I make my BBQ Beans from dried beans. I make 3 one-pound bags in a large slow cooker. Cover the beans with water and cook on high for about 4 hours with a teaspoon of salt.
Once cooked drained the water and add one red onion chopped up (I chop mine kind of small to hide it from the kids)
Then I mix in a batch of my Homemade Hickory BBQ Sauce and mix to cover all beans. From here you can personalize it with brown sugar, and other flavors. Then cook for another hour to let all the flavors meld.
This makes about 4 meals worth for our family so I let the beans cool down and then freeze the leftover in meal size portions.