Green Beans and Bacon is a simple, yet delicious veggie side dish to serve with a variety of main dishes! This recipe makes 4-5 servings.
Green Beans and Bacon is a simple, yet delicious veggie side dish to serve with a variety of main dishes! This recipe makes 4-5 servings.

I don’t know about you, but in our home we really enjoy eating green beans! Our little backyard raised bed garden has been our source of fresh green beans every summer for the past 10 years. A large part of our harvest of beans is home-canned each summer and lasts us until the following year. HOWEVER, nothing beats using fresh green beans in other dishes, so we always save a lot of them to eat fresh!! I’ve been making fresh green beans like the ones in this recipe for years.

When I was growing up, I didn’t really like green beans that much. My mom was a great cook in every way, but she would BOIL our green beans for a LONG time before serving. The beans were always a greyish green color and were really soft by the time we got to them… ugh… not a fan! I prefer them to be nice and green with a tiny bit of firmness to the bite.

The recipe I am sharing today is a delicious way to cook fresh green beans and bacon together for a nice side veggie side dish. These green beans are first blanched, then sautéed in a skillet to finish the dish. I will also share a tip (below) for ensuring your green beans stay a nice shade of GREEN, and don’t turn a pale olive/grey color while being cooked.

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Cook The Bacon And Onions First

The first thing I do when making this dish is to cook the bacon and onions first. Cut the strips of bacon into small pieces (I use kitchen scissors, but a knife will do just fine). When I cut the bacon into small pieces, it really helps it to cook faster!

Cook the bacon and chopped onion for about 4 minutes, then add minced garlic and continue cooking for 30 seconds (don’t burn the garlic). Remove from heat. Drain off any accumulated grease and set aside. The bacon may only be about ¾ of the way cooked at this point, but that is okay. It will finish cooking later in the process.

Bacon pieces are cooked in skillet along with chopped onion.

Tip For Cooking Green Beans So They Keep Their Color

Did you know that cooking fresh green beans with a lid on the pan will result in loss of some of the green color pigment? Much like tree leaves, green beans have chlorophyll in their cell structure which give them their nice green color. For example, in the Fall, we see the leaves on trees lose a lot of their natural chlorophyll (these nutrients are stored in the trunks for the following Spring). This results in the leaves changing color from green to orange, red, yellow or brown.

The same thing happens to green beans when heated with a lid on, because their green pigment is heat sensitive. Heating will reduce the amount of natural chlorophyll, which then changes their color. When a lid is placed on a pot of cooking green beans, any natural acids present in the green bean cell structure will condense on the lid. and then drip back into the pan full of green beans. This diminishes the natural green color even more to a more greyish olive green color. By cooking the beans without putting a lid on the pan, you will end up with a more vibrant true green color.

Now… there’s nothing different about the taste, but the color sure looks better when green beans are cooked this way. So, there you have it… a simple tip to keep those green beans GREEN. The End. And now… back to your regularly scheduled recipe.

Time To Cook the Green Beans And Bacon

Now we’re on to blanching the green beans. Be sure to trim off the stem end, then snap or cut the beans into approximately 3″ pieces. Bring a medium saucepan of water to a boil, then add the green beans and the bacon/onion mixture.

Cook the green beans for 5 minutes UNCOVERED in the boiling water. After 5 minutes, pour the beans into a strainer to drain off the water. Immediately after draining put the hot green beans into a bowl of ice water and let them chill for 3-4 minutes. This ice bath prevents the beans from continuing to cook, and the process is called “blanching” the beans. After 3-4 minutes, drain off the water and ice from the green beans.

Green beans and bacon are cooked in boiling water for 5 minutes.Immediately after cooking, the green beans are immersed in ice water to stop the cooking.Draining the green beans in a colander.

Time To Sauté The Green Beans And Bacon

Melt a teaspoon of butter in a large skillet. Add the strained green beans (with bacon and onion) to the skillet. Sauté the beans on medium heat, stirring occasionally, for 7-10 minutes. When done, they should be tender to the bite, with just a little bit of firmness. As it cooks, the bacon will “brown up” more as it cooks in the skillet.

