Beans on Toast (British Style)
Beans on toast is a classic British comfort food recipe that’s quick and easy to make at home. If you’re looking for breakfast beans this is the recipe. This post contains affiliate links, which means I earn a small commission if you shop through them.
There are variations on beans on toast all over the world. One of my favorites is Cannellini Bean Bruschetta, which I first enjoyed in Tuscany and is featured in my cookbook, Vegan in an Instant. And then there’s my favorite Hummus Crostini, which has completely different yet tasty Middle Eastern flavors.
But today we’re talking about how to make British beans on toast. These breakfast beans are quick and easy to make. I’ll show you the traditional British way. This is probably the simplest “recipe” on this site – if you’d like a more complex British recipe, try our Vegetable Wellington. If you are in the mood for food from the UK, don’t miss this list of the top Traditional British Foods.
What is Beans on Toast: Breaking Down the Components
British beans on toast is a popular and very simple comfort food recipe that really only requires two ingredients. You can think of it as the U.K. equivalent of Avocado Toast.
Simple white sandwich bread toasted in a toaster or broiler is the classic way to make it. However, it’s much tastier if you use thicker country-style bread. Sourdough, French, ciabatta, and even baguette slices will do.
You can toast your sliced bread in a toaster, under a broiler, or even on a grill.
The beans used are usually baked beans, but you can use other beans as well. While you can cook beans from dry and then simmer in sauce, or use my recipe for Vegetarian Baked Beans, most people use a very specific type of beans for British beans on toast.
The trick to classic British beans on toast is to use Heinz Beans (in the turquoise can). These are navy beans in a tomato sauce, and very similar to American baked beans. Thankfully you can find them fairly easily outside the U.K. I find them at my local Cost Plus World Market, but they can also be found on Amazon.
This Heinz 57 variety of baked beans is made with white beans (navy beans) and a mildly sweet and tangy tomato sauce. It’s naturally vegetarian and vegan, so no need to worry about bacon. Heinz also sells no-sugar-added and organic versions of their baked beans.
How to Make Beans on Toast
There are many fun variations on this classic. From Savoury French Toast Topped with Beans to topped with a fried egg or some halved cherry tomatoes, herbs and pepper.
To make this simple British comfort food recipe, simply make a piece of toast and gently warm the beans in a small saucepan on the stove or in the microwave. According to Heinz directions, they should not be diluted with water or brought to a boil, or the flavor could be affected.
How is this Dish Served?
Although beans on toast is a common breakfast dish, it’s also common to have beans on toast for lunch, or even as a side for dinner. Try it with a cup of English breakfast tea and a Scottish Shortbread Cookie.
When beans on toast is eaten as part of a weekend breakfast, it’s usually accompanied by fried eggs. In fact, beans are a common component of a Full English Breakfast. In this case, the beans are usually served in a separate dish rather than assembled on toast.
While usually served plain, you can make your beans on toast extra posh with a sprinkle of fresh herbs, which I highly recommend.
- 3 Slices thickly sliced rustic bread (I use sourdough)
- 1 (13 oz.) can Heinz British Beans with tomato sauce*
- Fresh parsley or cilantro, for ganish (optional)
- Place your sliced bread into a toaster, toaster oven, or onto a grill and cook until toasty.
- Pour the beans and sauce into a small saucepan. Bring to a low simmer over low heat. Do not bring to a boil or add any water as this will affect the flavor. Stir gently until hot. Alternatively, pour the beans and sauce into a microwave-safe container and cover with a paper towel. Microwave for about 2 minutes until hot.
- Spoon the warmed beans onto the slices of toast. Garnish with herbs if desired. Enjoy warm.
You can top your beans on toast with a fried egg, herbs, pepper, or tomatoes, or even add it to a Full English Breakfast.
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Nutrition Information:Yield: 3 Serving Size: 1 slice
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 118Total Fat: 1gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 536mgCarbohydrates: 25gFiber: 4gSugar: 9gProtein: 6g
Nutrition information is automatically calculated by Nutritionix. I am not a nutritionist and cannot guarantee accuracy. If your health depends on nutrition information, please calculate again with your favorite calculator.