Is it just me, or are baked beans one of those dishes that you forget about for a while – until you have them and remember how much you love them?
Because I love them!
They go so well as a side dish with a multitude of different recipes.
In the U.S., baked beans get their name from being baked in sauce after being parboiled. However, in other countries, they’re often stewed or steamed.
Regardless of how they’re made, if you’re wondering what goes with baked beans: I’ve got you covered.
Read on to discover what pairs perfectly with baked beans!
Best Baked Beans Main Dishes
1. Slow Cooked Texas Pulled Pork
Chef Dennis never fails to impress, and this Texas Pulled Pork is the perfect accompaniment with baked beans. Not to mention: this juicy, melt-in-your-mouth pulled pork coated in a luxurious tangy BBQ sauce all goes into the slow cooker!
So, whether you’re making this dish for a casual weeknight dinner, to impress company, or as a game day dish, there’s no fuss involved and it’s delicious, to boot.
Once your pork butt is cooked, you simply shred it with a fork, reduce the sauce in a pan, and then throw it all together. It’s best cooked for around 6 hours on high in your slow cooker, but the actual prep time is a mere 15 minutes!
While you can serve this on a buttery toasted bun with some fresh, sharp coleslaw on the side, personally I love pairing it with baked beans and a Parker House roll.
There’s just something about pork and beans, all mopped up with a soft, fluffy dinner roll that feels right.
2. Hot Dogs
Beans and franks are not only a staple of most folks’ childhoods; we even have a national holiday for it (July 13, for those asking)! So, obviously, we’re going to include hot dogs on this list.
In this recipe, A Southern Soul takes things to another level by cooking her dogs in an air fryer — pretty genius, if you ask me.
Not only is it quick and easy (six minutes for the dogs, two for the bun), but by air frying your hot dog, you end up with a juicy, succulent dog, with crisp, snappy skin. Isn’t that the most perfect combination?
Feel free to top your dog with any combination of goodies. Think:
- Pickled red onion
- Fresh diced yellow onion
- Ketchup or yellow mustard
- Sauerkraut, and more.
And don’t forget the baked beans on the side! Serve this one up for an easy lunch, dinner, or any other occasion!
3. Chilli Lime Pulled Pork
Yup, it’s another pulled pork recipe. I can’t help it — baked beans are just so good with pork!
But this one’s very different from the Texas-style pulled pork, with Mexican-inspired fresh, bright flavors, and a little kick from the chili.
Better yet, this is another slow cooker recipe, so just throw everything in the pot and let it go! Six to seven hours on low is all you need for this recipe – after which you shred, rehydrate in its cooking liquid, and finish with reserved cilantro for color and flavor.
While it’s recommended that you serve this with rice or tortillas, baked beans would be an incredible side dish too.
The richness of the beans combined with the bright, slightly spicy pork, all mopped up with either a tortilla or rice, makes for an easy-peasy, delicious weekday dinner.
This is also an awesome recipe for a crowd, so keep it in mind for your next big gathering!
4. Grilled Chicken
If you’ve ever suffered through a meal of chewy, dry chicken breasts (I know I have!), then this juicy and flavorful recipe is for you. It pairs beautifully with baked beans.
All you need to do is tenderize the breasts and pound them to a ½-inch thickness, then marinade it overnight (or for at least four hours) with lemon zest, extra virgin olive oil, minced garlic, dried thyme, dried oregano, salt, and pepper.
Lemon zest imparts all the flavor of the lemon without the acidic juice. This is key since the juice actually cooks your chicken and makes it dry and tough!
Finally, throw them on the grill for a few minutes on each side for healthy, juicy, flavorful chicken breast. Be sure to let it rest before you carve it up, as that’ll allow the meat to relax and reabsorb its juices.
One of the things I love about this recipe is how versatile it is — serve it in summer with a fresh, green salad, or chop it up and throw it in sandwiches or pasta.
However, my absolute favorite thing to do is serve it for dinner in the cooler months alongside some baked beans.
The beans provide a bit of healthy, carby goodness, and the richness of the baked bean sauce is the perfect accompaniment to the zesty chicken breast.
If you’ve never had a hamburger with baked beans, boy, are you missing out!
For me, the ideal classic hamburger has a thick, juicy, medium-rare patty, perfectly toasted buns (while I love brioche, sometimes I find brioche buns are a little too soft and can fall apart on burgers, so I prefer something with a slightly denser crumb), melty, gooey cheese, and a few slices of sharp bread and butter pickles.
I’m also a huge fan of burgers that switch it up! Believe it or not, one of the best hamburgers I ever had was a PB & J Burger with a thick smear of smooth peanut butter and grape jelly on the bun. Honestly!
