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Award-Winning Smoked Baked Beans Recipe (with VIDEO)

This award-winning smoked baked beans recipe was given to me by the wife of an uber-famous pitmaster who came to my book signing near Lake Austin and traded secrets with me all night long!!

Now, I can’t seem to start the pellet smoker without preparing this perfect side dish, full of rich smoky flavor, so today I’m sharing the dang thing! Get ready for a barbecue side dish that friends will beg you to make over and over again.

Juicy baked beans served up from a spoon out of an aluminum pan

While this classic recipe may seem like simple ingredients, it’s the secret ingredient that really makes it stand out among other bbq bean recipes–pineapple, which adds sweetness while melting into this lovely mixture of sweet and spicy goodness, is balanced with jalapeno peppers for a complex side dish with sass.

If a little bit of spice isn’t your thing, just remove the seeds and ribs of the jalapeno, leaving great flavor with very little heat.

Table of Contents

An aluminum pan full of the baked bean ingredients before stirring up
All of the ingredients are combined into an aluminum pan for easy cleanup and safe barbecue smoking

How to Smoke Beans

We start out with chunks of bacon, sliced into squares, cooked just enough to begin crisping up. We want the bacon to go on top of the beans crispy while utilizing all of the rich flavor in the bacon fat to saute our veggies.

A pan full of pieces of bacon crisping up
Crisping the bacon squares just enough that they can lay atop the baked beans

I start my pellet grill and fill it with wood chips while cooking the smoked bacon. If you are using an electric smoker you should do that as well so that you have plenty of time to warm up the smoker.

What Wood is Used to Smoke Beans?

The type of wood I choose is usually based on whatever else I am smoking but if it’s beef brisket I will be using live oak, hickory or pecan. If I’m smoking a pork butt it’s usually cherry wood. This recipe is such an easy side dish because it’s versatile.

Diced jalapeno, onion, and red bell pepper on a cutting board.
Serrano or Jalapeno Pepper can be used. Seeds may be removed for less spice.

How To Make Easy Baked Beans

This is one of the best side dishes because it’s so easy–it’s really just a can of baked beans loaded full of ingredients you probably already have in your pantry. Since dry beans are a long process, we love this recipe for its speed and flexibility.

This dish is made with ketchup, brown sugar, and yellow mustard powder, which are classic bbq sauce ingredients so it’s semi-homemade without going overboard.

Ingredients for smoked baked beans- Bush's Best Baked Bean, ketchup, pineapple tidbits, dry mustard powder.
Ingredients for our smoked beans include pineapple, the secret ingredient!

How To Make Baked Beans a Main Dish

Sweet barbecue baked beans are practically a main dish in themselves, but the classic addition of seared hot dogs (aka frank and beans) started sometime around the civil war. We like to add 5 sliced hot dogs, seared well in a large cast iron skillet to the beans to make them more substantial.

Also, leftover chopped brisket and smoked pork butt are a perfect addition to the bean mixture if you plan on serving it for dinner.

What Can I Add To Canned Beans For Flavor?

Along with the bacon, jalapeno, brown sugar, ketchup, and pineapple in this recipe, I recommend experimenting with adding apple cider vinegar, maple syrup, barbecue sauce, garlic, red onion, Worcestershire sauce, or a teaspoon of liquid smoke to canned beans for a quick zip of flavor.

An aluminum pan of smoked beans
Smoked Beans straight from the pit

What Goes With Baked Beans?

Baked beans are a great cookout side dish and go with everything you cook outside! Baked beans go with hotdogs and hamburgers, pulled pork, barbecue sandwiches, smoked brisket, barbecue ribs, pork belly, and sausage just to name a few.

Here are some of our favorite recipes with savory flavors to pair with sweet bbq beans.

Smoked baked beans straight out of the barbecue smoker

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A big pan of smoked baked beans with a spoon holding up a big potion of them.
Yield: 2.5 quarts

Award-Winning Smoked Baked Beans Recipe

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 3 hours
Total Time: 3 hours 15 minutes

These are the best smoked baked beans recipe ever! Serve them with barbecue and grilled hamburgers and hotdogs, throw them on the smoker and get ready to chow down. With this secret ingredient, there won't be any leftovers!

Ingredients

  • 8 slices of bacon, cut into ½ inch squares
  • ½ cup white onion, small diced
  • ½ red bell pepper, small diced
  • 1 serrano or jalapeno pepper, diced (leave seeds in for spicy)
  • 55oz. can Bush’s Baked Beans
  • 8 oz. can pineapple tidbits, drained, but reserve the juice
  • 1 c. brown sugar
  • 1 c. ketchup
  • ½ Tablespoon dry ground mustard (yellow)
  • Salt and black pepper, to taste
  • Optional: 1 c. chopped brisket or any other favorite smoked barbecue meat, chopped fine, 5 hotdogs, sliced and seared before adding.

Instructions

  1. In a cast iron skillet or saute pan, pour in the chopped bacon pieces and turn the heat to medium. Saute until the bacon is crispy and remove from the pan with a slotted spoon to a plate lined with a paper towel to drain.
  2. In the same skillet leave the bacon fat and add the diced onion, bell pepper, and jalapeno. Cook for 3-4 minutes or until tender.
  3. In a disposable pan (or this can be made in the cast iron skillet), add the cooked peppers and onions cooked in the bacon grease, the canned baked beans, pineapple chunks, ketchup, brown sugar, and dry mustard.
  4. Stir well incorporating all of the ingredients, if it needs thinning add the reserved pineapple juice.
  5. Place the cooked bacon squares on top of the baked beans.
  6. Smoke the beans at 225° to 250° for 2 ½ to 3 hours over indirect heat. (This recipe can also be made by baking in a 350° oven for 1 hour.)

Notes

If adding the optional meat, add with the other ingredients before placing the bacon on top. Then place in the barbecue smoker.

I love this recipe with 1 serrano pepper which is a more consistent heat than jalapeno peppers. The ribs and seeds can be removed for less spice.

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

15

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 346Total Fat: 12gSaturated Fat: 4gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 6gCholesterol: 44mgSodium: 926mgCarbohydrates: 46gFiber: 5gSugar: 29gProtein: 18g

This nutritional information is provided as a courtesy as an estimate only. Consult with a dietician for precise estimates. This website makes no claims that the nutritional values listed are accurate.

Did you make this recipe? Please leave us a comment below and let us know how it went!

Please leave a comment on the blog or share a photo on Instagram

Wendy Oltmanns

Sunday 9th of October 2022

I made these last night for a party and omitted the sugar. Had so many compliments about how beans are typically too sweet and syrupy but that these were perfect. Will make again!

Sarah Penrod

Tuesday 11th of October 2022

Glad to hear that worked out for you Wendy! :) Chef Sarah

Jayme

Wednesday 20th of April 2022

These are the only beans worth mentioning. Not another bean comes close.

Jayme

Monday 9th of May 2022

Update, we made these again on Mother's Day. We used the whole can of pineapple since it's my favorite part. We should've halved the sugar. I really can't get over how good these are. These must've been the beans Jack had because they are magic.

Cassie

Wednesday 20th of April 2022

These are the best beans I’ve ever had! A back mused bbq MUST!

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