Steven Raichlen’s The Barbecue! Bible is always a go-to book for me on all things barbecued. It is crammed full of so many fantastic recipes that I make time and time again. Like these smokehouse beans. They are so easy to make (with items I always have in my pantry or fridge) but come out just divine. Don’t waste your money on the canned version when you can make delicious BBQ beans on your smoker in less than 4 hours.
If you’re not a fan of liquid smoke, feel free to leave it out. But you’ll want to make up for it by making sure that your smoker is producing a good bit of smoke, so add a few extra chunks of wood if you do. Using double-smoked bacon will also add more fantastic smoke flavor.
You can also make smokehouse beans on a grill. Just use indirect heat. If you’re using a gas grill you might want to add a few chunks of wood to a wood box. If you don’t have one, that’s ok. The liquid smoke will still give you that smokehouse flavor.
Also try my peach BBQ beans.
These smokehouse beans are so easy to make but come out just divine. Don't waste your money on canned barbecue beans. These are so much better.
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 3 hours
Servings 8 servings
- 8 slices thin-cut bacon cut into 1/4" pieces
- 1 large onion finely chopped
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 30 ounces canned kidney beans rinsed, drained
- 15 ounces canned black beans rinsed, drained
- 1/3 cup dark brown sugar
- 1/4 cup molasses
- 1/4 cup bottled barbecue sauce
- 1/4 cup ketchup
- 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
- 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- 1 tablespoon dry mustard
- 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- 1/2 teaspoon liquid smoke
- 1/2 cup beer plus more, if needed
- kosher salt
- freshly ground black pepper
Fire up your smoker for cooking at 225 F. I used plenty of hickory wood because I wanted a good amount of smoke flavor.
Cook the bacon pieces in a large pot or Dutch oven. Drain all but 2 tablespoons of the fat (optional).
Add the onion and garlic. Stir and cook until starting to soften, about 5 minutes.
Add the remaining ingredients. Transfer to a disposable pan and onto the smoker.
Smoke 2-3 hours, stirring occasionally. If the beans get too thick, stir in a bit more beer.
Why grab a can of pre-made BBQ beans at the store when you can make your own in no time at all. Sure, I’ve made scratch baked beans before (on the smoker and they were fantastic!). These aren’t those beans. Quick to fix, these BBQ beans still pack in the flavor.
You can make these beans taste however you like just by changing which BBQ sauce you add. From smoky to spicy, you can’t go wrong. And speaking of spicy, for a little extra kick add a few sliced jalapenos. And for extra crunch, chop half of a medium sweet onion and toss that in too. You really cannot make a boo-boo when you make these beans.
If you have more time, try making my best BBQ beans on the planet (really, they are), Dinosaur-style BBQ beans, Peach BBQ beans, and Tangy Pit Beans.
Quick Fix BBQ Beans
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes
Servings 8 servings
- 1/2 large red or green bell pepper chopped
- 2 15 ounce cans pinto beans, rinsed, drained
- 1 cup your favorite BBQ sauce
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
After I finish writing this post I will curl up in front of a big bowl of these tangy pit beans and go to town on them. I love baked beans, and this is a very, very good variation on the theme. They are not boring. They have just the right amount of tang. And since this recipe makes a big batch, it’s a great dish to take to a pitch-in or family picnic.
These tangy pit beans were the perfect side for my smoked habanero meatloaf and cedar planked creamy mashed potato dinner.
If you’re in a hurry but still want great BBQ beans, try my quick fix version.
Tangy Pit Beans
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 15 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 25 minutes
Servings 12 -14 servings
- 2 tablespoons prepared yellow mustard
- 3 cups ketchup
- 1 cup diced sweet onion
- 1 medium green bell pepper chopped
- 1 1/2 cups brown sugar
- 1/2 cup honey
- 1 1/2 tablespoons BBQ rub I used our Memphis Rib Rub
- 2 15 ounce cans pork and beans
- 2 15 1/2 ounce cans red kidney beans, rinsed, drained
- 1 15 1/2 ounce can chili beans
- 1 15 1/2 ounce can large butter beans, rinsed, drained
- 1 15 1/2 ounce can pinto beans, rinsed, drained
- 4-5 strips of bacon
Preheat oven to 350 F. You can also make these beans on your smoker at 250 F, but you'll have to increase the cook time to 3 hours.
Whisk together the mustard and ketchup in a large bowl.
Stir in the onion, pepper, sugar, honey, and rub.
Add the beans, and slowly and gently fold in to mix well.
Pour mixture into a deep 9" x 13" baking ban.
Add bacon to top of beans and cover with foil.
Bake for 45 minutes.
Remove foil and bake another 15 minutes.
Let rest 15 minutes before serving.