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Beans on Toast

Something that I had never ever heard of before I moved over here to the UK, was a tasty dish called beans on toast. They eat everything on toast over here . . . tinned mushrooms, tinned spaghetti, tinned tomatoes, sardines, cheese . . . and, well, baked beans.

I first enountered this dish at the care facility that I worked at not too long after Todd and I got married. They were serving the residents beans on toast one night for supper, and I asked the cook . . . what exactly is beans on toast? She looked at me like I was a complete duffus, which of course I was. I thought that there must be some mystical recipe, and that I had somehow missed out on it all my life. I felt really dumb when she told me it was exactly what it said . . . baked beans dumped on to toast.

So, like any good Canadian that is trying hard to assimilate into a new country, I went home and tried it. I had to see what all the excitement was about.

They were quite good, but . . . I can remember thinking to myself . . . they can be better, and so I kicked them up a notch.

Anyone who knows me, knows I just can't leave well enough alone. I must always improve things in some way. (Which again, is debateable, but to me . . . they are improved)

And yes . . . sometimes even Todd and I have beans on toast for our tea.

And what's more, I'm cheeky brilliant enough to give you a recipe for it!

(These are rather good, if I don't say so myself.)

*Beans on Toast*
Serves 2
Printable Recipe

Comfort, comfort, comfort . . .

For the toast:
4 slices of sourdough bread
2 spring onions, thinly sliced
2 ounces strong cheddar cheese, grated
For the beans:
1 425g tin of baked beans in tomato sauce
1 TBS dark treacle
1 TBS soft light brown sugar
1 TBS cider vinegar
1 tsp mustard
2 tsp grated onion

Place the beans, treacle, sugar, vinegar, mustard and onion in a saucepan. Slowly bring to the boil, stirring, then reduce the heat to simmer and simmer for about 10 minutes. Keep warm while you do the toast.

Pre-heat the grill on your oven to high. Place the bread slices on a baking tray and grill for several minutes on each side until lightly toasted. Sprinkle one side of each slice with 1/4 of the grated cheese. Sprinkle the onions evenly over top of all. Bang back under the grill and grill until the cheese is melted and bubbly.

Place two sliced of cheese toast on each of two warmed plates. Divide the beans equally amongst the two plates and spoon them over top of the cheese toasts. Enjoy!
Marie Rayner
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  1. I love that you posted this . . . I have heard of it and had a ruff idea of what it was but now I know how to make it!

  2. Beans on toast - a great comfort food, and a good way of stuffing fibre into children (although the Food Police tell us scary tales of how much sugar there is in there too)! I like your posh BoT recipe, although I do like just pepper and a knob of butter on top of my beans, which I've reduced considerably first so that they're not too sloppy.

    And, like Vegemite vs Marmite, people here Take Positions on which brand of baked beans are best.

    1. As a Brit, now in Canada, I grew up on Beans on Toast and my variation is to put Marmite on the toast then beans on top. Gives it that extra bit of a savoury tang to it then add grated cheese for extra decadence.

    2. The Toddster would like that Unknown. He loves marmite!

  3. YUM! Love your take on baked beans on toast, Marie...the cheesy toast makes all the difference! Happy Day, my friend--LOVE YA ((BIG HUGS))

  4. Beans on toast - a favorite childhood lunch for many generations in our family. I remember my niece reporting back to her mother that I had served "peas on bread" for her tea. BUT, it never tasted so good as your version I'm sure. I'll be trying it your way the next time I have a craving. Yum, yum.

  5. oh my gosh, i've neve heard of beans and toast, but it looks sooooooooooooooooooo good !!

  6. Aww, you just made me feel homesick! I'm from the U.K- moved to NY not too long ago!
    I actually bring cans of Heinz baked beans back with me every time I visit home!
    Love your version of "cheesy beans on toast" as I like to call it!

  7. I love beans on toast....and tinned spaghetti. That one is my favourite!

  8. You could always go the whole hog and bake your own beans - aka Boston Baked Beans; plenty of scope for molasses sugar!

  9. People 'Take Positions' here too about which brand of beans is best. Personally I hate Heinz Baked Beans but Crosse and Blackwell or Asda's own brand are lovely. It sounds srange people never having heard of this great BoT delicacy! Even men can do it, given a little elementary instruction on how to work the tin opener!

    love, Angie, xx

  10. Baked Beans here in the aussie world is used a lot---children love them---I prefer the ham sauce
    We have them the way you make it ( nearly) Sunday night---but we put a poached egg on top ( very yummie) i love your blog Australia

  11. Marie!! This look absolutely yummy, nice pictures too, huggs!!! gloria

  12. Ooh, I love baked beans. I always use Heinz brand but I quite like the ham sauce ones. I will try your recipe with normal ones - it looks like a good Friday/Sunday night dinner. Yum!

    Cheers - Joolz

  13. Hmmm, I've never heard of this and it really looks good!
    I'm embarrassed to say I needed to look up "treacle". I knew it was something to "eat", but didn't know exactly what. Your blog is also educational!

  14. I am clueless about British Cooking, but I sure am learning a lot reading this blog. Those beans on toast(new for me) are going to make my husband cheer I think.I'm joining you here also.

