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Barbecue Beans

gluten free
wheat free
kid friendly
low fat low sugar, diabetic friendly
cheap as chickpeas
2 spoon difficulty rating

40 minutes

40 minutes total if using pre-cooked beans

Serves: 4

Barbecue Beans

We tend to think of baked beans as a tinned product, but of course, they were originally slow cooked in a casserole. This dish has a nice home-cooked taste, is very cheap to make from scratch and a few basic flavourings, freezes well - and works brilliantly in a slow cooker as well as the oven. (Just fry up the onion, garlic and potato in a frying pan then add to the slow cooker along with everything else). However you cook it, serve with crusty bread, mixed green salad and seeds. It's also good with veggie sausages! This is worth doubling quantities and freezing half. It also tastes even better the next day.

Use tamari soya sauce

Image courtesy of Away to Garden, with thanks


  • 250g/9oz dried haricot beans, pre-soaked the night before OR 2 tins haricot beans, rinsed and drained (for a quick and super-budget dish, use 2 tins value baked beans, rinse off the tomato sauce in cold water and drain)
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 250g/8oz onions, chopped
  • 250g/8oz potatoes, chopped into small cubes (1½cm/1 inch)
  • 3 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 100g/3½ oz tomato purée
  • 1 tin chopped tomatoes
  • 1 tsp English mustard (check GF if appropriate)
  • 2 tsp molasses/black treacle
  • 1 tbsp syrup: rice, date or agave
  • 2 tbsp soya sauce - use tamari for GF option
  • Freshly ground black pepper


1. If using tinned beans, go to stage 5.

2. If using a slow cooker, cook pre-soaked beans for about half an hour then skip to stage 7 and onwards.

3. If cooking beans from scratch, soak beans the night or morning before in cold water - minimum 8 hours.

4. When ready, drain and rinse beans. Place in a medium-large pan and cover with water.

5. Bring to boil and simmer until beans are soft - 1 hour minimum, about 12-15 minutes on a high setting in a pressure cooker.

6. If using canned beans, drain and rinse thoroughly in cold water. Set aside.

7. Heat olive oil in a large saucepan - use enough to cover the bottom. Fry the onion, garlic and potato in it. Fry in the smoked paprika for a minute.

8. With a fork or whisk, mix the tomato purée, chopped tomatoes, mustard, molasses, rice/date syrup and soya sauce in a bowl.

9. When potatoes are cooked and a bit browned, tip in the beans and the bowl of sauce into a large pan. (Or slow cooker pot if using)
10. Season with black pepper and salt to taste. Simmer for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally - or for 8 hours in a slow cooker on the lowest setting.

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