We recently had our first annual neighborhood block party. It was an absolute blast! The ladies who organized the event thought of absolutely everything. There was a bean bag toss tournament for adults (lesson learned: I am a terrible bean bag tosser). There was a cake walk for the children…well…cookie walk anyway (and my 4 year old won a round – he was thrilled!) There was face painting and someone called the ice cream truck to stop by. And then the fire department stopped by with a demonstration and even let the kids use the fire hose. It was amazing.
And then there was the food. Of course there were burgers & hot dogs and a pot luck dish to share. So it was the perfect time to give a new bean recipe a try! These beans were super delicious; I mean a cup of bourbon? Come on – they have to be great! These beans are also perfect for those people who don’t like spicy beans. These were definitely on the sweeter side, but with an amazing depth of flavor that was a huge crowd pleaser!
*For spicier beans, use a spicy BBQ sauce or add in a minced chipotle pepper!
Crockpot Bacon Bourbon Baked Beans
Adapted (slightly) from How Sweet Eats
1 lb dry navy beans
1 lb thick cut bacon, cut into pieces
1 medium onion, diced
1 clove garlic, minced
2 cups water
¾ cup BBQ sauce
1 cup brown sugar, loosely packed
¼ cup ketchup
2 tbsp molasses
1 cup bourbon
1 ½ tbsp vinegar
2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
The night before serving, place the beans into a large pot and cover with water to soak. In the morning, drain the beans. Add them back into the pot and cover with water. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes. Drain and set aside.
Meanwhile, fry the bacon until crisp. Without draining, remove the bacon from the pan; set aside. Add the onions to the bacon drippings and fry until softened; 5-7 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 1 more minute. Remove from heat and set aside.
Add the remaining ingredients to the slow cooker and whisk to combine. Add in the beans, bacon, and onions (along with all those glorious bacon drippings) and stir to combine. Cook on high for 6 hours or low for 10-12 hours (but seriously, you’d have to start the beans at 4am or something to do that – craziness).
Two hours before serving, turn the heat off and stir. Allow the beans to set, in the crockpot, off the heat until ready to serve (this will give the sauce time to thicken.)