Cowboy's Pinto Beans

"This is my recreation of the pinto beans at our favorite BBQ restaurant. It took a while to get the spicy, slightly sweet flavor right and this comes pretty durn close to the original."
photo by pattikay in L.A. photo by pattikay in L.A.
photo by pattikay in L.A.
Ready In:
1hr 20mins




  • Spray a 1 1/2-quart casserole dish with cooking spray.
  • Cook bacon until just crisp, pat with paper towels, and crumble. Reserve 2 tablespoons of bacon grease.
  • In reserved bacon grease, sauté onion and garlic until tender, about 10 minutes.
  • Put undrained pinto beans, onions and garlic, bacon pieces, and rest of ingredients into the casserole dish and mix well.
  • Bake, uncovered, in a preheated 350°F oven for 1 hour.

Questions & Replies

default avatar
Got a question? Share it with the community!


  1. Paka1931
    These were a big hit and they freeze well! I also used real bacon bits. I don't think it hurt the recipe at all but can't wait to try it with real strips of bacon! Thanks.
  2. redwine
    It's the molasses that does the trick in this recipe, don't delete it. I use molasses in almost all my bean recipes. It's something I learned from my mother and I know others who use a little dark karo syrup. I was out of sliced bacon, so I substituted the real bacon pieces from a jar commonly used on salads. They worked fine but I must stress they were REAL bacon.
  3. Roxygirl in Colorado
    Don't miss out on trying these beans! I don't remember having such delicious beans before, even at a restaurant. The flavor is peppery hot and slightly sweet (but not overpowering in any way). I tripled the recipe (but used less bacon and more garlic), filling a 9x13 pan to the brim. I made these to go with some beef enchiladas that I am bringing to another family (and keeping half for ourselves). You did a fine job recreating those beans, Leslie! Roxygirl
  4. Randy S.
    Excellent recipe! A perfect balance of flavored. This is a keeper!
  5. rochsann
    I made this recipe for a Mexican dinner potluck, and it complemented the other food wonderfully. I quadrupled the recipe, which was easy to do. I only doubled the bacon (microwavable), onion, cumin, cayenne pepper, pepper sauce, pepper, and worcestshire. I tripled the molasses, garlic, and chili powder. It turned out on the mild side with a little spicy kick. I used black and pinto beans. I also drained the beans a good bit, but I think that was only necessary because I had increased the recipe. These beans would be my choice over refried beans. Thanks for a great recipe!



Find More Recipes