Date-Sweetened Baked Beans

I love baked beans. My husband says that’s a Midwest thing…though technically I’ve never lived in the Midwest! But my parents did, so I guess my taste for sweet beans just might come from my somewhat Midwestern heritage.

Now, some of you may be wondering what baked beans are doing on a Paleo blog. Perhaps beans are more Primal than Paleo…but here’s a good explanation for why beans are a healthy food (as long as your particular digestion can tolerate them):

Are Legumes Paleo? by Chris Kresser

I don’t necessarily believe low carb is the purpose of this diet (or exactly healthy), and as beans are legal on the SCD when soaked 24 hours, I’ve decided to include them here. Why not? They’re nutritious and delicious! 🙂

Date-Sweetened Baked Beans

2 cups dried navy beans
3-4 cups chicken stock
1 cup dates
hot water
1 onion, diced
5 cloves garlic
1/4 tsp allspice
1/4 tsp nutmeg
Salt and pepper

The morning before you wish to serve the beans, rinse them and put them to soak in a bowl with 4 cups of water. Soak 24 hours, then drain and rinse.

Sauté onions with olive oil and a dash of salt in a stockpot till translucent. Meanwhile, place dates in a jar with the peeled garlic cloves. Pour in hot water till dates are almost covered, then blend with an immersion blender (could also use a regular blender).

When onions are translucent, add nutmeg and allspice. Sauté a few minutes more, then pour in the date/garlic purée, soaked beans, and 4 cups chicken broth. Season with salt and pepper (about 1/2 teaspoon each). Cook on low 6-8 hours, checking now and then to be sure liquid has not boiled off (the beans should not be soupy, but too little liquid will allow them to burn to the bottom of the pan). Beans are done when tender.

Note: If you’re in a hurry, you don’t necessarily have to sauté the onions and spices; you can just throw them in the pot. The sautéing may just give the dish a little extra flavor.


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