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Slow Cooker Calico Beans

If you love a good bean dish then no doubt you’ve tried an endless variety of chili and baked bean recipes. But, there’s an old Southwestern favorite that not many people know about called calico beans, so-named for the many different colors of beans used to create this hearty dish that resemble the colorful, small-pattern fabric that was so popular in the 1800s.

Another name for this recipe is cowboy beans since spiced beans were a staple of traditional ranch life when cowboys would herd the cows for months on end in remote, isolated areas. They had to eat at the chuck wagon every night, and so were limited on what food stores could last for the entire time. Beans always made the cut and were often served with beef or salt pork.

Now, using a slow cooker this old fashioned recipe is much easier to make than in the Old West, yet still delivers big on flavor.

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