happy accident – maple ginger baked beans

These beans are really TOO good.  My intent was to make a traditional baked beans, but somewhere along the way I made these.  They’re so good, I never even went back to make baked beans.  These taste surprisingly like the pork and beans we grew up with, but with a lingering sophistication from the ginger.  You have to make these for your next barbecue – they will make you famous!  You can easily half the recipe, but you’ll be surprised by how much the family will eat in a week.


2 lb small white beans
1 large sweet yellow onion
2 thick inches of fresh ginger, peeled and cut into 4 large chunks
1/3 cup maple syrup
2/3 cup agave nectar
2/3 cup brown sugar
3 tbs spicy brown mustard
1/2 cup ketchup
1 tsp dry mustard
1/2 lb thick cut bacon, fat trimmed and diced
1 bottle of Guinness beer

  1. Rinse and sort through beans looking for pebbles or misshapen beans.
  2. Place beans in a large bowl or pot, cover with 3 inches of cool water and soak for 4-12 hours.
  3. Drain and rinse beans, put in a large stockpot with a lid.  Fill pot with water as necessary to cover beans.  Put the lid on the pot and bring to a boil over high heat.
  4. Turn heat down to medium low and prop the lid open with a spoon so steam can escape.  Cook for 20-30 minutes or until tender.
  5. While the beans are cooking, heat a large skillet over medium heat.  Cook the bacon until it just begins to brown.  Add the onions and cook until soft, stirring occasionally (about 5 minutes).  Turn heat down to low and cook until golden brown, about 20 more minutes.
  6. When the beans are tender, drain in a colander, reserving cooking liquid.
  7. Return beans to pot, add Guinness, and enough cooking liquid to cover beans.  Add ginger, onion and bacon mixture, maple syrup, agave nectar, brown sugar, ketchup, mustard and dry mustard.
  8. Cover and simmer for another 30 minutes.