45 Easy Green Bean Recipes That Complement Any Main Dish
As far as vegetables go, we’re pretty big fans of green beans. They’re versatile, inexpensive, and pack a nutritional wallop with vitamin C, potassium, and fiber. Did we mention that they’re delicious, too? We’ve created a lot of green bean recipes over the years, because they seem to go with everything! Need some crunch in a potato salad? Green beans to the rescue. Grilled pork tenderloin that needs a simple, summery side? Fresh green bean recipes are the way to go. Don’t even get us started on that iconic Thanksgiving casserole! We love green bean recipes so much we must have invented dozens of twists on the dish over the years. We like them pretty much every which way, but these recipes for green beans all have one thing in common: they’re darn delicious. From our Slow Cooker Green Beans to Green Bean Lasagna, we’ve picked the best of the best green bean recipes from our repertoire.
Slow-Cooker Green Beans
Recipe: Slow-Cooker Green Beans Recipe
Throw bacon and green beans in a slow-cooker to create the ultimate savory side dish that is perfect for any week night meal.
Old-School Green Bean Casserole
Recipe: Old-School Green Bean Casserole
Win over your guests this holiday season by making a homemade green bean casserole, topped with fried shallots.
Homemade Green Bean Casserole with Crispy Leeks
Swap out canned fried onions for crispy leeks to top your medley of greens.
Martina McBride’s Green Beans with Goat Cheese and Warm Bacon Dressing
Chunks of goat cheese, bits of bacon, and sprinkles of dried cranberries transform this green bean dish into an impressive side.
Bacon-Brussels Sprout-Green Bean Casserole
Recipe: Bacon-Brussels Sprout-Green Bean Casserole
The addition of brussels sprouts and bacon make this green bean medley a real side dish winner.
Balsamic Green Beans with Pearl Onions
Green beans, pearl onions, and balsamic vinegar come together to create this elegant green bean casserole.
Southern-Style Green Beans
Lemon-Almond Green Bean Casserole
Lemon adds an energizing, light touch to this hearty casserole.
Pickled Green Beans
Pickled green beans are so versatile, serve them in a bloody Mary or add them to your charcuterie board.
Green Bean Casserole
Recipe: Green Bean Casserole
Everyone anticipates that there will be a green bean casserole on the Thanksgiving table, but just because it is expected doesn’t mean it can’t be amazing. You can go beyond the standard “recipe on the can” casserole by making a few simple substitutions, and by making a few simple additions. Start by substituting Alfredo sauce for cream of mushroom soup. Then, dress it up with add-ins that can include mushrooms, water chestnuts, Parmesan cheese, and toasted pecans. You will still have a great Thanksgiving Green Bean Casserole to enjoy, you’ll just have taken it from mundane to mouthwatering. Savor the difference.
Sweet-and-Sour Green Beans
Recipe: Sweet-and-Sour Green Beans
Recipe developer Christy Jordan says, "I make a triple batch of these and freeze leftovers in quart-size freezer bags to use at another meal on a busy day."
Lemony Green Bean Pasta Salad
Recipe: Lemony Green Bean Pasta Salad
Lemon and shallots marry for a bright taste that's ideal for a ladies' lunch or light supper. If you can't find haricots verts, use regular green beans instead. Opt for penne pasta, instead of casarecce, if you already have it on hand. We love how quickly this recipe comes together—just 30 minutes! You'll love the bright citrusy flavor paired with the perfect amount of crunch from the green beans.
Penne with Green Beans and Tomatoes
Recipes: Penne with Green Beans and Tomatoes
Add zing to your salads with fresh dill, or swap it for basil, mint, or parsley. For pasta, try using whole wheat for its earthy, toothsome quality; any kind will do.
Lemon-Sautéed Green Beans
Recipe: Lemon-Sautéed Green Beans
These citrusy green beans are a perfect complement to the sweet and spicy Kickin’ Orange-Glazed Chicken. Best of all, they only take about twenty minutes to make, meaning you can focus on your main dish without forsaking a star side. Serve with a lemon slice for a little added zest.
