Green Bean Casserole Recipe with Fresh Green Beans

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This homemade green bean casserole recipe with fresh green beans includes tender fresh green beans smothered in a homemade creamy mushroom sauce, topped with a delightful crunch of French fried onions. It’s the perfect side dish to elevate any holiday meal and a true crowd-pleaser for any occasion!

Serve with Roast Chicken and Homemade Cornbread.

fresh green bean casserole in a baking dish with serving spoon in it. Close up of green beans.
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Best Green Bean Casserole Recipe

This classic green bean casserole is made from scratch (minus the crispy fried onions)! You won’t find canned cream of mushroom soup or mushy green beans in this recipe. The homemade mushroom sauce tastes so much better, and it’s healthier. In my humble opinion- it’s the best and most delicious green bean casserole recipe!

This fresh green beans casserole is packed with tender green beans, a cream sauce, and onion topping that is baked until golden brown and ready to be the star side of your Thanksgiving table. You can enjoy it all holiday season.

You will also love the Roasted Green Beans Recipe with Garlic and Lemon, Italian Flat Green Beans, Beans and Greens, and Sautéed Frozen Green Beans Recipe (Easy).

green bean casserole on a plate with a fork taking a bite.

Simple Ingredients

Fresh green bean casserole is a wonderful side dish for the holiday season.

ingredient shot.
  • Fresh Green Beans: The star of the show! Fresh green beans are vibrant and crisp, providing a burst of garden-fresh flavor to your casserole. They bring a satisfying crunch and a burst of green color to the dish.
  • Unsalted Butter: This luxurious ingredient adds a rich, creamy element to the casserole. It’s used to sauté onions, garlic, and mushrooms, infusing the dish with a delightful buttery aroma.
  • Onion: Finely chopped onions are a foundational element, contributing a sweet and savory note to the casserole. They melt into the creamy sauce, adding depth and a subtle hint of sweetness.
  • Garlic: Minced garlic elevates the flavor profile with its aromatic, slightly pungent quality. It complements the earthiness of the mushrooms and provides a hint of warmth.
  • White Mushrooms: Sliced white mushrooms bring the dish an umami-rich, earthy flavor. They release their moisture as they cook, enhancing the sauce’s creaminess.
  • Half and Half (or Half Milk and Half Heavy Cream): This creamy elixir adds a luxurious texture and subtle dairy richness to the sauce. It’s the secret behind the velvety smoothness that blankets the green beans.
  • Salt and Black Pepper: These seasonings are the flavor enhancers. They’re your trusted companions in the kitchen, ensuring that every bite is perfectly seasoned to your liking.
  • All-Purpose Flour: The unsung hero that thickens the sauce to the ideal consistency. It creates a silky texture that envelops the green beans.
  • Chicken Broth or Vegetable Broth: The savory liquid gold that infuses depth of flavor into the sauce. Chicken broth adds a hearty note, while vegetable broth keeps it vegetarian-friendly.
  • Panko Bread Crumbs: These light, airy bread crumbs bring a crispy and delicate crunch to the casserole. They’re the textural contrast that makes each bite irresistible.
  • French Fried Onions: These crispy, golden delights are the crowning glory of your casserole. They add a savory, slightly sweet onion flavor and a satisfying crunch, making the dish visually appealing and unforgettable.

See the recipe card for quantities.

How to Make Green Bean Casserole From Scratch

How to make Best Fresh Green Bean Casserole Recipe: browning the onions in a skillet.

Preheat the Oven:
Preheat your oven to 400°F (204°C).
Prepare the Mushroom Sauce: In a large skillet, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the chopped onions and cook for about 3-4 minutes until they start to become translucent.
Adjust salt and pepper to taste.

How to make Best Fresh Green Bean Casserole Recipe: adding the mushrooms to the onions and cooking.

Add the minced garlic and sliced mushrooms to the skillet. Cook for another 5-7 minutes until the mushrooms have released their moisture and are slightly browned. Season the mushroom mixture with salt and black pepper to taste.

How to make Best Fresh Green Bean Casserole Recipe: cooked mushrooms and onions.

Make the Creamy Sauce: Sprinkle the 3 tablespoons of flour over the mushroom mixture. Stir well to combine and cook for 2-3 minutes. Slowly pour in the half and half (or milk and cream mixture) while whisking constantly to prevent lumps. Cooking and stirring until the sauce thickens, about 5-7 minutes. Stir in the chicken or vegetable broth and simmer, stir a few times for another 5 minutes until the sauce is smooth and creamy.

How to make Best Fresh Green Bean Casserole Recipe: cooking green beans and placing them a water bath.

Blanch the Green Beans: Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the fresh green beans and blanch for 2-3 minutes until they are bright green and slightly tender. Drain and immediately plunge them into a bowl of ice water to stop the cooking process. Drain again and set aside.

How to make Best Fresh Green Bean Casserole Recipe: adding the green beans in the cream sauce.

Combine the Sauce and Green Beans: Add the blanched green beans to the skillet with the mushroom sauce.

How to make Best Fresh Green Bean Casserole Recipe: mixing the beans and the creamy sauce.