That’s why I think baked beans are such a great side with a hamburger. The tang of the sauce makes for a great accompaniment, whether you’re a burger purist or a bit more adventurous…
Since burgers are such a personal preference, check out this list of 22 Best Burger Recipes from Food & Wine. No matter what you look for in a burger, you’re sure to find it here!
So, for your next grill, be sure to include a great hamburger of your choice and some baked beans on the side!
6. Glazed Ham
Glazed ham is one of those dishes that you probably don’t think about outside of Thanksgiving or Christmas, but it’s the ultimate crowd-pleaser dish. An added bonus is that it goes amazingly with baked beans!
This Brown Sugar Mustard Glazed Ham recipe from Cafe Delites is one of my favorites because it has everything you want in a glazed ham — it’s tender and juicy, full of flavor, and has a sticky glaze and crispy edges.
A baked ham does require a little more active cooking time and care to get it right, but I promise you – it’s totally worth it!
That’s especially the case if you’re entertaining and looking for a show-stopper main dish. Just be sure to keep basting that ham to make sure it stays nice and moist and doesn’t dry out.
Serve with some succulent roasted veggies and baked beans, and just wait for the compliments to come pouring in!
7. BBQ Pulled Chicken Sandwich
Surprise: it’s another BBQ recipe! Only this time, it’s a BBQ Pulled Chicken Sandwich, and — as you may have gathered — BBQ goes great with baked beans.
Because this one’s a chicken recipe (boneless, skinless thighs for this one), it only takes a few minutes to cook on the grill.
Plus, you can make it ahead of time and let it sit in the refrigerator for up to four days (or in the freezer for up to three months) – and the flavor will only get better!
Simply oil and rub the chicken all over with the rub ingredients, then throw on the grill until the juices run clear. Let it rest for a few minutes, then shred and mix together with the Root Beer BBQ sauce.
Toast up your bread, slap your chicken between it, and you’ve got a winner, winner, chicken dinner! The flavor of the root beer sauce works really well with baked beans, making them the perfect side for this dinner dish.
8. Grilled Cheese
“Grilled cheese and baked beans?”, you may be wondering? Yes!
Honestly, the concept isn’t too different from grilled cheese and tomato soup, especially if you go with a more tomato-based bean. Plus, you get to add a little protein to your grilled cheese!
Personally, I think this would be the perfect work-from-home or mid-week lunch, or weekend brunch, and it’s easy enough to do that you could whip up a batch for yourself, the kids, or whoever else is at home.
Natasha’s Kitchen takes her grilled cheese to the next level by using thick-sliced white bread (Texas Toast), a generous spread of butter, and three different types of cheese — medium cheddar, Gouda, and Havarti.
While grilled cheese is super easy to do, be sure to:
- Be patient and cook it over low heat for the best results
- Don’t be afraid of the butter (it’s what makes it delicious!)
- Thick bread will give you a better crunch
- Use a cast-iron skillet or non-stick pan for a great grilled cheese.
Then, just heat up your beans – and you’ve got the perfect lunch! Delicious!
9. Scrambled Eggs
Not sure if scrambled eggs go well with baked beans? Just ask the Brits!
Scrambled eggs and baked beans have long been a staple of that British classic the English Breakfast, along with bacon, sausages, hash browns, and fried mushrooms (give or take a few sides).
I love this scrambled egg recipe from BellyFull. If you’re a scrambled egg novice (or even a pro), this recipe provides some great tips to make sure your eggs end up rich and fluffy with nice, big curds.
While you may not want to go the whole hog, trust me when I say that scrambled eggs and baked beans make for an excellent and hearty breakfast.
The fluffy, creaminess of the eggs, along with the rich and tangy baked beans will set you up for the whole day — all you’ll want to add is some buttery toast on the side to mop up the sauce!
10. BBQ Ribs
It’s my last BBQ recipe — I promise! But BBQ just goes so great with baked beans, I couldn’t resist.
While some folks think that you can only make ribs if you’ve got a smoker, I’m here to testify to the ease and deliciousness of these oven-baked ribs.
Baked low and slow for two to three hours, these ribs are then coated in a sweet, spicy, and tangy BBQ sauce.
While Inspired Taste likes to serve these with a pasta salad, I recommend baked beans and some bread to mop everything up after.
11. Cheesy Garlic Bread
In fact, if you’re looking for a great bread recipe to go with those BBQ ribs, why not this Cheesy Garlic Bread recipe?
The added richness and saltiness of the cheese goes perfectly with baked beans, and – as a side dish itself – it’d be a great accompaniment to any meal!
Crusty French bread gets split, spread evenly with garlicky butter, topped with Colby Jack and mozzarella cheese, and then baked in the oven for about 12–15 minutes (or until the butter is melted and the cheese bubbly).
