Angela’s “Cowboy” Beans {Blue Bell Lodge}

“Beans!  Yuck!”  That was the common response from our oldest daughter whenever baked beans were served.  Didn’t matter how much hamburger, bacon, or brown sugar was added.  Hatti wasn’t gonna try them.  End of story.

But then, a few days after school let out last spring, our family took a little road trip out west.  To the beautiful Custer State Park and Black Hills of South Dakota.  It was a trip filled with so much nostalgia for me, as my family visited that area many times as my sisters and I were growing up.  I would get pings of a memory at almost every turn, and would find myself smiling as I watched our own daughters loving this special place, too.

Something my family didn’t do all those years ago, though, was go on a chuckwagon dinner ride.  I probably would not have even looked into it except my sister’s family had taken one in a couple years ago and highly recommended it.  So I signed us up.  Family of four for the Chuckwagon Dinner at Blue Bell Lodge.

It was a real treat. There were people of all ages, simply looking for a little entertainment, some wildlife spotting, and of course, a good ol’ chuckwagon meal in a beautiful setting.  We were not left disappointed.  The grub was delicious and plentiful.  And the live country and bluegrass put an instant tap in your foot.

But I think the best thing that came from this little rendezvous was that Hatti tried baked beans for the first time.  When I saw the beans on her plate I was perplexed and asked her if she was going to give the beans to her dad.  She said, “No, they said they’re Cowboy Beans, so I wanted to try them.”

“COWBOY” beans!!

That’s all it took.  A fun name.  And the bandanna and cowboy hat she was wearing probably helped, too.

So now, when we serve baked beans at home, we call them “Cowboy Beans”.  And Hatti eats them.  And helps herself to seconds.  This super easy and very tasty recipe comes from my dear friend, Angela, who has been eating this dish since she was a kid.  The recipe comes from her aunt.  Try these Cowboy Beans and I bet you’ll shout, “Yee-haw!”

Angela’s “Cowboy” Beans



In a large skillet, fry the hamburger and onion.  Drain any fat.  Add the rest of the ingredients and stir gently to combine.  Heat until warmed throughout.

Angela Johnson’s recipe box


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