Low Sodium Baked Beans

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Low Sodium Baked Beans are the side dish every BBQ needs! They’re simple to prepare, full of flavor, and clock in at only 48 mg sodium per serving!

Low Sodium Baked Beans in a cast iron skillet with a ladle full held above the pan

It isn’t a summer barbecue without baked beans, but if you’re living a low sodium lifestyle, canned beans might be one of the foods you’ve given up because they’re typically extremely high in sodium. One serving of baked beans made with standard canned beans can contain more than 500 mg sodium. No salt added canned beans make these Low Sodium Baked Beans an easy and delicious possibility.

These beans are bursting with flavor. The sauce bakes up as a mouthwatering combination of sweet and tangy with a hint of smokiness from the BBQ sauce. They’re excellent for feeding a crowd, perfect for a potluck, and require just one oven-safe pan to make them in. Easy to prepare and easy to clean up!! 


You’ll need these key ingredients and a few pantry staples to make this recipe.

ingredients for baked beans on a white plate and in small white bowls

Reduced Sodium Bacon – I use Market Pantry Reduced Sodium Bacon from Target. Check your labels to make sure you’re using the lowest sodium option.

No Salt-Added Beans – I choose no-salt-added pinto beans, but navy beans or any white bean will work.

No Salt Added Ketchup – Heinz No Salt Added Ketchup is available in most grocery stores and at Walmart. It contains 5 mg sodium per tablespoon, a considerable reduction from the standard version, which contains 180 mg sodium in one tablespoon.

Low Sodium BBQ Sauce – I make my own Homemade Low Sodium BBQ Sauce, but you can swap your own sauce or a low sodium store-bought sauce.

Apple Cider Vinegar: Vinegar gives the beans their delicious tanginess. Add less for a milder taste.

Brown Sugar: This recipe is the perfect balance of sweet and tangy. Add more brown sugar for a sweeter dish.

Molasses: Molasses gives the beans a delicious richness you don’t want to miss. 


Cast Iron Skillet or Large Oven Safe Pan

Wooden Spoon or Silicon Spatula

Optional: 9×13 Baking Dish

How to Make Low Sodium Baked Beans 

These baked beans are easy as 1-2-3-4! 

process shots of baked beans
  1. Add the bacon, onion, and bell pepper to a large, oven-safe pan or skillet over medium heat. 
  2. Saute until the veggies soften and the bacon is brown. 
  3. Stir in the remaining ingredients.
  4. Bake until the sauce is bubbly and thickened slightly. 

Remove the pan from the oven and let cool for 5-10 minutes before serving.

Low Sodium Baked Beans in two small white bowls, cast iron skillet in background

Variations on a Delicious Theme

Adjust the Sauce: This low sodium baked bean recipe bakes up saucy with lots of flavorful sauce. For a thicker variety, you can either bake the beans for an additional 30-45 minutes until the sauce reaches your desired consistency or drain two of the cans of beans before adding them to the pan. Keep in mind the sauce will thicken slightly as it cools.

Adjust the Sweetness: This recipe is equal parts tangy and sweet. If you prefer a sweeter version, increase the brown sugar to ⅓ cup or to taste.

Increase the Heat: Kick the heat up a notch by tossing a minced jalapeno pepper (or two, if you’re brave) into the pan with the bacon, onion, and bell peppers. 

Slow Cooker Version – To make this recipe in your slow cooker, sauté the bacon, onions, and bell pepper on your stovetop, then add it to your slow cooker with the remaining ingredients. Stir until evenly mixed and cook on low for 4-6 hours or high for 2-3 hours.

Low Sodium Baked Beans FAQs

How much sodium is in this recipe?

This recipe contains 48 mg sodium per serving. Always check the labels to ensure you use the lowest sodium ingredients possible.

Can I use other beans?

Navy beans, Great Northern beans, or cannellini beans are also excellent options.

Can I make this recipe with dried beans?

To make this recipe with dried beans, soak them overnight and place them in a large pot. Cover the soaked beans with water and bring them to a boil. Reduce heat to simmer and cook the beans until tender, about 1 hour.

Do I have to use a cast iron skillet?

No, a cast iron skillet is my favorite way to cook baked beans because I can sauté and bake in it. You can use any oven safe saute pan or skillet or transfer the beans to a 9×13 baking dish for baking.

Can I make this recipe without the bacon?

The bacon adds great flavor, but you can make delicious baked beans without it. Simply saute the onion and bell pepper together with one tablespoon of olive oil before mixing in the other ingredients.

Can I make this ahead of time?

You can prepare them fully and store the beans in the fridge or prepare the beans up to the baking step, transfer them to an airtight container, and store them in the fridge. When you’re ready to enjoy them, remove the beans from the fridge and let them come to room temperature. Transfer them to a 9×13 baking dish and bake as instructed.

How do I store this recipe?

Store these baked beans in an airtight container in the fridge for 4-5 days.

Low Sodium Baked Beans in a cast iron skillet with a ladle full held above the pan

If you like this recipe, you’ll love these!

If you like this recipe, try my Low Sodium Dairy Free Cole Slaw and grilled chicken brushed with my Homemade Low Sodium Barbecue Sauce with Brown Sugar.

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