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Slow Cooker Maple Bourbon Baked Beans

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Maple Bourbon Baked Beans

Yeah, I know. I’m not really “with” the seasons right now. Then again, being “with it” isn’t exactly something of which I have ever been accused.

I definitely intended to get my act together and make these baked beans this summer. You know, when it was actually warm and the season for cookouts and whatnot. But somehow I blinked, and summer was suddenly gone.

Thankfully, we aren’t picky about when we eat our baked beans in this house. So as the cooler weather started rolling in, I pulled out the slow cooker and filled it with some dried pinto beans which had been soaking overnight, some spices, plenty of molasses, brown sugar, and maple syrup, and a whole cup of bourbon.

Beans, beans, they're good for your heart...

Yes, you read that right. There’s a cup of bourbon in them beans. It feels so wrong but it’s so, so right.

While this is an easy recipe, I won’t pretend like this is quick. It requires you to soak your beans (I highly recommend these from Bob’s Red Mill) for at least 8 hours, and the actual cook time on these suckers is a solid 12 hours – in fact, I would suggest letting these guys cook overnight, and reheating them when you are ready to eat. But trust me when I tell you that homemade beans are so, so worth it. These beans are sweet and rich and full of flavor from the bourbon and several slices of thick-cut bacon. Not to mention, beans freeze notoriously well, which means that a big pot of beans now can mean sides of baked beans a couple of months down the road.

Believe me, you’ll be thankful for that when there is snow up to your…nevermind.

Maple Bourbon Baked Beans close-up

3.8 from 6 reviews
Slow Cooker Maple Bourbon Baked Beans
  • 1 pound dried pinto beans
  • 7 slices thick-cut bacon, diced
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 1½ cups water
  • 1 cup bourbon
  • ½ cup ketchup
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • ½ cup maple syrup
  • 6 tablespoons molasses
  • 2 tablespoons cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon spicy brown mustard
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  1. Place the dried beans in a large bowl. Cover with 2-3 inches of water, and let soak for 8 hours or overnight at room temperature.
  2. When the beans are finished soaking, drain and place the beans in a slow cooker (minimum 3½-quarts). Place the diced onion and bacon on top.
  3. In a bowl, whisk together the remaining ingredients and pour over the beans. Cover and cook on high for 12 hours. 1-2 hours before the beans are done, you may want to check the sauce for consistency. If it seems too thin, prop the lid open slightly with a wooden spoon to allow the sauce to reduce and thicken slightly while the beans finish cooking.
  4. If cooking overnight, allow the beans to cool to room temperature before placing in the fridge. Reheat before serving.

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Sunday 8th of August 2021

I have read you can do the beans by boiling the water and letting them soak for a hour. Does that work as well?

Unique Twists on Traditional BBQ Side Dishes - Free Cooking and BBQ Magazine

Wednesday 10th of March 2021

[…] Maple Bourbon Baked Beans With an entire cup of bourbon in this recipe, healthy beans become a naughty treat.  Maple, molasses, and brown sugar bring plenty of sweetness and the best part is they are made in the slow cooker to save time. […]

Tom Dusing

Saturday 27th of July 2019

I will be trying this in the near future.


Monday 13th of May 2019

5 stars because it insists on a rating. Haven't tried yet but am looking forward to try. But I just want to lnow if a pressure sooker can be used to take some of the slow cooker time?


Saturday 29th of June 2019

Hi Karen! I have not tried this recipe in a pressure cooker yet, although I'm sure it could be done. If you give it a try, I'd love to know how it goes!


Wednesday 6th of July 2016

Im in to the 10 hour mark now and the house smells amazing! Why Im cooking beans on one the hottest days of the year? The recipe caught my eye :) I snuck a sample taste and already I can tell this will be delicious ! I substituted the bourbon for a dark beer because I really don't have it around the house. I gave it a 4, but Im sure when I do it with the bourbon it will be a 5! Thank you..