Green beans are awesome! The best way to buy them is fresh, but frozen is fine, too. Canned green beans have their place and are better than nothing, but just don’t taste as good as fresh or frozen.
How to cook fresh Green Beans
- Snap off the ends. We usually just snap off the end that has the stem, but some people prefer to snap off both ends.
- Wash them well
- If you want them in pieces instead of the whole bean, you can cut them up now.
Cooking on the stove top (boiling). Start off with cold water and bring it to a boil on the stove. Drop in the green beans and cook for 4-5 minutes. They should still have a little “crunch” when you finish (if they are limp and not so green you overcooked them… and you’ll try again!) They keep cooking for a minute or two after you take them out of the water, so you want more crunch than you think.
Cooking in the microwave. Put them in a microwave safe bowl and cover with plastic wrap. (leave a corner open). Microwave for 3-4 minutes and taste one to see if they are done.
Roasting in the oven. Toss the green beans with some oil (just enough to cover them) and put them on a cookie sheet or in a cast iron skillet. Cook them at 400 degrees F for 15-20 minutes
Simple ways to eat green beans
Salt and pepper alone is enough if they are really fresh!
Add a little butter at the end (but only a little!)
Add salt, lemon juice and olive oil at the end of cooking. (or go one step farther and use this terrific salad dressing made with lemon juice and olive oil)
If all you have is canned beans, just heat them up! (they are also great as a salad with some onion, tomato and any salad dressing you want)
Easy recipes for delicious green beans
Mixed with cooked pasta as a salad (double the amount of green beans or use less pasta!)
Trivia about green beans
- There are 130 different varieties of green beans
- They are high in a lot of different nutrients – especially fiber, Vitamin B6, Vitamin C, and manganese.
- Green beans originated in Peru, spread to Central and South America. They were introduced to Europe by Christopher Columbus after his second voyage.
- There are only 44 calories in a cup of green beans
- Americans eat an average of around 7 pounds of green beans every year
Information from Wikipedia, CliffordAWright.com, foodreference.com and the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences of the University of Arizona.