bakedbeansbeforebaking-150x150Old-Fashioned Homemade New England Baked Beans With Real Maple Syrup Recipe

In yesteryear, a sign of the fall and winter months in Northern New England was often heralded with church dinners, usually consisting of old-fashioned homemade Baked Beans, Baked Ham, rolls, coleslaw, and homemade pies. The ladies of the church would get together and make many pans of delicious New England baked beans using locally grown dried beans from the fall harvest, salt pork or bacon from the fall livestock reduction, and of course real maple syrup from the backyard Maple tree or the local maple producer.

This tradition has somehow fallen by the wayside and the art of making nutritious baked beans at home has been replaced with a can opener and a can of Bush’s, Heinz, B&M, or Campbell’s baked beans.

If you have an appreciation of natural, wholesome food and some patience, please revive the true art of making homemade New England Baked Beans with real Maple Syrup. The following time-tested baked bean recipe is simply delicious. Enjoy!


A traditional New England main course meal or a nutritious side dish.


2 lbs dried beans – we suggest Dried Jacob’s Cattle Beans. You may also use Soldier Beans, Yellow-Eyed, or Great Northern Dried Beans.
1 Large Onion, Quartered (optional)
6 strips of bacon cooked and diced or 1/3 lb. salt pork sautéed lightly in pieces (optional)
1 1/2 cups Maple Syrup preferably amber like this Vermont Grade A Dark Robust Organic Maple Syrup
1/4 to 1/2 cup Brown Sugar
1/4 to 1/2 cup Molasses the Darker the richer flavor. We love Grandma’s Original Unsulphured All Natural Molasses
1 1/2 teaspoons Dry Mustard
2 cups boiling water


Rinse and pick over beans before using. Place these rinsed and picked-over beans in a LARGE container of cold water. The water should be more than double the depth of the beans in the pot as the beans will absorb a large amount of the water. Let the beans soak for 8 to 12 hours.

Drain and rinse beans. Place in a large stockpot and cover with water, at least 3 inches above the beans. Bring to a boil and then boil until you can blow gently on the skin of the bean and the skin will start to pull away from the bean. Turn heat to very low and add 1 heaping tablespoon of Baking Soda to the water. Stirring constantly or this will foam up and boil over. Cook for another 5 mins on low keeping a close eye on the pot. (The baking soda takes most of the gas from the beans). Drain and rinse the beans again. Make sure to rinse them well.

Place in the bottom of the baking dish, bean pot, or crockpot (6 quarts or larger):
onions, bacon, or salt pork. Place beans in the pot. Mix all remaining ingredients together and pour over beans. Make sure beans are covered.

Bake at 350 Degree oven for about 2 to 3 hours or in Crockpot on Low for 6 hours and then finish in the oven for about 1 hour. Make sure the beans stay covered in liquid so they do not dry out. Test every 30 mins after the first 2 hours when baking or after 5 hours in Crock-Pot. Baked beans should be soft, not crunchy. Overcooked bean will be mushy. Test the beans for the best results.

Enjoy! New England Baked Beans are sometimes served with Pickles. Feature your business, contact us. New England Living Magazine.


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