Maple Baked Beans with Apple Sausage – a very different and infinitely more delicious version of “beans and weiners”.
These maple baked beans with sausage remind me in a way of a childhood favourite, Do they still sell canned beans and wieners? I don’t think I’ve seen them since I was a kid and to be honest, apart from canned tomatoes or beans, there is very little caned food that actually comes into our house, so I’m not well acquainted with the canned food aisle.
I do remember eating them for lunch all the time as a kid and that thought inspired this much more flavorful version using some delicious apple sausage and maple baked beans in an apple infused sauce. The result was very tasty indeed and we enjoyed these with some great artisan crusty bread from Georgestown Bakery around the corner.
I was lucky enough to find some low fat turkey sausage for this recipe to keep it in the healthier range. I precooked the sausages in the oven first before adding them to the beans in the last half hour or so of cooking time. This allowed the sausages to impart some of their spicy flavor without falling apart into the beans…although that doesn’t sound too bad either. Freshly baked cornbread or Buttermilk Biscuits are also terrific with these baked beans.
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- 1 1/2 pounds dry white beans (navy beans work well
- 4 cloves minced garlic
- 1 large red onion finely chopped
- 3 tbsp olive oil
- 3 cups water
- 1 cup maple syrup
- 1/2 cup dark brown sugar
- 1 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 tsp pepper
- 3 tbsp smoked paprika
- 1 tsp chipotle powder
- 1 tbsp dried thyme
- 1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
- one 28 ounce can tomato sauce
- 2 tbsp dry mustard powder
- 4 large apples peeled, cored and diced (Softer fleshed apples like Macintosh are good, not crisp type apples like Granny Smiths. Use one you would use to make applesauce.)
- 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
- 1 1/2 pounds low-fat apple sausage
Begin by soaking the beans in water overnight or up to 48 hours.
Sauté together the olive oil, garlic and onions until softened but not browned.
Cook until the onions and garlic are softened, then add all of the other ingredients EXCEPT the sausages, along with the drained soaked beans to a large oven safe dutch oven or covered roasting pan.
Stir all together well, cover and place in a 325 degree F oven for minimum 4 hours
stirring occasionally. (Some varieties of white beans can take much longer, 6 hours or more, so plan to start them early or make them a day ahead as I mostly do.) The beans should be fully cooked and tender and the sauce
should thicken. I sometimes add a little extra boiling water during the cooking time if the sauce thickens too quickly before the beans are fully cooked. This is not a problem at all and can be done a few times if necessary, depending on the length of cooking time.
Roast or pan fry the sausage to fully cooked.
Slice the sausages into coins and add them to the baked beans in the last 30-60 minutes of cooking time for the beans.