Mom's Famous Canadian Maple Baked Beans - Original Recipe AND My Healthier Prep Version
Ever since I can remember, one of my all-time favourite, homecooked dishes has always been my mom’s maple baked beans. I love me some baked beans because a) mom’s are loaded with maple syrup and we all know what a dessert freak I am. And b) coming from the maple syrup capital of the WORLD, you best believe mom’s beans taste better than sex! (Sorry Mom for talking about you and sex in the same sentence. I admit, that’s just all kinds of WRONG!)
Unfortunately, when I’m prepping for a competition or trying to keep my calories low, consuming a half cup of that sweet, sweet nectar of the Gods just isn’t in the cards.
So what does Sam Shorkey do when she’s missing out and wants to get in on the family food action? She invents her own not-nearly-as-tasty-but-does-the-trick healthy, competition diet-friendly version of course!
I gotta admit that I almost feel ashamed– perhaps even disgraceful to my Canadian heritage– replacing the maple syrup in mom’s recipe with **shudders** Walden Farms chemical syrup (I mean “pancake” syrup.) Oh how my grandpa would be rolling in his grave to hear such blasphemy. So to make it up to both Grandpa and my mom, I’m going to post BOTH recipes. And I encourage you to make both versions then let us know just how much better my mom’s are! (No offense will be taken. Believe me, I KNOW.) 🙂
Mom’s Famous Canadian Maple Baked Beans – Her Original Recipe AND Sam’s Competition Prep Version
Bean Prep for Both Recipes:
Soak one 450 g (1 lb.) bag of white navy beans in a pot of cold water for at least a couple of hours. The longer you soak them, the less you need to cook them so overnight soaking is best if you have the time.
Be sure to rinse the beans really, REALLY well (bagged beans are super dusty) then put them back into a pot of water and bring to a boil. Once boiling, simmer, covered, on low heat for anywhere from 1 – 1.5 hours (depending how long they soaked for.)
Keep testing the beans to make sure they’re tender but not mushy or too firm. As beans are simmering, add more water as necessary. Make sure there is always an inch or two of liquid in the bottom of the pot.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. When beans are tender, remove from heat and pour into a large casserole dish. Add either Mom’s ingredients or mine below.
Stir everything together, cover and bake in the oven for about 30 – 60 minutes (depending how you like your beans.) The longer you bake them, the drier they will get.
Ingredients for Mom’s ORIGINAL, Sugar-Laden But Delicious Canadian Maple Baked Beans:
1/2 cup Pure Canadian Maple Syrup
1/4 cup ketchup
2 – 3 Tbsp. molasses
Salt & pepper to taste
Mom adds “just keep tasting them to see if you like them.”
Ingredients for Sam’s “Jacked on the Beanstalk” Sugar-Free Baked Beans:
1/4 cup Walden Farms Pancake Syrup
One small tomato, finely chopped
Half a small onion, finely chopped
1 tsp. dry mustard powder
Salt & pepper to taste
The above photo is of mom and me in spring 2015 making our annual batch of Shorkey’s homemade maple syrup. (Final product shown bottled in bean picture above.) 🙂
The best part of making maple syrup in my professional opinion is of course, eating maple taffy (the final stage of sugar making.)
Be sure to check my three part YouTube series “Sugar Makin’ with Shorkey” to learn exactly how we do it here in the maple syrup capital of the world: the Ottawa Valley, eh? 🙂
-Sam Shorkey, Jacked on the Beanstalk