Green Bean Potato Salad with Lemon-Soy Vinaigrette
Potato salad gets a fresh and crunchy twist with bright flavors and lots of yummy texture. Make the Lemon-Soy Vinaigrette ahead of time for an easier assembly.
Green Bean Salad with Hearts of Palm
This is a light, fresh, and delicious green bean salad that you will want to have on your Thanksgiving table. If you can't find haricots verts (small, thin French green beans), you can use regular beans. You will also love the hearts of palm. This is also a recipe that you can make ahead. If you want to make it ahead, just follow the simple instructions below:
Make ahead: Blanch the beans up to three days before, wrap them in damp paper towels, and store in a zip-top plastic freezer bag. Compose and dress the salad just before the big feast.
Caramelized Spicy Green Bean Recipe
Recipe: Caramelized Spicy Green Beans
The great thing about cooking with fresh green beans is that they are incredibly versatile vegetables. Whether you sauté, boil, or bake, these green bean recipes are amped with flavor.
In our first recipe, salty-sweet ingredients, some caramelization, and a bit of spice give these green beans a little pep in their step.
Green Beans with Hollandaise Sauce
Tie green beans in small bundles of five or six with chives that have been boiled for 5 seconds.
Green Beans with Tomato Sauce
Green Beans with Citrus and Pecans
This may look like a simple salad with a citrus dressing, and yes, a citrus vinaigrette adds fresh zing to crisp-tender green beans. The added ingredient here is cane syrup, adding in just that little bit of sweetness to enhance the tartness of the lemon juice. The orange juice will add a touch of sweetness as well. The chopped shallot brings a little spice, infusing the vinaigrette with a little punch and bite, offsetting the crunch of the green beans and creating a mouthwatering foil for the orange segments. Top this salad with the chopped pecans and you will enjoy a nutty crunch that adds an extra flavor and texture to each mouthful.
Pork-and-Green Bean Stir-Fry
Recipe: Pork-and-Green Bean Stir-Fry
The key to this dish is developing a nice char on the green beans. To do so, heat the oil in your skillet until it almost smokes before adding the beans. Let them sear, stirring every 20 to 30 seconds, and they'll take on color. Feel free to sub thinly sliced strips of red bell pepper instead of hot chiles.
Skillet Green Beans
Snappy Beans and Peas with Pecorino
Before serving, add desired amount of olive oil mixture to bean mixture and toss to coat. Don't forget to season with salt and pepper.
Green Bean Lasagna
Recipe: Green Bean Lasagna
Lasagna may not be the first thing you think of when you imagine classic Thanksgiving sides, but our take on this classic holiday dish will have you loving this new twist. It mixes the smooth taste of perfectly cooked pasta noodles with the crunch of just-right green beans, the creaminess of ricotta and shredded Italian cheese, and the sweetness of onions and mushrooms. Top this casserole with crushed buttery crackers and French fried onions and you will wonder how you ever enjoyed your green bean casserole any other way. This will be the update that will become your go-to family classic casserole for years to come.
Green Bean-Goat Cheese Gratin
Recipe: Green Bean-Goat Cheese Gratin
Designed to be a single-serving side dish, this recipe for Green Bean-Goat Cheese Gratin mixes the crispness of haricots verts (tiny green beans) with the richness of goat cheese and Parmesan cheese in an oven-baked delight. You will enjoy the texture and flavor of chopped pecans, which mix well with the creaminess of the goat cheese. Topped with a breadcrumb mixture, the individual servings bake to a crispy crust, allowing you to savor every bite of this bubbly delight. This over-the-top cheesy side is guaranteed to be a crowd-pleaser.
Fresh Pear-and-Green Bean Salad with Sorghum Vinaigrette
If opposites attract, this recipe is clearly proof of that. It mixes sweet and spicy, as well as sweet and sour, in a range of fantastic combinations that come together to create one amazing salad. For the sweet and sour, you have sweet sorghum vinaigrette, mixing sorghum and vinegar to give you just the right pairing of acidic and sugary. Next, the sweet and spicy pecans show that sugar and spice truly is nice, adding a range of flavors to this hearty side salad. The pears are a bold yet delicate fruit and the vinaigrette enhances their taste. The Gorgonzola cheese cuts the heat of the pecans, and everything comes together in a sensational bite of delight.