It’s super easy to make, an ideal dish to have on the side, and goes great with baked beans.
You could even serve up this garlic bread with just beans for lunch, or an after-school snack!
12. Jalapeño Popper Chicken Casserole
Casseroles can be really tough to figure out what to serve alongside, but baked beans go perfectly, adding protein and saucy deliciousness.
This Jalapeño Popper Chicken Casserole from eatwell101 is a real favorite in our household, featuring one of our most-loved snacks — jalapeño poppers!
The richness of the heavy cream and cream cheese, alongside the savory and salty bacon and cheddar, makes this dish perfect with baked beans, for a hearty dinner or lunch. Plus, the casserole is not only gluten-free but also low-carb and keto-friendly.
It’s easy to assemble, but you can even make this ahead of time and reheat. After that, all you’ll need to do is dish up with your baked beans!
13. Cottage Pie
Cottage Pie is another British classic cozy dish and one of my all-time faves. And while some braised cabbage or glazed carrots alongside are a classic side to serve, I love this with baked beans.
The tanginess of the beans goes perfectly with the richness of the Cottage Pie, so if you’ve never had beans and Cottage Pie, I urge you to give it a go!
Cottage Pie is a dish that takes a little longer to prepare since you need to cook off your beef mince, and then cook and mash your potatoes.
However, making the mixture for Cottage Pie isn’t as time-consuming as Italian ragù, so you could still put this dish together relatively quickly!
You could also cook your mince ahead of time and refrigerate or freeze, though I’d recommend cooking and mashing your potatoes on the day.
This all gets topped with a generous serving of Parmesan cheese and drizzled with butter, before being baked in the oven for 25–30 minutes, or until golden and bubbling at the edges.
Be sure to let your Cottage Pie rest for a few minutes before serving (so that it isn’t too runny and doesn’t burn the roof of your mouth off!), then pair it with a good helping of baked beans and enjoy!
Best Baked Beans Side Dishes
14. Cornbread Muffins
What side dish pairs perfectly with American classic baked beans? Why, another American classic, of course!
The slightly sweet taste of baked beans gives way to the firm yet fluffy texture of cornbread muffins. It may not be the most obvious choice, but hear me out — sweet cornbread muffins are truly the way to go.
My family and I really love how well these two dishes go together. The tanginess of baked beans floods the taste buds while the cornbread rounds everything out. It’s oh-so-perfect!
Out of the many cornbread muffin recipes out there, Southern Bite takes the cake. Their recipe uses plain corn meal and not store-bought, ready-to-bake mixes – giving you plenty of room for creativity.
Simply mix the ingredients and stir (but not too much!) before popping the tray into the oven for about 20 minutes. Your muffins are ready when they shine golden brown.
It’s easy, simple, and flavorful. If you have nothing else in mind, whip up this classic to enjoy alongside your baked beans in no time!
15. Homemade Coleslaw
For a truly heavenly side dish to your baked beans, go for a rich and hearty serving of coleslaw! This simple salad is one of my all-time favorites because of how fresh and versatile it is.
The secret to a delicious coleslaw is the dressing. The combination of mayonnaise and apple cider vinegar creates a creamy dressing that zaps you with a refreshing zing!
I’ve always loved coleslaw that’s popping with multiple colors. That’s why I use different types of cabbage on top of the carrots for a visually appealing and flavorful salad.
Coleslaw isn’t just easy to prepare, but you can also make plenty of servings for days to come! This way, you can enjoy all sorts of dishes with this salad – including baked beans.
I’ll let you in on my favorite combo — baked beans, coleslaw, and a plate of savory BBQ ribs.
The baked beans complement the smoky flavor of the ribs, while the coleslaw offers a crisp texture that elevates the entire experience. Oh, just talking about it makes me hungry!
16. Mac and Cheese
Mac and cheese? With baked beans? Yes!
This scrumptious duo is equal parts delicious and comforting. How does this combination work, exactly? It has everything to do with balance!
Mac and cheese is a creamy treat that people of all ages love. But if you’re making it for baked beans, don’t settle for anything ordinary.
Inject some personality into your mac and cheese by adding a crisp and golden layer of panko on top! Mom on Timeout had the idea of using panko instead of breadcrumbs, and the results are simply amazing.
Once placed in the oven, the panko topping gets a nice golden sizzle and becomes crispy – perfectly complementing the soft texture of the pasta.
When paired with baked beans, this crispiness adds structure so you don’t end up with a mushy plate. The first time I tried this pairing, my kids loved it so much that they went for seconds in no time!
