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Mr. T's "Old-Timey Baked Beans"

Discussion in 'Side Items' started by mr t 59874, Feb 26, 2016.

  1. mr t 59874

    mr t 59874 Master of the Pit SMF Premier Member

    The following is the actual commercial recipe for “Mr.T’s ® Original Baked Bean Dry Mix”.

     These baked beans are the real deal. The results of this made from scratch, baked bean recipe are phenomenal. Baking many hours with low heat produces a complex flavor to the baked beans and the exceptional flavor and aroma will have them standing in line at the potlucks and backyard BBQ’s. Although the recipe is time-consuming, you will find it worth every minute, please enjoy.


    Yield:  Approx. 1 gallon, 16 servings, ¾ cup per serving

                This recipe may easily be doubled or halved

    Difficulty:  Medium

    Prep time: Overnight plus 30 minutes

    Cooking time: 7 hours


    4 cups-2 Lb. Great Northern beans

    2/3 cup         dark molasses

    1  Lb.           salt pork, hickory smoked, cubed

    4                   whole cloves

    1  med.        Yellow onion, peeled, halved, studded with 4 cloves

     Dry Mix:

    2 tsp. - 4.7 g     dry mustard

    4 tsp. -  20.6 g  kosher salt

    ½  tsp. - 1.5 g   ground pepper                    

    ½  cup              dark brown sugar, packed                

    ½  tsp. – 1.2 g  Paprika                                


    1. Soak beans overnight, drain

    2. Bring enough water to cover beans to a boil for ten minutes

    3. Drain beans reserving water

    4. Rinse beans in cold water and set aside

    5. Dice smoked salt pork into 1-inch squares, put half on bottom of pot over onion

    6. Add beans

    7. Place remaining salt pork on top of beans

    8. Mix other ingredients into 6 cups of the reserved water and dissolve

    9. Pour the mixture over the beans to cover. Do not flood, cover tightly.

    10. Place in preheated 325°F-163°C oven for 6 hours or overnight at 300°F-149°C

    11. When beans are tender, bake uncovered at 250°F-121°C for 1 hour to brown surface, reduce, and thicken the liquid.

    12. Allow to cool, lightly stir and serve.

    These beans are best the next day and may be served, hot or cold.

    Cook's Note:

     Check & add reserved mixture every hour if needed to keep beans moist. Do not flood or allow the beans to become dry.

     Check for tenderness before finally removing beans from the oven. Due to water being used when cooking the beans, actual cooking times may differ due to the elevation they are cooked at. 

    Example of cooking time:

                     0800  water on to boil

                     0840  oven on 325° F-163°C.

                     0900  beans in oven

                     1500 oven 250°F-121°C.

                     1600  beans off

    All ingredients

    Beans after overnight soak

    Halved onion studded with cloves in bean pot / kettle

    Half of smoked salt pork with onion

    Strained beans after 10 minute boil and reserved liquid

    Reserved liquid after dry mix is added

    Beans added to pot

    Remaining smoked salt pork added to beans

    Liquid added to beans prior to baking

    Beans after 7 hours in oven

    Beans after light mixing and ready to be served

    Beans ready for serving


    Pork and beans

    From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    Pork and beans  is a culinary  dish that uses beans  and pork  as its main ingredients. Numerous variations exist, usually with a more specific name, from Fabada Asturiana[1]  to Olla podrida, to American canned pork and beans.[2]

    American canned pork and beans[edit]

    Although the time and place of the dish's invention is unclear, it was well established in the American diet by the mid-19th century. The 1832 cookbook The American Frugal Housewife  lists only three ingredients for this dish: a quart of beans, a pound of salt pork, and pepper.[3]According to the 1975 Better Homes and Garden Heritage Cookbook, canned pork and beans was the first convenience food.

    Commercially canned pork and beans were introduced in the United States during the 1880s. The dish is "an American canned classic, [and] is recognized by American consumers generally as an article of commerce that contains very little pork."[4]  This is due to the high fat content of the salt pork traditionally used for the last 180 years in American pork and beans, which often renders into solution when sufficiently heated.

    The recipe for American commercially canned pork and beans varies slightly from company to company, but generally consists of rehydrated  navy beans  packed in tomato sauce (usually made from concentrate and which may incorporate starch, sugar, salt and seasoning) with small chunks of salted pork  or rendered pork fat.[5]  The ingredients are cooked and packed into hermetically sealed containers and processed by heat to assure preservation.[6]

     Salt pork

    From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    Salt pork[1]  is salt-cured  pork. It is prepared from one of three primal cuts: pork side, pork belly, or fatback.[2][3][4]  Depending on the cut, respectively, salt pork may be lean, streaky or entirely fatty. Made from the same cuts as bacon, salt pork resembles uncut slab bacon, but is considerably saltier and not bacon-cured or smoked. It is thus virtually identical to the Ukrainian food salo, which also displays similar variation in meat-to-fat ratio. Long used as a shipboard ration,[5]  salt pork now finds use in traditional American cuisine, particularly Boston baked beans,[6]pork and beans, and to add its flavor to vegetables cooked in water, or with greens  as in soul food. It's also central to the flavoring of clam chowder. It generally is cut and cooked (blanched  or rendered) before use.