Gently stir to coat the green beans evenly with the sauce.

How to make Best Fresh Green Bean Casserole Recipe: adding the beans and the sauce to the baking pan.

Assemble and Bake: Transfer the green bean and mushroom mixture to a greased 9×13-inch baking dish. Sprinkle the panko and fried onion topping evenly over the green beans.

How to make Best Fresh Green Bean Casserole Recipe: topping the green beans with the onions and bread crumbs.

Bake: Place the casserole in the oven for 20 minutes, or until the topping is golden brown and the casserole is bubbling.

Serve: Remove from the oven and let it cool slightly before serving. Enjoy your homemade green bean casserole!

green bean casserole in a baking dish ready to serve.

Variations

Here are three variations of green bean casserole recipes:

1. Vegan Green Bean Casserole:

  • Replace butter with vegan margarine or olive oil.
  • Use almond milk or another non-dairy milk instead of half and half.
  • Swap chicken broth for vegetable broth.
  • For the topping, use vegan-friendly panko bread crumbs and crispy fried onions or make your own by frying thinly sliced onions in a mixture of flour and plant-based milk.

2. Bacon and Cheddar Green Bean Casserole:

  • Add cooked and crumbled bacon to the mushroom sauce for a smoky flavor.
  • Mix in shredded cheddar cheese into the mushroom sauce for a cheesy twist.
  • Top the casserole with extra cheddar cheese and crumbled bacon along with the panko and fried onions before baking.

3. Mediterranean-Inspired Green Bean Casserole:

  • Infuse Mediterranean flavors by adding sun-dried tomatoes, kalamata olives, and crumbled feta cheese to the mushroom sauce.
  • Season the dish with oregano, thyme, and a pinch of crushed red pepper flakes for some extra zest.
  • Instead of the traditional topping, mix crumbled feta cheese and breadcrumbs with olive oil and sprinkle it over the casserole before baking for a Mediterranean twist.
fresh green bean casserole in a baking dish with serving spoon in it. Close up of green beans.

How to Store and Reheat

Storing Green Bean Casserole:

  1. Allow the casserole to cool to room temperature.
  2. Cover the casserole dish tightly with plastic wrap or aluminum foil, or transfer leftovers to an airtight container.
  3. Refrigerate within 2 hours of cooking.
  4. Store in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days.

Reheating Green Bean Casserole:

  1. Preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C).
  2. If reheating the whole casserole, remove the plastic wrap or foil.
  3. If reheating individual servings, use an ovenproof dish.
  4. Bake the casserole, covered, for about 20-30 minutes or until heated through. You can uncover it for the last 10 minutes to crisp up the topping.
  5. If you prefer to reheat in the microwave, place individual servings on a microwave-safe plate, cover with a microwave-safe lid or microwave-safe plastic wrap with a small vent, and heat in 30-second intervals until hot.

Note: For the best texture and taste, reheating in the oven is recommended as it helps maintain the crispiness of the topping.

close up of best fresh green bean casserole on a plate with crispy onion on top.

How to Make Ahead of Time

You can make green bean casserole ahead of time to save time on the day you plan to serve it. Here’s how:

1. Prepare and Assemble the Casserole:

  • Follow the recipe instructions until you assemble the casserole in a baking dish, but do not bake it.

2. Cover and Refrigerate:

  • Once the casserole is assembled, cover it tightly with plastic wrap or aluminum foil to prevent air from getting in and refrigerate it. You can store it in the refrigerator for up to 24 hours before baking.

3. Bake When Ready:

  • When you’re ready to serve, preheat your oven to the specified temperature in the recipe (usually around 375°F or 190°C).
  • Remove the plastic wrap or foil from the casserole dish.
  • You may want to let the casserole sit at room temperature for about 20-30 minutes to take off the chill from the refrigerator.
  • Bake the casserole in the preheated oven according to the recipe instructions. You may need to add a few extra minutes to the baking time since it’s starting from a cold temperature. Keep an eye on it and bake until it’s hot and bubbly, and the topping is golden brown.

4. Serve:

  • Once the casserole is heated through and the topping is crispy and brown, remove it from the oven, and let it cool slightly before serving.

Making the green bean casserole ahead of time allows you to enjoy the convenience of preparing it in advance while still serving a freshly baked and delicious side dish for your meal.

If you love casserole recipes, you will also enjoy this Chicken Pot Pie Casserole with Biscuits!

green bean casserole on a plate with a fork taking a bite.

