Coca-Cola Baked Beans

Even before Elizabeth Candler Graham published her offbeat Classic Cooking with Coca-Cola in 1994, one of the South’s quintessential beverages had been used far and wide not only to baste hams and make all sorts of casseroles, puddings, and even cookies, but also to produce these unique baked beans. I’ve had the beans sweetened with molasses or sorghum instead of brown sugar and doctored with bell peppers or pickle relish. Whatever the concoction, there was always that special zing of Coke. Are the beans really good? You bet they are. And can Pepsi be used? Not in the South.

Ingredients

  • Two 15-ounce cans baked beans with pork
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 1 cup loosely packed light brown sugar
  • ½ cup ketchup
  • ½ cup Coca-Cola
  • 2 teaspoons dry mustard
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 6 slices bacon

Method

Preheat the oven to 325°F.

In a large bowl, combine the beans, onion, sugar, ketchup, Coke, dry mustard, and salt and pepper and stir till well blended. Scrape the mixture into a large, shallow baking dish, drape the bacon slices evenly over the top, and bake, uncovered, till the bacon is thoroughly cooked and the beans are bubbling, 1 to 1¼ hours. Serve the beans directly from the baking dish.