Quick Ways to Doctor a Bag of Green Beans

So how'd we do, dieters?Today's un-recipe: Ways to doctor frozen green beans with ingredients from the pantry and refrigerator.

So it's January 31st and we've been 'cutting back' and 'slimming down' for a month now.

How did we do? How do we feel?

Me, after four straight weeks of (almost) religiously counting Weight Watchers points, I'm finally feeling back in control (except for weekends, my danger zones) and feel new resolve to 'keep counting'. To help out, I've stocked the freezer with no-fuss no-muss frozen vegetables. I got tired of just plain ol' green beans so decided to spice them up a bit and was amazed at how many different ways they could be fixed, just using on-hand ingredients.

So this list is no recipe -- just, I hope, an inspiration to look into the depths of your own pantries. If you've got an idea for doctoring green beans, leave a comment -- we'll inspire one another!

#1 Beans with Mayo & Soy Sauce Toss cooked beans with about 1 tablespoon mayonnaise and 1/2 tablespoon soy sauce.

#2 Beans with Peanut Butter & Soy Sauce Toss cooked beans with about 1 tablespoon peanut butter and 1/2 tablespoon soy sauce (or just plain crunchy peanut butter).

#3 Beans with Orange Toss cooked beans with 1 tablespoon frozen orange juice concentrate.

#4 Beans with Lemon & Honey Toss cooked beans with a tablespoon of fresh lemon juice, a half tablespoon of honey. Season with lemon pepper.

#5 Beans with Popcorn Oil Toss cooked beans with a half tablespoon of flavored popcorn oil. Yum!

#6 Beans with Horseradish Sauce Toss cooked beans with a tablespoon of sour cream and a half tablespoon of horseradish.

#7 Beans with Mustard Toss cooked green beans with a spoonful of good mustard. (Many thanks to Elizabeth from Blog from Our Kitchen for this tip! She likes a coarse mustard.)

Green beans tossed with black bean sauce

~ recipes for fresh green beans ~


Who else pays special attention to recipes that Food & Wine and Cooking Light identify as 'staff favorites'? So here are the 'staff favorites' (ahem, yes my own) for January from A Veggie Venture. They represent the season, yes? with spare, healthful food and a comfort-food soup.

~ Broccoli with Sautéed Garlic, the favorite side vegetable ~
~ Quick 'Massaged' Kale Salad, the favorite vegetable salad ~
~ 15-Bean Soup, January's favorite soup ~

~ Favorite Vegetable Recipes, nearly three years of favorites, just one per month ~

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Alanna Kellogg
Alanna Kellogg

A Veggie Venture is home of "veggie evangelist" Alanna Kellogg and the famous asparagus-to-zucchini Alphabet of Vegetables.


  1. Great collection of easy ideas to jazz up green beans. For some reasons, that's one vegetable I don't use that often, but I love some of these ideas, especially the chunky peanut butter!

  2. Wow, Alanna, you've really gone to town. Green beans with muhammara (Middle Eastern condiment made with walnuts, roasted red pepper, lemon juice, garlic, pomegranate juice) is also good.

    But we pretty much stopped at the grainy mustard (simply because we loved it so much).

    About the black beans. If you get dried fermented black beans (Chinese grocer should have some) and you stir-fry the green beans with a bit of garlic, green beans with black beans is delicious.


    P.S. Thanks for the link!
    P.P.S. We sometimes make green beans with pimiento for festive occasions. I'm guessing that simply tossing in a few pimientos to steamed green beans would be good too (and look great as well).

  3. Toss with a little chicken broth, diced onion, diced, fresh or canned, tomatos. Yum..

  4. This is just a combination of things that you already listed, but I mix together horseradish, a little bit of mayo and worcestershire sauce and put it on green beans.

  5. I love fresh green beans, but I guess I'm spoiled these days, because unless beans are fresh or home-canned (not store-bought canned), they just don't taste very good to me.

    But your green bean ideas will work well for fresh ones and home-canned ones, too! So thanks.

  6. Green beans with a vinaigrette made of balsamic vinegar and chopped slow-roasted tomatoes, which we all have in the freezer!

  7. My favorite recipe for fresh green beans is roasted green beans that I got from a veggie cookbook. You just brush the green beans with oil and put on 425 for 15 minutes (shake at 7 minutes or so). Once they're brown pull them out and add a little bit of salt. These are excellent, like green bean fries! I'm trying to figure out how to make homemade green bean casserole minus the condensed mushroom soup. I'm guessing some combo of sour cream and mushrooms.

  8. Alyssa ~ By accident perhaps but you've happened onto the home of the World's Best Green Bean Casserole!

  9. Karen said...
    grate a little nutmeg for great flavor. I like the idea of a nut butter (my hero is allergic to peanuts) so I'll use cashew butter.

  10. Alanna's right Alyssa - it most definitely is the World's Best Green Bean Casserole! I made for Thanksgiving this year and my family was floored! Very, very good.

    I, um, like smothered green beans with bacon and onion. I'll leave it to you to look it up. :)

  11. THANK YOU! Many times I'd wished I could have a few different 'seasoning' ideas for green beans. In the summer, I usually just toss my fresh green beans with butter and either fresh savory or fresh tarragon.

  12. lemon juice and toasted sliced almonds! also, if you're not concerned about calories, adding some fried onions to that mix is heavenly.

  13. Excellent ideas!!! I must try the peanut butter and soy sauce. I like to make them with minced garlic, lemon juice and a bit of olive oil, roasted in the oven.

  14. Thanks for the casserole recipe! I'll have to try this with the frozen (fresh from the farmer's market this summer) I have in my freezer. If i had looked I might've found this. duh!

  15. I love having quick veggie ideas! My problem with frozen green beans, though, is that they always taste so watery. Even when coated in some sauce, when I bite into the bean, it seems to squirt out water, and both DH and I find it yucky. But I would love to find a way around this problem so that I can use frozen ones more often!

  16. Zoe ~ Yes, frozen green beans are definitely 'wet'. What about steaming them? or cooking in a dry covered skillet? It would be worth a try.

  17. I just wanted to say that I tried frozen green beans, heated in the microwave and tossed them with the peanut butter and soy sauce and it was absolutely delicious! Thanks for the idea!


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Thank you for taking a moment to write! I read each and every comment, for each and every recipe, whether a current recipe or a long-ago favorite. If you have a specific question, it's nearly always answered quick-quick. ~ Alanna