Baked beans is a dish traditionally containing white beans that are parboiled and then, in the US, baked in sauce at low temperature for a lengthy period. In the United Kingdom, the dish is sometimes baked, but usually stewed in sauce. Canned baked beans are not baked, but are cooked through a steam process.Baked beans has its origins in Native American cuisine, and the dish is made from beans indigenous to the Americas. The dish was adopted and adapted by English colonists in New England in the 17th century and, through cookbooks published in the 19th century, the dish spread to other regions of the United States and into Canada. Today, in the New England region of the United States, a variety of indigenous legumes are still used when preparing this dish in restaurants or in the home, such as Jacob's cattle, soldier beans, yellow-eyed beans, and navy beans (also known as native beans).Originally, Native Americans sweetened baked beans with maple syrup, a tradition some recipes still follow, but some English colonists used brown sugar beginning in the 17th century. In the 18th century, the convention of using American-made molasses as a sweetening agent became increasingly popular in order to avoid British taxes on sugar. Boston baked beans uses a sauce prepared with molasses and salt pork, the popularity of which dish has led to the city's nickname "Beantown".Today, baked beans are served throughout the United States alongside barbecue foods and at picnics. Beans in a brown sugar, sugar, or corn syrup sauce (sometimes with and sometimes without a tomato base) are widely available throughout the United States. Bush Brothers and Company currently sells the most canned baked beans in the United States. After the American Revolutionary War, the Fourth of July was celebrated with picnics, fireworks, dances, and dinners where serving baked beans became a tradition.Canned baked beans are used as a convenience food, and most commercially canned baked beans are made from haricot beans, also known as navy beans (a variety of Phaseolus vulgaris) in a sauce. They may be eaten hot or cold, and even straight from the can, as they are fully cooked. H. J. Heinz Company began production of canned baked beans in 1895. In the early 20th century, canned baked beans gained international popularity, particularly in the United Kingdom, where the greatest amount of canned baked beans is often part of an English full breakfast.