Healthy Green Bean Casserole

This healthy green bean casserole is a delicious lightened up version of the classic green bean casserole! Everyone in my family loves this light and tasty green bean casserole for Thanksgiving. No cans or cream of sketchiness! 

A delicious lightened up version of the classic green bean casserole! Everyone in my family loves this healthy green bean casserole for Thanksgiving. No cans or cream of sketchiness! 
Just say NO to mushy veggies!

I grew up eating green beans cold and straight from a can.  Odd?  Absolutely!  But that’s how my mom gave them to me and, unless there were mashed potatoes present, that’s what I devoured first!  Sometime after college I branched out and tried steamed green beans… then a fantabulous boss of mine introduced me to green beans and feta… and finally, I sucked it up and tried the super popular green bean casserole.  Oh. My. Gosh.

Let’s rewind a second.  Have you seen those Campbell’s commercials for their green bean casserole?  It plays on loop every holiday season, but in case you missed it, [click here] for the video.  This commercial is the reason I refused to try green bean casserole for yeeeears.  I think it was the visual of the goopy cream of mushroom soup… It turned me off to GBC entirely.  Until I watched Paul’s family make it from scratch last Thanksgiving.  To let you in on how my mind works, my thought process went a little like this:

Ewwww Green Bean Casserole!!! Oh!  No soup?  Cool! Well that seems harmless enough… those green beans look so… GREEN! I suppose I should try just a bite.  To be polite… OMG THIS IS SO FREAKING GOOD!

I went back for seconds.  Thirds even.

Light + Healthy Green Bean Casserole

A delicious lightened up version of the classic green bean casserole! Everyone in my family loves this healthy green bean casserole for Thanksgiving. No cans or cream of sketchiness! 
5 from 2 votes
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Healthy Green Bean Casserole

This healthy green bean casserole is a delicious lightened up version of the classic green bean casserole! Everyone in my family loves this light and tasty green bean casserole for Thanksgiving. No cans or cream of sketchiness! 

Course Side Dish
Cuisine American
Keyword Healthy Green Bean Casserole
Servings 6 servings
Author Jenn Laughlin - Peas and Crayons

Ingredients

  • 1 pound fresh green beans (rinsed and trimmed)
  • 8-12 ounces button mushrooms (trimmed and sliced)
  • 4-6 ounces french fried onions (homemade or store bought)
  • 2 TBSP butter or Earth Balance for vegan
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 2 TBSP all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup mushroom broth or veggie broth
  • 1 cup almond milk
  • a sprinkle of garlic powder if you have it!
  • salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 400 F.
  2. Blanch green beans by bringing a pot or skillet of water to boil, adding green beans, then removing after 3-5 minutes. You'll want them bright green and slightly tender. While the green beans are cooking, add ice and water to a large bowl and set aside. This will serve as your "ice bath" to shock the green beans and prevent them from continuing to cook. No mushy green beans here! Once the beans have finished boiling, drain them in a colander, pop em in the ice bath, and then drain again.
  3. Set aside.
  4. Next melt your butter in a skillet on medium-high heat.
  5. Add the mushrooms, along with a sprinkle of garlic powder, salt, and pepper.
  6. Saute, stirring occasionally, until the mushrooms begin to give up some of their liquid.
  7. Next add the minced garlic and 1/4 tsp nutmeg and continue to cook for another 1 to 2 minutes.
  8. Add your flour and stir to combine.
  9. Cook for 1 minute and add the broth.
  10. Simmer for about a minute, then decrease the heat to medium-low.
  11. Add your almond milk and cook until the mixture thickens, stirring occasionally, for approximately 6 to 8 minutes.
  12. Remove from the heat and stir in 1/4 of the onions and all of the green beans.
  13. Top with the remaining onions.
  14. Place into the oven and bake until bubbly for approximately 15 minutes.

special diets and swaps

Vegansaurus Chefs use earth balance and you’re good to go! 
Spicysaurus Chefs try a sprinkle of cayenne + a pinch of red pepper flakes
T-Rex Chefs feel free to use any broth you have on hand and even half and half or milk for the dairy option… but I promise you wont miss either if you try this version =)
vegan green bean casserole
trimmed green beans
green beans and asparagus
Sometimes I sneak a little asparagus into the mix too!
mushroom and green beans
Light + Healthy Green Bean Casserole

So . . . how was it?!

So yummy! In theory this recipe serves 4, but in reality I only ever get 2-3 servings out of it. Either one for me and one for Paul…. or 3 small servings for just moi over the course of 2 days. At least that’s standard operating procedure around here!

It’s good. REALLY good! Like last year, I plan on making this all fall/winter long and probably won’t tire of it until I go salad crazy in the spring.

