Sautéed Green Beans

5 from 2 votes

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Sautéed Green Beans are vibrant and flavorful veggies that make a delightful addition to any meal, and I’m here to guide you through the process of making them perfectly.

a pan for sautéed green beans with a spoon
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Sautéed green beans are the ideal side dish to accompany a variety of main courses. Their vibrant color and crisp-tender texture make them a versatile and visually appealing addition to your meal. Whether you’re grilling chicken, savoring a juicy steak, enjoying a seafood dish, or indulging in a vegetarian creation, sautéed green beans provide a fresh and flavorful balance.

Sautéed green beans make a great side dish, but you can also add them to stir-fries, pasta dishes like creamy chicken and bacon pasta, with pork tenderloins, and salads. With their adaptability and ability to complement a wide range of flavors, these green beans are sure to be a crowd-pleaser on your dinner table.

top view of a white plate of sautéed green beans with lemon zest and almonds

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

  • Quick and Easy: Sautéed green beans come together in a matter of minutes. Whether you’re a seasoned chef or a newbie in the kitchen, this recipe is a breeze to follow.
  • Flavorful: Sautéing green beans in a hot pan with a touch of oil creates a wonderful caramelization and brings out their natural sweetness. The result? Tender, crisp-tender beans bursting with flavor.
  • Texture: The combination of sautéing and a brief steam in the pan gives green beans a delightful texture—tender, yet with a slight bite. Say goodbye to mushy, overcooked veggies!

Recipe Ingredients

  • Fresh Green Beans: These crisp and fresh green beans, washed and trimmed, form the heart of this dish, offering a satisfying crunch and earthy sweetness.
  • Olive Oil or Butter: Your choice of olive oil or butter adds a rich and flavorful base to the sauté, allowing you to tailor the taste to your liking.
  • Garlic: Minced garlic infuses the dish with its aromatic and savory essence, enhancing the overall flavor.
  • Optional Sliced Almonds or Lemon Zest for Garnish: For an extra flair, consider garnishing your sautéed green beans with sliced almonds for crunch or lemon zest for a zesty, citrusy kick.

See the recipe card for full information on ingredients and quantities.

  • Balsamic Glaze: Drizzle a balsamic reduction over the green beans for a sweet and tangy kick.
  • Parmesan Cheese: Sprinkle freshly grated Parmesan cheese on top of your sautéed green beans for a cheesy twist.
  • Asian Inspired: Add soy sauce, sesame oil, and a dash of sesame seeds for an Asian flair.
  • Bacon Lovers: For an indulgent treat, sauté green beans with crispy bacon bits for a smoky, savory goodness.
  • Variety of Green Beans: You can use a different variety of green beans, such as haricots verts (thin French green beans) or wax beans, for sautéing. Adjust the cooking time if the beans are thinner or thicker than regular green beans.

How to Make Sautéed Green Beans

a pan with oil and garlic

Step #1. Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat and add olive oil.

a pan for sautéed green beans with a spoon

Step #2. Add trimmed green beans to the skillet and sauté for 5-7 minutes until tender-crisp. Adjust cooking time for desired tenderness.

a plate of sautéed green beans

Step #3. Season the sautéed green beans with salt and pepper to taste.

a white plate of sautéed green beans with almonds on top

Step #4. Garnish with sliced almonds or lemon zest for extra flavor and texture.

Recipe FAQs

Can I use other types of oil?

You can use vegetable oil, or even sesame oil for sautéing green beans. Choose an oil with a high smoke point to prevent it from burning.

What seasonings can I use for sautéed green beans?

Season sautéed green beans garlic powder, onion powder, or even a splash of soy sauce or lemon juice for added flavor.

Can I add other vegetables to sautéed green beans?

Yes, you can add other vegetables like sliced bell peppers, onions, or sliced carrots to your sautéed green beans for variety and flavor.

How do I prevent green beans from becoming overcooked?

To prevent overcooking, keep a close eye on the green beans while sautéing. They should be tender yet still have a slight crispness. Test their doneness by tasting a bean.

a white plate of sautéed green beans

Expert Tips

  • Trim the tough ends of the green beans before sautéing. Simply snap or cut off the ends to ensure that they cook evenly.
  • Use a hot pan and high heat. This ensures quick cooking and caramelization, which imparts a delicious flavor to the beans.
  • Overcrowding the pan will result in steaming rather than sautéing. Cook the beans in batches if needed to maintain even cooking.
  • If your sautéed green beans become too salty, you can balance the flavor by adding a squeeze of lemon juice or a drizzle of olive oil.
a pan for sautéed green beans and lemon zest

Can I Use Frozen Green Beans for Sautéing?

Yes, you can use frozen green beans, but it’s a good idea to thaw and drain them first. Frozen green beans might release more moisture, so adjust the cooking time as needed.

Can I Prepare Sautéed Green Beans in Advance?

While fresh sautéed green beans are best enjoyed right after cooking, you can prepare them in advance and store them in an airtight container in the refrigerator for a day or two. Reheat briefly in a pan before serving.

How To Store Sautéed Green Beans

Store leftover sautéed green beans in an airtight container in the refrigerator. They should be consumed within a day or two for the best quality.

More Side Dishes To Consider

a pan for sautéed green beans
5 from 2 votes

Sautéed Green Beans

Sautéed green beans are a delicious side dish, featuring crisp-tender beans infused with savory garlic, and optionally garnished with sliced almonds or zesty lemon zest.
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 10 minutes
Total: 20 minutes
Servings: 4


  • 1 pound fresh green beans, washed and trimmed
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil or butter
  • 2-3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Optional: sliced almonds or lemon zest for garnish
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  • Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat.
  • Add olive oil to the skillet and let it heat up.
  • Add the trimmed green beans to the skillet and sauté for about 5-7 minutes, stirring occasionally, until they become tender-crisp. Adjust the cooking time based on your desired level of tenderness.
  • Add the minced garlic to the skillet and sauté for an additional 1-2 minutes until the garlic becomes fragrant. Be careful not to let the garlic burn.
  • Season the sautéed green beans with salt and pepper to taste.
  • If desired, garnish with sliced almonds or a sprinkle of lemon zest for added flavor and texture.


  • Green Beans: Choose firm, vibrant green beans with no blemishes or brown spots. They should snap when bent. Store them in the refrigerator in a produce bag for up to one week.
  • Heat Level: Cooking on medium-high heat helps in achieving a nice sear on the green beans without burning them.
  • Garlic Timing: Adding garlic towards the end of the cooking process ensures it imparts flavor without getting burnt, which can introduce bitterness.
  • Tenderness: The goal is to get green beans that are tender yet still have a bit of crunch. Adjust cooking time according to personal preference.


Serving: 1 of 4 servings, Calories: 97kcal, Carbohydrates: 8g, Protein: 2g, Fat: 7g, Saturated Fat: 1g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 5g, Sodium: 7mg, Potassium: 239mg, Fiber: 3g, Sugar: 4g, Vitamin A: 782IU, Vitamin C: 14mg, Calcium: 42mg, Iron: 1mg
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