When the green beans and bacon have heated through and are at your desired tenderness, add a Tablespoon of butter to the skillet. Stir until butter melts, then season to taste with salt and pepper (approx. ½ teaspoon each, or as desired).

The green beans and bacon are cooked in butter in a large skillet.Butter is added to the green beans in the skillet.

Time to Eat!

Transfer the hot green beans and bacon to a serving bowl and serve immediately (while hot) alongside your favorite main dish. The green beans pair well with chicken, pork, turkey, beef and fish. You typically will get 4 nice sized servings, and you can get 5 servings if the portions are a bit smaller.

The hot green beans and bacon are served in a white serving bowl.You can see the nicely browned bacon with the green beans.

I hope you have a chance to try this recipe for green beans and bacon. Basically it is a simple veggie side dish that is fairly easy to make, and I hope you enjoy it. Thank you for stopping by, and I hope you will come back soon for more family-friendly recipes. Take care!

Looking For More VEGETABLE SIDE DISH  Recipes?

You can find ALL of my recipes in the Recipe Index, which is located at the top of the page. I have lots of wonderful veggie recipes to check out, including:

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Green Beans and Bacon

Green Beans and Bacon is a simple, yet delicious veggie side dish to serve with a variety of main dishes! This recipe makes 4-5 servings.

Category: Side Dish, Vegetable
Cuisine: American
Keyword: green beans and bacon
Servings: 4
Calories Per Serving: 136 kcal
Author: JB @ The Grateful Girl Cooks!
Ingredients
  • 2 slices bacon
  • ¼ small yellow onion , chopped
  • ½ teaspoon minced garlic
  • pounds fresh green beans , de-stemmed, cut or snapped in 2-3" pieces
  • 1 teaspoon butter
  • ½ teaspoon salt , approx., season to taste
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper , approx., season to taste
  • 1 Tablespoon butter
Instructions
  1. Cut bacon into small pieces. Cook bacon and chopped onion for about 4 minutes, Add garlic; continue cooking for 30 seconds (don't burn garlic). Remove from heat. Drain grease; set aside. Bacon will finish cooking later.

  2. Trim off stem from beans; snap or cut into approx. 3" pieces. Bring a large saucepan half full of water to a boil. Add green beans and bacon/onion/garlic mixture to boiling water. Cook beans for 5 minutes UNCOVERED. Remove from heat; pour beans into a strainer to drain water. Immediately after draining put hot green beans into a bowl of ice water for 3-4 minutes. . After 3-4 minutes, drain off water and ice from beans.

  3. Melt a teaspoon of butter in a large skillet. Add green beans (with bacon and onion) to skillet. Sauté uncovered on medium heat, stirring occasionally, for 7-10 minutes. When done, beans should be tender to the bite, with just a little bit of firmness. Add a Tablespoon of butter. Stir until butter melts, then season beans to taste with salt and pepper (approx. ½ teaspoon each, or as desired).

  4. Transfer hot green beans and bacon to a serving bowl; serve immediately.

Recipe Notes

Caloric calculation made based on 4 servings.

Nutrition Facts
Green Beans and Bacon
Amount Per Serving (1 (1/4 of total))
Calories 136 Calories from Fat 81
% Daily Value*
Fat 9g14%
Saturated Fat 4g25%
Trans Fat 1g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 3g
Cholesterol 17mg6%
Sodium 408mg18%
Potassium 394mg11%
Carbohydrates 13g4%
Fiber 5g21%
Sugar 6g7%
Protein 5g10%
Vitamin A 1298IU26%
Vitamin C 21mg25%
Calcium 68mg7%
Iron 2mg11%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

Here’s one more to pin on your Pinterest boards!Green Beans and Bacon is a simple, yet delicious veggie side dish to serve with a variety of main dishes! This recipe makes 4-5 servings.

Green Beans and Bacon

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