Monday, November 12, 2012

Healthier Green Bean Casserole

You know it's all about the fried onions. In the history of all Thanksgiving green bean casseroles, there has never been anyone to extol the virtues of cream of mushroom soup or wait all year for soggy green beans. So if we're really just looking for an excuse to eat fried onions, let's think about a better way to go about this, shall we?

Now this isn't weeknight healthy stuff, but it is a healthier alternative to the traditional version of the casserole. Fresh mushrooms, onions and balsamic vinegar give this great depth of flavor, without the usual heft. If anything, more room for pie and turkey, right?

And don't worry... there's still fried onions. It is Thanksgiving, after all.

Fresh green beans keep things crisp and flavorful.

After blanching in boiling water, straight to an ice bath to maintain the beans' bite and color.

After the onions have softened, in with the mushrooms until they've given up all of their liquid and that has evaporated.

A dusting of flour for a quick roux, laying the groundwork for a luscious sauce.

Mixed and ready for crisp onions and parmesan cheese. If you're working ahead of time, you can prepare the beans early in the day and then top with cheese and onions and bake just before serving.

Healthier Green Bean Casserole
1 lb green beans, ends removed
2 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 yellow onion, chopped
10 oz cremini mushrooms, sliced
3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons flour
1 cup chicken stock
1/2 cup fried onions
1/4 cup parmesan cheese

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Boil a large pot of water and add green beans; cooking for 5 minutes. Drain beans and immediately immerse in ice water. Allow beans to cool completely, remove from water and dry.

Heat olive oil over medium hight heat and add onions; cooking until soft and translucent. Add mushrooms and cook until they give up their liquid and that evaporates; about 10 minutes. Add balsamic vinegar  and S&P to pan and cook 1-2 minutes until mostly evaporated. Sprinkle flour over mushrooms, stirring constantly; cook for 1-2 minutes. Add chicken stock, scraping the bottom of the pan until all of the bits have released.

Toss beans with sauce and place the beans in a 9-inch square casserole dish. Top with fried onions and parmesan cheese. Bake for 15-20 minutes; serve hot.

*Recipe inspiration from Cooking Light


  1. Can you please tell me how many this serves?

  2. Well it depends on how much your guests love green bean casserole! I'd say six to eight is a safe bet, especially when there are so many other side dishes at the Thanksgiving table.


Let's chat! Add your comment here. Note, there may be a delay in posting for comment moderation.