Baked Beans with Ground Beef

Everyone is going to ask for seconds.

Baked Beans with Ground Beef
Photo: Photography: Caitlin Bensel; Food Styling: Torie Cox
Active Time:
30 mins
Bake Time:
40 mins
Total Time:
1 hrs 20 mins
Servings:
12

Somewhere between a side dish and a meal, this sweet-and-savory baked bean dish features both bacon and a heaping amount of cooked ground beef. You can serve it alongside coleslaw, homemade cornbread, or your favorite meal from the barbecue.

What's the Best Beef for Baked Beans with Ground Beef?

The particular grade of beef is up to you, but we like 80/20 ground chunk because it often has the most flavor. However, because these baked beans bake for a while, the ground beef has time to absorb flavor. In that case, you can go a bit leaner, such a 90/10 ground sirloin.

Ingredients

  • 2 (15-ounce) cans red kidney beans, rinsed and drained

  • 1 (15-ounce) can great northern white beans, rinsed and drained

  • ¾ cup ketchup

  • ¾ cup sweet or spicy barbecue sauce

  • ¾ cup packed dark brown sugar

  • 2 Tbsp. Worcestershire sauce

  • 2 Tbsp. Dijon mustard

  • 4 slices (about 4 ounces) bacon, chopped

  • 1 pound ground beef

  • 1 medium yellow onion, diced

  • 1 medium red bell pepper, seeded and diced

  • 3 cloves garlic, minced

  • Salt and pepper, to taste

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 375°F. Spray a 9- x 13-inch baking dish with cooking spray. Combine the beans, ketchup, barbecue sauce, sugar, Worcestershire sauce, and mustard in the prepared baking dish. Set aside.

  2. In a large skillet, cook the bacon over medium heat until just crisp, about 6 minutes. Remove the bacon with a slotted spoon to a paper towel-lined plate. Keep 1 tablespoon of bacon fat in the skillet.

  3. Add the ground beef to the skillet and cook for 4 minutes, breaking it up with a wooden spoon. Add the onions and peppers, and continue cooking until the beef is cooked through and the onions are soft, 4 to 6 minutes. Drain any excess liquid from the mixture, if needed. Stir in the garlic and cook for 1 additional minute. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Transfer the beef mixture to the baking dish and stir to combine well. Sprinkle the bacon over the top.

  4. Cover the dish with foil or an oven-safe lid and bake for 30 minutes. Remove the foil or lid and continue to bake until the mixture thickens slightly, another 10 minutes. Let rest for 10 minutes before serving.

If you like slightly less sweet baked beans, scale back the brown sugar to 1/3 to 1/2 cup. The sweet ketchup and barbecue sauce provide a good dose of sweetness.

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