Everyone has their comfort foods – the dishes that your mom or grandmother used to make, and that somehow never taste as good, no matter how closely you follow their recipes and instructions. In my family, it’s always been dad’s recipes that inspire the most nostalgia in my head. His eggplant parmesan, or baked salmon. But even though dad is widely known as the head chef in our household, mom holds one recipe over him that tips the scales in her favor when it comes to comfort foods!
“Texas Beans,” which mom originally found in a recipe book produced by what was then our local grocery store chain, Ukrops, has been one of her staple dishes for as long as I can remember. The recipe card, like most good things, is worn with age and splattered with bacon grease and brown sugar. You can always tell a recipe has been well loved and well used by the amount of stains and smudges on it. This dish is also a great alternative to chili, if you’re looking to change up your dinner repertoire!
For this deliciously simple dump-and-go recipe, you’ll need a variety of beans, bacon, beef, and some very simple flavor enhancers.
First, preheat the oven to 325° F. Dice the onion into small pieces. Add to a large Dutch oven, along with a pound of 93% lean ground beef. Cook on medium heat until the beef is completely cooked and the onions are soft and translucent.
After the beef is finished cooking, add all the remaining ingredients to the pot. Stir well to combine. Cook, stirring occasionally, on medium heat for 5-10 minutes.
Note: the beans can be prepared up to a few days in advance. Just cook them through this step, refrigerate, and then bake them right before you’re ready to serve.
If your Dutch oven is oven-safe, go ahead and transfer it straight from the stovetop to the oven (leave the lid off). If not, transfer the beans to an oven-safe baking dish and bake for 35-45 minutes.
Remove from oven and enjoy while hot. I suggest serving with some warm buttery bread!
- 1 (6.3 oz) package fully cooked bacon
- 1 large yellow onion, diced
- 1 pound 93% lean ground beef
- 1 (15.8 oz) can kidney beans, undrained
- 1 (15.8 oz) can northern beans, undrained
- 1 (28 oz) can original Bush’s Baked Beans, undrained
- ½ (heaping) cup light brown sugar, packed
- ½ (heaping) cup ketchup
- 4 (heaping) teaspoons mustard
- Preheat the oven to 325° F.
- Dice the onion and the bacon into ¼” pieces. It doesn’t have to be precise – think of what size bacon you’d like on your spoon later!
- Place the beef and the diced onion into a large dutch oven and cook on medium heat until the onion is translucent and the beef is browned, about 10 minutes. Be sure to stir frequently to avoid burning.
- Once the beef is browned, add the bacon and cook for an additional 2-3 minutes.
- After bacon is warmed, add all other ingredients to the pan. Stir well, and let simmer for 5-10 minutes to allow flavors to meld.
- If your dutch oven is oven-safe, place in the oven. If not, transfer the beans to an oven safe casserole dish before baking.
- Bake for 35-45 minutes. Enjoy while hot.