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5 Healthier, Low-Sugar Baked Beans Recipes

March 31, 2024
Courtesy of Our Nourishing Table

With warmer weather comes barbecues, and with them come classic comfort foods like baked beans. Typically baked beans recipes are loaded with sugar — and though that’s fine once in a while, it would be so nice to be able to enjoy them any time the craving strikes. Luckily, with a bit of creativity, there are ways to make this favorite side dish that are sweet and tangy, but not full of sugar. Whether you prefer a smoky, spicy, or classic flavor profile, here are five baked beans recipes to whip up for the next cookout.

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1. Homemade Baked Beans

Healthy no-sugar baked beans

Courtesy of Our Nourishing Table

Despite the name, these beans aren’t actually baked; you make them on the stove (or in the slow cooker) in less than 15 minutes. They’re slightly sweet from a touch of maple syrup, and also tangy and flavorful thanks to a blend of spices, tomato puree, and cider vinegar

Try this recipe from Our Nourishing Table.

2. Healthy Baked Beans

Healthy baked beans

Courtesy of Mary’s Whole Life

If smoky baked beans are your jam, this one’s for you. With bacon, a touch of sugar-free barbecue sauce, coconut aminos, and spices, these have depth and richness. (For even more smoky flavor, swap some of the paprika for smoked paprika.) There’s a little sweetness to balance it out that comes from a small amount of coconut sugar and maple syrup. 

Try this recipe from Mary’s Whole Life.

3. No-Sugar Baked Beans

No sugar baked beans

Courtesy of Daily Dish

With just 10 minutes of prep and 8 ingredients, this is a no-fuss baked beans recipe that’s a sure crowd pleaser. A touch of smoky chipotle, soy sauce, and maple syrup add depth and flavor. Swap honey for the maple for a different twist.

Try this recipe from Daily Dish.

4. Homemade Chipotle Baked Beans

Chipotle baked beans

Courtesy of Drizzle and Dip

Chipotle takes a more active role in this flavorful baked beans recipe, which also features smoked paprika, Dijon, Worcester sauce, cumin, and garlic. Just a touch of maple and brown sugar balance the spice and smokiness; swap in coconut sugar for the brown sugar, if you prefer.

Try this recipe from Drizzle and Dip.

5. Easy Baked Beans

Easy baked beans

Courtesy of Well Plated

Ketchup and tomato paste lend both sweetness and umami to this quick and easy “baked” beans recipe, ready in 30 minutes on the stove. There’s no bacon in this one, and if you skip the Worcestershire sauce, it’s vegetarian. Add a dash of coconut aminos and a little extra salt instead.

Try this recipe from Well Plated.

Read next: 5 Healthy Recipes You Can Make with a Can of Navy Beans

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