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Easy Southern Baked Beans Recipe with Ground Beef

Savor the irresistible union of sweet and smoky flavors in this Easy Southern Baked Beans Recipe With Ground Beef. Undeniably the perfect side dish for your summer cookouts, it’s brimming with a hearty goodness that will make your guests ask for seconds. Enjoy this culinary symphony of tangy sauce, tender beans, and rich ground beef, all melded together and baked to perfection. It’s time to elevate your outdoor gatherings with a Southern twist!

easy southern baked beans recipe with ground beef

Are you ready for a delicious meal that’s packed with flavor and easy to make?

Then you have got to try this easy recipe!

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It’s chock-full of juicy, lean ground beef, sweet onions, and a subtle hint of spice that’ll leave your taste buds dancing.

The best part? You can whip this up in just under an hour, and even quicker if you use the tip in the recipe notes below. 

So, what are you waiting for?

Get your apron on and let’s get cooking!

I’ve held onto this recipe card for years, ever since I left for college.

It’s an all-time favorite among my family and is always in high demand during holiday dinners and other family gatherings.

It’s such a classic dish in southern states, a hearty dish that is full of sassy southern goodness.

So, grab your trusty cast iron pot or Dutch oven and prepare yourself to savor the irresistible flavors that await in this easy recipe.

The rich blend of flavors will leave your mouth watering and your stomach craving for more.

Disclosure – I may get a small commission for purchases made through affiliate links in this post.

Southern Baked Beans

Key to Success #1 – Start with Browned Ground Beef

It’s time to take your summer BBQ game to the next level with the best baked beans, and I’ll tell you the secret ingredient: browned ground beef. 

Not only does it add a nice depth of flavor, but it also makes the texture even better.

If you want to speed up this recipe and make it a 30-minute dish, add the diced onions to the meat while it’s cooking. 

This way, you’ll not only save time in the oven, but you’ll also ensure the onions are fully softened, creating the perfect consistency.

To get the beef perfectly browned, start by heating a large skillet over medium heat. 

Then, add the ground beef to the pan and, using a wooden spoon or spatula, break it up into smaller pieces. 

Ensure that you stir the meat frequently as it cooks to achieve the ideal level of browning all around.

Once the beef is ready, remove it from the skillet and drain any excess fat. Y

You can do this simply by using a couple of paper towels to soak up any remaining grease, which not only reduces the greasiness but also makes it healthier.

Adding well-browned ground beef to your Southern Baked Beans gives you the perfect mix of tasty flavors and textures. 

Baked Beans with Ground Beef

Key to Success #2 – Finely Dice the Onions

This delectable dish is infused with the hearty flavor of ground beef, onions, and a delightful hint of spice.

Personally, I prefer my baked beans with finely diced onions to ensure a consistent texture throughout.

However, if you prefer a bit more onion punch, feel free to chop larger bits to your liking.

Both white and yellow onion varieties work great in these easy baked beans.

I typically use white onion due to its ease of accessibility. 

When it comes to dicing these aromatic vegetables, the best tool for the job is a Santoku knife

This particular knife boasts a thin blade and incredible sharpness, definitely a must-have in your kitchen collection.

Maintaining the sharpness of your knives is crucial for extended usage. 

It’s highly recommended to hand wash knives rather than using the dishwasher to prevent the blade from dulling and damage to the handle. 

My set of knives has served me well for countless years, and I attribute it to good care practices.

Interestingly enough, onions are remarkably straightforward to dice. 

With their naturally divided rings, achieving consistently even onion bits is quite easy. Simply cut perpendicularly along the rings to save time and effort. 

With these simple steps, you’ll have perfectly diced onions that will elevate the flavor of your baked beans to new heights, delivering a rich and robust taste that is both comforting and memorable.

easy southern baked beans recipe with ground beef

Key to Success #3 – A Can Of Pork ‘N Beans Makes It Easy

One of the key secrets to success in creating this indulgent dish is to make it easy and convenient without sacrificing flavor.

And that’s where the magic of a can of Pork ‘N Beans comes in. 

Using a can of Pork ‘N Beans as a shortcut is a game-changer that will save you time and effort in the kitchen.

No need to soak and cook navy beans or pinto beans from scratch—simply open the can of beans, and you’re ready to go.

