9 Fresh Ways to Cook Green Beans

It makes me sad to think that most people only ever eat steamed green beans. Don't get me wrong, steamed green beans can be delicious, but there are so many other ways to prepare and enjoy snappy summer (and fall) vegetables. A few of my favorite ways to cook them are below.

  • 01 of 09

    Braise Them

    Braised Romano Beans. Photo © Molly Watson

    Along with frying and grilling, braising is one of my favorite ways to cook green beans. Rather than cooking them to a trendy crisp-tender texture, this method slowly cooks green beans until they are extremely tender and infused with the flavor of the cooking liquid, but stops short of turning them mushy. They are pure perfection next to a roast chicken. See the recipe for Slow-Braised Green Beans.

  • 02 of 09

    Fry Them

    Buttermilk Fried Green Beans. Photo © Molly Watson

    It may not be a very common way to cook green beans, but it certainly is a delicious one. I like to serve these as an appetizer, often with small grape or cherry tomatoes alongside to provide a bit of sweet snap. See this Recipe for Buttermilk Fried Green Beans

  • 03 of 09

    Grill Them

    Grilled Green Beans
    Grilled Green Beans. Photo © Molly Watson

    It's true: You can grill green beans. And not for nothing. Grilling intensifies the grassy, vegetal flavor of green beans beautifully. See How to Grill Green Beans here.

  • 04 of 09

    Marinate Them

    Marinated Green Bean Salad. Photo © Molly Watson

    Soaking quickly steamed green beans in a bright vinaigrette like the shallot-infused one pictured here - takes advantage of their study texture and ability to absorb flavor. Marinated beans work as a salad or a side dish and are particularly delicious alongside a hearty grilled steak. See a recipe for Marinated Green Beans or Green Beans in Jalapeno and Mint.

    Continue to 5 of 9 below.
  • 05 of 09

    Pickle Them

    Pickled Green Beans. Photo © Molly Watson

    These bright, crispy refrigerator pickles are easy to make and add their spicy kick to any relish tray, crudité platter, or a very special Fresh Tomato Bloody Mary. Get the full recipe for Pickled Green Beans.

  • 06 of 09

    Put Them In a Casserole

    Green Bean Casserole
    Green Bean Casserole. Photo © Molly Watson

    Baking green beans in a saucy, flavorful mix and topping them with something crunchy is a Thanksgiving favorite. Try this Green Bean Casserole.

  • 07 of 09

    Roast Them

    Roasted Green Beans. Photo © Molly Watson

    Roasting gives green beans crispy edges to contrast their tender insides. It's a delicious and easy way to cook green beans, whether for one or for a crowd. Get the Recipe for Roasted Green Beans.

  • 08 of 09

    Serve Them In a Salad

    Green Beans With Sesame Dressing
    Green Beans With Sesame Dressing. Photo © Molly Watson

    Raw green beans might be a bit much for most people - that's a lot of vegetal goodness. Yet, I love using green beans in salads, even if I lightly steam them first. Two favorites are this Green Bean Red Onion Salad and Green Beans With Shallot Vinaigrette.

    Continue to 9 of 9 below.
  • 09 of 09

    Steam Them

    Steamed Green Beans. Photo © Molly Watson

    Steaming is a classic method of cooking green beans. When steamed to a crisp-tender texture and dressed with a bit of fresh butter, sea salt, and freshly ground black pepper, fresh garden green beans are a complete delight. See details on How to Steam Green Beans.