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December 1, 2023

Green Bean Casserole

Fresh green beans and not a can in sight—our homemade green bean casserole recipe gives your favorite creamy veggie side dish a bit of a makeover.

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homemade green bean casserole with a creamy sauce, topped with French fried onions in a casserole dish

More Holiday Dinner Classics

Classic Green Bean Casserole Made From Scratch

You can make a fresh green bean casserole, from scratch! It’s not even harder than the canned version! Starting with fresh green beans—or even frozen ones—will yield a green bean casserole with better texture. Add this to the holiday list, and make some other greats from our 40 Best Thanksgiving Side Dishes. Or if you’re looking for other ways to serve string beans check out Green Beans Almondine and Green Beans with Apples and Sage Butter.

homemade green bean casserole with a creamy sauce and topped with French fried onions being scooped from a casserole dish
homemade green bean casserole with a creamy sauce and topped with French fried onions in a casserole dish

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Can You Make Green Bean Casserole Ahead of Time?

A few hours ahead of time? Yes! A day or two ahead of time? Not really. Green bean casserole is just one of those things that’s best enjoyed freshly-baked. Especially if you’re making it from fresh green beans instead of canned, and making this classic casserole from scratch! There are a few shortcuts.

  • Blanch the green beans ahead of time! You can do this step easily a day or two ahead, and just keep the bean in the fridge until you’re ready to assemble the casserole.

  • On Thanksgiving Day, if you’re short on stove top and oven space, prep the casserole up to the point of putting it into the oven. Then pop it into the fridge until 20 minutes before dinner time. Then, pop it in the oven to bake. You’ll be pulling it out right as the turkey is finished carving.

  • If you’re looking for ways to cut down on prep time, the Green Beans Almondine is a real game changer!

green beans, butter, flour, spices, dijon, chicken stock, half & half and French fried onions to make green bean casserole

Fresh Green Bean Casserole Ingredients

  • Green beans–fresh or frozen–either is OK!

  • Dairy: Butter and Half & Half

  • Flour

  • Dijon mustard

  • Seasoning: Onion powder, garlic powder, nutmeg

  • Vegetable or chicken stock. FYI, if you use veggie stock, this green bean casserole will be fully vegetarian, in case you’d like to offer a vegetarian side dish at Thanksgiving.

  • French’s fried onions. This is the one classic ingredient that we’re not messing with. There’s just nothing quite like these crispy fried onion bits, and we’re keeping ‘em! Plus, we’ve been known to snack on them as we cook on Thanksgiving Day—it’s a marathon! We need snacks!

blanched green beans being drained in a colander
cream sauce being stirred in a skillet made with butter, flour, half and half, spices, mustard and stock

How Do You Make Green Bean Casserole From Scratch?

  1. Blanch the green beans until they’re just bright green—three minutes for frozen, about five for fresh. Drain green beans, pat them dry, and add them to a 9x13-inch baking dish.

  2. Start making the cream sauce by melting butter, then whisking in flour, onion powder, garlic powder, pepper, salt, nutmeg and Dijon mustard in a large saucepan.

  3. Whisk in the stock until it’s thoroughly combined, then stir in the cream.

  4. Bring the cream sauce to a gentle simmer for a few minutes to thicken.

  5. Pour the sauce over the green beans, and mix to combine.

  6. Bake the casserole for 20 minutes.

  7. Pull the casserole out, give the green beans another stir, then top with French’s crispy onions and bake them for another 10 minutes.

  8. Serve piping hot!

blanched green beans covered in homemade cream sauce in a casserole dish
grean beans tossed in cream sauce and topped with french fried onions in a casserole dish ready to be baked in the oven

How to Store Leftover Green Bean Casserole + Tips

  • Leftovers will last for 3-4 days in the fridge, and are best reheated in the oven.

  • Can you freeze green bean casserole? We don’t love the texture of this green bean casserole after it is frozen. Best to eat those leftovers as soon as possible!

  • More great Thanksgiving recipes to complete your meal: Baked Brie, followed by Perfect Roast Turkey Recipe, Potato Leek au Gratin and Glazed Carrots, finished with our homemade Pumpkin Pie.

homemade green bean casserole with a creamy sauce and topped with French fried onions in a casserole dish

A Few New Classics Holiday Dishes You Will Love

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Green Bean Casserole

  • Serves: 10
  • Prep Time:  20 min
  • Cook Time:  30 min
  • Calories: 176

Ingredients

  • 2 pounds fresh or frozen green beans
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • ½ teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 cup vegetable or chicken stock
  • 2 cups half and half
  • 1½ cups French fried onions

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 375°F with a rack in the center position.

