Green beans with onions and bacon is a perfectly delicious way to use frozen green beans. They cook a bit longer - 15 to 20 minutes - to create tender, flavorful beans that make a wonderful side dish for any meal.
This recipe for long-cooked green beans with onion and bacon is one of our family's favorite winter side dishes and I love that it uses our garden green beans that I freeze each year to use all winter long.
While summer is time to quick-cook green beans by grilling or sautéing with tomatoes, winter is for using our garden beans in soups, stews, casseroles and long-cooked like this recipe.
Although by "longer cooked" I just mean 15 minutes, lol. But that's longer than the 3-5 minutes fresh beans are cooked, so longer cooked, for sure.
One of the site's most popular articles is how - and why - to freeze green beans without blanching them first.
I'm not surprised, since preserving green beans this way is super easy and results in a better product, in my opinion (and many others), even if it goes against the "expert" advice.
While I've gotten lots of questions on that technique (LOTS of comments!) over the years by far the most common question I get is "how do you cook with them?"
There are a number of other recipes that use frozen green beans on the site, including:
- Thai Inspired Turkey or Chicken Vegetable Curry
- Cheesy Crust Ham Pie
- Slow Cooker Sweet Chili Chicken Vegetables
- Slow Cooker Chicken Dinner
- Slow Cooker Italian Sausage Vegetable Soup
- Italian Vegetable Beef Soup
- Quick Bone Broth Chicken & Vegetable Soup
And now this recipe for a wonderfully flavored side dish that lets the green beans shine.
Green Beans with Onions and Bacon
The simple ingredients for this recipe to make long cooked green beans include the frozen beans (a quart or 16oz. bag), bacon, onion, a bit of chicken broth, salt and pepper.
I also usually add red pepper flakes, since we're fans of spicy around here.
Like I mentioned, while this recipe is called "long-cooked" they're really only cooked 15-20 minutes.
You cooke the bacon a bit first, but then it's just a matter of throwing everything else in the the pot and letting it cook until the beans are soft and tender and the onions translucent.
Best kind of recipe, right?
Well, that and that it tastes good - and this delivers. Simple ingredients + simple cooking = amazing flavor.
THAT is the best kind of recipe, now that I think about it!
What readers say about long cooked green beans with onions & bacon:
"We made this recipe last night using unblanched green beans from last summer. It was super yummy! The sauce almost seemed to caramelize a bit and had tons of flavor. We will definitely make this again!" -Megan
Long Cooked Green Beans with Onions & Bacon
- 2 slices bacon chopped
- 1/2 large onion chopped
- ¾ to 1 pound frozen green beans or 1 quart bag
- 1/4 cup chicken broth
- 1/4 teaspoon salt to taste
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- 1 sweet red pepper chopped
- 1 to 2 cloves garlic minced
- 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- Cook bacon in a large saucepan or deep skillet over med-high heat until almost cooked; add onion and cook another minute.
- Add frozen green beans, chicken broth, and seasonings. Cover and bring to a boil, lower heat to med-low and cook, covered, for 15 minutes or until desired doneness.
- Optional: Remove cover & raise heat to medium to evaporate some of the liquid (I don't usually bother).
We made this recipe last night using unblanched green beans from last summer. It was super yummy! The sauce almost seemed to carmelize a bit and had tons of flavor. We will definitely make this again! Thanks for sharing.
I'm so glad you gave this a try, Megan! It always surprises me with how good it is. 🙂
Oma June says
How could I do this in my electric pressure cooker?
I haven't tried it, so I wouldn't know the times, but you could look up a other green bean recipe and adapt it.
I’ve always cooked fresh green beans this way, except that I substitute a few slices of smoked sausage (beef, pork, or turkey sausage will all work fine), and they’re even better!
Oh, I hadn't thought of that - will have to try it!!
Roy Faria says
No doubt about it, this is a very good recipe.
Glad you liked it!
Terry Workman says
So I only use a quarter cup of chicken broth? No other liquid?
Yes, any more and it was too soupy for us. You can certainly try more if you'd like.
Terry Workman says
I used a little more then cooked it off. Added garlic powder and a half teaspoon of vinegar. Tastes just like Grandma’s! Your recipe is definitely a keeper.
I love this recipe and I have always fixed fresh green beans by first cooking my bacon (I only use the bacon drippings for seasoning). I cut up a medium onion into small quarters, heat with a little butter, use about 1/4 tsp lite salt; then I add 1 cup of water and 5 chicken bullion cubes until dissolved. Then, I add the fresh green beans and fill with water until beans covered. Cook on high heat until almost done. (20 minutes) Then, I taste and if needed more seasoning, add 1/4 tsp more of lite salt and a couple more bullion cubes. Now is the time also to put new potatoes on top of the beans while you have enough liquid to steam cook potatoes. Optional: The potatoes you can put pats of butter and season with a little sprinkle of lite salt. Turn down heat to medium and cover partially with lid until potatoes are cooked. My husband and friends tell me they are the best beans they ever tasted. By the way, I love your website and your easy to do recipes, etc.
Thank you, Joyce! And this sounds like a wonderful way to cook beans, too.:)
Can you use this same method for vegetables bought in the grocery store (carrots broccoli, cauliflower ect.)?
Probably, though I haven't tried it. I don't think broccoli would need that much cooking time, though.
Arnold Wallace says
I have 3-4 bushels of snap beans (with at least that volume ready next week), the prettiest I have ever grown. Have seen not one beatle! Have a son in Tampa, Fla., who wants the beans, thus, the search began to find a way of freezing without blanching or freezing in water. You have provided just what I believed to be THE way to freeze bean and if I am to do the freezing it will be completed just as you have so noted. Also makes the transporting to Tampa from Atlanta easier.
Ninety percent of those in my age bracket either can, blanch and freeze, or freeze the beans in water. Your way is easie and more sensible.
I'm glad to have helped, Arnold - I hope you (and your son) enjoy them this way!
Sandy S. says
These were the best green beans ever! Now I know what to do with all my frozen beans, thank you, the whole family loved them!
Yay! Happy to read this Sandy. 🙂
Sue Smith says
Agreed. We like them canned best too. Something about the squeekieness (I know it's not a word) of the frozen beans when I chew them that gives me shivers. Maybe, though, with all those yummy ingredients I would like them better.
Sharon H....I tip and tail mine when I can them. My mother did that and my grandmother did that and that is why I do that. LOL
Sharon H says
About the only way we like frozen green beans, is cooked in soups, stews, casseroles, etc. I usually freeze some, and I don't blanch them either for the same reasons you don't, but we like our beans canned, so that's my preferred method. But I noticed in your video that you cut off the natural tip end of the bean. Why do you do that? It's just bean....enlighten me, please!
I honestly can't stand that hard, sharp tip on the beans, Sharon. 🙂 Maybe they're more pronounced in the filet-style beans I grow, but some of them seem like little sharp daggers just waiting to poke me!
Sharon H says
Oh, okay! LOL, I guess that'd make sense to me too, then. I usually grow Contender beans, but when I had more space available I'd also grown some of the long slender filet-types. I really liked those too, especially for cooking fresh. Thanks, Jaimi!
Hmm, maybe it has something to do with the variety of the bean. I'm growing something called "green bean, bush" (some sort of basic dollar store seeds that are doing much better than I would have expected) and the tip on those beans is actually rather soft and tender, much scarier looking than they really are.
Yes, some people aren't bothered by them and some varieties have harder tips. I just prefer to stay clear of them. 🙂