Vegetable Baked Beans
My Vegetable Baked Beans are hands down THE MOST delicious vegetarian baked beans! Made with a thick and hearty tomato sauce with added vegetables like carrots, celery and onion, along with other delicious additions. Truth be told, you could actually call these ‘healthy baked beans’.
These beans have very little sugar added (compared to regular baked bean recipes) and the ‘hidden’ vegetables in the tomato sauce is loaded with flavor, which help give the beans natural sweetness. Perfect if your kids like beans, as it’s a great way to hide vegetables in their food. Packed with protein and fiber, they wont even know they’re good for them!
This dish also works if you’re vegetarian or vegan. Or if you’re just looking to add more plant-based options to your meal plan, this baked bean recipe is ideal.
I actually developed this recipe while I was recipe testing a Heinz Copycat Baked Beans recipe but on one of my tests I found the sauce to be too thick in comparison. This recipe is the result of that happy accident and was just too good not to publish.
Best type of beans to use for baked beans
These vegetable baked beans are made with navy beans (haricot if you’re in the U.K.)
No, but soaking does 2 things. It helps with cooking time (speeds it up by 25%). Many varieties of beans hold their shape better when soaked and are less likely to fall apart. Soaking also helps remove some of the indigestible sugars.
This happened to me when I added hot water once (I thought it would speed up the soaking process). It hydrated the beans quickly and caused them to split. It is best to start with cold water for soaking beans. In addition, cooking slower and lower will maintain the integrity of the beans and help prevent the skins from splitting.
Vegetable Baked Beans Additions/Substitutes
You can add more veggies if you like. The carrots, celery and onion are a must (it is known as the holy trinity in cooking, or a mire poix) so it is best to start with these and build from there. You could add zucchini (courgette), red bell pepper, sweet potato/yam, cauliflower, just to name a few. Just remember that if you add anything green like spinach, it will affect the color.
Can I used canned/tinned beans for baked beans?
You can, but they may fall apart after baking as they are already quite soft. Dried beans hold their shape and firmness better.
How to serve vegetable baked beans
You can serve them as a side, serve on toast (like the Brits do, picture above) or stir in some pasta to make a meal. Trust me on this one, the pasta thing works! Use them as a side for steak, grilled ribs, chicken or fish. Plus, they’re delicious with sausages (like my Italian Sausage and Beans).
Ingredients for Vegetable Baked Beans:
- Dried beans
- Olive oil
- Yellow onion
- Fresh tomatoes
- Crushed tomatoes
- Worcestershire sauce