Instead of using canned ingredients, try this healthier skillet green bean casserole with fresh green beans and onions, a homemade cream of mushroom sauce, and a crunchy breadcrumb topping.
I'm going to be so cliché and say that I cannot even believe that Thanksgiving is next week. But then I'm going to take it a step further and say that it is like really, really freaking me out.
A few years ago, I read an article about how the older we get, the faster time goes. We kind of already knew that, right? But the really scary part? Allegedly, by the time you're seven, half of your "perceived life" is over. OVER.
And considering I'm much, much older than seven, I feel like I've basically got one foot in the grave over here. And I can't even imagine how quickly the seasons will go by in just a few years from now.
Or how much shorter my days will get. Will I wake up, get dressed, and then immediately have to go back to bed? Hellooo, don't the heavens above understand that the older I get, the more time I need? Stop taking it away from me!
All of that to say, I didn't get the chance to make a fraction of the Thanksgiving dishes I wanted to make this year. And at the rate time is moving, I may as well just get started on making Thanksgiving dishes for next year. That's really only a half joke.
However, I did have time to whip up the glorious-looking revamped green bean casserole I spotted in this year's Thanksgiving issue from Cooking Light. And if I could only make one new dish this year, I'm glad this was it.
❤️ Why you'll love this recipe
If you're a fan of green bean casserole, but like everything to be fresh, this is the recipe for you! It doesn't involve any canned onions or cream of mushroom soup in a can.
It's made with homemade cream of mushroom sauce (SO easy to make!), fresh onions, and a crunchy breadcrumb topping. Plus, fresh and crispy green beans (or haricot verts, which I like to use!).
I promise it's not that much more time-intensive than opening cans. And so, so worth it. I mean, when you're eating green bean casserole, don't you actually want to taste the green beans? And how fresh and delicious they are?
This dish is also healthier than the typical green bean casserole since it's made with all fresh ingredients.
This skillet green bean casserole is the perfect side dish for any time of year, but is especially delicious for Thanksgiving.
The ingredient list may feel a little bit long, but it's all pretty basic and you likely already have many of the ingredients in your kitchen.
- Haricots verts (or regular green beans)
- Whole-wheat bread
- Chopped parsley
- Olive oil
- Parmesan cheese
- Yellow onion
- All-purpose flour
- Chicken stock
- Dry sherry
- Ground nutmeg
👩🍳 How to make skillet green bean casserole
Making this green bean casserole has a few steps, but it's super easy!
To start, bring a large saucepan filled with water to a boil.
Add haricot verts or green beans and cook for about 3 minutes (they'll likely take a minute or two longer if you're not using haricot verts) or until crisp-tender.
Plunge beans into ice water to stop cooking and drain well.
Put bread in food processor and pulse until coarse crumbs form. Remove to a bowl and mix in parsley, olive oil, minced garlic, and grated parmesan cheese.
Pre-heat broiler to high and heat olive oil in a 10-inch cast-iron skillet over medium heat.
Add onion and mushrooms and sauté for about 8 minutes.
Stir in flour and cook for 1 minute. Stir stock, milk, and sherry into the skillet and bring to a simmer. Cook for about 3 minutes.
Remove skillet from heat and stir in remaining 4 Tbsp parmesan, salt, pepper, and nutmeg. Add beans to pan and toss to coat in mushroom/onion mixture.
Sprinkle skillet with breadcrumb mixture and place under broiler for 2 minutes.
Because the "casserole" is broiled in a skillet for just a couple minutes, the beens retain their beautiful color and crunch. A fact for which I am completely thankful.
Also, they don't need to be in the oven for long, so it's easy to broil these after your turkey is out and resting.
❓ Green beans are haricot verts?
Of course, I'm calling this a green bean casserole, but actually used haricot verts. You can use either and this side dish will be just as delicious!
