Delicious Southern Green Beans Recipe for Dinner

As a chef specializing in southern-style cuisine, there’s nothing more satisfying than preparing a classic side dish that screams comfort and home. Today, I’m sharing with you my recipe for Southern Green Beans – a dish that will transport you down to the heart of Dixie with just one bite.

There’s nothing quite like the taste of slow-cooked green beans simmered with smoked meat and bacon pieces to create a thick, hearty sauce that packs a ton of flavor. In this recipe, we’ll be using frozen green beans, that not only cuts down on prep time but also ensures that the fresh green bean taste and texture are retained.

Whether it’s for a summertime barbecue or your Thanksgiving spread, these Southern Style Green Beans are the perfect side dish to accompany any meal. The ingredient list may seem lengthy, but I assure you, the end result is worth every last minute spent in the kitchen. So grab your pots and pans and let’s get started on making some of the best Southern Green Beans you’ve ever tasted!

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Southern Green Beans
Southern Green Beans

This recipe for Southern Green Beans is an ode to the classic style of cooking that has been passed down from generation to generation in the American South. And why should you love it? Let me count the ways.

Firstly, these green beans are slow-cooked so they’re incredibly tender and full of flavor. Unlike boiled or steamed green beans which can be bland and lack texture, this recipe brings out the true essence of the vegetables. The combination of bacon and onion garlic smoked with chicken broth gives these beans a unique smoky and savory taste that you’ll never forget.

Secondly, these Southern Green Beans are incredibly easy to make. Once you’ve got all your ingredients together, all you need to do is add them to a large pot and simmer it on low heat for a few hours. This dish will cook itself while you get on with other things, ready to serve along with any main course.

Thirdly, these beans can be modified and customized in a myriad of ways. Want to add some parmesan cheese? Go ahead! Want to switch up the seasoning salt or add some minced powder granules? Feel free! Not only do these green beans taste amazing straight out of the pot but also they can also be adjusted according to your personal tastes.

Lastly, Southern Green Beans recipe are versatile enough to be served with a variety of dishes. They make an excellent side dish for fried chicken or meatloaf, but they can also perfectly accompany summer salads or pasta dinners.

So why should you choose this recipe over any other? Because it’s easy and the result is impressive. The flavor is unbeatable because of the use of cracked black pepper, creole seasonings, thyme and rosemary which all contribute to its deliciousness – making it the best southern green bean recipe ever!

Ingredient List

 These southern green beans are the perfect side dish for any meal.
These southern green beans are the perfect side dish for any meal.

Gather the ingredients for the perfect Southern-Style Green Beans

To make a pot of delicious and hearty Southern-Style Green Beans, you will need the following ingredients:

  • 2 lbs fresh green beans, stringed and snapped
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 medium red onion, chopped
  • 4 slices thick-cut bacon or smoked turkey, chopped into small pieces
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 1 tablespoon minced onion powder
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic powder or granules
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon seasoned salt

These quality ingredients are the key to making the perfect Southern-style side dish. The combination of fresh green beans and savory meats like bacon or smoked turkey will give your green beans a satisfying richness. Plus, adding freshly-minced garlic, onion powder, and seasoned salt creates a robust flavor profile that you will love.

The Recipe How-To

 Fresh green beans simmered in savory bacon and spices.
Fresh green beans simmered in savory bacon and spices.

Are you ready to dive into the heart of this Southern Green Beans Recipe? Then, let me guide you through the preparation process.


To make 10 servings of this southern-style side dish, you will need:

  • 2 lbs. fresh green beans, cleaned and trimmed
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 large yellow onion, chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced or garlic powder/granules equivalent
  • 6 slices of thick-cut bacon, diced
  • Seasoning salt or regular salt
  • Black pepper, to taste
  • 1 cup of chicken broth or chicken stock


  1. Start by rinsing and trimming your fresh green beans. Set them aside.
  2. Take a large pot and place it over medium-high heat. Add your diced bacon pieces and cook until they are crispy.
  3. Remove the bacon from the pot, but keep the fat in.
  4. Add your chopped onions and garlic to the bacon grease and cook until they are translucent.
  5. Put your green beans in the pot with the onions and garlic mixture.
  6. Add two cups of water and one cup of chicken broth or stock to the pot. Bring to a boil then reduce heat to low.
  7. Toss in some seasoning salt or regular salt on top of the green beans mixture according to your preference.
  8. Cover the pot’s lid loosely and allow it to slow simmer for approximately 45-60 minutes or until you reach your preferred tenderness of the beans. Give it a stir occasionally, and add more water as needed.
  9. Add black pepper to taste.
  10. Once done, sprinkle some fresh parmesan cheese over your cooked green beans before serving.

