Vegetarian Slow-Cooker Baked Beans
Yield: 8-10 Servings
All the goodness of seasoned, simmered old-fashioned New England baked beans, without the salt pork plus the added convenience of the slow cooker! Both bean traditionalists and vegetarians will gobble these up.
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- 1 lb. dried beans (such as Great Northern)
- 1 large onion, diced fine (around 1 3/4 cups) — save the end
- 1 cup water
- 1 6 oz. can tomato paste
- 1/4 cup maple syrup
- 1/4 cup molasses
- 4 Tbsp. brown sugar
- 1 Tbsp. vinegar
- 1 tsp. Worcestershire sauce (a vegetarian version)
- 1 1/2 Tbsp. kosher salt
- 1 tsp. ground mustard
- 1/4 tsp. pepper
- 1/8 tsp. cinnamon
- 1/8 tsp. nutmeg
- 8 whole cloves
Instructions:The night before, pick through the beans to remove any stones, then place in a bowl and cover with enough water to cover the beans by two inches. Soak overnight.
In the morning, mix together all ingredients except the beans, onion, and cloves in a large bowl.
In the bottom of minimum 4-quart slow cooker, layer the diced onion, then add the beans*.
Pour the liquid mixture over the beans, then add up to an additional 3 cups of water until the tops of the beans are just submerged.
For extra flavor, take the reserved onion end and press 8 cloves into it in a circle. I used a skewer to make the holes before inserting the cloves. (I also used more than 8 cloves, which I think overpowered the beans a bit, so in the future I will be using less!) Place the onion end into the center of the beans. Remove before eating.
Cook the beans on high for 6-8 hours, or on low for 8-10 hours. I left mine in the pot on low for around 12 hours (it was a long day), and as you might expect, they taste better the longer they sit.