Welcome, my dear friends, to my kitchen. Today, I’m going to share with you a recipe that I’ve been making for over half of my life – the Sweet and Southern Green Beans Recipe. There’s nothing quite like it in the world, and once you give it a try, you’ll be hooked.
The South has always been known for its culinary prowess, and when it comes to side dishes, our green beans are second to none. And this isn’t just any old green bean recipe – this is southern-style green beans recipe cooked low and slow in bacon fat with a touch of sweetness from light brown sugar.
As you cook up these delicious beans slow-cooked with bacon bits and onions, you’ll notice how the flavors come together in perfect harmony. It’s the kind of dish that sends your taste buds dancing and makes your soul feel just a bit brighter.
So sit back, relax, and let me show you how to make one of the most delicious southern-style green beans recipes on the planet because I guarantee that once you try them, you’ll never look back.
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
My dear friend, let me tell you why you’ll absolutely fall in love with this sweet and southern green beans recipe. First things first, let’s talk about the star of this recipe – the green beans!
These tender green beans are cooked southern style, slow-cooked to perfection with bacon bits and onion garlic for a delicious Southern flavor. No ordinary canned green beans here, my friend! Fresh or frozen green beans work just as well, but the result is simply unbeatable.
Now let me tell you how we kick these southern green beans up a notch. We add light brown sugar to make them irresistibly sweet – the perfect balance in every bite. Melted butter brings everything together, while red pepper flakes add a little extra kick for those who dare.
But that’s not all! This recipe is very versatile too; customize it to your liking with some of our suggested substitutions and variations below. From Non-Dairy Vegan options to nitrate-free bacon choices, we’ve got you covered. Trust me; your guests will be impressed by your culinary agility.
Don’t miss out on making this scrumptious dish at your next family gathering, potluck or BBQ! These Candied Green Beans are sure to steal the show as a memorable side dish that will have everyone asking for seconds. Don’t just take my word for it; try it out for yourself and taste the delicious Southern-style cooking magic!
Before we dive into the delicious recipe, let’s take a look at the ingredients list you’ll need for this sweet and southern green beans recipe:
- 4 cans of cut green beans (drained)
- ½ cup of light brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon of butter
- 1 teaspoon of salt
- ½ teaspoon of black pepper
- ½ teaspoon of red pepper flakes
- 1 teaspoon of onion powder
- 1 teaspoon of garlic powder
- 2 tablespoons of bacon bits (nitrate-free for healthier option)
- 1/3 cup of chicken or vegetable broth
- Cooking spray
These ingredients are easy to get your hands on and will produce a delicious southern-style side dish that your family and friends won’t stop talking about.
The Recipe How-To
Now that we have all the ingredients, it’s time for the fun part: cooking our Sweet and Southern Green Beans recipe. Before we start, let’s make sure we have all our equipment ready. We’ll need a large skillet or saucepan, a colander, and a cooking spray.
Step 1: Prepare the green beans
First things first, we need to prepare the green beans. Place them in a colander and rinse them thoroughly under cold water to remove any dirt or debris.
Step 2: Cook the bacon
Next up is our star ingredient, the bacon. Cook the chopped bacon bits in a large skillet over medium heat until they are crispy. Transfer the cooked bits onto a paper towel-lined plate to drain and set aside.
Step 3: Create your sweet sauce
In the same skillet, melt two tablespoons of butter over medium-high heat. Once the butter has melted, add one tablespoon of light brown sugar and half a teaspoon of red pepper flakes. Cook for 30 seconds until the mixture has thickened slightly.
Step 4: Add onion and garlic
Add one small chopped onion and two minced garlic cloves to the skillet with the sauce. Sauté for about three minutes until they’re softened.
Step 5: Add green beans and broth
Now it’s time for our main ingredient, the green beans! Add in two cans of drained green beans and half a cup of chicken or vegetable broth to the skillet. Give everything a good stir and cover with a lid.
Step 6: Slow cook
Reduce heat to low and simmer for approximately twenty-five minutes, stirring occasionally. This will ensure that your sweet southern green beans are slow-cooked to perfection!
