Baked Calico Beans (Slow Cooker Baked Beans)
Great as a side dish or an entrée, Baked Calico Beans are hearty, savory, and always hit the spot! Loaded with ground beef and flavorful ingredients like Worcestershire sauce and ketchup (along with plenty of beans), this filling slow cooker recipe is ideal for potlucks, campfires, and as an easy weeknight dinner!
Baked Calico Beans
When I think of comforting meals from below the Mason Dixon line, this easy recipe always comes to mind first! It’s hearty, filling, and deliciously savory. Pork and beans, kidney beans, and butter beans create the calico look to the dish while also making it tasty as can be! While the beans may be the star of the show, though, what I think makes this recipe so tasty is the ground beef and added flavorful ingredients.
Worcestershire sauce, Ketchup, brown sugar and more mix together to create a seriously good flavor palate for the beans and ground beef to absorb as it all slowly cooks together. That’s why it’s so great to use the slow cooker for this recipe – it not only keeps things nice and easy, but the flavors really have time to settle and develop. Also, the beans become perfectly tender from the slow cooking!
If you serve this bean dish as an entrée, make sure to serve some Buttermilk Cornbread with it! It’s a fun dinner to make if your little ones are into cowboys, and the two pair wonderfully together. This calico beans recipe also is good as a side dish for more southern staple entrées like Easy Chicken Fried Steak or BBQ Country Style Pork Ribs. While calico beans are a great comfort meal for when it’s cold outside, they’re also just as enjoyable at a summertime cookout!
How to Make It
Just like any good Crockpot recipe, these calico beans are delightfully easy to make!
Cook the beef. In a large skillet over medium high heat brown and cook your ground beef. Drain off the grease.
Add the ingredients. To your slow cooker add the ground beef, diced onion, pork and beans, drained kidney and butter beans, ketchup, brown sugar, Worcestershire sauce, vinegar, and water.
Stir. Stir to combine.
Add seasonings. Add salt and pepper to taste.
Cook. Cover and cook on low for 4 hours, stirring once.
Serve and enjoy!
Variations to Try
There are plenty of ways to customize these tried and true beans while still keeping them tasty! Here are just a few variations you may like.
- You can substitute bbq sauce for the ketchup. For crazy good flavor, use either Spicy Barbecue Sauce or Honey Chipotle Barbecue Sauce!
- For a pop of fresh flavor and vibrant color, consider adding diced green bell peppers or jalapeños.
- You can switch out the kidney beans and butter beans for your favorite beans. Cannellini, black beans, or pinto beans all work as well.
- You can use breakfast sausage or smoked sausage instead of the beef if you’d prefer.
Storage and Reheating
If you have any leftover calico beans, you’re in luck because they refrigerate very well! Once your leftovers have fully cooled to room temperature, pop them into an air tight food storage container and keep it in the fridge. Properly stored, these beefy beans will stay fresh for about 3-4 days.
To reheat your calico beans, you can either use the microwave or the Crockpot. It all just depends on how much time you have! If you use the microwave, reheat the beans in 30 second increments, stirring every time the time is up, until warmed through. In the slow cooker, set the setting to “high” and stir every 10-15 minutes until heated through. Make sure the lid is on in between stirring.
Keep that slow cooker plugged in!
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Get the Recipe: Baked Calico Beans (slow Cooker Baked Beans)
- 1 pound ground beef
- Half of an onion, diced
- 1 15 ounce can pork & beans
- 1 15 ounce can kidney beans, drained
- 1 15 ounce can large butter beans, drained
- 1 cup ketchup
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon Worcestershire
- 1 tablespoon vinegar
- ½ cup water
- slow cooker
- In a large skillet over medium high heat brown and cook your ground beef. Drain off the grease.
- To your slow cooker add the ground beef, diced onion, pork and beans, drained kidney and butter beans, ketchup, brown sugar, worcestershire, vinegar and water.
- Stir to combine.
- Add salt and pepper to taste.
- Cover and cook on low for 4 hours, stirring once.