If you're wondering what the difference is, haricot verts are French green beans. They're typically longer and skinnier than regular green beans and tend to be a bit more tender and flavorful.
You'll prepare this dish the same no matter which you use, but green beans will require a tiny bit more boiling than haricot verts since they're thicker (just a minute or two).
To be clear, I totally understand if you would prefer to serve the traditional green bean casserole at your Thanksgiving dinner. I am all about Thanksgiving traditions and it's pretty rare for us to introduce a new dish to our dinner table on the big day.
Instead, I use this time of year to discover new dishes that I can enjoy around the holidays and this skillet green bean casserole is a recipe I'd make for any dinner during the cold weather months.
And probably in the summer, too.
And because this recipe makes a fairly decent amount of green beans (especially if you're not serving it for a crowd and just have one other person in your household), you'll have leftovers for day.
While you may not think green bean casserole is a very appropriate breakfast food, I'm here to tell you it is. Especially when you put a poached egg (or sunny-side up) egg on top.
That's enough to make me want to cancel all my Thanksgiving plans and just make a skillet green bean casserole for myself to enjoy for a couple days.
OK, I wouldn't actually do that. Because what would I do without stuffing??
But I will most certainly be making this again before the season is over. And probably putting 6 poached eggs on top and eating it right out of the skillet.
Possibly while wearing my pajamas. And alternating it with bites of leftover stuffing. And really bad Christmas movies.
🍠 More Thanksgiving side dishes
If you're looking for more delicious holiday side dishes, I have a few favorites!
- The Best Thanksgiving Stuffing
- Mojito Cranberry Sauce
- Loaded Mashed Potatoes in Jars
- Caramelized Brussels Sprouts with Pancetta, Pomegranate, and Feta
- Ginger Coconut Whipped Sweet Potatoes
- Lime Ginger Pear Sauce
- Green Bean Almondine (from The Suburban Soapbox)
Time really needs to slow down so I can spend more of it enjoying dishes like this healthier green bean casserole. And stop being sad that I didn't discover this in the first seven years of my life. Boo.
Are you a Thanksgiving traditionalist or do you serve new dishes at your table each year?
And if you're cooking a turkey this year, check out my guide on How to Cook a Butterball Turkey!
Skillet Green Bean Casserole
- 1 lb. haricots verts (or regular green beans)
- 2 slices whole-wheat bread
- ¼ cup chopped parsley
- 3 Tbsp olive oil, divided
- ½ tsp minced garlic
- 1 ½ oz. (about 6 Tbsp) grated parmesan cheese, divided
- ½ cup chopped yellow onion
- 4 oz. white mushrooms, sliced
- 1 ½ Tbsp all-purpose flour
- ½ cup sodium-free or low-sodium chicken stock
- ½ cup 2% milk
- 2 Tbsp dry sherry
- ½ tsp salt
- ¼ tsp black pepper
- ⅛ tsp ground nutmeg
- Bring a large saucepan filled with water to a boil. Cook beans for about 3 minutes (a minute or two longer if not using haricot verts) or until crisp-tender. Plunge beans into ice water to stop cooking and drain well.
- Put bread in food processor and pulse until coarse crumbs form. Remove to a bowl and mix in parsley, 1 Tbsp olive oil, minced garlic, and 2 Tbsp grated parmesan cheese.
- Pre-heat broiler to high.
- Heat remaining 2 Tbsp olive oil in a 10-inch cast-iron skillet over medium heat. Add onion and mushrooms and sauté for about 8 minutes. Stir in flour and cook for 1 minute.
- Stir stock, milk, and sherry into the skillet and bring to a simmer. Cook for about 3 minutes.
- Remove skillet from heat and stir in remaining 4 Tbsp parmesan, salt, pepper, and nutmeg. Add beans to pan and toss to coat in mushroom/onion mixture.
- Sprinkle skillet with breadcrumb mixture and place under broiler for 2 minutes.
- Recipe adapted from Cooking Light
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