A saucy and unique casserole that will have you begging for beans

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Brenda Stanley
Tales of the Dinner Belle

Belle's Smoky and Sweet Bean Casserole
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I have hundreds of recipes and most are written on the original recipe cards, even decades after I jotted them down or someone gave it to me. The problem now is that my “reading” glasses have just become my glasses, and I find myself struggling to read the faded print. That was the case when I pulled out the card that holds the recipe for my sweet bean casserole. I ended up rewriting it so I could actually read it the next time. So, in the process, I decided to share this family favorite with you.

A variety of beans makes this dish unique. And it is as simple as opening cans -- no soaking or sorting. The sweet and tangy sauce has a touch of bacon and gives it a delicious smoky taste. Beans are such a healthy and high-protein food and, yet, we rarely enjoy them as our main dish. This casserole will change that and have you begging for more.

Belle’s Smoky and Sweet Bean Casserole

  • 1 small onion, peeled and chopped
  • 1/2 pound ground beef
  • 1/4 cup chopped bacon
  • 1/2 cup ketchup
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 2 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon yellow mustard
  • 15-ounce can pork and beans
  • 15-ounce can chick peas (garbanzo beans), drained
  • 15-ounce can kidney beans, drained
  • 15-ounce can lima beans, drained

Brown the onion and ground beef and drain off the grease. Mix together the bacon, ketchup, brown sugar, salt, pepper, vinegar and mustard. In a separate bowl, combine the beans, ground beef and onion. Pour the sauce over the bean mixture and stir to coat well. Place in a 9-by-13-inch baking pan. Bake at 350 for 30 minutes.

Brenda Stanley is the mother of five children, including two sets of twins, and a grandmother of three. She is a cookbook author and novelist. For more recipes and information, visit her website www.talesofthedinnerbelle.com.

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