foods and cuisines

Boston baked beans | A taste of home that’ll bring back fond memories of your last fiesta

A variety of baked beans, typically sweetened with molasses or maple syrup and flavored with salt pork or bacon.

General Region : North East

Associated Region: Boston, Massachusetts

Regional varieties

The region has two main styles of baked beans: Boston baked beans and Maine baked beans. The difference between the two styles is that Boston beans are made with small white navy beans or pea beans with thin skin while Maine beans are made with native bean varieties with thicker skins. The varieties used in Maine are Marafax, soldier, and the most popular baked bean variety in Maine is the yellow-eye.

Both varieties are often made with salt pork or bacon. However, there is also a long tradition of vegetarian baked beans made with the same recipe as Boston baked beans or Maine baked beans but made without the addition of salt pork or bacon

Boston baked beans Ingredients

  • 300g of dried white haricot beans, soaked for at least 4 hours
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 carrot, peeled and quartered
  • 1 onion, peeled and quartered
  • 1 garlic clove, peeled and bashed
  • 250g of pork belly, (salted or smoked if possible) diced
  • 100g of blackstrap molasses
  • 1 tbsp of Dijon mustard
  • 1 tsp onion granules
  • 1 tsp garlic granules
  • 1 pinch of cloves
  • salt
  • pepper

Method of preparing Boston baked beans

  • Drain the soaked beans and place in a pan with the bay leaf, carrot, onion and garlic. Top up with water and cook for 30 minutes or until beans are cooked but not too soft as they will also be baked in the oven. Keep an eye on the water level and top up if needed.
  • Place the pork belly in a pan and top up with water. Bring up to the boil, skim off the scum from the surface, then drain and set aside.
  • Once the beans are cooked, drain, reserving 350ml of the cooking water and discarding the carrot and onion. Place the beans into an oven proof dish with a lid (or use tin foil).
  • Preheat the oven to 160°C/gas mark 3.
  • Stir the molasses, mustard and spices into the reserved cooking water. Season with salt and pepper.
  • Add the pork to the beans and stir in the cooking sauce. Cover with a lid and bake for 2–3 hours. Remove the lid for the last 30 minutes and give the beans a stir. The final 30 minutes should allow the sauce to reduce and become nice and sticky.

Why do they call them Boston baked beans?

Boston Baked Beans are a candy industry name for sugar coated peanuts that have been dyed red to match the color of, you guessed it, baked beans. Their origin is muddy. No one really seems to know who came up with them.

What are Boston beans made of?

If someone offers you Boston baked beans, you’ll most likely receive a sweet-savory blend of navy beans that have been slow-cooked in molasses, black pepper, and salt pork. That classic style has been synonymous with the city known as “Beantown” for centuries.

Are Boston baked beans good?

Just like other types of baked beans, Boston baked beans are made with small white beans that are baked in the oven with a sweet-and-savory sauce. As the beans bake, the sauce thickens, the edges caramelize, and the flavors intensify. This is a dish that is definitely worth the wait, friends.

What to eat with baked beans?

Not only do many vegetables go with baked beans, but salads, fruit, cornbread, and potato dishes pair well.

What flavor is Boston baked beans?

Boston Baked Beans candy can be found in various retail outlets, including grocery stores, convenience stores, and online retailers. It remains a popular choice for those seeking a crunchy, peanut-flavored treat.

Who eats baked beans for breakfast?

Beans and toast is a breakfast tradition in the UK (it’s both adored and loathed) that has stood the test of time. The story goes that in 1927 an executive at Heinz decided to create a national dish in order to sell more canned beans and an iconic dish was born.

Are Boston Baked Beans sweet?

Traditional baked bean recipes use brown sugar to sweeten the tomato-based sauce, while Boston baked beans rely on molasses to add a honeyed richness to the dish.