Delicious and easy smoked cowboy beans recipe

Are you ready for a taste of the Wild West? Look no further than our recipe for Smoked Smoky Saucy Cowboy Beans! This dish is the epitome of hearty, bold, and delicious cowboy cuisine. You won’t be able to resist the combination of smoky and saucy flavors in every bite.

As an assistant to a BBQ chef, I know that nothing beats a classic blend of baked beans and barbecue sauce. But our recipe takes it to the next level with added ingredients like smoked paprika, chipotle peppers, and even a hint of bourbon (optional, of course). The result is a rich, flavorful side dish that pairs perfectly with grilled meats or can stand alone as a vegetarian option.

Don’t let the long list of ingredients intimidate you – this recipe is easy to make in a slow cooker or on the grill. And trust me, it’s worth it for the mouthwatering aroma alone. So gather your cowboy hat and boots, and let’s get cookin’!

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Smoked Smoky Saucy Cowboy Beans
Smoked Smoky Saucy Cowboy Beans

Are you looking to add a little bit of smoky flavor to your next backyard BBQ? Look no further than this Smoked Smoky Saucy Cowboy Beans Recipe! With its combination of bold saucy flavors from BBQ sauce and dijon, along with the savory taste of smoked beef brisket, these beans are sure to be a hit with both meat lovers and vegetarians alike.

One reason why you’ll love this recipe is its versatility. It can be served as a saucy side dish or even as a standalone meal. The smoky cowboy beans are also easy to make in a slow cooker, which means that you can prep them ahead of time and let them simmer for hours on end without having to worry about overcooking.

But what really sets this recipe apart is the layered depth of flavors. The sweet barbecue sauce adds a touch of sweetness to the smoky beans, while the chopped yellow onions and white onions bring out the natural savoriness of the dish. The smoked paprika and chipotle offer a spicy kick that ensures the beans aren’t too sweet, while the canned pork beans and tomato sauce provide a hearty thickness that holds everything together.

If you want to make this recipe even more special, add some optional bourbon for an extra boost of flavor. And if you’re feeling extra adventurous, try swapping in vegetarian baked beans instead of pork for a healthier take on this Texas-style classic.

Overall, these Smoked Smoky Saucy Cowboy Beans are hands down my absolute favorite baked beans recipe. Loaded with flavors like brown sugar and halo cleaver smoke bacon, it’s near impossible to resist these syrupy loaded flavors infused in every single bite. So whether you’re making smoked ribs or trying out a new tiramisu recipe from Smitten Kitchen, make sure to give these saucy cowboy beans a try – they won’t disappoint!

Ingredient List

 These beans are so good, they'll make a cowboy out of anyone.
These beans are so good, they’ll make a cowboy out of anyone.

Ingredients You’ll Need

  • 110 ounces canned pork beans in tomato sauce
  • 1 white onion, chopped
  • 2 cups sweet barbecue sauce
  • 1/4 cup dijon mustard
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons smoked paprika
  • 2 tablespoons chipotle powder
  • 1 pound beef brisket, smoke bacon, or halo cleaver(optional)
  • Yellow onion, chopped (optional)
  • Bourbon or other whiskey (optional)

Before we start cooking, let’s gather all the ingredients we need. Here’s a list of what we’ll have to get from the store to make these smoky saucy cowboy beans. I’m a firm believer that every bean deserves something saucy, and these beans are no exception. And it doesn’t get any more classic than using delicious slow-cooked pork beans in tomato sauce as our main ingredient.

To add depth and richness to this dish, I use a combination of sweet barbecue sauce and sharp Dijon mustard. Don’t forget to grab some brown sugar which will give the sweetness it needs, and smoked paprika and chipotle powder for smoky depth and heat.

You can also choose to add some beef brisket or smoked bacon – they work great as an additional protein – or leave it vegetarian if you prefer. If you’re feeling extra adventurous, adding bourbon or other whiskey will take these beans to another level! Whatever you decide to do with your choice of protein is up to you, as these smoky saucy cowboy beans are already loaded with flavors from BBQ sauce and mustard, making them a perfect side dish for your next BBQ party.

The Recipe How-To

 Smoked to perfection, these beans are begging for a taste.
Smoked to perfection, these beans are begging for a taste.

Now that we’ve covered the ingredients needed for this delicious recipe, let’s dive into how to prepare it.

Smoked Smoky Saucy Cowboy Beans Recipe
Step 1: Preparing the Beans

Start with 110 ounces of canned pork and beans, 1 can of tomato sauce, 1 white onion chopped, and 2 cups of chopped yellow onions. Rinse the canned pork and beans and place them in a colander. Take your time washing the beans, as you want to remove any odd pieces or remaining packaging material.

Once the beans are washed, pour them into a mixing bowl. Add the tomato sauce, chopped white onions, and chopped yellow onions for added flavor.

Step 2: Preparing the Sauce

This sauce is what makes these cowboy beans really stand out. Attach a meat thermometer to your smoke or grill to keep an eye on the temperature, then light up some charcoal with wood chips in a convenient place to smoke your bacon.

