Yah, yah, yah, mock me if you must, but I just veganized the favorite meal of 5-year olds everywhere. Except I also made them fit for adults! So please, open your minds for a moment and check out these Vegan Beanie Weenies, complete with beer-marinated kielbasa!
My Gramma Josie used to make these for me when I was a little kid (it was a fave, in line behind mac n’ cheese with hotdogs and ketchup all mixed in, and vanilla ice cream microwaved until it was pretty much soup. (Don’t ask – I was a strange child))
They fell out of rotation as I became an adult, but back in 2007 while the kitchen in my last house was being renovated, I had to learn to put dinner on the table with only a microwave, a grill and a small hot plate. This was before I was vegan, and actually right before I went vegetarian, and I’ll admit there was a lot of pizza ordering going on, but hotdogs were my other go-to. They were cheap (hello, that kitchen was pricey!), they were easy, and most important of all, they left little to clean up (because who likes to wash dishes in the bathroom?)
So hotdogs were consumed in buns, wrapped in tortillas, cold with just a squirt of ketchup <blushes>, and most deliciously… in a bowl of baked beans. I’m not bragging (at all, I realize how this must sound), these were simply meals of convenience and necessity.
So now that I’m ready to act like a grownup again and have a functioning stove and all that jazz, I thought I’d revisit them. And, you know, add some beer.
I also switched out the
band-aids and broken glass hot dogs for Tofurky Kielbasa, and made my own baked beans. It was easier than I thought it would be, and quite delicious! You could up the Sriracha and make this an even more grownup dish, if you like. Either way, I thought it was kind of a fun comfort food that I wanted to share.
What was your favorite weird food as a child?
“Drunken” Beanie Weenies (2 hearty servings, or 3 modest)
- 2 links Tofurky Kielbasa
- 1 can or bottle of your favorite vegan beer (I used 90 Schilling cuz I love me some Colorado beer!)
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 can navy beans, drained and rinsed
- 2 Tablespoons brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon sriracha
- 1 teaspoon chili powder
- 2 Tablespoons molasses
- 1/2 vidalia onion, well-chopped but not quite diced
- pinch of applewood smoked sea salt
- 1/2 cup water (plus more if it’s still too thick)
- Poke holes in your kielbasa with a fork. Mix the beer and garlic in a tupperware large enough for the sausages, then add them. Let sit for at least 2 hours.
- Mix the beans and all remaining ingredients in a pot over medium-high heat and bring to just barely a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 5 minutes.
- Slice the kielbasa and add to the pot, then continue to simmer for another 10 minutes.