Made with garlic, lemon, and butter, these sautéed green beans are a welcome addition to any meal! They are bright, colorful and ready in just 20 minutes.
Growing up, some variety of green beans was often on our table. Whether we ate them steamed, baked or sauteed, my mom always served them with butter, salt and pepper to keep them simple. We’re upping the ante on versatile green beans with today’s recipe for sautéed green beans with lemon for brightness and garlic for flavor.
These vibrant green beans come together quickly and easily in a pan on the stove. After lots of recipe testing, 7-10 minutes is the perfect cooking time – longer and the beans will be mushy! You’ll know they’re done when they just start to turn bright green and still have a bite or crunch.
What you need for Sauteed Green Beans
Just 7 simple ingredients are needed for this vegetarian side:
- Green beans
- Olive oil
- Salt + pepper
- lemon juice
Get the top 10 5 star recipes!
Join our email list for new recipes and BONUS: get the top 10 ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ recipe e-books!
Variations on refried beans
While you can’t go wrong with the classic lemon + garlic flavor, green beans are totally versatile. Jazz up sautéed green beans with any of these ingredient combinations:
Should you use fresh or frozen green beans?
When it comes to making refried beans, we ALWAYS recommend using them fresh green beans. Most frozen green beans actually come precooked or at least partially cooked and can end up super mushy.
Using fresh beans guarantees crisp, bright green beans.
What is the best way to cut green beans?
There are 2 simple ways to cut green beans. We like to use kitchen shears to trim the edges or you can use a sharp knife.
What kind of oil is best for sautéing beans?
Olive oil and avocado oil are our go-to oils when it comes to sautéing green beans. They are mild in flavor and have the perfect smoke point.
You can also try vegetable oil, sesame oil. or canola oil, too.
What can you add to green beans for flavor?
We like to add freshly chopped garlic and salt to the green beans for flavor, but feel free to mix in any pre-made spice mix or soy sauce for something different.
Can you sauté green beans without blanching them?
Yes, you can sauté green beans without scalding them! While blanching the beans helps them cook faster, it adds a second step that we don’t think is necessary.
Store leftover beans in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
To reheat: Heat the green beans in the microwave or in a pan on the stove.
We do not recommend freezing sautéed green beans as their texture can become grainy when frozen, thawed and reheated.
These bright and colorful sautéed green beans add freshness to any meal. They make a delicious addition to holiday menus and are simple enough to make on busy weeknights. Pair them with our Hamburger in a Pot side dish, Lemon Baked Chicken, Quinoa Pizza Casserole, or any hearty dinner recipe!
Photo: The photos taken in this post are by Ashley McGlaughlin of The Edible Perspective.