Hot and bubbly straight from the oven, this green bean casserole features crunchy beans tossed in a creamy mushroom sauce. A simple quick boiling and cooling method yields crisp-tender, bright green vegetables instead of their mushy canned cousins. Topped with golden fried onions rings, it’s a side dish that people will fight over. I know we do at my house!
Green bean casserole is one of the most highly anticipated dishes during the holidays. My version has a few crowd-pleasing upgrades. I wanted to see if I could turn an underwhelming yet traditional side dish into something mouth-watering. So you won’t find frozen or canned green beans here. Instead, break out the high-quality, fresh ingredients for outstanding taste and texture. I’ll even show you how to make your own onion rings for the topping.
Breaking down the recipe into three distinct parts makes it easy. By cooking each component with care, the green beans, gravy and onion rings can all reach their flavor potential. You’ll be surprised just how simple this dish is to make. This will be the most requested item at any Thanksgiving dinner or get together.
Green Bean Casserole Ingredients
- Fresh green beans or haricot verts
- Minced garlic
- Sliced brown mushrooms
- Butter or olive oil
- All-purpose flour
- Chicken stock
- Heavy cream
- Seasonings: Salt, pepper, and nutmeg
- Fried onions: Made from scratch or store-bought, such as French’s Crispy Fried Onions
How to Make Fresh Green Bean Casserole
- Blanch and shock the green beans to make them tender and bright green in color.
- Saute the garlic and mushrooms until fragrant to create the base for the gravy.
- Add butter and flour to make a roux to thicken the sauce, then gradually add the stock.
- Add in heavy cream and allow to briefly simmer and reduce to concentrate the flavors.
- Combine the pre-cooked beans and mushroom sauce and bake until the casserole is hot.
- Make the crispy fried onions, top the casserole with them, and serve immediately.
Homemade Crispy Fried Onions
It’s a breeze to roam down the grocery store aisle and grab a container of French’s Crispy Fried Onions. But how about making your own, with no additives and less sodium? In just a few minutes, you can make fresh onions rings. They’re so irresistible, you will never buy the packaged stuff again. My son kept sneaking some nibbles in between each batch and worried that I wouldn’t have enough for the topping.
The creamy coated green beans, generously decorated on top with the battered onion rings. If you want cheese, you can sprinkle some melty types such as grated Cheddar cheese, Gruyere, or Parmesan as the dish heats in the oven. The layers of contrasting textures is a delightful treat, making a typically boring vegetable dish more thrilling for dinnertime.
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If you make this recipe, please let me know! Leave a comment, rate it, and don’t forget to tag a photo #jessicagavin on Instagram. I’d love to see what you come up with. Cheers, friends!
The right breading for crispy fried onion rings
An equal combination of flour and cornstarch creates the crunchy texture. If you use only flour, the coating becomes too thick and heavy. With just cornstarch, the coating is very tough. A combination gives just the right balance. Using a high smoke point oil and maintaining a deep frying temperature between 350 to 375ºF yields a light golden color with a super-crispy coating that doesn’t taste greasy.
Green Bean Casserole
Green Bean Casserole
- 3 quarts water, (2.8L)
- 2 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, (17g) divided
- 2 pounds green beans, (908g) fresh, trimmed, cut into 2-inch pieces
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, (40g)
- 1 tablespoon minced garlic, (10g)
- 1 pound brown mushrooms, (454g) cut into 1/2-inch thick slices
- 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour, (27g)
- 1 1/2 cups unsalted chicken stock, (360ml)
- 1 1/2 cups heavy cream, (360ml)
- 3/4 teaspoons black pepper, divided
- 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg, optional
Fried Onion Topping
- 1 small yellow onion, (about 1 cup cut onions) cut in 1/8-inch thick slices
- 1/2 cup all-purpose flour, (70g)
- 1/2 cup cornstarch, (68g)
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt, (10g)
- 2 large eggs
- 1 cup vegetable oil, (240ml)
Green Bean Casserole
- Set the oven rack to the center position and preheat the oven to 425ºF (218ªC).
- Add 3 quarts of water and 1 teaspoon salt to a large pot. Heat the water over high heat until it reaches a rolling boil and large bubbles break the surface.
- Add green beans to the boiling water and cook for 3 minutes.
- Drain the beans and transfer them to a large bowl filled with ice water. Allow the beans to sit in an ice bath for at least 5 minutes, and then drain well.
- Heat a large skillet with high sides over medium heat.
- Add butter to the pan. Once it melts add the garlic and saute for 30 seconds.
- Add mushrooms, 1 teaspoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper, stir to combine.
- Saute and stir until mushrooms release their moisture, evaporates, and becomes tender about 5 minutes.
- Add flour, and cook and stir for 1 minute.
- Gradually add in the chicken stock, constantly stirring to combine. Bring the stock to a rapid simmer, and cook for 4 minutes until it is slightly thickened.
- Add the heavy cream and simmer until sauce reduces slightly and thickens, stirring occasionally for about 5 minutes.
- Stir in 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Taste sauce and add more seasoning as needed.
- Stir in drained cooked green beans, and then transfer the mixture to a 13x9-inch baking dish.
- Bake until the sauce is bubbly and the beans are hot, 5 to 10 minutes. Remove dish from the oven and cover it with foil to keep warm. Meanwhile, make the onion topping.
Fried Onion Topping
- Whisk together 1/2 cup flour, 1/2 cup cornstarch, and 1 teaspoon salt in a medium bowl.
- Whisk the eggs in a separate medium bowl.
- Bread the onion rings by dipping them first in the flour mixture, then the eggs, then back into the flour.
- Line a plate with paper towels.
- Heat the oil in a small saucepan or saute pan to 350 to 375ºF (176 to 191ºC).
- Fry the breaded onion rings in batches until both sides are a light golden brown and crispy, about 2 minutes per side.
- Transfer the onion rings to a paper towel-lined plate to drain any excess oil.
- Serve green bean casserole hot with onion topping sprinkled on top.
- Store bought French’s Crispy Fried Onions can be used instead of the homemade onions rings if you are short on time.
- For homemade onion topping, use the smaller inside rings, instead of the larger perimeter slices. Keeping the onions petite makes them cook faster and are easier to eat.
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