Maple Baked Beans & Chicken

Baked beans are a classic comfort food and a time-saving "fix it and forget it," slow cooker dish you can prepare in advance. Using lean chicken, instead of higher fat meats like pork hocks and bacon, works great and reduces the fat content.
Serves: 8
Prep Time: 15 min
Cook Time: 720 min

Ingredients

2 cups navy beans, dry
2 bay leaves
4 cups cold water
1 cup maple syrup
1/2 cup ketchup
2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
1 tbsp mustard powder
1/2 tsp thyme, dried
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp black pepper, freshly ground
2 onions, large, cut in half
8 whole cloves
4 skinless chicken legs, separated into thigh and drumstick portions

Food Safety

Before you start, wash all surfaces and your hands with soap and warm water, and remember to wash your hands, utensils and cutting boards after they touch raw meat or eggs. Avoid cross-contamination by using a different cutting board for your meat and other ingredients. Make sure you’re cooking to safe temperatures and chilling any leftovers within two hours. For more food safety tips, visit our Food Safety at Home Section.

Steps

  1. Rinse beans and add to crock of slow cooker along with the bay leaf. Cover with 12 cups (3L) cold water. Cover and cook in slow cooker set to LOW for 6-8 hours. It works well to do this step overnight. The beans should be tender but not falling apart. Alternately, you can boil them on the stove for an hour or so until tender but not splitting.

  2. Remove 2 cups (500 mL) bean water from crock. You may use this later if beans are dry. Keep in fridge. Discard it later if you don't use it.

  3. Stir maple syrup, ketchup, cider vinegar, dry mustard powder, dried thyme, salt and pepper into beans. If you don't like sweet beans add less maple syrup. You can always adjust sweetness later.

  4. Cut onions in half and peel. Push two pieces of whole cloves into each of the halves. Add to the bean pot along with the skinless chicken pieces. Push them down to submerge as well as you can. Bone in chicken will give more flavour and match the longer cooking time.

  5. Cover and cook on LOW heat 4 hours. Then cook up to one additional hour with lid off to evaporate liquid and you get the desired level of "sauciness." How you want the beans is a matter of preference.

Helpful Tip

The salt is optional. The other ingredients lend lots of flavour if you need a lower sodium version. It also works to add more chicken depending on appetites and the number of people you have to feed.

Nutrition Info

Per 640 g serving Amount
Calories490
Protein38 g
Fat8 g
Saturated Fat2 g
Carbohydrate67 g
Fibre10 g
Sugar31 g
Cholesterol110 mg
Sodium450 mg
Per 640 g serving % Daily Value
Potassium33
Calcium15
Iron25
Vitamin A6
Vitamin C20
Vitamin B642
Vitamin B1224
Folate94
Zinc56