    Along with hardtack, salt pork was a standard ration  for many militaries and navies throughout the 17th, 18th, and 19th centuries, seeing usage in the American Civil WarWar of 1812, and the Napoleonic Wars, among others.
    Last edited: Feb 27, 2016
  2. chef jimmyj

    chef jimmyj Epic Pitmaster Staff Member Moderator Group Lead OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Sounds like a great balance of flavors and not too sweet...JJ
  3. driedstick

    driedstick Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Looks great Tom,, Never thought  about reserving the Liquid,, thanks for sharing,,will have to try it one of these times when I can get caught up on my list of to-do's LOL 

  4. b-one

    b-one Legendary Pitmaster OTBS Member

    Looks like a great recipe! I love great northern beans but use the pre cooked ones out of convience.
  5. dls1

    dls1 Smoking Fanatic

    Nice looking pot of baked beans, Tom.

    With a couple variations, your recipe and method are quite similar to mine. I omit, and supplement, the brown sugar with additional molasses, specifically blackstrap. Also, I saute the salt pork cubes for about 5 minutes with 3-4 diced anchovy fillets. As a guideline, after incorporating all of the ingredients, I bake the pre-soaked beans at 250°F in a tightly covered pot for around 6 hours, then remove the cover and continue for another 2-3 hours, or until the beans are tender. I reserve the beans overnight, then gently reheat the following day. Just prior to service, I stir in a couple tablespoons of dark rum.

    I haven't made baked beans for a while so thanks for the reminder and inspiration. I'm going to pick up some Great Northerns tomorrow.
  6. mr t 59874

    mr t 59874 Master of the Pit SMF Premier Member

    Thanks JJ, spot on.

    Thanks ds, there's a lot of flavor in the liquid.

    Thanks b-one.

    Thanks dls1, your recipe sounds good. I wanted to develope recipe that was both good and marketable, the above was the result.

  7. travisty

    travisty Smoking Fanatic SMF Premier Member

    I pitty the fool who wont at least try making these once or twice![​IMG]
  8. foamheart

    foamheart Epic Pitmaster OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I love Great Northern beans!  White beans and rice is a cooazz staple. But it usually has some fried protien with it, like fried oysters or fish, or boudin balls.

    Then when I lived up in Conn. they taught me that not all baked beans come out of cans. Zowie, some really good food for a cold winters supper.

    I am adding this to my recipe list, and you know I'll be trying soon!

    Great looking bowl. But wheres the featured knife? You always have a knife that makes me drool.
  9. ak1

    ak1 Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Hell! I'm in! This looks too good.
  10. Tom,

    this looks great!!!! , too bad three days ago we made a huge batch for a gathering. this will definitely be the next go around. 

    Thank you for sharing, [​IMG]

  11. weev

    weev Smoking Fanatic ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    Sounds good have you tried finishing up this recipe in the smoker maybe pre bake then finish the next day
  12. redheelerdog

    redheelerdog Master of the Pit SMF Premier Member

    Those beans look amazing - thanks for the info and recipe!

  13. mr t 59874

    mr t 59874 Master of the Pit SMF Premier Member

    Good one.

    Thanks Foam, the knives were nearby. I will be more attentive on the next one, thanks.

    Thanks AK1.

    Thank you and you are welcome. Let us know how they turn out.

    Good question Weev. I have considered doing that but I did not want to add to much smoke and cover up the other flavors. I use a hot smoke on the salt pork (2 oz.Hickory,medium density, white smoke @ 175°) for ± 45 minutes. The result being an overall hint of smoke flavor to the beans with a more pronounced smoke flavor to the salt pork without the bitter taste reminiscent of over smoked foods.  

    Thanks and you are welcome.

  14. mr t 59874

    mr t 59874 Master of the Pit SMF Premier Member

    dls1 touched on an important point in his post. Check for tenderness before finally removing beans from the oven. Due to water being used when cooking the beans, actual cooking times may differ due to the elevation they are cooked at. I will edit the thread to include this information.

  15. SmokinAl

    SmokinAl SMF Hall of Fame Pitmaster Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    That's a great looking bean recipe.

    Time consuming as you say, but it sure looks like it's worth the wait.

    Have you ever smoked them under a rack of ribs, so the beans would get some rib drippings?

    Points for a great post!

  16. dirtsailor2003

    dirtsailor2003 Epic Pitmaster OTBS Member

    Looks great Tom!

  17. mr t 59874

    mr t 59874 Master of the Pit SMF Premier Member

    Thank you, Al. Your idea of smoking under a rack of ribs would surely work with certain recipes. This one, however, gets the desired amount of smoke flavor from the smoked salt pork. By selecting and smoking a fatty piece of salt pork, plenty of fat / flavor is infused into the beans.

    Thanks for your question and point.

    Thank you, ds.

  18. thatcho

    thatcho Meat Mopper

    Looks outstanding maybe a honey do this weekend.
  19. mr t 59874

    mr t 59874 Master of the Pit SMF Premier Member

    Suggestion on cooking the beans, smoke salt pork anytime ahead of bake, soak beans Friday night, bake on Saturday, share on Sunday. This timeline will allow full flavor saturation throughout.

    Let us know how they turned out. 

  20. thatcho

    thatcho Meat Mopper

    Sounds like a plan MR. T. Thanks for the heads up