National Beans ‘N’ Franks Day Date in the current year: July 13, 2024

National Beans ‘N’ Franks Day National Beans ‘N’ Franks Day is observed annually on July 13. It was created to celebrate a simple yet delicious dish that is considered one of the first comfort foods in the United States.

Beans and franks (or franks and beans) is a dish consisting of baked beans and sliced hot dogs. Baked beans originated in Native American cuisine and were adopted by English colonists in New England shortly after their arrival in the 17th century. In the 19th century, the dish spread to other parts of North America thanks to cookbooks.

The 1832 cookbook The American Frugal Housewife contained a recipe for pork and beans, a simple dish consisting of baked beans, salted pork, and pepper. Beans and franks is probably a variation of pork and beans, although it is unclear who and when came up with the idea to substitute hot dogs (frankfurters, or franks for short) for salted pork.

Mass-produced baked beans became a commercially available convenience food in the 19th century. Although the H.J. Heinz Company is generally credited with popularizing baked beans because it was the first company to sell baked beans outside of the United States, it wasn’t the only manufacturer of canned beans in the country. One of the first and leading manufacturers of canned beans was Van Camp’s.

During the Civil War, Indianapolis businessman Gilbert Van Camp built the first successful cold storage warehouse in the United States and began experimenting with canning. His canned products quickly became a wartime staple, and Van Camp even became an official food supplier for the Union Army.

In 1894, Gilbert’s son Frank started producing and selling pork and beans in tomato sauce, which would become one of the company’s signature products. A few decades later, Van Camp’s introduced the Beanee Weenee, beans in tomato sauce with bite-sized pieces of chicken and beef Vienna sausage instead of pork. Although Van Camp’s owns the name Beanee Weenee, it has become a generic trademark in some parts of the Untied States.

The most basic version of beans and franks consists of canned baked beans (with juices) and sliced hot dogs (wieners or frankfurters). It is a simple and hearty dish served in informal settings such as BBQs, which goes well with grilled vegetables, corn on the cob, and coleslaw. However, some people aren’t satisfied with the standard recipe and make their beans and franks more interesting by adding other ingredients such as onion, brown sugar, various herbs and spices, barbecue sauce, and mustard.

The origin of National Beans ‘N’ Franks Day is unclear, but there is no doubt that this iconic comfort food deserves to be celebrated. You can observe the holiday by making beans and franks from scratch, opening a can of beans and franks for lunch or dinner, going out to a diner that serves the dish, or hosting a cookout or picnic for your friends and family to enjoy beans and franks together. And don’t forget to post about the holiday on social media with the hashtags #NationalBeansNFranksDay and #BeansNFranksDay.

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