Day Six: Thug Kitchen’s Apple-Baked Beans

Sometimes I decide to make something simply because I notice I have all the ingredients. This is particularly true when the ingredients are slightly obscure….like smoked paprika and molasses (yeah, yeah…I know molasses isn’t obscure, but I think I’ve used it one other time in my life, so I was surprised I had an unopened container of it).

Anyway, I was hoping my new cookbook would arrive today, but, alas, it did not, so I started browsing through Thug Kitchen again and came across this recipe for Apple Baked Beans. I had all the ingredients, except my white beans were canned, not dried, so I used two cans in place of 1.5 cups of dried beans. After I’d added everything, it looked more like soup than beans, and I knew the beans wouldn’t be absorbing any fluid, so I added another can…and then another apple.

It was starting to look more like baked beans, but when I tasted it, all I could taste was tomato sauce, so I added more paprika…and molasses…and brown sugar…and vinegar….and soy sauce.

Apple-Baked Beans

3 cans white beans
2 teaspoons olive oil
1/2 yellow or white onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
2 teaspoons smoked paprika
1 15-ounce can tomato sauce
2 tablespoons molasses
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
4 tablespoons brown sugar
4 teaspoons soy sauce
2 1/2 cups vegetable broth

sprig of rosemary
2 medium apples, any variety, chopped


Heat oil over medium heat. Add your onion and sauté until it starts to brown. Add garlic, smoked paprika and continue cooking for another minute. Add beans, tomato sauce, molasses, apple cider vinegar, brown sugar and soy sauce. Stir everything together and bring to a light simmer. Once it starts bubbling, add  broth and rosemary.

Then add the chopped apple….


After I was finally happy with the adjustments, I realized two things:

1) I’ve never really liked baked beans, and

2) there is no actual baking involved in the making of these apparently baked beans.

Nevertheless, they are quite good…ish, but I couldn’t really eat more than a spoonful or two.

I served them with some nice cranberry bread J picked up at the bakery in town and the left-over fried tofu from last evening.


As it turns out, J liked them more than I did. I still don’t like baked beans. Though I didn’t mind a taste or two, I just couldn’t finish even the small side bowl.

1/10: would not do again. I’ll likely freeze the left-over baked beans, and, two years from now, discover them in the freezer and throw them away.

So that’s two evenings in a row that have been a bit of a bust for the vegan dinners.

Oh, and just as I was correcting the seasoning on the beans, J arrived back from the post office with a package–my new cookbook: Isa Does It by Isa Chandra Moskowitz. I’m super excited to go through this book because Moskowitz writes such engaging commentary in all of her cookbooks, and her recipes are invariably amazing.


2 thoughts on “Day Six: Thug Kitchen’s Apple-Baked Beans

  1. So, was the recipe bad, or do you just not like baked beans? It wouldn’t help your readers much to make something you really don’t like and then rate it 1/10. Thoughts?


    1. I suppose you’re right, but that post was part of a six-week experiment I was engaged in a couple of years ago. I keep the blog merely to keep track of recipes and adjustments/creations I’ve tried and to share recipes with a few friends and relatives who are into plant-based eating.

      That said, since I’ve gone full-on plant-based, I now only include recipes I would make again.


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