17. Sweet Potato Fries
Mashed, chips, fries, or mojos — whatever form potato takes, it’s always welcome at our dinner table. And because of how much we love it, it was only a matter of time before we tested it as a side dish to baked beans.
And what do you know? It works splendidly!
Spice things up further by going for sweet potatoes instead. These vitamin-packed root crops work in the same way as potatoes, but they also have a slightly sweet flavor that potatoes don’t.
I especially love Good Life Eats’ grilled fries because the recipe uses healthier oils. It’s perfect for health-conscious eaters who still want to enjoy their meals.
These grilled fries have a nice, smoky texture that’s packed full of flavor and elevates the strong taste that most baked beans have. Overall, it’s a wonderful combination for BBQ parties!
18. Quinoa Salad
Quinoa is an insanely amazing superfood that’s rich in fiber, protein, and nutrients. If you’re a baked beans lover, you’ll also love this quinoa salad since it’s such a great side to the dish!
This salad is so easy to prepare, and ready in as little as 20 minutes. You’ll just need quinoa, sweet bell peppers, cucumber, and red onion. The dressing made of vinegar, olive oil, and honey brings everything together for a fresh treat you’re sure to love!
Quinoa salad is an explosion of flavors that really emphasizes the baked beans’ milder and tangy taste. The strong tomato notes also meld well with quinoa – creating an overall profile that I can only describe as garden-like.
A hearty plate of baked beans with a nutritious side of quinoa salad is the perfect duo for cooler, autumn months. It’s so cozy and comforting that you’ll want to curl up on the couch after and watch some TV!
19. Potato Salad
Looking to put a charming twist on your potato side dishes? Instead of making fries or chips for your baked beans, why not whip up a batch of potato salad?
Baked beans with potato salad is the ultimate comfort food because of how well they jive together! Making sure your potato salad is creamy and tangy is the key, which is why I love this recipe from Spend with Pennies.
To start, buy your favorite potatoes and boil them until tender. While that’s cooking, prepare your salad dressing of mayonnaise, pickles, cider vinegar, and some herbs.
You even have creative license to add other ingredients for a truly unique dish! Think hardboiled eggs, carrots, or Greek yogurt.
Once the potatoes are tender (but not overcooked), let them cool first before mixing them with the dressing. Make sure to prepare lots of dressing to keep the salad creamy!
With baked beans, these two dishes have so much contrast that they’ll create a refreshing experience you’ll always come back to!
20. Grilled Zucchini
Grilled zucchini is a tasty snack on its own, especially during warmer months. But have you ever tried using it as a side dish?
It might seem novel at first, but this versatile veggie is a real team player when paired with baked beans!
When done right, grilled zucchini adds a firm texture to your recipes. It’s also smoky like BBQ, so the combination treats you to a nice blend of fresh, tangy, and charred flavors!
The key to excellent grilled zucchini is choosing only the freshest crop you can find. And before grilling them, make sure to slice the veggie thick enough to absorb the heat without becoming too soft.
The result? Slices of zucchini seared to perfection that smell and taste amazing! Grab a plateful of baked beans and enjoy all the different flavors popping on your tongue. Trust me: this combination never disappoints.
Best Toppings for Baked Beans
21. Bacon Bits
Crispy, juicy bacon is all it takes to add some crunch and hints of flavor to your delicious baked beans.
22. Plain Greek Yogurt
Play around with baked beans’ sweet tomato taste by combining the tanginess and heavier texture of Greek yogurt!
23. Homemade Salsa
Here’s a real kicker — homemade salsa! This blend of tomatoes, spices, and herbs builds on and elevates the flavor of baked beans.
23 Dishes That Go Well With Baked Beans
- Slow Cooked Texas Pulled Pork
- Hot Dogs
- Chili Lime Pulled Pork
- Grilled Chicken
- Glazed ham
- BBQ Pulled Chicken Sandwich
- Grilled Cheese
- Scrambled Eggs
- BBQ Ribs
- Cheesy Garlic Bread
- Jalapeño Popper Chicken Casserole
- Cottage Pie
Best Baked Beans Side Dishes
- Cornbread Muffins
- Homemade Coleslaw
- Mac and Cheese
- Sweet Potato Fries
- Quinoa Salad
- Potato Salad
- Grilled Zucchini
Best Toppings for Baked Beans:
- Bacon bits
- Plain greek yogurt
- Homemade salsa
- Pick one (or two)
My name is Noha.
I’m passionate about food, an avid traveler, and I love to explore new cultures and cuisines whenever I get the chance by sharing my recipes and experiences with my readers.
A big fan of exploring different cuisines and always looking for new and exciting flavors to explore. I’m especially interested in healthy eating and finding ways to make delicious dishes without sacrificing nutrition.