This slow-cooked method enhances the flavor of this southern-style green beans recipe, giving it that signature taste that you’re bound to enjoy.

Substitutions and Variations

 Have a taste of the south with these flavorful green beans.
Have a taste of the south with these flavorful green beans.

As a chef, I always encourage experimentation and creativity when it comes to cooking. With this southern green beans recipe, there are many possibilities for substitutions and variations based on what you have available and personal preference. Here are a few ideas to get you started:

– Replace the frozen green beans with fresh or canned green beans: While the recipe uses frozen green beans, you can easily substitute fresh or canned ones. Be aware that cooking times may vary depending on the type of green beans you use.

– Experiment with different types of meat: The recipe calls for bacon or ham hocks, but you can also try smoked turkey, pork shoulder, or sausage. Each will bring its own unique flavor to the dish.

– Add in some potatoes: For a heartier dish, consider adding cubed potatoes along with the green beans. They will absorb all the delicious flavors from the other ingredients and make a great side dish for any meal.

– Use different seasonings: While seasoning salt is used in this recipe, feel free to experiment with other seasonings such as garlic powder, onion powder, or even cajun seasoning for a bit of extra kick.

– Make it vegetarian/vegan: Use vegetable broth instead of chicken broth and omit the meat for a vegetarian version. You can also try using vegan bacon bits or tempeh as a substitute for meat.

No matter how you choose to make these southern green beans, be sure to adjust cooking times and seasonings accordingly to your personal taste. Don’t be afraid to experiment and find your own perfect variation!

Serving and Pairing

 A classic southern dish that will have you coming back for seconds.
A classic southern dish that will have you coming back for seconds.

Southern green beans are a versatile and delicious side dish that pairs well with a range of main dishes. These beans are hearty and flavorful, offering a delicious balance of savory and sweet tastes. One of the best ways to serve Southern green beans is as a side dish to classic Southern meats like chicken, turkey, ham or chops. They also pair well with roasted beef and lamb.

If you’re looking for a vegetarian pairing, try serving the beans alongside other vegetable sides, such as roasted roots vegetables or sautéed greens. The savory flavor of these green beans also makes them perfect to accompany spicy dishes like jambalaya, gumbo or pulled pork sliders.

In addition to pairing them with classic Southern mains, you can also experiment with more international flavors. For instance, you can add Southern green beans to stir-fries or enjoy them with teriyaki chicken or fish. On the other hand, they could be paired with Tex-Mex dishes like taco salad or enchiladas.

Overall, Southern-style green beans are an excellent addition to any mealtime menu. Their versatility and delightful taste appeal to a variety of tastes buds making it a must-have on your dining table!

Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating

 The combination of bacon and green beans is a match made in heaven.
The combination of bacon and green beans is a match made in heaven.

Once you’ve cooked your delicious Southern-style green beans recipe, you’re probably wondering how long you can store leftovers for and how to best reheat them. Well, wonder no more, my friends! I’m here to guide you through the post-cooking process.

To start with, let’s talk about storing your cooked green beans. If you have any leftovers from your feast, simply transfer them into an airtight container and refrigerate them. The cooked green beans will last for up to 3-4 days in the fridge, making it easy for you to enjoy them as a side dish or snack later on.

When it comes to reheating your green beans, there are a few options available. The fastest way is to use the microwave oven. Just place the desired amount of green beans onto a microwave-safe dish and heat on high for around 30 seconds at a time until heated through.

If you prefer crispy bacon, then it’s best to reheat it separately in a skillet over medium-high heat until crisp. Then spoon out any excess bacon fat and add the leftover green beans to the skillet. Stir well until heated through before serving.

For those who like slow-cooked flavors, reheating your green beans on the stovetop is your best bet. Just pour some chicken broth or water (about 1/2 cup per serving) into a pot and bring it to a boil over medium-high heat. Once boiling, add in your leftover green beans and reduce heat to low. Simmer them gently until heated through, stirring occasionally.

If you stored any leftovers in the freezer, make sure to thaw them overnight in the refrigerator before reheating them with any of the methods mentioned above.

By following these simple steps, you can enjoy your Southern-style green beans whenever you want without compromising their fresh-from-the-pot flavor!

Tips for Perfect Results

 Your taste buds won't be able to resist the delicious aroma of these southern green beans.
Your taste buds won’t be able to resist the delicious aroma of these southern green beans.

