Hang Fire's pit beans

Hang Fire's pit beans

The Hang Fire Cookbook

We love a hearty bowl of sweet, smoky pit beans with hunks of barbecued meat running through it. We keep smoked riblets, thick, barky bits of pulled pork and any falling-apart trimmings from our briskets to add to our pit beans. We’ve served versions of this recipe with our barbecue since day one, and it is hands-down our most popular side dish. The recipe finally stopped evolving after about a year of making these. Here’s how to make our version of awesome pit beans.


Quantity Ingredient
1 tablespoon groundnut oil
1 large onion, diced
2 garlic cloves, very finely chopped
1 small red bell pepper, deseeded and diced
5 green jalapenos, deseeded and diced
400g tin or fresh chopped tomatoes
500ml beef stock
200g Hang Fire smokehouse barbecue sauce, or other barbecue sauce of your choice
400g tin red kidney beans, rinsed and drained well
400g tin pinto beans, rinsed and drained well
400g tin haricot beans, rinsed and drained well
450g smoked barbecue meat of your choice, roughly chopped
small bunch coriander, finely chopped, including stalks

For the seasoning

Quantity Ingredient
1 tablespoon smoked paprika
1 tablespoon ground cumin
1 tablespoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon chilli powder
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon cracked black pepper
1 teaspoon fine sea salt


  1. We usually slip a pan of these beans into the grill or smoker when we’re cooking other meats. We are going to start the beans off in a large pan and then transfer them to a casserole dish (or cast-iron pan) to cook through. Have your dish or pan to hand to put in the smoker or oven.
  2. First, combine the seasoning ingredients in a bowl and add 4–5 tablespoons of water, just enough to make a paste. Set aside.
  3. If using your grill or smoker, set it up for indirect heat and regulate to 120°C. If using an oven, preheat it to 160°C.
  4. Heat the oil in a large pan and add the onion. Cook over medium heat for 10 minutes, until softened, then add the garlic, bell pepper and jalapeños, and sauté for a further 5 minutes. Add your seasoning paste, stir through to combine for 1–2 minutes. Now add your chopped tomatoes, beef stock and barbecue sauce, then stir well. Lastly, add the drained beans, chopped barbecue meat and coriander. Stir for about 3 minutes, just to warm through. Transfer the beans to your casserole dish or cast-iron pan.
  5. Set in your grill or smoker and cook for 6–8 hours, uncovered, until caramelised and golden on top. If using your oven, bake for around 4 hours. If the beans look like they’re drying out, add a little water to loosen them.
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