{MM} easy baked beans + two awesome must-read books


I’m on a “gotta-make-more-bean-dishes-kick,” & yesterday I made some super easy “baked” beans–frugal, easy (don’t let the list of ingredients scare you!), & tasty. 

(And you know, navy beans are on my list of foods to focus on for weight loss, so even better.)

I’d like to share the recipe with you, but first,


On Friday Joseph had a required “morale/family day.”

(I think this is the Air Force’s way of making sure the underlings don’t revolt.)

We went up to Fredricksburg, a little German themed town (which means all the restaurants served beer, potatoes, & sausage) north of San Antonio & spent the day going to a WWII Pacific War museum, window shopping, & just enjoying the beautiful spring weather with the rest of Joseph’s office pals. Since it was a family day I brought Salem & the baby.

Because it was my birthday the day before, Joseph bought me some really unnecessary, but fun edibles–pumpkin butter, sweet potato pecan butter, & strawberry balsamic vinegar–from a store called Rustlin’ Rob’s that carried at least a thousand different vinegars, spreads, dips, sauces, & butters.

The great thing was you could sample anything they had for sale.


After all the time Joseph has been away with this last trial it was a treat to spend so much time together.


Now, time for some {MM} goodness.
(Then, that recipe.)

♥ If you’ve never read Gena‘s “Weekend Reading” posts, you should. She usually highlights five recipe picks + five thought-provoking reads. Her approach to veganism is refreshingly grounded in logic & reason , & she’s always on the lookout for scientific & medical themed posts to share that highlight those themes. Always awesome reads & finds. Check out her latest WR post, here.

♥ Two books you should read.

1. Discovering the Word of Wisdom: Surprising insights from a whole food, plant-based perspective, by Jane Birch

jane birch book

{As a side note, if you’re Mormon & vegan/vegetarian/plant-based you probably found my blog through doing a google search of Mormon + vegan, & came upon this post, which by the way, still has an ongoing discussion.}

Jane Birch, contacted me sometime shortly before I gave birth to Tyndale about her new book which I know will be of interest to all my fellow LDS veg-lovers. I was thrilled to see someone finally writing a book from an LDS (The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints) perspective about plant-based/vegan diets. But, despite my excitement, somehow things got lost in the shuffle (you know, having my 5th baby & all), & it was only after several readers contacted me about how awesome the book is that I recalled I had a copy & needed to read it!

I have only recently picked up the digital copy she sent me (you can get the print copy on Amazon, here), & can I tell you, it’s fabulous! It’s a comprehensive take on how a vegan diet fits within the context of the counsel given in the Word of Wisdom. For all my Mormon peeps, you must check it out. She also runs a website of the same name, that you should also check out.

(And, I think the insight offered would be equally beneficial for non-LDS friends as well.)

2. Motherhood Realized: An Inspiring Anthology for the Hardest Job You’ll Ever Love, from the Power of Moms website

(If you’ve never visited their site before &  you’re a mom, go there, right now. It has a plethora of uplifting resources to help you be your best mom self.)

power of moms

I don’t like reading “mommy” books. In fact, I was approached to review another mom-themed book earlier this year, but after reading just a few pages, I knew I could not recommend it you because like so many momspiration books, I found the writing poor & the message trite. (Boy, I sound snobby, don’t I? I apologize.)

But this book. This book is real. It’s thoughtful & thought-provoking, authentic & well-written.

I got an advanced copy & though I haven’t got around to finishing it yet, I have enjoyed everything I’ve read so far.

The chapters are short, 5 minute reads (like blog posts), written by women just like you.

One of the reasons I don’t like reading mommy-themed books is they often induce guilt, & heaven knows, we don’t need any more guilt!

But, this book is written in such an optimistic, joyful way.  Every mom needs to read this, especially on those days when you need a little pick me up.

It would also make a fab Mother’s Day gift for a sister, aunt, mom, friend, neighbor. Highly recommend!

(And thanks to bring joy readers Katrina, & Sarah for putting it on my radar & letting me know about it!)

*Get a free gift if you buy the book!*
If you order the book through Amazon, after you order, fill out the short form here & Power of Moms will send you a gift valued at $40. Sweet.


recipes to pin:
all recipes are vegan + gluten-free

blueberry pomegrante chia breakfast parfaits
(gorgeous! & I love chia pudding.)

mexican street corn
(I’m salivating.)

raw chocolate hazelnut strawberry jam thumbprint cookies
(what a delightful combination.)

roasted carrot soup w/ white miso
(only a few ingredients.)

grain-free mesquite + cocao nib muffins
(a savory muffin recipe.)

chocolate mouse pie w/ peanut butter whip & pretzel crust
use gf pretzels to make gluten-free
(chocolate + pb = bliss.)
(Also, Ashlea’s been nominated for a
Saveur Food Blog award, vote for her here!)

Now for those easy baked beans. 

This week’s {MM} recipe is a rather easy, protein rich main that also fits the bill for a frugal meal.

You can make crockpot baked beans & simmer spices with beans, but often my attempts to do this are a flop.

I find it easier to cook the beans then add the spices. Also, this is a not-to-sweet version of baked beans.

You know the kind that comes in a can that is sickenly sweet? These beans are not that.

They’re full of flavor, with a subtle touch of sweetness.

