Lately, I have been on a mission to create flavorful beans and this Smoky Great Northern Beans recipe is perfect for anyone looking for a bean that holds a little smoke, a little heat, and keeps its shape and texture.
Before we get into the recipe, let me also mention this recipe is vegan, oil-free, low calorie dense and ready in 30 minutes!
What ingredients will you need?
Great Northern Beans. I use canned but you can use fresh homemade beans.
Onion. White or sweet work well in this recipe.
Dried Herbs. Garlic powder, oregano, thyme, crushed red pepper (you choose your level of spice) and black pepper.
Liquid Smoke. I like the Colgin brand of liquid smoke.
Liquid Aminos. You can use Bragg Liquid Aminos. soy sauce or tamari (wheat-free)
Water or Vegetable Broth. I think the flavoring is on point with just using water but you can add a little more by using vegetable broth.
1. In a non-stick pan over medium/low heat, water sauté the onions, until soft. Meaning, when you cook the onion, no oil is used. Let the onion start to cook then when it gets a little stuck, add a splash of water. Move the onions around. Continue to do this until soft.
2. Add all of the seasonings (garlic powder, dried oregano, thyme, crushed red pepper, liquid smoke, liquid aminos and black pepper) into the pan with a splash of water. Mix well. It will be come a paste. Let cook for 1-2 minutes.
3. Slowly pour in the water or vegetable broth, stirring to blend with the spices.
4. Add beans. Mix well.
5. Bring to a boil.
6. Turn to medium low, keeping a simmer. Set timer for 15 minutes. Stir a few times to ensure nothing is sticking to the bottom or the sides.
7. Remove from burner to let cool.
Greens would be a great add-in to this recipe!
For a lighter green, like spinach, let wilt in over the last few minutes of cooking.
For heartier greens, like kale or collards, add in at the same time your beans are added along with an extra 1/4 cup water. The heartier greens will need to be cooked longer (30-60 minutes) to get that soft braised taste. To see another recipe like this, check out my Braised Greens & Beans recipe.
Other Bean recipes you might enjoy from Jen’s Vegan Eats…
Smoky Great Northern BeansCourse: MainDifficulty: Easy
Savory, smoky beans with a little kick of heat; low calorie dense, flavorful and vegan.
onion, 1/4 cup chopped small (use white or sweet)
water or vegetable broth, 1/2 cup + water to sauté onion
garlic powder, 1/4 tsp
dried oregano, 1/4 tsp
dried, thyme, 1/8 tsp
black pepper, 1/8 tsp
crushed red pepper, 1/16 tsp – 1/8 tsp (you choose how spicy you want it)
liquid smoke, 3 – 5 drops
liquid aminos, 1/2 – 1 tbsp (I start with 1/2 tbsp and then add a little extra at the end if I want more seasoning. You can also add a sprinkle of salt at the end instead, if needed) Soy suace or Tamari are great replacements but I would start with 1/2 tbsp first to see if you even need more seasoning.
great northern beans, 1 can drained & rinsed (or use 1 1/2 – 1 3/4 cup home cooked beans)
- In a small non-stick pot over medium/low heat, water sauté the onions, until soft. Meaning, when you cook the onion, no oil is used. Let the onion start to cook then when it gets a little stuck, add a splash of water. Move the onions around. Continue to do this until soft.
- Add all of the seasonings (garlic powder, dried oregano, thyme, crushed red pepper, liquid smoke, liquid aminos and black pepper) into the pan with a splash of water. Mix well. It will be come a paste. Let cook for 1-2 minutes.
- Slowly pour in the 1/2 cup of water or vegetable broth, stirring to blend with the spices.
- Add drained & rinsed beans. Mix well.
- Bring to a boil.
- Turn to low, keeping a simmer. Set timer for 15 minutes and cover the pan with a lid. Stir a few times to ensure nothing is sticking to the bottom or the sides.
- Uncover, remove from burner and let cool.
- Calories/Serving 93.4 | F 0G | C 18G | P 6.5G
- Low Calorie Density: 335 Calories/lb.
- Optional Greens:
For lighter greens, like spinach, add them in last 5 minutes. Stir well then let wilt, covered.
For heartier greens like kale and collards, add them in at the same time as adding the beans along with an extra 1/4 cup water or vegetable broth. Heartier greens you will want to cook longer; think 30-60 minutes. Check on them and stir every 15-20 minutes.
How can you serve your Smoky Great Northern Beans?
- When eating for weight loss, I typically eat them alongside steamed or oil-free mashed potatoes and steamed or oil-free roasted asparagus, broccoli or zucchini.
- If you make the beans with the greens, they would be incredible over toast.
- When not eating for weight loss, pair your Smoky Great Northern Beans with a vegan or wfpb/oil-free corn bread.