  2. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat. Prepare a large bowl of ice water.

  3. Once the water is boiling, add the green beans and cook until almost tender, about 5 minutes for fresh or 3 minutes for frozen. Drain green beans and transfer them to the ice bath for 2 minutes. Drain green beans, pat them dry, and add them to a 9x13-inch baking dish.

  4. Add the butter to a large saucepan set over medium-high heat. Once the butter is melted, whisk in the flour, onion powder, garlic powder, salt, pepper, nutmeg, and mustard; cook, whisking occasionally, until fragrant, about 2 minutes.

  5. Slowly whisk in the stock until smooth. Slowly whisk in the half and half, then bring the mixture to a simmer over medium heat. Cook until thickened, stirring occasionally, about 5 minutes. Pour over the green beans and toss to coat.

  6. Bake until sauce starts to bubble, about 20 minutes. Remove from the oven, toss the green beans, and sprinkle with fried onions. Return to the oven until golden brown, about 10 minutes more.

Nutrition Info

  • Per Serving
  • Amount
  • Calories176
  • Protein4 g
  • Carbohydrates14 g
  • Total Fat12 g
  • Dietary Fiber3 g
  • Cholesterol23 mg
  • sodium178 mg
  • Total Sugars5 g

Green Bean Casserole

Questions & Reviews

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  • Claire

    If I’m doubling the recipe, would you recommend cooking it in 2 separate dishes or can I just make it all in one pan?

    2 separate would probably work best. Hope you enjoy Claire!

  • JFar

    Are the green beans trimmed and cut? If so, how big? They looked like they were cut in the pictures but the recipe doesn’t say it needs to be.

    If you're using fresh we like to trim the little ends off. As for cutting them it's total preference you can leave them long or cut in half if you prefer them shorter. Hope you enjoy, happy thanksgiving!

  • Melissa

    How would this turn out in the crockpot? Trying to limit items in the oven for Thanksgiving.

    We haven't tested this in the crockpot but you could bake it earlier in the day then keep it on warm in a slow cooker. We wouldn't sprinkle it with fried onions until you are ready to serve though or they will get soggy. Happy Thanksgiving Melissa!

  • Janet

    Looking at nutrition for the green bean casserole. How large is the serving you are using?

    We don't currently have yield. It serves 10 so it would be 1/10th of the pan.

  • Stephanie

    Recipe calls for Dijon. Is that Dijon mustard?

    Yes, it is!

  • Lisa

    Loved it! My husband (who dislikes green bean casserole) said it was delicious and he’d eat it again.

    WOW, that's high praise! Thanks Lisa, I'm glad you both enjoyed it!

  • Kate n.

    Actually amazing. I've never liked green bean casserole until I made this recipe. This has been a staple in my house for several years now. No modifications needed, just follow the instructions and it is a beautiful dish

    Thanks Kate, this is so great to hear! We are so happy you love it!

  • B.G.

    Smash hit! Best green bean casserole! I've never been a huge fan of the canned version. My 11 year old daughter requests these for every special occasion, even her birthday. This recipe won't disappoint!

    Thanks SO much B.G.! Happy you love it!

  • Stephanie

    Delicious recipe! I received rave reviews after serving it last Thanksgiving. Unfortunately I had forgotten that I actually doubled the amount of green beans for the amount of sauce that the recipe makes. This year for a group of 10 I tripled the amount of green beans (using whole frozen) and used one and a half times the recipe of sauce. Still excellent! So much better than using canned beans! 🙂 I will admit that I did Doctor some of the proportions of spices because I like things a little zestier. But this is a great recipe!

    Thanks Stephanie, so happy everyone loved it!

  • Colleen

    This was amazing. Highly recommend Made it for Thanksgiving trying to get away from the canned food and all the same texture green bean casserole usually served. Took this to a family gathering we’re people usually prefer no tampering with the tried and true and there were no leftovers.

    Love this Colleen! Thanks so much for trying it out, it's hard to try new recipes ESPECIALLY on a holiday! So glad it was enjoyed!