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Traditional Boston Baked Beans

Submitted by: | Source: Gladys Davis (my mom)

Traditional Boston Baked Beans
2010-05-08 Other
5 4

This is my mother's version for Boston's famous baked beans.

  • Servings: 8
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 4 hours
  • Total Time: 4 hours & 20 minutes


2 cups Dried Navy Beans, white beans), rinsed and soaked overnight in cold water
1 qt Water
1½ tsp Salt
1 Large or 2 Small Bay Leaves
¼ cup Dark Brown Sugar
6 Strips Smoked Bacon Sliced In 1/4" Pieces or Some Leftover Cubed Ham
1 Tbsp Dry Mustard
1 Yellow Onion, diced
⅓ cup Dark Molasses


Drain and rinse the pre-soaked beans. Add the beans to a heavy Dutch oven. One with a tight-fitting lid is very important.

Add the water, bay leaf, and a 1/2 teaspoon of salt, and bring to a boil over high heat.

Turn down the heat to low, and simmer partly covered (meaning leave the lid offset by about an inch) for 1 hour and 15 minutes. Stir occasionally to prevent sticking to bottom of dutch oven. The beans will still be firm at this point, but starting to get tender.

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F.

Remove from the heat, and discard the bay leaf, but DO NOT drain the cooking liquid.

Stir in the mustard, brown sugar, molasses, onions, bacon, or ham and remaining salt.

Cover and bake for about 2 hours, until the beans are tender. Be sure to check the beans several times during the baking time. It's important not to let the beans dry out. If it seems too watery, you can remove the lid until it thickens a bit.

Remove the lid, give the mixture a stir, and cook for another 20 minutes to give the top a chance to crust a little bit.