Mix 2 cups of sweet barbecue sauce, ¼ cup of brown sugar, 2 tablespoons of Dijon mustard, and 1 tablespoon each of smoked paprika and chipotle powder in a mixing bowl for the base sauce.

Next up, add some smoked bacon cut at an angle towards halos with a cleaver or sharpened chef’s knife. The ideal amount will depend on your personal preference. For instance, I prefer using about 4 slices.

Final Step: Smoking and Grilling

We’re finally ready to smoke our cowboy beans.

Load up this saucy concoction with at least 16 ounces of smoked brisket alongside your favorite baked bean recipe for added flavor. Place it in a metal pan in a way that aids proper heat diffusion.

Add the mixings from Steps 1 and 2 above into this pot and mix them thoroughly until all is evenly distributed across your container. Then load your pot into your smoker/grill after it has been preheated to about 225 F of heat.

Once you have your smoker/grill heated up correctly, put your cowboy beans recipe mixture in there and cook for roughly about 2 hours depending on how hot it is outside until everything in there is heated through properly

That’s it! You now have some smoky, saucy cowboy beans that are perfect as a main course or side dish for any outdoor gathering.

Substitutions and Variations

 Hearty and flavorful, these beans are the perfect side dish for any BBQ.
Hearty and flavorful, these beans are the perfect side dish for any BBQ.

One of the great things about this Smoked Smoky Saucy Cowboy Beans recipe is that it can be easily modified to suit your preferences or the ingredients you have on hand. Here are some possible substitutions and variations you can try:

– Beef Brisket: While this recipe calls for smoked bacon, you can substitute it with beef brisket if you prefer a heartier, meatier flavor. Just season it with some salt, pepper, and paprika before adding it to the slow cooker.

– Vegetarian Baked Beans: If you’re looking for a vegetarian version of this recipe, just substitute the canned pork and beans with vegetarian baked beans. You can also add some diced bell peppers, corn, or zucchini to add some texture and flavor.

– Texas-style Baked Beans: For a more authentic cowboy beans recipe, try adding some brown sugar and molasses to create that classic Texas-style sweetness. You can also use black beans instead of pinto beans for a more flavorful variation.

– Bold and Spicy BBQ Sauce: While our recommended barbecue sauce has a balanced smoky-sweet flavor, you can experiment with other bold and spicy BBQ sauces to give your cowboy beans an extra kick. Try adding some hot sauce or red pepper flakes as well.

– Bourbon-infused Cowboy Beans: For an adult twist on this recipe, try adding 1/4 cup of bourbon to the slow cooker along with the rest of the ingredients. The result is a slightly boozy and indulgent flavor that goes great with grilled meats or as a side dish for a weekend barbecue.

Remember that these are just some ideas for how you can modify this already delicious recipe. Don’t be afraid to experiment with different ingredients and seasoning to create your own unique version of Smoked Smoky Saucy Cowboy Beans!

Serving and Pairing

 These beans have so much smoky flavor, you won't be able to resist a second helping.
These beans have so much smoky flavor, you won’t be able to resist a second helping.

When it comes to serving and pairing smoked smoky saucy cowboy beans, you have a world of options at your disposal. These beans are incredibly versatile and pair well with a variety of different dishes.

One classic pairing is to serve these delicious beans as a side dish for your favorite barbecue recipes. Whether you’re making pulled pork, beef brisket, or ribs, smoked smoky saucy cowboy beans make the perfect complement to these bold and flavorful meats.

If you’re looking for a more vegetarian-friendly option, these beans can also be paired with grilled vegetables or tofu. For an extra kick of flavor, try tossing some smoked bacon into the mix!

Another great pairing option is to serve these beans alongside traditional southern comfort foods like cornbread, collard greens, and mac and cheese. The rich and savory flavors of the beans add depth and complexity to these classic dishes.

And if you’re feeling adventurous, try incorporating smoked smoky saucy cowboy beans into your favorite breakfast recipes. These beans are a great addition to huevos rancheros or breakfast burritos, and can even be used as a topping for avocado toast.

No matter how you choose to serve them, smoked smoky saucy cowboy beans are sure to be a hit at your next gathering. So fire up that slow cooker and get ready for some deliciousness!

Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating

 These saucy cowboy beans are truly the stars of the show.
These saucy cowboy beans are truly the stars of the show.

The great thing about this Smoked Smoky Saucy Cowboy Beans Recipe is that it can easily be made ahead of time, stored, and reheated for later enjoyment.

If you’re planning to make it ahead of time, simply follow the recipe instructions until fully cooked. Once done, transfer the beans to an airtight container and store it in the fridge for up to 3-4 days. Before serving, reheat the beans in a cast-iron skillet or microwave.

For longer storage, you can freeze the bean mixture in an airtight container for up to three months. When ready to serve, let the beans thaw overnight in the refrigerator and reheat using your preferred warming method.

