long slow cooking dark rum maple baked beans

Some comfort food just takes a long time to cook….perfect for a cold day (and night in this case) at home.

And…. I like rum…..and dark rum works really well with baked beans

The finished beans do not taste like alcohol and all traces of alcohol are removed. There’s no way any traces survive 16+ hours of simmering, and no one will get tipsy from beans. The rum adds such richness and depth of flavor that I cannot imagine the beans without it.

If you have reasons to omit the rum, you may replace it with water; however, your beans won’t taste like mine and I loved everything about them. So far everyone who has sampled the beans has asked for the recipe…or more servings. . . .

Long slow cooking dark rum maple baked beans

1 pound dry Great Northern beans (or navy beans)
1 cup dark rum
1 cup maple syrup
1 cup barbecue sauce
1 cup light brown sugar, packed
1 cup water
heaping 1/4 cup ketchup
1/4 cup yellow mustard
1/4 cup molasses(not dark/robust/blackstrap)
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar

  1. Rinse and sort dry beans in a colander over the sink.
  2. Add beans to a large pot and cover with 8 cups water and let soak overnight (about 8 hours). OR to save time….
  3. …Use the 1 hour rapid soak method. Bring beans and 8 cups water to a boil. Allow beans to boil rapidly for 3 minutes, uncovered. Shut the heat off, cover the pot, and let stand for 1 hour.
  4. In either the overnight soak method or the 1 hour rapid soak method, drain soaking water and rinse beans well under running water in a colander over the sink. Rinse again, just to be careful.
  5. Return beans to pot, cover with 6 cups water, and allow to simmer on low heat for about 45 minutes, or until quite tender and cooked about 80% of the way. They’ll be transferred to a slow cooker where they’ll cook for 12+ hours so you don’t want them or need them to be totally done, but they shouldn’t be overly hard either (taste a few beans, you’ll know when you bite into them)
  6. While beans are simmering, combine all remaining ingredients in the slow cooker, and whisk to combine until smooth. I turn my slow cooker on low at this point to help the ingredients blend together.
  7. After beans have finished simmering, drain them, add them to the slow cooker, and stirthoroughly.
  8. Cover and cook on low heat for about 12 hours (start checking at about 8 hours), or until beans are tender.  The sauce will thicken and reduce dramatically – you will easily be able to see this step. The  smell in your house is intoxicating. If after 12 hours your sauce is still liquid or on the soupy side, remove the lid, increase the heat to the highest setting, and cook uncovered until thickened to desired level (this took 4 hours for me; 12 hours covered on low and 4 hours uncovered on high, for 16 hours total). Note – Because slow-cookers and temperatures vary greatly, you can tinker with the temperature settings as you see fit. You could possibly cook on medium for 10 to 12 hours, or cook on high for 8 to 10 hours, or do a combination of settings until your sauce has thickened and beans are tender.
  9. Serve immediately. Beans will keep airtight in the refrigerator for up to 1 week, and taste better on days 2 and 3 as the flavor blend even more.

Add some vegan cheese or just eat from a bowl – these are scrumptious! They can also be served over rice and freeze beautifully.

In fact, I often double the recipe to give me more to freeze. When I double it, I allow for 24+hours of cooking…and 20 servings.




Author: mduggan10

I have lived in a Victorian-era house, spent several years living on a boat, and now live at the top of a mountain. Throughout his all, I have been a coffee snob, a whole foods snob, and an instructional designer.

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