Chef John's Boston Baked Beans


This is a great side dish with anything!

Prep Time:
15 mins
Cook Time:
2 hrs 30 mins
Additional Time:
8 hrs
Total Time:
10 hrs 45 mins
6 servings


  • 1 pound dry navy beans

  • 6 cups water

  • 1 pinch baking soda

  • 1 bay leaf

  • 6 slices bacon, cut into 1/2-inch pieces

  • 1 yellow onion, diced

  • cup molasses

  • ¼ cup packed dark brown sugar

  • 1 teaspoon dry mustard powder

  • 1 ½ teaspoons salt

  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, or to taste


  1. Soak navy beans overnight in a large bowl with enough water by several inches. Drain and place beans into a large Dutch oven or heavy pot with 6 cups water, baking soda, and bay leaf. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to medium, and boil for 10 minutes. Drain, saving bean-cooking liquid.

  2. Preheat oven to 300 degrees F (150 degrees C).

  3. Transfer beans into clean Dutch oven and stir bacon, onion, molasses, brown sugar, dry mustard, salt, and black pepper into beans. Pour enough of the hot reserved bean liquid in to cover beans; stir.

  4. Cover Dutch oven and bake in preheated oven for 1 hour. Check liquid level and add more of the reserved bean liquid to bring liquid up to cover beans. Return to oven and continue baking until beans are tender and almost all the liquid has been absorbed, about 1 hour.

  5. Raise oven heat to 350; bake beans uncovered in oven until top develops a flavorful crust, 20 to 30 more minutes.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

411 Calories
5g Fat
73g Carbs
21g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 6
Calories 411
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 5g 7%
Saturated Fat 1g 7%
Cholesterol 10mg 3%
Sodium 861mg 37%
Total Carbohydrate 73g 26%
Dietary Fiber 19g 69%
Total Sugars 24g
Protein 21g
Vitamin C 5mg 26%
Calcium 175mg 13%
Iron 5mg 30%
Potassium 1288mg 27%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

** Nutrient information is not available for all ingredients. Amount is based on available nutrient data.

(-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a medically restrictive diet, please consult your doctor or registered dietitian before preparing this recipe for personal consumption.

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