My friend has some kind of weird food sensitivity to mustard. He's coming over for dinner and I wanted to make baked beans, but just about every baked beans recipe I've seen calls for mustard.

I have a feeling I can probably just leave the mustard out, but I feel like it might leave the flavor somewhat unbalanced. What can I do instead?

  • If he has a mustard allergy, I'd beware of many substitutions without knowing what similar items he might be affected by. Leave it out, then taste it and see if it needs anything. If it's too over-sweet, you can try some horseradish or hot sauce to give it the 'bite' that might be missing. Also a bit of acid for brightness (which is typically in prepared mustard).
    – Joe
    Commented Aug 23, 2015 at 21:28
  • @Joe good point, I don't know how he does with horseradish but as far as he and I are aware it's only mustard. I ended up skipping it entirely without an issue; I used a very fruity/acidic barbecue sauce. Maybe it lacked some depth but it wasn't bad just omitting it. Commented Aug 24, 2015 at 1:49

2 Answers 2


Just omit the mustard. In just about every recipe I have seen for beans, it is proportionally a very small component. And while we tend to think of mustard as being bold in flavor, it's really the vinegar that makes it seem that way.

You should also stray from any recipes that call for store bought barbecue sauces, as many will contain mustard.

Finally, one reason mustard appears as an ingredient in dishes like this is it is an emulsifier. You may wish to find a substitute emulsifier, making sure of course that your friend can handle it as an ingredient, to keep too much of the pork fat from separating in your mixture.

  • Good point about emulsification Commented Aug 24, 2015 at 18:33

It’s better to leave it out, instead of substituting. I am allergic to mustard, which means I avoid everything in the same food family, like horseradish.

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