bbq baked beans


So often when folks think of the 4th of July, backyard gatherings and barbeque, they think of meat. Frankly, that makes sense. Barbeques can be a tough place for vegans. This year Mark Bittman of the New York Times wrote an article discussing this very matter here. In honor of making the 4th a tasty and inclusive holiday, I have developed a few recipes for vegan sides to accompany your meatless main dishes. This year we had grilled portobello mushrooms, zuchinni and onions in place of hamburger patties. Slather some of the extra bbq sauce on your “burger,” make these sides and finish with a big slice of watermelon! Happy vegan 4th!

BBQ Baked Beans

BBQ Sauce 


  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 1 medium onion, minced
  • 4 strips tempeh bacon, diced
  • ½ teaspoon paprika
  • 1/8 teaspoon celery salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1 tablespoon mustard powder
  • ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon onion powder
  • 3/4 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup ketchup
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1/3 cup molasses
  • 1 teaspoon prepared horseradish
  • ½ cup apple cider vinegar
  • 2 15 oz. cans tomato sauce
  • 1 teaspoon salt


  1. Heat canola oil over medium heat in a large sauce pan.
  2. Add onion and sauté until translucent, about 3 minutes.
  3. Add tempeh bacon and stir. Cook for 3 minutes.
  4. Add paprika, celery salt, ginger, mustard powder, garlic powder and onion powder. Stir until fragrant, about 2 minutes.
  5. Add brown sugar. Stir and cook until melted, about 2 minutes.
  6. Add ketchup, tomato paste, molasses and horseradish. Stir until incorporated.
  7. Add apple cider vinegar, cans tomato sauce and salt. Stir to incorporate.
  8. Reduce heat to low. Simmer, stirring every few minutes, for 1-2 hours,  or until the sauce has reduced by half. Sauce can be eaten after an hour, but will improve the more reduced it gets. Be careful of splattering (I use a screen to prevent splatters) and burning/sticking to the bottom of the pan.
  • 3 tablespoons canola oil
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 4 strips tempeh bacon, diced
  • 1 red pepper, diced
  • 1 green pepper, diced
  • 2 15 oz. cans great northern (white) beans
  • 1 15 oz. can kidney beans
  • 1 15 oz. can pinto beans


  1. Heat canola oil over medium heat in a medium sauce pan.
  2. Add onion and sauté until translucent, about 3 minutes.
  3. Add garlic, stir and sauté until fragrant, about 3 minutes.
  4. Add tempeh bacon, stir and sauté  until fragrant, about 3 minutes.
  5. Add green and red peppers, and sauté until soft.
  6. Reserve 1/3 of pan. This can be added to spaghetti sauce, chili or any other dish that would benefit from peppers, onions, garlic and “bacon.”
  7. Add beans and stir to incorporate.
  8. Add bean mixture and two cups of bbq sauce to an oven-safe casserole dish.
  9. Bake at 325 degrees, or until mixture is incorporated and heated through.
  10. Enjoy!

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