this recipe

Great as a barbecue side or as dinner's main feature with a warm piece of cornbread, these slow-cooked baked beans are rich and creamy with a pleasant touch of smoke. And, of course there's bourbon in them! Maker's Mark® and ginger ale add a light sweetness that plays well against that tanginess. As if all that weren't enough, the beans are topped with a crisp, buttery crumble.

Preparation Time

60 minutes, or overnight

Cook Time

1 hour 40 minutes

Total Time

2 hours 40 minutes


  • 1 lb. dried pinto or white beans

  • 1/4 lb. of bacon, cut into medium dice

  • 1 white onion diced

  • 2 cloves of garlic, peeled and crushed

  • 3/4 cup Homemade Maker's Mark® BBQ sauce

  • 6 oz. (4 shots) 

    Maker's Mark® Bourbon

  • 1 can of ginger ale

  • 4 cups pork or chicken stock

For Topping to Finish

  • 1 cup panko bread crumbs

  • 3 tbsp. butter

  • 3 oz. country ham, chopped

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A close up image of a bowl of beans and meat.
  • Step 1
    Soak beans overnight
    Soak dried beans for at least 1 hour or overnight.
  • Step 2
    Preheat oven and prepare bacon
    While preheating oven to 325 degrees, brown bacon on the stove over medium heat in an oven-safe pot or Dutch oven.
  • Step 3
    Add onion and garlic
    When almost crispy, add onion and garlic and cook for 5 minutes, stirring often.
  • Step 4
    Mix beans in
    Drain your beans and add to the bacon mixture.
  • Step 5
    Drop in the remaining ingredients
    Add Maker's Mark BBQ sauce, Maker's Mark Bourbon and ginger ale. Mix well, and then add the pork or chicken stock.
  • Step 6

    Bake with lid

    Cover pot, place in oven and bake for 1 hour.

  • Step 7

    Remove lid and bake

    Uncover and bake another 30 minutes or until beans are tender and a crust has begun to form on top of the dish.

  • Step 1
    Mix ingredients over heat
  • Step 2
    Stir until brown
    Stir constantly until lightly brown, about 5 minutes.
  • Step 3
    Add the crumble
    Remove beans from oven and top with the crumble before serving.
A bottle of Maker's Mark bourbon whisky behind a tall glass with a Bourbon Bloody Mary over ice and a pickle, celery, and lime garnish. A small bowl of lime slices is to the left.

Bourbon Baked Beans

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Perfect pairing

Try an easy-to-make Maker's® and Ginger highball with this dish. Just pour 1 ½ parts Maker's® in a highball glass with ice, top with ginger ale and garnish with lime.

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Soaker saver

If you forgot to soak them last night, try quick soaking your beans. Just boil them in water and cover for 2 minutes. Remove from heat and let stand for an hour. Drain beans, discarding the water.

Red icon on a cream-colored background, representing two beans.

Taste five

Dried beans can be temperamental individuals that cook at different speeds – even within the same batch. When testing for doneness, sample a few at a time to get a better idea of how far along they are.

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Maker's® BBQ sauce

You'll find a ton of uses for this adaptable BBQ sauce and Star Hill Provisions® favorite. Check out the recipe here.

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Tips, tools & techniques 

Some people enjoy crispy, caramelized baked beans. Others prefer a more soupy, saucy version. If you're in the former group, try cooking them a little longer with the lid off. You might also try placing them under the broiler after adding the crumble to get a nice bubbly, crunchy char going on top. If you're the saucy type, add additional liquid like stock or water during cooking. Beans will continue to absorb flavor over time, so storing the finished product overnight will add richness and thickness. Lastly, an additional splash of Maker's Mark at the end really punches up the caramel flavor.

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A photo of the classic Maker's Mark bourbon whisky bottle.