Crock Pot Calico Beans – An Old Fashioned Cowboy Beans Recipe

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These Crock Pot Calico Beans are easy to make and full of flavor. With bacon, ground beef and four kinds of beans, it is a hearty side dish that easily could pass as a main dish served with a side of cornbread or biscuits.

Need a new recipe for a pitch-in or party? This Cowboy Calico Beans recipe is perfect for a crowd and since they are made in the crock pot, you can put them together early and not worry.

These Crock Pot Calico Beans are easy to make and full of flavor. With bacon, ground beef and four kinds of beans, it is a hearty side dish.

Crock Pot Calico Bean Recipe

Crock Pot Calico Beans are a staple in our family. The recipe Barbara always uses comes from a local cookbook from the Shelby County (Indiana) Extension Homemakers Council in 1980.

What are calico beans?

Cowboy calico beans is a baked bean dish made from three different type of canned beans giving the dish a beautiful calico appearance – just like a three colored calico cat.

Kids and adults alike love these cowboy calico beans.  What’s so great about cowboy beans?

The sweet and tangy sauce is made from ketchup, mustard, brown sugar and vinegar – very reminiscent of a sloppy joe sauce.  And the addition of bacon and ground beef takes these baked beans over the top.

These Crock Pot Calico Beans are easy to make and full of flavor. With bacon, ground beef and four kinds of beans, it is a hearty side dish.

These are always a hit at pitch-ins or potluck meals and are a great alternative to regular baked beans. Barbara often has requests for her slow cooker calico beans when she is asked to bring a dish to a meal or party. Fixing them in the slow cooker also means you can put it all together in the morning and they are ready by lunch!

Calico Baked Beans in the Crock Pot go great served along side a Beef Brisket, Old Fashioned Pea Salad and Cheesy Cabbage Casserole.

Notes About Calico Baked Bean Crock Pot Recipe:

  • Be sure to drain off any excess grease while browning the ground beef and bacon.
  • You could swap in and out your favorite beans or whatever you have on hand for this crock pot calico baked bean recipe. We often use white cannellini or Great Northern beans for butter beans.
  • For Grandma’s calico bean recipe, drain the juices off the beans except for the pork and beans.
  • Barbara suggests using smoked, sliced jowl (hers always comes from Rihm Foods) instead of regular bacon for an extra layer of flavor – but regular bacon works just fine!
  • Looking for some more ground beef recipes? Try Mom’s Hamburger Gravy and our Hamburger Vegetable Soup with V8 juice.
  • Check out our Amazon Store for our pantry essentials and favorite kitchen gear.

These Crock Pot Calico Beans are easy to make and full of flavor. With bacon, ground beef and four kinds of beans, it is a hearty side dish.

Are calico beans a side or a main dish?

The answer is both!

Honestly, I think they can be the main dish of a meal since they have both ground beef AND bacon along with FOUR different kinds of beans! Be sure to drain the beans (except for the Pork and Beans) before adding them to the dish! You could serve them with some biscuits or Maryann’s Sweet Cornbread!

But, these are probably most often served as a side dish.

This crock pot version is a calico bean recipe for a crowd.  It makes a huge crock pot full, enough for friends and family.

 

These Crock Pot Calico Beans are easy to make and full of flavor. With bacon, ground beef and four kinds of beans, it is a hearty side dish.

How to Make Grandma’s Calico Beans Recipe:

Instructions:

  1. In a skillet, brown bacon, ground beef and onions. Drain excess fat if needed.
  2. Add pork and beans, drained pinto beans, lima beans and white beans, ketchup, mustard, salt, brown sugar and vinegar to the meat mixture; pour into the crock pot insert.
  3. Cook on low for 4 hours or until hot.

For the full recipe and ingredient amounts for slow cooker calico beans, scroll to the recipe card at the bottom of this post. 

These Crock Pot Calico Beans are easy to make and full of flavor. With bacon, ground beef and four kinds of beans, it is a hearty side dish.

Ingredients in Old Fashioned Cowboy Beans Recipe:

Bacon

Ground Beef

Onion

Brown Sugar

Ketchup

Vinegar

Mustard

Salt

Pork and Beans

Butter Beans (or any other white bean)

Kidney Beans

Lima Beans

These Crock Pot Calico Beans are easy to make and full of flavor. With bacon, ground beef and four kinds of beans, it is a hearty side dish.

