bubbling.
- I used a can of Bush’s Vegetarian Baked Beans. You can use your favorite brand!
- Make this dish vegetarian by omitting the bacon and Worcestershire sauce! Or, if you have a vegetarian brand of Worcestershire on hand, use that! Annie’s makes a good one!
- Prep Time: 5 minutes
- Cook Time: 40 minutes
- Category: Side Dish
- Method: Baked
- Cuisine: American
Keywords: bourbon bacon baked beans, beans, easy