KAYLEE CROTCHETT’S COWBOY BEANS
I first tasted Kaylee’s Cowboy Beans about a year or so ago, and in my opinion, they were the best Cowboy Beans ever!!! Man, were they tasty. Oh, yeah, she doesn’t like to cook—or at least she didn’t when I first met her. I hope she is working on developing more recipes. More about Kaylee later…I promise.
The secret to this recipe is its simplicity. It is also extremely flexible…if you want to make it like RIGHT NOW!!!, and don’t have the exact ingredients, the recipe is very forgiving. Here are some thoughts on alternatives:
While her recipe calls for hamburger, or ground beef, you can substitute ground round, ground chuck, ground sirloin, cubed or shredded beef, or jump right out of the beef realm and use ground turkey or chicken, ground pork or even pulled pork. For a Vegetarian version, you can substitute one of the Meatless Crumbles products (Morning Star Farms has one). Since it will take a few minutes, I would start the meat browning in a skillet first
Kaylee’s recipe calls for 5 different beans…that’s a lot of beans. However, they all work well together. But, if someone that you cook for doesn’t like one type of beans, you can easily substitute it or leave it out. You can substitute kidney beans, garbanzo beans (chic peas), and I bet even white or yellow hominy would be good. Bottom line is “don’t let the BEANS get you down”. For added heat, you could use a can of hot chili beans.
Sweet Baby Ray’s is a very tasty, mild sauce, and I’m not even going to list all the labels you could use instead–everyone has their favorite, however, so use what suits you…you probably would anyway :-). There are also many sauces that will add heat if that is what you want…they will change Kaylee’s original flavor, but if heat is what you demand, go for it.
Simplicity is the key to Kaylee’s recipe—brown and drain the meat, dump the beans (drained or not, you decide), pour in the sauce, slow cook…there you have it. I’m sure there are recipes that call for more ingredients, but the whole point to this recipe is keep the preparation simple and quick. If you are inclined and have the time, you can add chopped onion, green pepper, Jalapeno or chili peppers, and with the barbecue sauce, seasonings shouldn’t be needed (that’s simplicity!!!).
So, without further ado, here is the recipe:
KAYLEE’S COWBOY BEANS
1 LB HAMBURGER
1 CAN PORK ‘N BEANS
1 CAN BLACK BEANS, DRAINED
1 CAN PINTO BEANS, DRAINED
1 CAN GREAT NORTHERN BEANS
1 CAN NAVY BEANS
SMALL BOTTLE SWEET BABY RAY’s HONEY BBQ
1. DON’T STIR ‘TIL IT’S DONE
2. BEANS IN CROCK POT FIRST
3. BROWN GROUND BEEF, THEN DRAIN. ADD TO CROCK POT WITH BEANS.
4. BBQ SAUCE LAST
5. 4 HRS. ON HIGH IN CROCK POT
Serve in bowls as is, or on corn or tortilla chips, rice or pasta of your choice. Possible toppings are shredded cheese, chopped onion, chopped tomato, jalapeno, chili or other peppers.
Are they good? Well, I made a DOUBLE RECIPE (2 lbs of ground beef, and two cans of each of the called-for beans, but the only alteration to the recipe as shown was that I only used one bottle of Sweet Baby Ray’s Barbecue Sauce (I used Honey) to serve with Burgers and Dogs at the local Elk’s Lodge last Sunday afternoon, from 1:00 PM to 4:00 PM. I volunteered to cook that day, and cooked 30 hamburgers and about a half dozen hot dogs…at the end of the three hour afternoon, there were NO LEFTOVER BEANS!!! Although I gave you several alternatives to the ingredients above, I’m not going to make any changes, unless absolutely necessary, like being out of a particular item. Also, the pics leave a little–OK, a lot–to be desired. Sorry. Photography isn’t my strong suit, but it WILL get better. I need better lighting, and when I make these again, I will take better, hopefully, pics and replace those above.
Skillets are skillets, I guess, but I am sold on non-stick…and there are a bunch!!! Here are a few to check out.
There aren’t as many Slow Cookers as there are Nonstick Skillets, but here are a few. OK, you got me–more than just a few skillets and slow cookers, but plenty to choose from, if you need one.
Now, as I promised, here is more about Kaylee…horses, horses, horses…that’s the short version. For more, keep reading.
Kaylee is an exercise rider for one of the premier thoroughbred horse trainers in the world—I won’t name him here without his permission, but if you are familiar with horse racing, you would immediately recognize his name. She regularly exercises these beautiful creatures at a pace called “breezing”, which is the fastest pace used for “practice”—the only pace faster is in an actual race. She wants to be a jockey, and if given the opportunity, I think she will be a good one.
Some of the horses Kaylee breezes are Kentucky Derby and Triple Crown contenders (she works at Churchill Downs during their racing season). Some of them are just cantankerous, some are young and inexperienced…all of these require intense concentration and great care on the part of the rider.
Kaylee is in her fourth year as an exercise rider, and also has horses of her own. Oh, yeah, Kaylee turned 20 in December of 2018. She is an amazing young lady, and I am proud to call her a friend, and to display her recipe in this post (with her permission). I look forward to sharing her next recipe with you…and maybe a pic of her in the Winner’s Circle!!!
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