Top Tips

Here are some top tips to help you make a delicious green bean casserole:

  • Choose Fresh Green Beans: Opt for fresh green beans whenever possible as they have a better texture and flavor than canned or frozen ones.
  • Trim and Blanch Green Beans: To ensure your green beans are tender and vibrant, trim the ends and blanch them briefly in boiling water before adding them to the casserole. Plunge them into ice water immediately to stop the cooking process and retain their color.
  • Homemade Mushroom Sauce: Making the mushroom sauce from scratch with fresh mushrooms, onions, and garlic adds a depth of flavor that sets your casserole apart from canned soup-based versions.
  • Season Well: Don’t skimp on seasoning. Taste and adjust the salt and pepper levels in both the mushroom sauce and the overall casserole to your preference.
  • Experiment with Toppings: While the classic topping includes panko bread crumbs and French fried onions, you can get creative with other options like crushed Ritz crackers, bacon bits, or even grated Parmesan cheese.
  • Make-Ahead Convenience: You can assemble the casserole ahead of time and refrigerate it. Just be sure to let it come to room temperature before baking to ensure even cooking.
  • Even Distribution: When combining the mushroom sauce with the green beans, make sure to coat the beans evenly for a consistent taste in every bite.
  • Watch the Oven: Keep an eye on your casserole as it bakes to prevent over-browning of the topping. You may need to cover it with foil if it’s getting too dark.
  • Let It Rest: Allow the casserole to cool for a few minutes after removing it from the oven. This helps the sauce thicken and makes it easier to serve.
  • Garnish and Serve: Before serving, consider garnishing with fresh herbs like chopped parsley or thyme to add a pop of color and freshness to your casserole.
green bean casserole on a plate with a fork taking a bite.

FAQs

Can I use frozen green beans instead of fresh ones?

Yes, you can use frozen green beans as a substitute for fresh ones in this recipe. Just be sure to thaw and drain them before using.

How long should I bake the casserole if I’m making it ahead of time and it’s coming straight from the refrigerator?

If baking the casserole directly from the refrigerator, you may need to add 5-10 minutes to the baking time to ensure it’s heated through and the topping is crispy and golden brown.

What can I substitute for French fried onions?

You can use crispy fried shallots, crushed potato chips, or even homemade crispy onions as a substitute for French fried onions.

Is it better to use frozen green beans or canned green beans for green bean casserole?

Fresh or frozen green beans are generally preferred over canned green beans for a better texture and flavor in green bean casserole. Canned green beans yield to a mushy casserole.

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Best Fresh Green Bean Casserole Recipe

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5 from 2 reviews

This homemade green bean casserole recipe with fresh green beans includes tender fresh green beans smothered in a homemade creamy mushroom sauce, topped with a delightful crunch of French fried onions. It’s the perfect side dish to elevate any holiday meal and a true crowd-pleaser for any occasion!

  • Total Time: 40 minutes
  • Yield: 810 servings 1x

Ingredients

Units Scale

For the Casserole:

  • 1 1/2 pounds fresh green beans, ends trimmed and cut in half
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 8 ounces white mushrooms, sliced
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup half and half (or use a combination of half milk and half heavy cream)
  • 1 cup chicken broth or vegetable broth
  • Salt and black pepper to taste

For the Topping:

  • 3/4 cup panko bread crumbs
  • 1 cup French fried onions

Instructions

  1. Blanch the Green Beans: Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the fresh green beans and blanch for 2-3 minutes until they are bright green and slightly tender. Drain and immediately plunge them into a bowl of ice water to stop the cooking process. Drain again and set aside.
    Preheat the Oven:
  2. Preheat your oven to 400°F (204°C).
  3. Prepare the Mushroom Sauce: In a large skillet, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the chopped onions and cook for about 3-4 minutes until they start to become translucent. Add the minced garlic and sliced mushrooms to the skillet. Cook for another 5-7 minutes until the mushrooms have released their moisture and are slightly browned. Season the mushroom mixture with salt and black pepper to taste.
  4. Make the Creamy Sauce: Sprinkle the 3 tablespoons of flour over the mushroom mixture. Stir well to combine and cook for 2-3 minutes. Slowly pour in the half and half (or milk and cream mixture) while whisking constantly to prevent lumps. Cooking and stirring until the sauce thickens, about 5-7 minutes. Stir in the chicken or vegetable broth and simmer, stir a few times, for another 5 minutes until the sauce is smooth and creamy. Adjust salt and pepper to taste.
  5. Combine the Sauce and Green Beans: Add the blanched green beans to the skillet with the mushroom sauce. Gently stir to coat the green beans evenly with the sauce.
  6. Assemble and Bake: Transfer the green bean and mushroom mixture to a greased 9×13-inch baking dish. Sprinkle the panko and fried onion topping evenly over the green beans.
  7. Bake: Place the casserole in the oven for 20 minutes, or until the topping is golden brown and the casserole is bubbling.
  8. Serve: Remove from the oven and let it cool slightly before serving. Enjoy your homemade green bean casserole!

This green bean casserole will totally be a hit at your next gathering or holiday meal!

Notes

* See Make Ahead and Storage & Reheat Instructions in the Blog Post above. 

  • Mushrooms: Feel free to leave out the mushrooms or replace with thinly sliced bell pepper.
  • Author: Elena
  • Prep Time: 15 min
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Category: Savory
  • Method: American
  • Cuisine: American

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About Elena

My dream is to share delicious wholesome recipes that you will share around the table with all your loved ones. The memories surrounded by food are the heart and soul of CucinaByElena.

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3 Comments

  1. Yum! This was easy, very flavorful and so much better than the casserole with condensed soup. It’s so good I do t want to wait until next Thanksgiving to make it again!