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Southwestern Beans

With the Fourth of July just a few days away, we are all preparing for family gatherings and backyard barbecues to celebrate our independence. While we all expect something delicious to be coming from the grill, getting creative with the side items is always fun.
Here in the South, baked beans are a standard at any backyard gathering. The sweet, sticky, and bacon covered beans are fantastic. However, I love baked beans so much that I make several varieties throughout the year to enjoy as a meal. This recipe was inspired as a hybrid of my Mexican Campfire Beans and traditional Southern Picnic Beans. These beans are spicy! However, the heat is well rounded with the deep flavor of the chipotle powder and the sweetness of the brown sugar.
So, as you prepare for your gathering this week, consider spicing up the cookout with these Southwestern Beans.
1 Pound Ground Beef
1/2 Cup Minced Yellow Onion
3-15 ounce Cans Pork-N-Beans
1 Cup Packed Light Brown Sugar
1 Cup Ketchup
2 Tablespoons Mustard
12 ounces Pale Ale
1 Tablespoon Chili Powder
1 Tablespoon Minced Garlic
1/4 teaspoon Red Pepper Flakes
1/2 teaspoon Chipotle Pepper Powder
1/2 teaspoon Cayenne Pepper
1/4 teaspoon Dried Oregano
1/2 teaspoon Paprika
1 1/2 teaspoons Ground Cumin
2 teaspoons Salt
1 teaspoon Black Pepper
1. Brown the ground beef with the minced onion over medium heat, breaking the meat into smaller pieces. Cook until completely browned, approximately 5 minutes.
2. While the meat is cooking, place the remaining ingredients into the slow cooker.
3. Add the beef and onions, with cooking juices, to the slow cooker.
4. Stir to thoroughly combine.
5. Cover and set to LOW.
6. Cook for at least 5 hours or up to 8 hours.

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