This green bean casserole recipe is made with fresh green beans, an easy and creamy sauce made from onions and mushrooms, and topped with classic crunchy fried onions! Great for Thanksgiving, Christmas, or any holiday celebration.
The holidays are finally here, and this Fresh Green Bean Casserole recipe is a must-have on your dinner table!
Made with fresh green beans and an easy mushroom and onion gravy sauce, this casserole is made completely from scratch except for the fried onions.
It takes all the flavors you know and love from the comfort classic version made with canned green beans and cream of mushroom soup, and make it even better by using fresh ingredients that you know and love.
Green Bean Casserole Ingredients
- Fresh Green Beans: Fresh green beans are the key! They’re quickly blanched and cooled down in an ice bath to ensure that they stay crisp and bright green.
- Butter: A little butter is used to saute the onions and mushrooms.
- Onions: White or yellow onions both work.
- Mushrooms: White or baby bella mushrooms both work. I prefer baby bella because it has a stronger flavor. If you’re not a huge mushroom fan, go with white mushrooms for a milder flavor.
- Seasonings: Salt, pepper, garlic, and a little nutmeg all add to the irresistible savory and creamy flavors in this green bean casserole.
- Flour: Used to help the sauce thicken slightly.
- Chicken broth: Adds some liquid needed to make the sauce. You could use beef or vegetable broth as well. Water will work in a pinch.
- Half and half: This adds the creamy element to the gravy that we all know and love. I don’t recommend using only milk or only heavy cream. Half and half is the perfect consistency that makes it thick and creamy without being overly rich.
- Fried onions: I used store-bought fried onions to save time. No need to make those at home!
How to Make Green Bean Casserole
First, blanch some green beans in boiling water until bright green, about 4-6 minutes depending on how crisp you want them. Then transfer them to an ice bath to cool and set aside.
Next, cook the onions in a large skillet with butter for 5 minutes over medium heat until soft and translucent. Add the mushrooms, salt, and pepper, and cook for 5 more minutes until tender.
Add in the garlic and nutmeg and cook for 30 seconds, until fragrant.
Next, add in the flour and cook for 1 minute, stirring everything constantly to help it distribute evenly in the vegetables. This will be the base that thickens the sauce.
Then, add the broth and cook for 2 minutes, making sure to scrape up any of the brown bits on the bottom of the pan. This is where all the flavor is!
Reduce the heat to low and add in the half and half. Stir everything together and bring to a simmer. Simmer for 10 minutes, stirring frequently, until the sauce has thickened enough to generously coat the back of a spoon.
You want a thick and creamy sauce!
Next, drain the water from the green beans and add them to the skillet with the sauce. Toss everything together.
Last but certainly not least, top everything with the the fried onions. Bake for 15 minutes at 400°F.
Remove from the oven and serve!
Just look at how creamy and amazing that looks. I know you and your family are going to love it!
Tips and Tricks
- To make this in a casserole dish instead of an oven-safe skillet, make the green beans and sauce as directed. Then transfer both to a 9×9-inch baking dish (or a dish similar in size), top with fried onions, and bake as directed.
- Make-ahead instructions: Assemble the casserole all the way through tossing the green beans with the gravy sauce. Then cover with aluminum foil and refrigerate up to 24 hours. Right before baking, top the casserole with fried onions and bake per instructions.
- Want to make this for a large gathering? You can easily double this recipe! Just double all of the ingredients, and use 2 cups of fried onions. Make the green beans and sauce as directed, then transfer both to a 9×13-inch baking dish. Top with fried onions and bake as directed for 20 minutes, or until sauce is bubbly.
Substitutions and Variations
While all of the ingredients in this recipe are fairly easy to find, here are some ingredient variations that could also work:
- Don’t like mushrooms? You can completely leave them out if you prefer, or you could add in an extra 1/2 onion instead.
- Instead of fried onions, you can top the casserole with 1 cup of panko breadcrumbs that have been mixed with 2 tablespoons melted butter to get a crispy topping.
- Don’t have chicken broth? You can use beef or vegetable broth instead. Water will also work in a pinch.
More Thanksgiving Recipes
- Brussel Sprout Salad
- Honey Balsamic Brussel Sprouts
- How to Make Turkey Gravy from Drippings
- Easy Cranberry Sauce
- Herb Roast Turkey Recipe