Baked Beans in a Crockpot

37 Reviews / 4.6 Average
These Slow Cooker Baked Beans would be the perfect addition to any summer BBQ, cookout, or picnic, AND they are just as delicious leftover, so if you are entertaining make your day even easier by cooking these a day in advance. If served alongside other side dishes, this recipe will feed a small crowd.
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Can you smell that? It’s barbecue season! That means grilled meats and baked beans all-around. To ditch the canned stuff, we’ve created our own baked beans in a crockpot. These pack a lot more flavor, plus they’ll make your house smell absolutely incredible while they’re cooking! This also works as a good dairy-free, gluten-free and nut-free side allergy sensitive guests can enjoy, too.

There was a time when I thought baked beans only came out of a can. And, since we did away with most pre-made, canned foods back when we started our real food pledge, that means I didn’t have baked beans for a LONG time!

Cooking Baked Beans in a Crockpot

As it turns out…I really like and missed baked beans. So needless to say, I am glad to have them back in my life and am also glad to be able to introduce them to my kids (they both gave this recipe two thumbs up – whew!). With a little easy prep, you’re well on your way to making a baked beans side that everyone will gobble up this summer.

How to Soak Dried Navy Beans

Making baked beans in a slow cooker from scratch means using whole-food ingredients to get the most out of this recipe. For that reason, we recommend using dried Navy beans! Don’t worry though, all it takes is a simple soak in the fridge overnight to make them perfect for absorbing the spices and sauces that go into this set-and-forget side.

To soak dried Navy beans: Place them in a mixing bowl or container with water that just about covers them. Leave them in the fridge for about 6-8 hours, (or overnight), and drain them in the morning before putting them in the slow cooker!

We are officially ready for summer—bring it on!

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376 thoughts on “Baked Beans in a Crockpot”

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Recipe Rating




  1. Thank you for this recipe!! I didn’t have maple syrup so I just used 1/2 cup of brown sugar and the results were nothing short of amazing. My husband says they are the best beans he has ever had.

  2. 5 stars
    It’s in the crock pot now for dinner tomorrow night! Going to make it with corn bread and grilled chicken breast. I may make a salad too.

  3. 5 stars
    Thank you for this recipe! I made this today for a party and it turned out great! I actually made 5 cups of beans with two cans of organic tomato sauce and 3 1/2 cups of water and it turned out fine. Plenty of liquid. It tasted just like the canned ones but with cleaner ingredients. I diced the onions and left it in. Tastes just fine with it.

  4. Hi, just wondering if it’s ok that this looks really dry in the crock pot? I’m concerned about the beans that aren’t covered in sauce…

    1. Amy Taylor (comment moderator)

      Hello. We can’t answer recipe questions in real time, sorry. The beans should not have been dry. How did they turn out?

    1. Amy Taylor (comment moderator)

      Hi there. Other readers have used can beans. You might find them overly soft after slow cooking that long.

      1. Amy Taylor (comment moderator)

        Hi. Sometimes but usually use a sauce from a jar or tetra-pak. I, personally, no longer use canned tomato anything unless I know there is a bpa-free liner.

      1. Christina Olofintuyi

        I did high and in 8 hrs they are burned and ruined : -( My house smells bad too. I’ve never had anything burn in the crockpot before. I’m going to try again on low. Was really looking forward to these. Also the prep time was longer than 5 minutes for me with cooking the bacon, dicing it up and then mixing all the ingredients.

  5. Thanks for the recipe! If I am making the veggie version do you think salt needs to be added? If so how much?

    1. It’s not salt so much as umami/savory that you need. I make veg baked beans with molasses, but you could try soy sauce, steak sauce, maybe miso or something along that line.

  6. This may sound like a silly question, but I measured out the dried beans and soaked them overnight. The next morning they had swelled to twice their size! Do I use only half or all of them now? New to the dried bean game here!

      1. Kate | HappyForks.com

        5 stars
        Low temperature in the fridge lowers the activity of bacteria (so they don’t cause the fermentation) and still lets the beans to absorb the water. Anyway leaving them in room temperature for 6-8 hours should be safe, but definitely shouldn’t go over 12 hrs.

    1. Amy Taylor (comment moderator)

      Hi. Take a look at the picture at the top of the page and decide if it looks like a good consistency for you.

    2. Mine look soupy. And my fiancé feels they should be thicker. You can’t really tell by the picture much. But I can say this pictures mixture does look thicker than mine and I followed the recipe to the T.

  7. 5 stars
    I made this exactly as written, but it was done after 7 hours on high. It was absolutely delicious! I served it over wild rice. Also, I read several comments expressing concern about canned tomatoes. I found organic, one-ingredient strained tomatoes in a jar and they worked perfectly.

  8. I just made this recipe and it is AMAZING! I did (by mistake) not realize some ingredients were supposed to be whisked first, so I just stirred things up really good in the crock pot before starting cooking. I also was leary about cooking on high for that long so I cooked on LOW for 12 hours. (Beans had been soaked in water for about 4 hours beforehand). Came out perfectly! Definitely a keeper, I will never buy canned baked beans again!

