Canned baked beans….meh. They’re great for a quick and convenient snack, but beware – the average can of beans has 21g of sugar. It is simple to make your own, you then know exactly what goes into them, and you can also mix up your beans if you like. You don’t have to use haricot, you can use cannelini, pinto, navy, any type you like or a mixture.
My recipe uses chorizo, you can also use bacon if you don’t like the strong flavour of chorizo, or if you are vegetarian, you can leave out the meat (or include vegan sausages) and up the flavour stakes with additional herbs and spices. This recipe makes enough for 4 serves for dinner or approx 6 batches of smaller lunch-time serves. Quite an easily portable snack too. You can also serve more people at dinner by adding other ingredients to the plate such as toast, cheese, eggs, sausages, chips, hash browns and sauteed mushrooms.
2 x 400g cans of beans of your choice (you can also use dried beans if you soak them overnight)
1 x 400g can of diced tomatoes (or about 6 large Roma or Truss tomatoes skinned and chopped)
1 average sized onion, diced
1 clove of garlic, very thinly sliced or chopped
Optional extra veg: a small chopped carrot, a small chopped capsicum
1 chorizo chopped into small dice, or two to three rashers of smoked bacon diced or vegan sausages chopped
1 teaspoon of Worcester sauce (If vegan, use a spoon of liquid smoke instead)
1 teaspoon of dijon mustard
1 teaspoon of smoked paprika
Half a teaspoon of cumin powder
1 teaspoon of mixed herbs, dried, fresh or freeze dried
1 teaspoon of vegetable stock powder
salt/pepper/sugar to taste
Prepare the chopped ingredients:
If using canned beans drain them:
Fry the chorizo, or vegan sausages, (or bacon) in a few tablespoons of olive oil until it is slightly crispy and the fat has rendered.
Add the onions and garlic (and the carrot and capsicum if including them):
Once the onion begins to soften add the flavourings – mustard, cumin, paprika, herbs, Worcester sauce, stock powder.
Stir everything to combine well and then add the tomatoes.
Half fill the tomato can with water, swirl it to rinse the last bits of tomato and add it to the pan. Alternatively just add a little extra water if using fresh tomatoes.
Add the beans, but try not to stir them too much (this tends to mush them up. Shake them around the pan.
Leave to cook for 20 – 30 minutes until the beans are soft enough to eat. Add salt and pepper to taste. You shouldn’t need to add sugar, but if you do, consider adding some honey or agave syrup instead of granulated sugar.
Serve in a bowl with fresh crusty bread and some grated cheese. So simple and tasty that you’ll probably never buy cans of baked beans again.
Vegan version with vegan sausages and carrot: