Pork Belly Bourbon Baked Beans

December 1, 2015

Pork Belly Bourbon Baked Beans

All of the best and most indulgent things come together for these Pork Belly Bourbon Baked Beans. Just saying it sounds a little naughty. Pork belly. Bourbon. Baked Beans. Mmmmmmmmmmmmmm. This is the side dish that will upstage any main course that makes it to the party. Honestly, I’d be cool if you just served these beans as the main course and skipped the other stuff. These baked beans are layered with flavor in every bite. From the rich, almost sweet, apple braised pork belly to the firm and savory beans every single bite will battle your inner inhibitions to burst out in song while eating.

Pork Belly

Pork belly is a pretty fun ingredient to work with and it’s been readily available (and dang affordable) at several stores lately. My favorite place to stock up is Costco. I’ll buy a whole slab and turn most of it into homemade bacon and reserve a special section just for these beautiful meaty baked beans. Pork belly is pretty darn fatty, but that means that the meat running through there is ridiculously flavorful and tender.

Pork Belly and Bourbon Baked Beans

I cooked this whole batch of beans on my smoker, but you can just as easily do the recipe on your stove top! Your best friend is going to be a heavy duty cast iron skillet because it will evenly distribute the heat throughout the long cook. These beans are pretty low maintenance to make… just a lot of dumping, covering, and simmering. If you’ve never made baked beans before, this recipe will have you wondering why you spent so many years warming up that canned stuff.

Pork Belly Bourbon Baked Beans

pork belly bourbon baked beans in a cast iron skillet
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5 from 1 vote

Pork Belly Bourbon Baked Beans

All of the best and most indulgent things come together for these Pork Belly Bourbon Baked Beans. From the rich, almost sweet, apple braised pork belly to the firm and savory beans every single bite will battle your inner inhibitions to burst out in song while eating.
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time6 hrs
Total Time6 hrs 15 mins
Course: Side Dishes
Cuisine: Barbecue, Comfort Food, Party Food
Servings: 10 people


  • 3 pounds pork belly skin removed and fatty side scored in 1 inch squares
  • 2 cups unfiltered apple juice or cider
  • 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup bourbon
  • 1/2 cup yellow onion finely chopped
  • 3 16 oz cans pinto beans drained and rinsed
  • 2 16 oz cans kidney beans drained and rinsed
  • 2 cups barbecue sauce
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons yellow mustard

Pork Belly Rub

  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon cracked black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground mustard
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper


  • In a small bowl, combine all of the ingredients for the Pork Belly Rub. Liberally season the entire pork belly with the rub.
  • Start up your smoker. You're looking for a lot of thin blue smoke and about 225 degrees. Once the grill is smoking, place the seasoned pork belly fat side up on the grill grate and close the lid. Smoke for 2 hours.
  • In a large dutch oven, combine the apple juice, apple cider vinegar, brown sugar and bourbon. Remove the pork belly from the grill and place in the dutch oven. Cover the Dutch oven with the lid, return to the grill and increase your grill temperature to 275 degrees.
  • Cook for an additional 2 hours, or until the pork is tender and shreds easily with a fork. Drain excess liquid from the Dutch oven and set aside. Shred the pork belly, removing any excess fat.
  • Return the shredded pork belly to the Dutch oven. Stir in the beans, BBQ sauce, brown sugar, mustard and 1/2 cup of the reserved cooking liquid. Cover with the lid and return to the grill. Cook for 2 more hours or until the ingredients are well combined and at the consistency you like. Add additional BBQ sauce if you like your beans a little thinner!
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44 thoughts on “Pork Belly Bourbon Baked Beans

  1. Bucketlist +1 I’m sure this can serve as a full meal! This must be so delicious you don’t even want more 🙂 Thanks for stopping by at my blog! Glad to find someone coming up with beautiful meals in my main interest! I’ll be checking your blog pretty often I think 🙂

  2. This is the most beautiful post. *wipes tear from face*

    The title alone combines three of my favorite things and holy crap, I’m hungry! I need to make this the next time I have pork belly delivered in my CSA. I NEED this in my life!

  3. I just made this, with slight diferences. Smoked a whole pork belly (6hrs) with a mustard wild mushroom rub (super bowl party). I managed to secure a couple lbs off the one end for baked beans. Awesome!!!! Just awesome.. Best baked beans I ever had…. There is never EVER enough pork belly is there?

    1. I did something like this too! I love the idea of a mustard – wild mushroom rub! My biggest difference was to put the beans in an open dish underneath the pork butt I was smoking! In doing that I had to limit the pork belly amount (Is there such a thing as too much pork fat in a bean dish???), but it came out really well! All the family raved over it!

  4. I cannot wait to make these beans (*drooling*)!
    My question is: What bourbon and BBQ sauce did you use in these?
    We use a Kansas City style sauce (like Zarda’s or KC Masterpiece).
    I’ll be using an electric smoker (a Masterbuilt digital) – will that make a difference in the taste? Thank you!
    Love your blog!
    So many recipes and so little time…

  5. I don’t have a smoker is there another way I can fix this? Cause it looks delicious and I have been looking for a great baked bean recipe. Thanks so much for any help you can give me. 🙂 Have a wonderful weekend

  6. What size is the large dutch oven you use? I am looking to invest in one and this would be a great recipe to start with!

  7. I tried out this recipe for a bbq competition and won first place. They raved about these beans and even asked for seconds!! I also tried your drunken brisket with bacon bbq sauce recipe at the same competition. Your recipes have truly inspired me and I give you all the credit.

  8. I’m making this next weekend. Have all the ingredients ready to go, excited! Will be using 4 12oz packs of sliced salt pork, and plan to wrap them with cooking twine prior to smoking them, could not find a slab of pork salt

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