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Homemade British Baked Beans

When you can't find a tin of Heinz, this recipe will give you the British beans you know and love.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time30 mins
Total Time40 mins
Course: Breakfast, Side Dish
Cuisine: British
Keyword: beans in tomato sauce, british baked beans, british food, cooking dried beans, crushed tomatoes, harissa beans, heinz baked beans, heinz beans, small white beans, white beans
Servings: 20 servings
Author: The Elegant Economist
Cost: $5


  • Instant Pot (or a stock pot for cooking beans)
  • Large saucepan


For Dried Beans:

  • 3 cups dried small white beans (600g)
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • ½ medium onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 whole bay leaves

For the Baked Bean Sauce:

  • 28 ounces tinned crushed tomatoes (790g)
  • ¼ cup Heinz tomato ketchup
  • 2 Tbsp tomato paste
  • 2 Tbsp granulated sugar
  • ¼ tsp garlic powder
  • ¼ tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • ½ tsp white pepper


To Cook Dried Beans (in Instant Pot):

  • Place (unsoaked) dried beans in Instant Pot. Add onion, garlic, olive oil, and bay leaves. Cover with enough water to fully submerge the beans, plus an inch or two - about six to eight cups water (1.5L).
  • Place on the lid, and set the Instant Pot to pressure cook for 30 minutes. Once the time has elapsed, allow the pressure to release naturally to preserve the shape of the beans.
  • Drain cooking water and discard the bay leaves, and make your sauce.

To Cook Dried Beans (on Stove):

  • Soak your beans in a large bowl, completely submerged, overnight - or for at least 8 hours. When ready to cook, drain and discard soaking water.
  • In a large stock pot place your beans, onion, garlic, olive oil, and bay leaves. Add 6-8 cups of water (1.5L or so). Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium high and simmer for about an hour - check the beans for doneness, and if needed, cook for up to another hour.
  • Once fully cooked, drain cooking water, discard bay leaves, and make your sauce.

For the Sauce:

  • Add all of your ingredients to the saucepan, and over medium heat bring to a simmer to allow all the flavours to combine. Add more ketchup if needed (I won't judge you). Once the sauce tastes good, add your beans and allow to cook for 15-20 minutes until they take on the flavour of the sauce. You may wish to add more salt at this point. Remove from heat and serve warm. You can also portion and freeze for up to three months.


This recipe makes a lot of beans, which I recommend portioning into small containers and freezing. The recipe can easily be halved if fewer beans are required.
These beans will keep in the freezer for up to 3 months.