Baked Beans Traditional Bean-hole Beans

Total Time
Prep 9 hrs
Cook 10 hrs

Authentic lumbermen's Bean-Hole Beans, baked overnight in the ground. This recipe is the real deal and was traditionally served with biscuits, colesalaw, molasses cookies/gingerbread. From our local Patten Lumberman's Museum where every second Saturday in August they serve hundreds.

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. Soak 2 pounds of yellow-eye beans overnight.
  2. Parboil beans until the skin peels away by blowing on a few beans in a spoon.
  3. Add the mix to the beans and stir slightly.
  4. Slice 1 pound salt pork into sections.
  5. Cut each section partly through in a criss-cross pattern and place pieces on top of the beans.
  6. Cover the beans and set to one side.
  7. The bean hole should be dug into the ground and be half again as large as your dutch oven or any other tightly lidded pot.
  8. Using seasoned hard wood, accumulate live coals until hole is 3/4 full.
  9. Shovel out the coals leaving about 3 inches of live coals in the bottom of the hole.
  10. Set the bean pot in the hole on top of the 3 inch bed of coals.
  11. Shovel the rest of the coals around and on top of the pot.
  12. Cover with dirt and check for escaping steam and making sure none is leaking out.
  13. If steam is leaking out, cover area with more dirt.
  14. Leave in the ground for 8 hours or overnight.
  15. Note: Make sure the beans are completely covered with hot water before putting in ground.
  16. The beans need to go into the ground hot.
Most Helpful

How cool is this? Never heard of Bean-hole Beans, but I love the historical aspect. I did them in the crock pot because to be totallly honest I dig in my yard to plant my garden, and flowers, period. I'm sure the "hole method would enhance the flavors even more, but these were really good.

cowbells27 April 23, 2008

Only four because I have to dig the hole! Really, I'll try it in a Dutch Oven. I love it though, now I can tell my Mom I do do somethings a little more modern! I am going to give this to my brother, he'll do it right!

KissaMew March 23, 2006

Hi Aroostook, Cumberland County born and raised and returning soon to live. What would life be without "a beanhole bean supper to go to???" :) I use an old recipe and do it in my crockpot now but these are lovely! Thanks for posting, ayuh!

Hajar Elizabeth November 30, 2005