Simple and easy, these garlic green beans with bacon and Parmesan cheese are made using fresh green beans that are cooked until crisp tender, and seasoned with bold flavors! They’re the perfect side dish that even the kids will love!
This is one of my Side Dish recipes I know you’ll want to keep on hand!
With the holidays coming up, things like potatoes and turkey/ham get all the spotlight… but I really like the non-traditional sides.
Like these green beans! They’re so full of flavor, yet only use a handful of simple ingredients and are ready in about 20 minutes.
For this recipe I like to blanch my green beans first, then sauté them. However, since that does take a bit of extra time, I’ve also shared how you can cook the beans entirely in the same skillet.
In case the term “blanch” is new to you, check out my handy Cooking Terms page!
How to make garlic green beans with bacon?
This is just an overview; the full ingredients and directions are in the recipe card toward the bottom of this post.
- Blanch green beans. Without blanching, fresh green beans wouldn’t get all the way tender in the skillet.
- Cook garlic. Cooking the garlic takes it from a sharp, pungent flavor and transforms it into a mellow and mildly sweet flavor.
- Combine. Stir together, then serve.
When choosing fresh green beans, pick ones that are green and firm. Stay away from those that are broken, brown, or limp.
Variations of this recipe
- One pan method – to make this recipe even faster, you can skip the blanching. Add the green beans to the skillet, add about 1/3 cup of water, cover the skillet with a tight-fitting lid, and cook for several minuets, or until green beans are mostly tender. Remove lid, remove green beans to a plate or colander, then proceed with the recipe.
- Spicy – if you like things a bit spicy, try adding 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes or a drizzle of sriracha sauce.
- Lemon – for some extra flavor, try adding some grated lemon zest and/or a squeeze of lemon juice.
- Cheese – for the best results, use freshly grated Parmesan cheese from a wedge. But pre-shredded or grated Parmesan will also work.
- Frozen – if you don’t have fresh green beans, you can use frozen whole green beans, however you’ll want to thaw them completely. You can omit the blanching steps and just sauté them, and they may need a bit less time in the skillet.
Green beans and string beans are basically the same. String beans just have a fibrous string that runs down the length and should be removed; similar to a sugar snap pea. Haricot verts are French green beans, which are generally a little longer and skinnier than traditional green beans. The taste is fairly similar, however.
Fresh green beans have a part at the top, where the bean was connected to the rest of the plant. That end needs to be removed, and you can also trim the other end (that has a little string) as well. My favorite way is to line a handful of green beans up against the edge of a knife, then use the knife to trim about 1/2″ off. Turn the pile of green beans around, line them up, and trim the other end.
Making green beans ahead of time
I don’t recommend making this recipe entirely ahead of time. However, you can blanch the green beans, drain them, dry them completely, then refrigerate them (in an airtight container). They should keep for about 2 days.
Then when ready to serve, complete the remaining steps of the recipe (sautéing in the skillet).
These green beans can also be frozen! After the beans are blanched, drain them, dry them completely, then transfer to a freezer safe container.
Green beans can be frozen for up to 6-8 months. Thaw in the refrigerator, then sauté as directed in the recipe.
Leftover cooked green beans should be stored in an airtight container and enjoyed within 3-5 days.
I definitely prefer either stainless steel or a cast iron skillet, since nonstick doesn’t give a great sear and the coating can come off over time. This skillet is definitely not cheap, so please don’t feel like you HAVE to use it. Any cast iron or stainless steel skillet will do the trick. I just absolutely love the quality of Le Creuset products, and it’s held up for years of hard work!
Did you make this? Be sure to leave a review below and tag me @the_chunky_chef on Facebook and Instagram!
- 1 lb. fresh green beans ends trimmed
- 6 Tbsp unsalted butter
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 1 cup cooked and crumbled bacon typically from 12 slices of bacon
- 2 Tbsp freshly grated Parmesan cheese
- 1/2 tsp kosher salt
- 1/2 tsp onion powder
- 1/2 tsp black pepper
Blanch green beans
- Bring a pot/pan of water to a boil. Add the green beans, and cook 4-6 minutes, until crisp tender and bright green.
- Drain in a colander and set aside for now.
- To a large heavy bottomed skillet (I prefer cast iron or stainless steel), add butter and heat over MED heat.
- Once melted, add minced garlic and cook for 1-2 minutes, stirring often.
- To the skillet, add drained green beans and stir.
- Add crumbled bacon, Parmesan cheese, salt, onion powder, and black pepper, then stir well to combine.
- Once combined, serve hot and enjoy!
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- I’ve estimated that this recipe serves 4, but feel free to divide it up into as many servings as you’d like.
The Chunky Chef is not a dietician or nutritionist, and any nutritional information shared is an estimate. If calorie count and other nutritional values are important to you, we recommend running the ingredients through whichever online nutritional calculator you prefer. Calories can vary quite a bit depending on which brands were used.