Slow-Cooker Barbecue Franks and Beans
Summery baked beans without having to turn on the oven? Yes, please.
Why This Recipe Works
For barbecue beans that offer up creamy beans draped in a glossy sauce bursting with flavor, we turned to the slow cooker. After extensive testing, we landed on using canned beans for their ability to retain their creaminess without blowing out and turning the sauce starchy. For a sauce with deep, rich, smoky flavor, we began by sauteing a combination of chopped bacon and onion in a nonstick skillet. When the bacon was rendered and the onion softened, we added a classic barbecue sauce base (a mix of ketchup, brown sugar, molasses, mustard, cider vinegar, and chili powder) and simmered it briefly to cook off the raw flavor of the chili powder. Into the slow cooker we tossed this sauce, the beans, and a full package of hot dogs, cut into 1-inch pieces. After slow-cooking long enough for the flavors to meld, the result was savory, meaty, sweet, smoky, and spicy—a great guest at any backyard gathering.