What do you serve with calico beans?

Cowboy calico beans are the perfect side dish. Here’s ten perfect entrees to serve along side calico baked beans.

These Crock Pot Calico Beans are easy to make and full of flavor. With bacon, ground beef and four kinds of beans, it is a hearty side dish.

What to serve with Calico Beans?

Here’s our favorite dinner menu from appetizer to dessert featuring Slow Cooker Cowboy Calico Beans.  Find the recipes below!

Broiled Tomato Slices

Garden-fresh tomatoes are broiled with a perfect topping made with a combination of sour cream, mayonnaise, onion and dill.  Once finished, these Broiled Tomato Slices can be served as an easy summer side dish or a fancy party hors doeuvre. 

Grilled Pork Steak

Grilled pork shoulder steak is marinated in a dry rub for just 15 minutes and the result is a tender, pork steak full of flavor the whole family will enjoy. The dry rub consists of garlic salt, paprika, brown sugar, and black pepper. This will be a new go-to recipe for your summer grilling rotation.

Buttermilk Mac and Cheese

Buttermilk Mac and Cheese is the best ever, oven-baked macaroni and cheese.  The addition of eggs to this old-fashioned macaroni and cheese lends to a fluffy version that will have your family and friends asking for more. 

Spicy Roasted Zucchini

The gentle spice of this Spicy Roasted Zucchini makes it a perfect side dish for any meal, especially when you need a dish using easy ingredients.

Red Hot Cinnamon Apples

Red Hot Candies are not just for eating.  Instead, add them to an old fashioned classic stewed apples to create Red Hot Cinnamon Apples.  Eat these as a snack or a dessert. Either way, kids love them!

Yellow Cake Mix Gooey Bars

These decadent Yellow Cake Mix Gooey Bars are knock your socks off good and super easy to make with just six ingredients.

Our Favorite Baked Bean Recipes

Baked beans, including this calico version, are always a hit at pitch-ins so we have several here on These Old Cookbooks.

Crock Pot Calico Baked Beans

These Crock Pot Calico Beans are easy to make and full of flavor. With bacon, ground beef and four kinds of beans, it is a hearty side dish.
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time4 hrs
Total Time4 hrs 15 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Keyword: calico beans with bacon, crock pot calico baked beans, crock pot calico beans, grandma's calico beans recipe, slow cooker calico beans
Servings: 12
Author: Barbara

Ingredients

  • 1/2 lb. bacon or jowl cut into chunks
  • 1 lb. ground beef
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup ketchup
  • 2 Tablespoons vinegar
  • 1 Tablespoon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 16 oz. can of pork and beans
  • 15 oz. can butter beans, drained
  • 16 oz. can kidney beans, drained
  • 15 oz. can lima beans, drained

Instructions

  • Brown bacon, ground beef and onions in a pan; remove excess fat if desired.
    These Crock Pot Calico Beans are easy to make and full of flavor. With bacon, ground beef and four kinds of beans, it is a hearty side dish.
  • Add all the remaining ingredients and mix well.
    These Crock Pot Calico Beans are easy to make and full of flavor. With bacon, ground beef and four kinds of beans, it is a hearty side dish.
  • Pour into a crock pot insert; cook on low for 4 hours or until warm.
    These Crock Pot Calico Beans are easy to make and full of flavor. With bacon, ground beef and four kinds of beans, it is a hearty side dish.

Notes

  • Be sure to drain off any excess grease while browning the ground beef and bacon.
  • You could swap in and out your favorite beans or whatever you have on hand for this crock pot calico baked bean recipe. We often use white cannellini or Great Northern beans for butter beans. 
  • For Grandma's calico bean recipe, drain the juices off the beans except for the pork and beans.
  • Barbara suggests using smoked, sliced jowl (hers always comes from Rihm Foods) instead of regular bacon for an extra layer of flavor - but regular bacon works just fine!
  • Looking for some more ground beef recipes? Try Mom's Hamburger Gravy and our Hamburger Vegetable Soup with V8 juice.

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These Crock Pot Calico Beans are easy to make and full of flavor. With bacon, ground beef and four kinds of beans, it is a hearty side dish.

This was a sponsored post but the opinions are our own. Visit Rihm Foods on Facebook.

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