  9. Thanks for the recipe. I liked the combination of flavours. I diced the onion and left it in the dish instead of removing it. I only put in 1/2 cup of syrup but I think I would cut it back even more next time. We took these to a potluck and they everyone enjoyed them. My husband was near the back of the line and didn’t even get to taste them. We’ll definitely make these again.

  10. The baked beans were fantastic! I made them on top of the stove in a heavy pot on low, just under simmer all day .

  11. 5 stars
    This recipe was excellent. I cooked it on high for ten hours and it came out perfectly and tasted better than store-bought beans. Thanks for sharing this! Excellent!

  12. This recipe is absolutely delicious and so easy. I leave out the bacon and green pepper and they are still yummy!!

  13. Heather Lively

    Has anyone ever added ground beef or turkey to these? Thinking you’d brown before and then add in?

    1. Amy Taylor (comment moderator)

      Hi . Adding meat would work. Do brown it first and add it toward the end of the cooking cycle.

  14. 5 stars
    We have made these several times and they always come out great. They are delicious and easy to make. We have had zero issues with the beans not cooking. They cook up perfectly and are usually finished cooking before 10 hours. We always use dried navy beans. We always soak them the night before. We have made them for numerous gatherings and they are always a hit. We usually freeze the leftovers for quick weeknight side dishes.

    For the people having issues with the beans not cooking: I am wondering if it might be the type beans you are using? Navy beans are the super small ones, not the larger kidney style beans like cannellini. Also, are you soaking the beans the night before?

  15. 5 stars
    I used canned beans because I waited to long to start the recipe and they were amazing! I also used green tomato sauce I had from last fall’s garden harvest since we were out. Worked great and were a huge hit! Thanks for sharing the recipe!

  16. 3 stars
    What did I do wrong? I made this recipe overnight and put everything in the crockpot as instructed but woke up to find it burnt to a crisp. There was still 2.5 hours remaining on the timer.

    1. Amy Taylor (comment moderator)

      Oh, sorry that happened. :( Unfortunately, not all crock pots cook at the same temps on high and low. It is likely that yours is particularly hot.

  17. After several failed attempts at these, I finally did some research and found out that adding something acidic (tomato sauce, vinegar) makes the beans take FOREVER to cook. My crockpot would be a blackened mess before the beans were soft. Now I cook the beans, pepper and onion on low for 6-8 hours with just water, then add the other ingredients to simmer for 30 minutes or so.

    1. I too have made this with a failed attempt. Mine were really gross. I don’t know what happened, but no one ate them and I threw the whole pot out. I really wanted it to work, and want to try again but don’t want to have to throw all of this away again! :(

    1. Amy Taylor (comment moderator)

      Hi Julie. Depending on appetite and what it is being served with, a half cup to a full cup is a good gauge.

  18. If you are cutting out canned beans, why would you make them and use a CAN of tomatoes? Trying to understand the difference in NOT using canned beans vs. canned tomatoes.

    1. Amy Taylor (comment moderator)

      Hi there. This recipe is a homemade version of baked beans. You can eliminate the tomato sauce short cut if you want the added step of making your own. You can also choose tomato sauce from a jar to avoid the worry of BPA.

  19. I just made these and they turned black around the edges in the crockpot after 10 hours. Should it really have been low not high setting?

    1. Amy Taylor (comment moderator)

      Hi Ann. Every crock pot is a little different. Some of the temperatures can vary at high and low settings leading to different results.

  20. I find that 10-12 hours on high is too much as the sweetness of the beans had a slightly burnt flavour. Is there a reason I can’t do it on low? If not, can I cut the time to 8 hours? Love this recipe! Thanks.

    1. Amy Taylor (comment moderator)

      Hi Pat. Your cooker probably cooks at a higher temperature. You can try it on low or for less time.

  21. Hi,
    This recipe calls for cooked bacon? I was confused by that and chopped it but left it raw…wanted it to impart flavor and not dry out. Was that a typo or do you actually cook the bacon before adding it?

  22. Thank you Amy! I totally understand it takes awhile to respond. I just wasn’t sure if I might get a response soon so I gave it a shot! I didn’t make the beans but I will be soon! I ended up making the BBQ sauce from the 100 Days cookbook though and it was INCREDIBLE!!! We all loved it!!! Yum!

  23. Hi! If I wanted to make a quicker stove top version of these beans using canned beans how many cans would I need and how long to cook??? I am out of bacon right now so it’ll be a vegetarian version but that’s ok with me. I just wanted to make these tonight with my pork roast but I’m already out of time to do crock pot version. Any advice is appreciated! Thanks!

    1. Amy Taylor (comment moderator)

      Hi Nicole. We are usually not able to answer recipe questions in real time. Did you make it? I’d say two 16 oz cans would be about right. I think I would cook the bacon, onion, and peppers before adding the other ingredients. :) Simmer for maybe 30 minutes or until the flavors blend together nicely.

  24. Hi! I love your site – thank you! Do you think the taste would be altered too much if I left out the yellow mustard? My husband is allergic. Thanks!