Big Batch Maple Syrup & Bacon Beans

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Maple & Bacon Beansby Karen Swan

It’s getting cold where I live.  Freezing mornings are followed by clear, crisp blue sky days and there’s just enough chill in the air come early afternoon that you feel quite justified in coming indoors, setting something delicious and fragrant to simmer on the stove, then sitting and tackling every single puzzle in your child’s collection.

We do love a good beans recipe here at MamaBake and this is one that I made a few years ago but had forgotten about.  A chilly afternoon spent flicking through my archives of Donna Hay magazines resulted in the unearthing of the recipe that my husband has dubbed, ‘The Best Beans in the Universe”.  I had no choice but to make then really, did I?

Of course, I had to adapt it to use what I had at hand, as there was no way I was trotting off to the supermarket at 4pm!  And, in true MamaBake style, I had to big batch it so I had a batch ready to defrost and heat on the next cold, grey Autumnal evening.

So, pull out your favourite pot and give these a try – do you think they live up to the hype?


(makes 12 hearty serves)

2 tablespoons oil for frying

400g bacon, cut into bite sized pieces

2 brown onions – chopped

2 tsp mustard powder

1 tablespoons tomato paste

2 tablespoons Worchestershire Sauce

2 tablespoons maple syrup

1 cup beef stock

2 cups tomato passata

8 x tins beans (I used a combination of kidney, butter, borlotti and cannellini)

salt and pepper to taste.


Heat the oil in a large saucepan.

Add the onion and the bacon and cook until golden.  Don’t fast forward this part!  The crispier the bacon and the more golden the onion, the better the beans will taste!  All the little bits of ‘caramelised’ goodness on the bottom of the pan will be mixed in when the sauce is added.

Add the remaining ingredients and stir well.

Lower the heat, cover and simmer for around 10 minutes until the sauce is thickened.

I find these incredibly rich and like them on their own with something fresh and green (like broccoli or even some baby spinach stirred through.)

How do you like your beans?

Maple & Bacon Beans

(This dish can be frozen)

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