The canned beans are already seasoned with dark brown sugar, vinegar, and spices and packed with a savory tomato sauce that adds depth to the dish.

My favorite brand of Pork ‘N Beans to use in this great recipe is Van Camp’s but you can use a different brand of pork & beans if you prefer.

If you like to eat the pork & beans on their own, then you’ll love them in this ground beef recipe.

Do you remember eating Pork ‘n Beans with cut-up hot dogs in it when you were a kid? 

Key to Success #4 – A Baking Dish That’s Not Too Big and Not Too Small

When it comes to baked beans, choosing the right baking dish is crucial to ensuring they come out perfectly cooked. 

For this recipe, I recommend using a dish that is not too big or too small, ideally around 8×8 inches or 9×9 inches in size. 

However, it doesn’t have to be a square dish, as any baking dish around that size should do the trick.

If you’re wondering about other options, I used a dish that is about 10×4 inches, and it worked well too. 

Just make sure to avoid using a 9×13-inch baking dish unless you plan on doubling the recipe, as the beans will get too spread out and might overcook.

In terms of alternative cooking equipment, an oven-safe saucepan with a lid is a great option. 

If you have an oven-safe 3-quart or 4-quart stainless steel saucepan with a lid or a small Dutch oven, that would work perfectly for this recipe.

When it comes to storing leftover baked beans, there are a few things to keep in mind. 

First, make sure to cool them down before storing them in an airtight container in the fridge. 

They should keep well for up to four days. 

If you want to freeze them, transfer them to a freezer-safe container, and they should be good for up to three months. 

Just make sure to thaw them out in the fridge overnight before reheating them.

Southern Baked Beans

Can you make Southern-Style Baked Beans in the Slow Cooker?

Yes! It’s easy to make southern style baked beans in the Crock Pot. 

Simply make sure that your ground beef is browned in advance and then add the rest of the ingredients to your slow cooker and set it on low for about 4 hours. 

Using your other kitchen appliances, such as the slow cooker, to make your side dishes is the best way to free up your oven for other larger items or your main course.

Bringing Southern Comfort to Every Occasion

One of the reasons these beans are so versatile is their robust flavor profile.

The combination of tender white beans, savory meat, and a perfect balance of spices creates a taste that is both bold and comforting.

This allows them to stand alone as a satisfying main course, with just a dollop of sour cream and a sprinkle of fresh herbs as the perfect finishing touch.

But why stop there? 

These beans can also be enjoyed in a variety of other ways, making them a truly adaptable dish. 

Serve them alongside a slice of warm and crumbly cornbread to add a contrasting texture and a hint of sweetness to the main meal. 

Or these hearty baked beans can be ladled over a bed of fluffy rice. 

They also make the perfect hearty side dish for your summer BBQ or family reunion, along with your favorite potato salad. 

The possibilities are endless, limited only by your imagination and taste preferences.

Save this Southern Baked Beans Recipe to your favorite BBQ board or your Side Dishes board.

Southern Baked Beans
Southern Baked Beans

Southern Baked Beans

Yield: 12 servings
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes

Southern Baked Beans are the perfect side dish for your summer BBQ or holiday get-together.

These oven-baked beans with ground beef and onions are a little bit sweet and a little bit spicy.

This is a family-favorite dish that is requested over and for holiday dinners.


  • 1 lb ground beef, browned
  • 1/2 cup onion, finely chopped
  • 28 oz Pork & Beans
  • 1/2 cup ketchup
  • 2 Tbsp sugar
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp pepper
  • 1/2 tsp Tabasco sauce


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease 8x8-inch baking dish.
  2. Combine all ingredients in greased casserole dish. Stir well.
  3. Cook covered for 30 minutes then remove cover and cook another 30 minutes.


If you're starting with uncooked ground beef, you can add the onions into the skillet while you are browning the beef. Cook beef and onions until beef is fully cooked and onions are soft and translucent. Bake uncovered for only 30 minutes. 

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 12 Serving Size: 1 grams
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 188Total Fat: 9gSaturated Fat: 3gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 31mgSodium: 491mgCarbohydrates: 18gFiber: 4gSugar: 4gProtein: 10g

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Thats the same as Portuguese beans my grandmother used to make hers was better

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