Step 7: Candied Green Beans
After twenty-five minutes, remove the lid and add two tablespoons of brown sugar to the skillet. Sauté for an additional three minutes, stirring occasionally, until the sauce thickens and turns into a caramel-like sauce.
Step 8: Add the cooked bacon bits
Finally, add the cooked bacon bits back into the skillet and stir everything together.
That’s it! Your delicious southern-style green beans are ready to serve as a side dish or a main course. For a complete meal, pair them up with turkey tails, pulled pork or ham hock as options. For a vegan-style, you can substitute bacon with Non-Dairy/Vegan option that still gives your green beans a mouth-watering taste.
I hope you enjoy making this sweet and Southern green beans recipe as much as I enjoyed writing it!
Substitutions and Variations
Now y’all, this here recipe is mighty fine just the way it is. But if you’re a creative sort, or maybe just looking to switch things up a bit, I got some ideas for you.
First off, let’s talk about the bacon. Now, I’m all for some good ole nitrate-free bacon bits in my green beans, but if that’s not your style or you’re lookin’ for a non-dairy or vegan option, fear not! You can easily swap out the bacon for some dairy-free or vegan-friendly alternatives like coconut bacon bits or tempeh bacon. Or, you can just leave it out altogether and enjoy some sweet southern green beans without any animal products.
If brown sugar ain’t your thing either, honey or maple syrup make great sweet substitutes. And for those of y’all who like a little kick in ya green beans, try adding some red pepper flakes to the skillet along with the butter.
Now as far as variations go, the possibilities are endless! Instead of canned green beans, try fresh green beans slow cooked in a skillet with some onion and garlic. Or mix it up with some sour green beans by adding some sliced red potatoes and chopped ham hock or pulled pork to the skillet.
And if you’re feelin’ real fancy, turn these southern green beans into a green bean casserole by mixing them with some creamy cheese sauce and topping with bread crumbs before baking. Or serve ’em up alongside some savory mashed potatoes for a truly unforgettable side dish.
So go ahead and get creative with this delicious southern-style green bean recipe, y’all!
Serving and Pairing
Now that you’ve prepared your mouth-watering Sweet and Southern Green Beans dish, it’s time to elevate the dining experience by pairing it with a complementary dish. There are various options available depending on your taste preferences and available ingredients.
The sweet and savory flavors of this Southern-style green beans recipe makes it a perfect match for dishes with a spicy or tangy profile. A zesty potato salad recipe is an excellent side dish option that will balance the sweetness of the green beans. Adding some garlic to your mashed potatoes can also complement the flavors in the Southern-style green beans.
Another great alternative is serving this delicious southern green beans with pulled pork or turkey tail for a heartier meal. Creamy macaroni and cheese, honey glazed ham, or cornbread are popular Southern sides that perfectly complement these scrumptious sweet and candied green beans.
For meatless meals, you can add the sweet Southern greens on top of a bed of rice for a vegan or vegetarian dish. You can also use them as a side dish for roasted vegetables, lentil soup, or mushroom risotto.
No matter how you serve your Sweet and Southern Green Beans, it is best paired with your preferred beverage such as iced tea, lemonade, or even red wine depending on how much you want to spice up the meal.
Get creative with these delicious southern-style green beans by using leftovers to create new dishes such as mixed bean casserole or roasted potatoes recipe sprinkled with bacon bits. Don’t be afraid to experiment; you might surprise yourself!
Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating
Well, now that you have made a pot of these delicious Southern-style green beans, you must be wondering how to store and reheat them. Fear not, I’ve got some tips to help keep your green beans tasting fresh and flavorsome.
If you have leftovers (and let’s face it, that’s unlikely), simply transfer them to an airtight container in a refrigerator. The key here is to ensure that the green beans are completely cooled down before storage. You can store them for up to three days in the refrigerator.
When it’s time to reheat, you can either place them in a microwave-safe container and heat up on high for 1-2 minutes, or transfer them back to a pan and slowly reheat over medium to low heat while adding a little bit of water or broth if they look dry.
Now, if you’re planning on making the green beans ahead of time for an event or gathering, then you can slow-cook them as usual and simply allow them to cool before transferring them into an airtight container. Then, store the container in the refrigerator until the day of the event. On the day of serving, reheat everything in a skillet over medium-high heat until heated through.
