1 pound maple-cured bacon
1 large white onion, finely chopped
1 pound 80 percent-lean ground beef
1 can (151/2 ounces) dark-red kidney beans
1 can (151/2 ounces) white cannellini beans or great northern beans
1 can (151/2 ounces) black-eyed peas or navy beans
1 can (8 ounces) baked beans
1 can (151/2 ounces) medium to hot chili beans
1 bottle (12 ounces) chili sauce
1 cup brown sugar
6 ounces apple cider vinegar
1 tablespoon garlic powder
1 tablespoon chili powder
1/2 tablespoon paprika
Hot sauce to taste
The night before cooking beans, fry one pound of maple-cured bacon in a large skillet or frying pan until crisp. Remove the bacon; crumble when cool. Drain fat from skillet, reserving about 1 teaspoon. Cook onion and ground beef in the skillet with the reserved bacon fat Until meat is browned. Drain off the fat and transfer the onions, cooked ground beef and bacon to the cooking sleeve of a 5-quart slow cooker.
Drain and rinse all the beans except the chili and baked beans. Then add all the beans, chili sauce, brown sugar, vinegar and spices to the rest of the ingredients. Stir well. Cover with plastic wrap and store in the refrigerator overnight.
The next day, transfer the cooking sleeve with the beans and meat to the slow cooker set on low for a minimum of 4 cooking hours. Serve warm.