Green Bean Casserole with Bacon and Onion Straws

5 from 8 votes
11 Comments

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This Green Bean Casserole is the best ever! No cream-of soups or canned onions. Just fresh green beans in a creamy sauce with crispy bacon and onion straws.

Fresh green beans on a white platter topped with bacon bits and onion straws

Green Bean Casserole

Normally I am not a huge fan of green bean casserole… especially when it is made with canned beans, cream of mushroom soup, and those canned crispy onions. However, add onion straws and bacon and I am instantly a fan. If you MUST cut corners on this recipe and make substitutions, by all means, go for it. I understand Thanksgiving can be crazy making a million different things and green beans are probably the least of your worries. I won’t be offended if you substitute those fake, crispy onion things. It just won’t taste as quite as good.

Toppings for Green Bean Casserole

Feel free to make additions to this recipe. I would normally add sautéed mushrooms to the sauce but my husband hates mushrooms so I left them out of this recipe. This is a versatile dish and you can really make it to your liking. Also, if you are worried about presentation and want your dish to look like the picture above, just combine the beans and sauce, put them on an oven-safe ceramic platter, and then top with the bacon and onion straws.

If you aren’t too concerned about presentation, just do it all in a glass baking dish. I assure you that is what I will be doing on Thanksgiving! I made the gravy slightly thinner for the version depicted in the photo, and didn’t add cheese so you could really see the vibrant color of the green beans. Normally I wouldn’t do that but for pictures sake, I wanted it to look pretty.

More Classic Thanksgiving Sides

If you’re looking for a few more ways to dress up your dressing, or serve after the main meal, check out our Best Recipes for Thanksgiving Dinner here.

How to Make Green Bean Casserole

Fresh green beans on a white platter topped with bacon bits and onion straws

Green Bean Casserole with Bacon and Onion Straws

5 from 8 votes
This Green Bean Casserole is the best ever! No cream-of soups or canned onions. Just fresh green beans in a creamy sauce with crispy bacon and onion straws.
Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 30 mins
Total Time 50 mins
Course Side Dish
Cuisine American
Servings 8

Equipment

  • 9x13 inch pan

Ingredients

For the onion straws:

For the beans and sauce:

Instructions

For the onion straws:

  • Separate onions and place them in a large Ziploc bag. Pour buttermilk over the onions, squeeze the air out of the bag, and refrigerate for at least an hour.
  • In a pie pan or shallow dish, combine flour, salt, cayenne, paprika, and pepper.
  • Heat oil in a skillet or deep pan to 375-degrees. Using tongs, dredge the onion rings a few at a time and place in hot oil for 2-3 minutes or until onions become nice and golden brown. Remove from oil and place on paper towels. Set aside.

For the beans and sauce:

  • Bring a pot of salted water to a boil (as if you were boiling pasta). Add beans and boil for about 5-6 minutes or until beans become crisp tender (boiling time depends on how crisp or soft you like your beans.. check them before removing). Drain and place in ice water to prevent further cooking. Drain and set aside.
  • Heat a large skillet to medium-high heat and cook bacon completely. Remove from skillet and drain on paper towels. Set aside.
  • Reduce heat to medium-low and drain all but about 2 Tbsp. of the bacon grease from the skillet (or you can drain it all and just use 2 Tbsp of butter). Sprinkle flour over remaining bacon grease (or butter) and stir, forming a roux. Whisk in chicken broth and bring to a simmer. Whisk in half-and-half a little at a time until sauce thickens. You want it to be a gravy-like consistency. Add a little milk if needed to thin the sauce. Heat for about 5 minutes or until sauce barely starts to simmer. Add pepper, to taste.
  • Preheat oven to 350-degrees. In a casserole or oven-safe dish, combine beans, sauce, cheese (optional) and half of the bacon. Sprinkle onion straws and remaining bacon over the top and bake for about 20 minutes. Serve immediately.

Notes

Prep time does not include the one hour of marinating the onions in buttermilk.  Please allow extra time for this.

Nutrition Information

Calories: 508kcalCarbohydrates: 45gProtein: 21gFat: 27gSaturated Fat: 13gCholesterol: 67mgSodium: 765mgPotassium: 411mgFiber: 3gSugar: 6gVitamin A: 1116IUVitamin C: 10mgCalcium: 346mgIron: 1mg

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About the author

Erica Walker

Erica lives in Boise, Idaho with her husband, Jared, an attorney, and her beautiful three girls. Beyond the world of recipes, she loves adventuring with everything from kayaking, to cruising, to snowboarding and taking the family along for the thrill ride.

More about Erica Walker

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Comments

  1. 5 stars
    I was just thinking the other day that the only way to improve upon green bean casserole would be to add bacon. This is perfect! I can’t get enough! I’ll be making this again for Thanksgiving!

  2. 5 stars
    Yummy! This is my favorite Thanksgiving side dish. Can’t wait to make it this year. The bacon onion straws sound amazing.

  3. 5 stars
    Like you I’ve never loved canned green beans in this type of casserole. I do LOVE how you’ve made it with fresh beans. And those onion straws are delish!

  4. 5 stars
    This was an awesome side dish with dinner last night! Looking forward to serving this again with Thanksgiving dinner!

    1. Yes, you can prepare the sauce ahead of time. You canprepare the onion straws ahead and store them in an airtight container until ready to use. The fresh beans can be snipped and halved ahead of time as well. Hope this helps! Thank you for asking!