Smoked Baked Beans From Dried Beans

Discussion in 'Side Items' started by sgtbarker, Apr 16, 2012.

  1. sgtbarker

    sgtbarker Newbie

    Sorry, about a topic I'm sure has been hashed over a gazillion times on here but trying to locate specific info on here is like trying to get the truth out of a politician. Sorry my feelings only after alot of frustration trying to navigate through the forums.

    Anyways, I tried to smoke beans from dried beans over the weekend and after several hours of cooking the beans were still hard.  So before you chime in on just what did this green horn not do, here's what I did. First I used dried navy beans. Second I soaked them for several hours. I then cooked them for an hour on the stove in water and then transferred them (the beans not the liquid I cooked them in) into my pan along with my sauce. Sent them into the smoker for almost 4 hours at 225 and they were still hard. Put them into the oven at 350 for another hour and a half, final result, the beans were still hard and as of today they were causing terrible chipping in the toilet!!!! lol

    So can someone tell me what or where I went wrong?

    Thank you,

  2. solaryellow

    solaryellow Limited Mod Group Lead

    What kind of beans did you use?

    I usually bring them to a boil for 20 minutes and then let them sit for another 45. Then I add in the rest of my ingredients and toss on the smoker.
  3. If the beans are old and stale or you have really hard tap water (or some other water high in minerals or acidity) the beans will take forever and a day to get tender.
    I found that out the hard way!!!! LOL
    I cook them in spring water, even then it can take a long time depending on the type of bean.

  4. badbob

    badbob Smoke Blower

    I always use a crock pot. Set it and forget it!
  5. chef jimmyj

    chef jimmyj Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Group Lead OTBS Member

    The beans should be tender but not mushy before you apply sauce and Smoke. Salt and Acid inhibit tenderization of beans. Many recipes call for 1tsp of Baking Soda in the water to get them more tender and salt is not added until they are completely cooked...JJ
    Last edited: Apr 17, 2012
  6. sgtbarker

    sgtbarker Newbie

    Soaked and cooked in spring water. We've used this same supplier of beans for baked beans in a bean pot with no problems.
  7. sgtbarker

    sgtbarker Newbie

    Did the Baking Soda trick and used no salt because the sauce included leftover smoked ham from Easter and bacon. Next time instead of dried navy beans will try them out of a can.
  8. ak1

    ak1 Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    I always let dried beans soak for a day or so. I've never had any issues with them not being tender.
  9. cliffcarter

    cliffcarter Master of the Pit Group Lead OTBS Member

    I've been baking navy, AKA "small white" or "pea" beans, for 30+ years. They are an old New England tradition.

    The procedure is simple-

    wash the beans and place in a pot, cover with about 2-3 inches of water and boil them until they wrinkle and float, about 15 mins.

    then drain and place in the cooking vessel(I use a DO) add molasses, brown sugar and dry mustard, cover with hot water, about an inch and cook in the oven(or smoker) at a temp high enough to get the liquid boiling( which, I suspect, was your problem 225° was not hot enough and the hour and a half at 350° was not long enough IMHO).

    I cook my beans in the oven at 300°, checking occaisionally to make sure there is enough water. They are done in 4-5 hours.
  10. I never knew that. Thanks JJ.
  11. coffee_junkie

    coffee_junkie Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Make sure the beans are soft and done before putting in the smoker, don't count on cooking your beans in the smoker, you are just adding and melding flavors in there. I like Bad Bobs idea, soak overnight, toss in the crock pot for 8 hours, drain the water and then prepare your beans for the smoker (add seasonings, other ingredients).
  12. forluvofsmoke

    forluvofsmoke Smoking Guru OTBS Member

  13. I'm a Newbie and a little late to this party, but hopefully this might help.  I have heard that using salt when soaking makes beans hard, but here is what Cook's Country says:  "When beans soak in brine, sodium ions from the salt replace calcium and magnesium ions in the skin of the beans. Sodium ions weaken the  pectin holding the cells together, allowing more water to penetrate the skins to produce softer, more tender beans. Our formula is to soak a pound of dried beans overnight in a solution of 3 tablespoons of salt dissolved in 4 quarts of water."

    I use dried beans when making my Kansas City Style BBQ Beans with Pork Burnt Ends, but I cheat.  I don't like hard beans, in fact I like my BBQ beans to be soft, very thick and not runny.  Sometimes I soak and sometimes I don't, but I cook the beans in a pressure cooker on my double burner, then I smoke them for 5 or 6 hours using apple wood.  I use 2 pounds of beans and about 2.5 pounds of pork burnt ends.  I like the results, and I get lots of compliments.  Here's a pic.

    Hope this helps.  Good luck.

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