Achieving southern-style green beans that are perfectly cooked and flavorful can be a daunting task, but with some helpful tips and tricks, you’ll have no trouble making delicious green beans in no time. Here are some of my best tips for ensuring your southern green beans come out absolutely perfect every time.

Firstly, the key to successful southern-style green beans is to cook them slow and steady. Resist the urge to crank up the heat and overcook or burn them – trust me, it’s not worth it. Instead, start with medium-high heat to cook bacon or onion until lightly browned before adding the green beans, chicken stock or water, and any other seasonings.

Secondly, if you’re using fresh green beans instead of frozen ones, be sure to trim off the ends or “string” them before cooking. This step may seem tedious, but it ensures that your green beans are tender and easy to eat.

Thirdly, adding smoked meat or other aromatics can significantly enhance the flavor of your southern-style green beans recipe. Ham hocks, bacon pieces or smoked turkey are all popular choices when preparing this classic side dish.

Fourthly, don’t forget about the importance of seasoning! A sprinkle of seasoning salt or minced garlic can go a long way in adding flavor to your green beans. For an extra kick of flavor, try adding parmesan cheese for a tasty finishing touch.

Lastly, when cooking your green beans on low heat for an extended period of time (like when slow-simmering them to perfection), be sure to check on them frequently and stir occasionally so that they don’t stick or burn. You want them to be tender and full of flavor without being mushy or burnt.

These tips will help you create the perfect southern-style green bean dish that will have everyone asking for seconds. Keep these tips in mind next time you’re making this classic side dish and see what a difference they make!


As we near the end of this recipe article, it is important to address any lingering questions or concerns that you may have about making this delectable dish. To help guide you through any sticking points, I’ve put together a list of frequently asked questions and thoughtfully provided detailed answers to each one below.

What can I add to green beans for flavor?

Enhance the flavor of your green beans by incorporating garlic powder, onion powder, thyme, salt, and pepper. These ingredients can take your dish to the next level, making it taste refreshingly delectable.

What are green beans called in the South?

Discover a mouth-watering recipe for Southern-style green beans that are slow-cooked to perfection. These green beans, often referred to as “Southern string beans,” are an ideal side dish for any occasion, especially during holidays.

What is the best way to spice up green beans?

For this recipe, we’ll need some flavorful ingredients to give our southern-style cuisine a delicious taste. Let’s grab some garlic, whether it’s been minced, in powder form, or in granules. We’ll also need onion, minced, powdered, or in granule form, to add some savory notes. Once the dish is ready, we’ll sprinkle some parsley as a finisher, and fresh lemon juice will give it a tangy kick. To add some texture, we’ll toast some sesame seeds and toss them in. We’ll use classic black malabar pepper and salt, along with some herbs like basil, oregano, and thyme to season the dish to perfection.

Bottom Line

In conclusion, the Southern Green Beans recipe is the perfect side dish to add a little bit of southern comfort to any meal. With its slow-cooked flavors and simple ingredient list, this recipe is easy to make and always delicious. Whether you’re cooking for a family gathering or just need an easy weeknight dinner idea, Southern Green Beans are sure to please.

Plus, with the various substitutions and variations listed in this article, you can tailor the recipe to fit your specific tastes and dietary restrictions. Don’t like bacon? Try smoked turkey instead. Looking for a vegetarian option? Skip the meat altogether and add in some extra seasoning.

Incorporating this dish into your next meal will not only impress your guests but also allow you to experience the true essence of southern-style cuisine. So don’t hesitate, give this recipe a try today and enjoy the tasty goodness of Southern Green Beans!

Southern Green Beans

Southern Green Beans Recipe

These are excellent. This recipe calls for frozen green beans, but I often make it with fresh green beans for an even better taste. Great as a side to the holiday dinners.
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Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 20 mins
Course Side Dish
Cuisine Southern American
Calories 195.6 kcal


  • 3 cups frozen green beans
  • 6 slices bacon
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 3 teaspoons seasoning salt
  • parmesan cheese


  • Place beans in pan and cover with water.
  • Bring to a boil.
  • Fry bacon until crisp and crumble.
  • Combine onion, bacon and seasoned salt; add to green beans.
  • Simmer for 15-20 minutes.
  • Drain, then sprinkle with Parmesan cheese before serving.

Add Your Own Notes


Serving: 142gCalories: 195.6kcalCarbohydrates: 9.5gProtein: 5.7gFat: 15.5gSaturated Fat: 5.2gCholesterol: 23.1mgSodium: 293.2mgFiber: 3.4gSugar: 2.4g
Keyword < 30 Mins, Easy, Vegetable
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