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BBQ Baked Beans in a cast iron pan

Smoked BBQ Baked Beans

Easy barbecued baked beans that are comforting, slightly sweet, mildly smoky, rich, meaty, and totally indulgent.
Course Side Dish
Cuisine barbecue, bbq, side dish, Smoked Food
Keyword barbecued baked beans, BBQ Baked Beans, smoked baked beans
Prep Time 25 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 25 minutes
Servings 6 -8 servings
Cost $25.00


  • 4 slices thick-cut bacon, diced diced
  • 1 large red onion, chopped (about 2 cups)
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 cup beer, amber or pale ale
  • 1 cup tomato sauce
  • ¼ cup balsamic vinegar
  • ¼ cup molasses
  • ¼ cup brown sugar
  • ¼ cup Dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon coarse black pepper
  • 3 15-oz cans beans, drained and rinsed (a combination of pinto, white, kidney, or black beans)
  • 1 cup water, as needed (or a combination of other liquids, including coffee, see notes)

Optional additions:

  • 1 cup shredded brisket or pulled pork
  • 1-2 tablespoons maple syrup, for sweetness
  • 1-2 tablespoons hot sauce, for heat
  • ¼ cup coffee, for richness
  • 1 tablespoon cider vinegar, for acid/tang


  • Pre-heat smoker to 275 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • In a large cast iron skillet, sauté the bacon over medium heat about 5 minutes, just to render the fat and crisp up the bacon. Remove the bacon (set aside for later) and discard most of the fat (saving about 2 tablespoons for the next step).
  • Add the onions and sauté over medium heat for 5 minutes, add garlic and sauté another 2 minutes or until onion and garlic is soft, but not caramelized.
  • Add the beer and cook down for 1 minute. Add the tomato sauce, balsamic, molasses, brown sugar, Dijon, salt, pepper, beans and the cooked bacon. Mix to combine.
    If adding pulled pork or brisket, do it now and mix to combine.
  • Transfer pot onto the smoker, uncovered, and cook for 60 minutes until they are thick, rich, and well combined. Stirring occasionally.
  • If they start to look a little dried out, add some water or other liquids (like coffee), in small increments (about ½ cup at a time).