{MM} easy baked beans + two awesome must-read books

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Total Time: 35 minutes

Yield: about 12 cups

Serving Size: about 1 cup, or 1/12 of recipe yield

Calories per serving: 260

Fat grams per serving: 5

{MM} easy baked beans + two awesome must-read books

easy "baked" beans -- vegan + gluten-free


  • 1/4 c. olive oil (or water)
  • 1 1/2 onions, diced
  • 9 c. cooked navy beans (about 3 c. dry)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 c. water
  • 1, 6 oz. can tomato paste
  • 2 TBS. agave
  • 1/2 TBS. blackstrap molasses
  • 1 TBS. mustard
  • 1/2 TBS. salt
  • 1/2 TBS. no-salt seasoning
  • 1 tsp. paprika
  • 1 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp. tumeric
  • 1/2 tsp. red pepper sauce (like Tabasco)
  • black pepper to taste


  1. Soak navy beans over night. Drain water then cover with water, add bay leaf. Cook navy beans until soft, but not mushy (about 2 hours on medium heat). Remove bay leaf. Drain water, reserving 2 cups.
  2. In large stockpot, heat oil on medium heat. Saute onions for 3-4 minutes. Add all spices, mustard, agave, molasses, red pepper sauce, salt, water & tomato paste, & stir until incorporated. Add beans & stir.
  3. Simmer on medium-low heat for 20 minutes, or until beans are warmed. Add fresh black pepper to taste.
  4. Serve with coleslaw & cornbread.
  5. Leftovers will keep for up to 5 days in airtight container.

Additional nutrition info: 43 g carbs, 15 g fiber, 12 g protein, 5 g sugar, 417 mg sodium; 6 WWP points

Here’s to another fab week.


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  1. Katie Lorsch
    on April 9, 2014 at 11:51 pm said:

    My mom’s plant-based story is in the Discovering the Word of Wisdom book! Love it 🙂

  2. Lucy
    on April 9, 2014 at 12:31 am said:

    I’ve really wanted to get my hands on that Motherhood Realized book. I keep seeing such positive reviews on it! I also need to read Discovering the Word of Wisdom book. My mom, aunt, uncle, and a few cousins all have their personal stories in there about why they became vegan…why I haven’t I gotten it yet? Ordering it now! I love your MM posts– most people do posts like these on Friday and they are my favorite kind of posts, so to get them on a Monday is a little more rare, but fun for me, especially since Monday’s aren’t always something I look forward to. Love your blog!

  3. Lisa C.
    on April 8, 2014 at 4:32 pm said:

    You have me intrigued with the Motherhood Realized book! And I agree- making dried beans is a technique we should all have done pat. Beans are delicious and so good on the budget!

  4. Emily C.
    on April 7, 2014 at 8:56 pm said:

    Janae, what a gem-packed post. I hope you enjoyed all kinds of birthday fun with kids (and without) over the weekend!

    Discovering the Word of Wisdom has been on my nightstand for a few weeks and I thought that I should send a recommendation to you. Of course, you’ve already found it. 🙂 I heard about it from another fantastic blog, Word of Wisdom Living (www.wordofwisdomliving.com). Your review for Motherhood Realized as someone who didn’t write part of it makes me even more excited for my Amazon order to ship.

    Since you love PB and chocolate, here’s something we’re going to try for Reese’s-like peanut butter eggs http://detoxinista.com/2013/03/healthier-peanut-butter-eggs/

    • Janae Wise
      on April 8, 2014 at 7:34 pm said:

      Thanks for the link to the PB & chocolate recipe–looks delish! I haven’t looked into the WOW blog–thanks for letting me know. And thank you for the birthday wishes. I had a great time, though I must say birthdays tend to get less & less important with each year, it seems.

  5. Ashlae
    on April 7, 2014 at 8:29 pm said:

    Happy belated birthday, lady! And thanks for the link love + Saveur shoutout – you rule. 🙂

  6. Jane Birch
    on April 7, 2014 at 7:16 pm said:


    Thanks for the generous endorsement of Discovering the Word of Wisdom! While the primary audience for the book is members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, I hope others will also read it. Mormons are certainly not the only people blessed with amazing counsel on how we should eat. Most religions, if you look deeply enough, have given some wonderful advice on caring for our bodies and eating a diet that is pleasing to God.

    I hope this book will help “bring joy” to many people. You can read the first two chapters here: http://discoveringthewordofwisdom.com/buy-book/about-the-book/. Anyone can contact me at here: http://discoveringthewordofwisdom.com/contact-me/.

    • Janae Wise
      on April 8, 2014 at 7:33 pm said:

      Of course! I’m happy to help spread the word & I so appreciate your open, fair-minded approach to the issue. It’s a breath of fresh air!

  7. Ashley M. [at] (never)homemaker
    on April 7, 2014 at 5:20 pm said:

    Those beans! They look divine! I’m definitely also going to have to check out that Motherhood Realized book. Looks great a good read. Just have to finish the 10,000 other books I started first 🙂 <3

  8. Pure Ella
    on April 7, 2014 at 4:54 pm said:

    We are bean lovers over here so I’m really enjoying this recipe! Thank you 😉

    Thanks also for sharing my Blueberry + Pomegranate Chia Oats Breakfast Parfait!! It’s a super delicious recipe 😉

    Oh and I want to congratulate Oh Ladycakes for being in Saveur’s finals ~ ummm…. it just so happens that I’m lucky to be running in the Best Family Cooking Blog Awards!!!
    Would love some love with a vote too 😉
    xoxox Ella

    • Janae Wise
      on April 7, 2014 at 4:56 pm said:

      Congrats Ella! I didn’t know you were in the running. I’ll be sure to cast my vote your way.

      Thanks for letting us know & again, congrats!!