  15. Hi Marie. Beans on toast are a family favourite in our house for breakfast. I dice up a little lean bacon and fry it first before pouring over the beans to reheat them. As I have mentioned before the Gorgeous Boy enjoys "vegetarian food" so long as I serve it with a little meat LOL!! It always amazes me when people say they have never heard of a dish which I assume EVERYBODY eats !!!!!! It makes me think that there are so many food combinations out there that I have yet to try....bring them on :-)

  16. Talk about lifting the humble Baked Bean up to a whole new level. I love the doctoring you've given the sauce Marie - very yum. MOTH loves BOT for brekkie, says it helps with his cholesterol levels which have now reached highs never seen by medical science!
    Millie ^_^

  17. That's a great recipe that you have there and the pictures are fantastic.

  18. Of course having grown up on these beans I adore them - and can find them in the supermarket here I'm happy to say! only 1 of my daughter's like them though!! I've just printed out your recipe (YUM) and am going to try it your way, I didn't think Heinz baked beans could be improved upon until I read this:)))
    Mary x

  19. Hi there! I too am a Canadian living in Britain (7 years now) and I also love anything on toast, beans not being the least. I like mine with cheese if I have the time to grate it, otherwise just beans is fine. I have just one thing to say about your recipe though (please don' take offense) and that is that the whole point of beans on toast is that it's virtually effortless...and your recipe calls for way too much work! Although it looks delicious and I will definitely try it when in a mood for 'posh beans on toast'! To be fair though, I used to try and spruce up beans on toast myself in my earlier years in Britain, thinking I could improve it etc like, you but after all these years I have learned to leave well enough alone, as you say, especially when you have a 5 month old baby who gives you only a 30 min nap window to eat breakfast. That's when I realized the beautiful simplicity to just beans on toast (with a sprinkle of pepper).

    You're blog is excellent, there is a lot to be explored in British food!

  20. As a Canadian Holly, I couldn't answer that question with any certainty! I am sure the ones in Canada are pretty much the same. MY point here is . . . this is a uniquely British Supper Dish, which I had never heard of until I moved over here to the UK. Being used to my mother's and my own homemade baked beans, the idea of eating tinned beans was not something I had ever even considered. Here I did and this is what I did with that idea. ☺

  21. You are a Canadian in England, I'm an American in Canada! I just did a post on British encounters I have in Canada. Tonight I'm craving baked beans + I found your blog because I wondered, "What do you eat them with?". And I have a can of the Heinz Baked Beans from England that I bought in a shop here in Vancouver. And yes, my British father-in-law says there is a difference when they're from England! Thanks for the post! Yum!

  22. I love the idea of adding sliced onions to the cheese on toast. There are so many possibilities with this simple dish, and you can eat beans on toast for any meal too. We not only enjoy it, it helps to balance our tight budget as well.

  23. While this does sound yummy, it is way too "Americanized" with all the extra ingredients in the beans. Essentially, it is Boston style baked beans made with Heinz beans instead of pork and beans.

  24. You are right Caine, this is not the traditional type of Beans on Toast which would simply be an unadulterated tin of beans heated up and dumped on top of white bread toast. Whilst that is quite tasty in it's own right, I like to kick things up a notch on here, but then again . . . I AM a North American and whilst you may be able to take the girl out of Canada, you can't always take the Canada out of the girl!

  25. I am a Brit live here now in South Carolina Hp sauce and a good piccalli on the beans is also good and yes I love your posts do you have the ingredents for the British sausages also a good pork pie! thank-you Heather

  26. I'll see what I can rustle up for you Heather!

  27. I make a dish to where i use some pork steaks, sliced onion, sliced fresh baby portabella mushrooms, two tins of drained blackbeans, and a small tin on bushes baked beans. I cook them on low in the crock for about 6 hours. I have so much extra beans/onion/mushrooms left that I serve ot.over buttered toast the next few day for an amazing lunch. Any beans and toast is so good and filling. Thanks for your recipe, ill have to give it a try 😀

  28. I make a dish where I use a few pork steaks, sliced onion, sliced fresh mushrom, 2 cans black beans, and one small can of bushs baked beans. I cook in the crock on low for approx 6 hours. There is always plenty of the bean mixture for leftovers. The next few days I enjoy it over some buttered toast and it is delicious! I cant wait to try your recipe. Beans over toast is such a filling and fairly healthy meal. Thanks for sharing your recipe! 😀

  29. Thanks for your comment Rebecca! Your version of beans sounds lovely! YOu can't beat beans on toast for an economical, nutritious and delicious supper!

  30. Are you supposed to add Worcestershire sauce as well?

  31. I don't add Worcestershire Sauce catsbreakfast. You can if you want to when you make them. It's up to you!

  32. OK - I have the beans in the pressure cooker! Can't wait to taste these later one!

    1. I hope you enjoy them! I have never cooked beans in the pressure cooker. I bet they are great!

  33. My mom was from Boston. I grew up loving Boston baked beans. In fact all beams every form of beans. Your recipe sounds wonderful! I'm going to try it. Thanks for the recipe to try it sounds good.

    1. You sound like me! I love baked beans in any way shape or form also! Hope you enjoy the recipe!


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