Balsamic Green Beans
Recipe: Balsamic Green Beans
Green beans are a simple vegetable, but we love to add textures and flavors to this everyday family favorite. We have green beans on our table every year for Thanksgiving, and this recipe shows you wonderful new ways to savor this holiday staple. You will enjoy the crunch and flavor from the crispy fried shallots, crumbled bacon, and coarsely chopped roasted almonds on top. The balsamic vinegar-and-sugar mixture also adds just a touch of sweet-yet-tart delight to this fantastic side dish. Add a pinch of salt and pepper to taste, and everyone will be in line to get a second helping.
Green Bean, Grape, and Pasta Salad
If you're a broccoli salad fan, you'll love the combination of these colorful ingredients. Cook the pasta al dente, so it's firm enough to hold its own when tossed with the tangy-sweet salad dressing.
Veggie Potato Salad
Recipe: Veggie Potato Salad
This “all-in-one” side dish features potato salad with the addition of garden-fresh vegetables such as carrots, celery, radishes, and green beans.
Home-style Green Bean Casserole
Recipe: Home-style Green Bean Casserole
This green bean casserole gets a much-needed makeover from fresh veggies and a lightened (but super-rich!) homemade sauce. And the best part: It's under 200 calories per serving!
Green Beans with Caramelized Shallots
Shallots and a touch of brown sugar bring out the sweetness in the beans.
Roasted Green Bean, Apple, and Bacon Sandwiches
A green bean and apple sandwich? Trust us on this one. We fell for the combo of tender beans, crisp apples, salty Parm, and tangy dressing. Keep it tidy by hollowing out the baguette to create a cradle for the fillings.
Green Beans with Garlic
Recipe: Green Beans with Garlic
Sauté fresh garlic to jazz up this simple yet delicious side dish.
Roasted Green Beans with Sun-dried Tomatoes
Baking your green beans with pine nuts and sun-dried tomatoes is a hands-free way to pack the greens with flavor.
Green Beans with Goat Cheese, Tomatoes, and Almonds
Creamy goat cheese, crunchy toasted almonds, juicy red tomatoes, and flavorful vinaigrette puts this recipe a cut above ordinary green beans.
Grilled Shrimp-and-Green Bean Salad
This salad is perfect for busy weeknights and casual get-togethers. The shrimp can be grilled up to a day ahead. Store the prepared dressing in the fridge for up to a week, then return to room temperature just before tossing with the salad.
Oregano Green Beans
Recipe: Oregano Green Beans
These flavorful green beans simmer with sautéed onions and garlic, tomatoes, chicken broth, oregano, and thyme. Tangy lemon juice and crumbled feta cheese top it all off.
Cheddar-Pecan Green Bean Casserole
This recipe is similar to the classic green bean casserole, but with a few twists. Toss blanched green beans with a buttermilk-Ranch dressing and top with panko breadcrumbs, crushed French-fried onions, chopped pecans, and shredded Cheddar cheese.
Roasted Fingerlings and Green Beans With Creamy Tarragon Dressing
You'll adore this potato-and-green bean dish paired with a delicious Creamy Tarragon Dressing. Find fingerling potatoes at your local grocery store. Plan to make the dressing while the potatoes cook.
Lemon-Garlic Green Beans
Recipe: Lemon-Garlic Green Beans
This savory side dish blends the flavors of lemon, garlic, shallots, and basil.
Sautéed Green Beans and Pears
Recipe: Sautéed Green Beans and Pears
Green beans, tender pears, brown sugar, and balsamic make for a positively divine combination.
Brown Butter Green Beans
Recipe: Brown Butter Green Beans
Browning butter is a French technique that gives butter a rich and nutty flavor. We've simplified this process by preparing it in the microwave.
Hot Bacon Potato Salad with Green Beans
Recipe: Hot Bacon Potato Salad with Green Beans
Classic potato salad ingredients get a kick from bacon and green beans. We love this paired with a perfectly grilled steak.