So put down the pumpkin, and make this healthy green bean casserole, stat. You’ll be happy you did!

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Comments

  • Duchess Mejala

    I love this recipe! I made it for christmas dinner and it turned sooo amazing! I added a little bit of dried cranberries for added sweetness but you really don’t need it. It was really good and I will definitely make it again for the next occasion.

  • Tiz

    Wow this looks and sounds super awesome! Can’t wait for my green beans to sprout so I can make this!

  • I have a question for you… what do you think about using frozen green beans? I have to travel and was thinking of whipping up this delicious looking sauce at home, then combining it with thawed green beans and baking when I get there (long drive). Costco has some pretty darn good frozen beans, thought it might save some time. What do you think? Looks yummy, can’t wait for Thanksgiving dinner already!

    • Have you had them thawed out before? I know the microwave packets at the grocery store lead to mushy beans — but thawing good quality frozen ones might be great!!! If you’ve tried them and like them I’d vote 100% yes! The blanching is really quick and easy but I’m absolutely curious to try them with frozen now — let me know how it goes! <3 Happy early Thanksgiving! <3

    • They turned out excellent! Waaaaaaaaaaay better than canned green beans. Not mushy. Probably the best green bean casserole I’ve ever had, though I did use onion instead of the mushroom. Thank you for the recipe!

  • yayyyy thanks girl! *happy dance!*

  • Ellie

    This looks amazing!!!! I wish I had found your blog before the holiday! Will definitely make this next year when I veganize my Thanksgiving meal! And for a “few” meals in between too! I love green beans!!

  • Missymaki

    yes, yes, YES!  This is what I am going to serve for a veggie side.  EXACTLY the way you have it here.  Delicious!

  • Yummy, Yummy, Yummy!!!!!!

  • Kim

    Mmm, this looks scrumptious 🙂

  • goopy is NEVER a good thing! haha. ever! =) This is so delish I hope you try/love it!!

  • Now that’s a green bean casserole that I would enjoy eating! I’m totally with you in that it’s always grossed me out because of the commercials. It just didn’t look appetizing and I don’t like goopy veggies.

  • YUM! This looks perfect .. and the fact that you said it’s not mushy … I’m sold!

    Love the larger font size!

  • Its def an american-y dish but has always been so goopy and mushy that it was never appealing! This is totally yum and I hope you try it sometime! <3 super fall-friendly and really hearty yet light!

  • NICE! I’ll never forget how years ago I made this dish for T-day at a boyfriend’s family’s house, and I didn’t know you were supposed to cook the beans first. . . so it was totally raw greenbeans under the baked casserole!  But personally I prefer crunchy beans.  This is a good solution!
    I think the font size is great.

  • Ami @ parsnipsandpears

     *that it is… not this :s

  • I have NEVER tried green bean casserole!  Although… truth be told I think this it is more common/popular in the US than here in Canada (I have actually never seen it as part of a holiday meal).  I HAVE seen the commercials though and always thought it had to have the soup also.  This looks so yummy!  I think I am going to try serving some up this holiday season!!!

  • Thanks doll! Hope you guys give this a try! I keep making it over and over! =)

  • Thanks Viviane!!!! Glad you’re with me on that one! <3 mwah!

  • Yayyy! Let me know if you guys make it! <3

  • My kind of 4 year old!!! What a brave eater! =)

  • You won’t be disappointed! <3 I had gone so long without trying it that now I’m making up for lost time by making it allll the flipping time! =) happy sunday loveyy!

  • Thanks!!! The slow burn is the best way to describe it! I always try to sneak in some pepper flakes and cayenne where I can =) Addictive! <3

  • Thanks for the feedback schnookums! =)

  • ahhhh totally make this! soooooooo good! <3

  • Alicia

    My husband just asked me the other day id I would make a green bean casserole for Thanksgiving, This one looks so delicious!!

  • Stephsnacks

    mmm this sounds like a great side dish for thanksgiving!

  • egcounce

    I have never been a fan of GBC either.  I’ve always seen the mushy kind at holiday dinners or BBQ restaurants.  Sad that I have never even thought about using fresh green beans–guess I’ll have to try this–it looks good!

  • Robyn :)

    I was hoping for a non mushy GBC recipe for Thanksgiving!!  Thanks!

  • I love your font size! Makes it so readable. And I have never liked green beans but may be tempted to try this casserole…it really looks great!

  • I tried this recipe today and I loved it! The red pepper flakes were genius!

  • Like the font!  LOVE the recipe – perfect for me to bring to Thanksgiving dinner – doesn’t LOOK healthy, but it is.