For those who prefer freezing food for later consumption, these green beans can be frozen too! However, make sure they are completely cooled down before freezing them in heavy-duty freezer bags or containers. When ready to eat, thaw them out overnight in the refrigerator and follow the reheating instructions mentioned above.
In conclusion, these sweet and Southern green beans will last up to three days in the refrigerator and can be reheated quickly by following our simple instructions. So what are you waiting for? These delectable candied beans will make the perfect side dish at any meal!
Tips for Perfect Results
Now that you know the basics of cooking Southern-Style Green Beans, let me share with you some tips to ensure they turn out perfectly every time.
First things first, always use fresh green beans instead of canned. Your beans will have a brighter color and better texture. Plus, we want to taste the Southern flavor in our green beans.
Another tip that seems obvious but is worth noting is to make sure you slow cook the green beans, saturating them in flavor. Nothing beats the sweet Southern taste of slow-cooked green beans!
When adding salt to your recipe, add it at the end after tasting your cooked green beans. You may find that they don’t need any additional salt due to the bacon and broth flavoring.
To add some extra kick to your green beans, try adding red pepper flakes or some hot sauce if you’re feeling adventurous in the kitchen.
Don’t overcook your bacon when making bacon bits for this recipe. You want them crispy but not burnt. If you’re looking for a non-dairy or vegan option, try substituting the bacon bits with coconut bacon or tempeh bacon.
Lastly, for those who are on a tight schedule or need to plan ahead, remember these sweet and Southern green beans can be made-ahead and reheated without losing their flavorful taste. Leftovers can be stored in an air-tight container in the fridge for up to three days.
Follow these tips and your guests will be begging for your Sweet and Southern Green Beans recipe every time they visit!
Now that I have given you all the details of this Southern-style Sweet and Southern Green Beans Recipe, it’s time for us to address some of the frequently asked questions to ensure that you have everything you need to prepare this dish perfectly. Here are some of the common queries about this recipe and my expert advice to solve any doubts or concerns you may have. Read on!
What can I add to green beans to make them taste better?
Incorporating garlic powder, onion powder, thyme, salt and pepper into your green beans can elevate their flavor and provide a refreshing and savory taste.
How do I jazz up green beans?
In this recipe article, I will be sharing some amazing toppings that will take your Southern-style cuisine to the next level. From the crunch of toasted almonds and pine nuts to the tanginess of goat cheese and pomegranate seeds, these toppings will elevate your dishes to a whole new level of deliciousness. Whether you’re in the mood for something crunchy, cheesy or zesty, I’ve got you covered. So, let’s dive right in and explore these mouth-watering toppings.
What is the most flavorful green bean?
The ‘Kentucky Wonder Bush’ is a type of green bean known for its lengthy 9-inch pods, which are considered to be some of the most flavorful when harvested at an early stage.
So my friends, there you have it, my recipe for sweet and Southern green beans. As a chef specializing in Southern-style cuisine, I can attest that this is the perfect side dish to complement your next meal.
With its deliciously sweet and savory flavor profile, this recipe is sure to delight even the pickiest of eaters. And the best part? It’s easy to make with simple and accessible ingredients like fresh green beans, bacon bits, light brown sugar, butter, and more.
So go ahead and try out this Southern gem today! Whether you’re looking for a tasty addition to your Thanksgiving dinner or just want to switch up your weeknight meal rotation, I guarantee this recipe won’t disappoint. Don’t forget to share with your family and friends and let them enjoy the delicious taste of Southern-style cuisine.
Remember, cooking isn’t just about making food – it’s about creating memorable experiences that bring people together. Happy cooking!
Sweet and Southern Green Beans Recipe
- 2 (1 lb) cans allen's green beans, southern style
- 1/2 cup butter
- 1 cup light brown sugar
- 1 cup bacon bits
- Preheat oven to 350°F
- Drain cans of beans and spread in bottom of 13 x 9 inch casserole dish.
- In small saucepan, melt butter and brown sugar over medium low heat.
- Pour butter/sugar mixture over beans, top with bacon bits.
- Bake for 30 minutes at 350°F.
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