Sweet & Smoky Cast Iron Cowboy Beans

Cuisinart original

The perfect side for you roasted chicken or barbeque developed by Chef Matt Jennings. These easy beans are a campfire staple that develop deeper, smokier flavor the longer they cook.


Serves 4-6


1                            Spanish onion, finely chopped

¾ cup                     Bacon, coarsely chopped

2                            Garlic cloves, crushed

3 cups                    Kidney beans*, rinsed and pre-soaked overnight

1 teaspoon              Smoked paprika

1 cup                      Tomato puree

½ cup                   Tomato ketchup

1 quart                    Beef stock

3 tablespoons         Worcestershire sauce

3 tablespoons         Balsamic vinegar

½ cup                   Brown sugar

1 tablespoon           Extra-virgin olive oil

Kosher salt & freshly cracked pepper to taste

Nutritional information

No nutrition information available


  1. Set Cuisinart’s large cast iron pan/skillet into the Woodcreek Pellet Grill & Smoker. Set the Woodcreek to ‘sear’. Shut the lid. Wait 10-25 minutes until the grill is hot.
  2. Open the lid and add the extra virgin olive oil to the cast iron pan and sauté the onion and bacon until golden brown and fragrant.
  3. Add the garlic and smoked paprika and sauté for another 30 seconds then add the drained beans. Stir to combine.
  4. Add in the paprika, tomato puree, ketchup, Worcestershire sauce, balsamic vinegar, brown sugar and about half of the stock. Stir to combine, reserving the remaining stock.
  5. Cover with aluminum foil and lower the heat to 350°F and allow to simmer gently for 2 hours, topping off with remaining beef stock as needed to ensure the beans don't dry out and burn. *If using pre-cooked, canned beans, allow to simmer for 30-45 minutes or until beans are tender and flavors are well incorporated.
  6. When the sauce is thick and deep red, season to taste, and serve!

*Canned beans can be substituted (2 – 15 oz cans of red kidney beans)