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Three-Bean Casserole

Every time I have a party to go to, I make this delicious three-bean casserole! 

It’s packed with smoky bacon, savory ground beef, and three kinds of beans. And the sweet and tangy sauce takes it over the top! 

Spoonful of three bean casserole from baking dish.
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Plus, it’s a breeze to make. It’s great for potlucks, barbecues, or anytime you need an easy dish to feed a crowd.

This just might become your new favorite way to feed a hungry group!

Why You’ll Love This Three-Bean Casserole

Crowd-Pleaser: This filling side dish can feed a crowd and is always a hit with vegetarians and meat-eaters alike.

Easy to Make Ahead: You can easily assemble the casserole in advance and refrigerate or freeze it until ready to bake.

Budget-Friendly: Since you use canned beans, the ingredients are easy on the wallet!

Full of Flavor: The combination of tender beans in a sweet and tangy sauce is always a hit.

Spoon scooping a serving of three bean casserole from baking dish.

Ingredients

  • Bacon: The smoky, salty backbone of this hearty casserole.
  • Ground Beef: It adds a rich, meaty texture and flavor to the dish.
  • Onion and Garlic: They add a nice flavor and texture to the casserole.
  • Pork and Beans: A can adds a classic barbecue flavor.
  • Kidney and Butter Beans: This brings variety and texture to the dish.
  • Ketchup: It adds a tangy, tomato-based sweetness to the sauce.
  • Brown Sugar: It adds an extra dose of sweetness.
  • Dry Mustard: For a sharp, subtle kick!
  • Worcestershire Sauce: For the umami-rich flavor you know and love.
Three bean casserole in a rectangular baking dish.

How to Make Three Bean Casserole

This casserole is so easy to make!

1. Preheat the oven. Set the oven temperature to 325°F.

2. Cook the bacon and beef. In a skillet, cook the chopped bacon until crisp, then brown the ground beef and onions in the bacon fat. Add the garlic.

3. Mix the ingredients. In a large bowl, combine the pork and beans, kidney beans, butter beans, ketchup, brown sugar, dry mustard, Worcestershire sauce, cooked beef mixture, and 2/3 of the bacon.

4. Assemble and bake. Pour the mixture into a 9×13-inch baking dish, top with remaining bacon, cover with foil, and bake for 45 minutes. Remove the foil and bake for 10 more minutes until hot and bubbly.

5. Rest and serve. Let the casserole stand for 5 minutes before serving.

Three bean casserole served in a white bowl.

Tips for the Best Three-Bean Casserole

Here are my tried-and-true tips for the very best casserole:

  • Ditch the excess liquid. Drain and rinse the kidney and butter beans to remove excess liquid and sodium.
  • Mix it up well. Ensure all ingredients are well combined before baking to evenly distribute flavors and textures.
  • Have fun with variations. Add diced bell peppers, jalapeños, or substitute different types of beans.
  • Make it a meal. For a complete and satisfying meal, pair the casserole with cornbread, coleslaw, or a fresh green salad.
  • Get a step ahead. Assemble the casserole a day in advance and refrigerate. Then, bake when ready to serve.
Three bean casserole cooked in a baking dish.

How to Store

If you have leftover casserole, follow these steps to enjoy it later.

To Store: Allow the casserole to cool completely. Store in an air-tight container and refrigerate for up to 4 days.

To Freeze: Portion the cooled casserole into individual servings and freeze in containers. Or freeze the entire casserole in a freezer-safe container for up to 3 months. Thaw in the refrigerator overnight before reheating in the oven.

To Reheat: Remove the casserole from the refrigerator and let it sit at room temperature. Cover with foil and bake for 20-25 minutes at 350, or until heated through.

Three Bean Casserole

Course: Side DishCuisine: American
Servings

8

servings
Prep time

10

minutes
Cooking time

45

minutes
Calories

461

kcal

Ingredients

  • 1/2 pound bacon, chopped

  • 1 pound ground beef

  • 1 large onion, chopped

  • 2 cloves garlic, minced

  • 1 (28 ounce) can pork and beans

  • 1 (15 ounce) can kidney beans, drained and rinsed

  • 1 (15 ounce) can butter beans, drained and rinsed

  • 1/2 cup ketchup

  • 1/2 cup brown sugar

  • 2 tsp dry mustard

  • 1 tsp Worcestershire sauce

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 325°F.
  • In a large skillet over medium-high heat, cook the bacon until crisp. Remove with a slotted spoon to a paper towel-lined plate. Remove all but 2 tbsp of bacon fat from the skillet.
  • Add the ground beef and onions to the skillet. Cook over medium-high heat until the beef is no longer pink, breaking it up as it cooks. Drain excess fat. Add the garlic and cook 1 minute more.
  • In a large bowl, mix together the pork and beans, kidney beans, butter beans, ketchup, brown sugar, dry mustard, Worcestershire sauce, cooked beef mixture, and about 2/3 of the bacon. Pour into a 9×13-inch baking dish.
  • Top the bean mixture with the remaining bacon. Cover with foil and bake for 45 minutes. Remove the foil and bake for an additional 10 minutes, until hot and bubbly. Let stand 5 minutes before serving.

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author avatar
beautyeval - InsanelyGood
Hey there! I'm beautyeval. I love running, cooking, and curling up with a good book! I share recipes for people who LOVE good food, but want to keep things simple :)

8 thoughts on “Three-Bean Casserole”

  1. Some of your recipes look like they would be very good. But there is no simple way to print them to try without having pages of printed ads and photos.

    Reply
    • Hi Lois!
      If you scroll to the recipe card at the bottom, you should see a “PRINT” button on the bottom right corner of the image, above the Servings, Prep and Cook Times
      Click that and you’ll just print the recipe card with ingredients and instructions ๐Ÿ™‚

      Reply
  2. I have this cooking in my instant pot right now. Canโ€™t wait for it! Would you please add how much bacon you use, as itโ€™s not in the recipe itself. I did use what I felt like enough, if its ever enough, because it is bacon!

    Reply
    • Hi Angie!
      We used regular butter beans but if you want to use baby lima beans, you totally can.
      The recipe will be the same ๐Ÿ™‚

      Reply

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