When reheating, you may notice that some of the liquid has thickened due to the slow cooking process. If this happens, add a little water or chicken broth to thin out the consistency until it reaches your desired texture.

Another option is to make this Smoked Smoky Saucy Cowboy Beans Recipe in a slow cooker to save time and effort. Simply combine all the ingredients in the slow cooker and cook on low for about 4-6 hours or on high for 2-3 hours until bubbly and heated through.

Whether you’re looking for a hearty weeknight meal or a delicious side dish for your next barbecue feast, this Smoked Smoky Saucy Cowboy Beans Recipe is sure to satisfy your cravings. With its bold saucy flavors and smoky undertones, these beans are an absolute favorite among BBQ lovers everywhere.

Tips for Perfect Results

 You can't have a successful BBQ without a big pot of cowboy beans.
You can’t have a successful BBQ without a big pot of cowboy beans.

When it comes to cooking cowboy beans, using the right technique can make a huge difference in the final dish. Here are some tips to ensure that your smoked smoky saucy cowboy beans turn out mouth-watering and delicious:

1. Use the Right Type of Beans: When making cowboy beans, it is crucial to select the right type of beans. Pinto beans work best as they have a soft texture, which allows them to absorb flavors better. You can also use black beans or navy beans if you prefer.

2. Soak Your Beans Overnight: To reduce cooking time, soak your beans overnight before using them in your recipe. This also helps soften them up and remove any unwanted flavors.

3. Pre-Cook Your Meat: Adding pre-cooked meat to your cowboy beans will give it a deeper flavor and reduce cooking time. You can use leftover beef brisket, smoked pork, or bacon for added taste.

4. Add Smoky Flavors: To achieve that classic cowboy flavor, try adding some smoke to your recipe. You can use smoke chips, a dedicated smoker or even smoke the bacon you’re adding to the dish.

5. Balance Your Flavors: Cowboy beans should be rich in flavors while not overpowering each other at the same time. Use enough barbecue sauce for tang but not too much that it becomes too sweet.

6. Don’t Overcook Your Beans: Overcooking your beans can lead to them becoming mushy and losing their texture. Cook them until soft but still holding their shape well.

7. Let it Sit: One thing many people get wrong is serving the food immediately after preparation when it’s often steaming hot but letting it sit for an hour or so allows the flavors to harmonize giving a more rounded finish.

With these simple tips and tricks, you’ll be able to prepare an excellent batch of smoked smoky saucy cowboy beans every time!

Bottom Line

This recipe for Smoked Smoky Saucy Cowboy Beans is a mouth-watering dish that will never disappoint you. Whether you are having a BBQ party, going on a picnic or staying at home, this meal is perfect for every occasion.

With its bold and saucy flavor, it is sure to be an absolute favorite among your family and friends. You can make it more smoky, add some dijon and paprika or even bacon to bring out the rich flavor of the sauce.

If you are a vegetarian or want to skip the canned pork beans, you can use homemade beans or skip the meat altogether. This recipe can also be made in a slow cooker, which makes it easier to prepare and cook.

Lastly, if you want to take it up a notch, you can pair it with your favorite saucy bbq brisket or ribs. The syrupy loaded flavors of the beans will complement the smoky aroma of the meat perfectly.

In conclusion, this Smoked Smoky Saucy Cowboy Beans recipe is a must-try for anyone who loves bold and flavorful food. So don’t wait any longer, get your ingredients together and start cooking!

Smoked Smoky Saucy Cowboy Beans

Smoked Smoky Saucy Cowboy Beans Recipe

I know it is a mouth full, but I looked at other recipes and none were actually smoked in a smoker, just in an indoor oven with liquid smoke. In 1997 I had some Cowboy beans and have not been able to find anything close till now. This recipe must be cooked in a smoker capable of burning wood. This is a link to the sauce I use - I used 2 - 55 ounce cans of beans
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 2 hours
Course Side Dish
Cuisine Texan
Servings 1 cup
Calories 169.2 kcal


  • 110 ounces canned pork and beans in tomato sauce
  • 1 white onion, chopped (or yellow)
  • 2 cups sweet barbecue sauce
  • 1/2 lb beef brisket, diced (smoked and cooked)
  • 3 ounces wood chips (hickory or mesquite)


  • Open beans and drain off excess fluid from top of beans, do not drain or rinse.
  • In a large mixing bowl add beans, onions, sauce and brisket and stir until well blended.
  • Find a large baking dish that will fit inside smoker or you may use 2 smaller dishes.
  • Pour mixture into a glass baking dish and place in smoker oven.
  • Add wood chips to smoker and cook for 2 hours @ 225 degrees.
  • Remove, STIR WELL and serve hot.
  • You may substitute pork or ground beef.



Serving: 164gCalories: 169.2kcalCarbohydrates: 27.4gProtein: 8.7gFat: 4.1gSaturated Fat: 1.4gCholesterol: 16mgSodium: 743.8mgFiber: 5.5gSugar: 8.4g
Keyword < 4 Hours, Beans, Easy, For Large Groups, Healthy, Low Cholesterol
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