Sunday, July 3, 2011

Sides for Summer Dinners-Baked Beans, Roasted Red Potatoes & Grilled Vegetables

 Baked Beans, Roasted Red Potatoes & Grilled Vegetables


Baked Beans are a staple to Summer.  I grew up on this recipe and it is my go to, tried and true side dish for any BBQ.  

The best part of these baked beans are how easy they are- add the following to your crock pot and let it cook on low for the entire afternoon or as little as 2-3 hours on high.

First, add baked beans- I add 3, 15 oz cans.

Continue adding the ingredients to your crock pot - 3/4 c sugar, 1 tbsp minced onions, 1 tbsp chili powder, 2 tbsp garlic, 1 tbsp mustard, 3/4 c BBQ sauce, 1/4 c ketchup, 1/4 c molasses, 1/4 c honey and finish by adding 1 tbsp of liquid smoke.

If you have never cooked with liquid smoke- start!  It is amazing.  It adds the smoky BBQ taste to your food, without actually having to BBQ-SO good!!

Jeremy prefers everything SUPER spicy so at this point I typically sprinkle some red pepper flakes to kick it up a notch.

Stir all together and cover to let cook.

You will LOVE the flavor and spice to these.  If you are looking for a thicker baked bean you can also prepare these and place in the oven instead of the crock pot at 350 degrees for 2-3 hours too.


A nice substitute to mashed or baked potatoes are roasted red potatoes.  

I washed the potatoes and diced them-setting them aside.  
In a bowl I combined 1/2 c olive oil, 1/2 c balsamic vinegar, 1 1/2 tbsp rosemary, 1 tbsp thyme, a few dashes of red pepper flakes, 1/2 c grilled onions and 1 heaping tbsp of fresh minced garlic.
Mix the marinade together and stir in the potatoes until they are well incorporated.  

If you are serving later, cover and refrigerate.  If you are cooking immediately, preheat your oven to 450 degrees and place evening on a baking sheet.  Drizzle remaining marinade over the potatoes and bake for 20-30 minutes.  


 Another SUPER easy side to summer dinners and BBQ are fresh vegetables.  They are vibrant in color and flavor.  Place directly on your grill or stove top with a bit of olive oil and seasonings to your preference.  You can also place your vegetables in foil for a better steaming effect if you prefer.  Great marinade and spice options are pepper, garlic, lemon pepper, paprika, and chili pepper.  If you prefer a sweeter taste- brown sugar and molasses are awesome too!

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