National Baked Bean Month
What is July known for in the U.S? Well, it’s mainly known as the month during which American Independence is celebrated, but it’s also a month during which many people get together for family picnics and barbecues. The common denominator between all of these different types of celebrations is baked beans — the perfect side dish to BBQ, hot dogs, hamburgers, and a whole lot of other dishes.
With so many people serving baked beans during these get-togethers, it’s no wonder that July was made into National Baked Bean Month. This is the perfect month for people to grab a can of baked beans and turn them into something remarkable that friends and family members will be talking about all summer long.
The History Of National Baked Bean Month
Baked beans were originally used in Native American cuisine using beans that would’ve been native to the Americas. When English colonists arrived, they would adopt these dishes and alter them to their own tastes.
This resulted in baked bean recipes spread across North America. Originally, Native Americans used maple syrup to sweeten their baked beans, but English colonists were more likely to use brown sugar for sweetening their bean dishes.
Molasses would become increasingly popular to sweeten baked beans during the 18th century, as epitomized by Boston Baked Beans — a dish that’s made with salt pork and molasses.
This dish was so popular in Boston, that the city would become known as “Beantown.” Nowadays, baked beans are traditionally made with corn syrup, brown sugar, or sugar, and are available canned all across the U.S.
In 1981, the popularity of baked beans began to surge, and this is when the Michigan Bean Commission founded National Baked Bean Month. This was a way to emphasize the health benefits of eating beans, as well as to circulate some recipes for baked beans that can be used at picnics or barbecues during the month of July.
Observing National Baked Bean Month
Since the point of observing National Baked Bean Month is to enjoy more baked beans, it might take a little bit of creativity to serve baked beans several days during this month without making the same dish over and over again.
So we decided to list some ideas. Besides just using baked beans as a side dish to barbecues, people can also make beans and franks with them, use them to make chili, use them to make a type of ranchero nachos, or turn them into ham and bean stew.
No matter how a person chooses to use them, they can use the hashtag #NationalBakedBeanMonth to share their favorite baked bean recipes with the world.