  • Elizabeth Brunetti

    This looks really great!  I love the addition of red pepper flakes – I like to use those to add a slow-burning kick to homey recipes like this!  Great pics, too!

  • I STILL haven’t tried green bean casserole! It’s one of those classic Thanksgiving dishes that was never classic in my house. I guess that’s a good thing?! The goopy mess in the pictures gives me the heeby jeebies too. ;-p

    Your version, on the other hand, looks amazing! Yum yum yum. I think I’m going to add this to the turkey day repertoire this year! And I love the idea of kicking up the heat with cayenne.

  • I think green bean casserole is the most disgusting Thanksgiving dish mainly because of the cream of mushroom soup.  I would love to actually try it though with this recipe.  My husband would love me that much more because he adores the stuff.

  • Amy-Nutrition by Nature

    Love this! Green bean casserol is one of my favorite thanksgiving dishes! Always has been. I like the new bigger font size. 🙂

  • I made green bean casserole for the first time last year (and it was the first time I’d ever tried it) and loved it!  I think I’m going to try your recipe this year!

  • I can’t do green bean casserole, the mushrooms ruin it for me. *shudder*

  • now this looks like a green bean casserole i would actually eat!!! thanks!!

  • Mmm that looks delicious, anything with mushrooms and fried onions sounds brilliant to me! 
    And I do love asparagus 🙂
    I would definitely go for the spicysaurus version and add some red chili flakes!Beautiful photos 🙂

  • That’s what I’m talkin’ about!!!  Looks so much tastier than the “classic” version!!  🙂

  • It looks really yummy! I’ll pin this one for my vegetarian days 🙂

    xoxo, Ana

  • You had me at fried onions!! 🙂 Looks delish! And I like the font both ways but I think I’m gona have to go with bigger is better! 

  • My 4 year old would go crazy for this as he is a mushroom-aholic.  This looks great and thanks for a healthier alternative to the “cream of” laden traditional recipe.

  • Stephanie @ Eat. Drink. Love.

    This looks like one tasty green bean casserole!! Much better than the canned stuff!

  • Hey schnookums! You can simply omit the mushroom, or add carmelized onions (mmm!) or even try some sauteed roasted red peppes in the mix! Anything you LOVE would probably taste fantastic here! xoxoxo

  • The mushrooms look so awesome in this! For some reason I’m having an intense craving for just those mushrooms swimming in that sauce! This looks great 🙂 

  • Lindsay @ The Lean Green Bean

    i LOVE green beans, but have never liked the casserole. however hubby loves it. def making this for him for thanksgiving

  • Anne

    Oh my!  I think I love you!  LOL  This will work perfect for us.

  • Jemma @ Celery and Cupcakes

    This looks stunning and so tasty!

  • Jenn, I’m with you on the commercial and I’ve never been a fan of GBC, but this looks wonderful!  May have to try it!

  • Lauren Hayward

    YUM! looks fab 🙂

  • Bikingbeforebed

    I have always been a green bean casserole hater because of those commercials. That and the sweet potatoes with marshmallows on top. Not my idea of delicious Thanksgiving sides. This looks absolutely yummy. Nice and green:)

  • Viviane Bauquet Farre

    “Just say no to mushy vegetables” – I love this mantra! You’ve crafted a wonderful looking lunch here and I’ll bet the crunch is all there.

  • Kay

    Okay, so I know this is like, green bean casserole blasphemy, but I am NOT a mushroom eater.  Any suggestions for something else to sub in?

  • This looks WAY better than the stuff where you open a bunch of cans & bake.  My sister is crazy about the other kind (I hope she’s not reading this). I think it’s awful!   

  • We were just talking about making this from scratch this t-giving….since Joe and I both like it (a lot), but both of our families use the canned stuff! I really like the add of asparagus too.
    Thanks for sharing! 
    Either font size works for me…but I think I do like the bigger a bit more. 

  • Myinnercheerleader

    It looks so fresh and tasty.  On my list to try this weekend.  I grew up on canned veggies but now only buy fresh. 

  • Emily Dryden

    Oh my gosh, this looks amazing! 
    Casseroles are typically so heavy that I tend to avoid them altogether, but this one is just the opposite. I can’t wait to try it. Thanks for sharing! 🙂

  • Looks delicious, and I love that it’s lighter 🙂
    I personally liked the font a bit smaller.

  • MMMMMmmm I’ve never had green bean casserole for the same reasons you never did… canned green beans… cream of mushroom soup… BLAH.

    I love fresh green beans though… and mushrooms… and french fried onions! I gotta try this.

  • Green bean casserole was never a venture of my mom’s until I was in highschool. Now it’s a staple on most holiday weekends at some point… SO good.

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