This is my Family Favorite Green Beans recipe that is bright, flavorful, and so easy to make! These sautéed green beans are bright and crunchy, and they’re deliciously flavored with butter, almonds, dried cranberries, and shallots. It’s my go-to recipe for a fresh vegetable holiday side dish, or any time we need an easy healthy side that the whole family will eat.
Green Beans Recipe with Almonds and Cranberries
I’ll let you in on a little family secret – I make this green beans recipe every single holiday dinner. It’s so easy and fast, I usually make it the same time that I make the turkey gravy from the pan drippings. So when everything is done, and I only have about 10 minutes, I make the green beans and the gravy.
The way I can make it so fast is by blanching the green beans ahead of time! When green beans are already blanched, it only takes about 10-15 minutes from then, depending on how soft you like them.
These green beans seem like tons of time and effort went into them, seeing as they’re so perfectly cooked and flavored. But that’s just the secret… the simplicity of this side dish is what makes it so remarkable. On a stressful holiday like Thanksgiving or Christmas, it’s nice to have a reliable recipe like this one that you know will be quick, easy, and absolutely delicious every single time.
Besides, it’s nice to have something fresh and bright as part of the holiday spread. On a table filled with heartier side dishes that are comforting and super filling, it makes your plate more well-rounded to have something there like these green beans.
Ingredients You Need
- Green Beans – Make sure you’re only using fresh green beans, not frozen or canned.
- Butter – You can use salted or unsalted! The choice is yours. I usually use unsalted butter to control the amount of sodium.
- Olive Oil – Extra virgin olive oil yields the best flavor. In a pinch, avocado oil can also be used.
- Shallots – The slightly sweet, delicate flavor of shallots perfectly accompanies the rest of the ingredients in this fresh recipe.
- Cranberries – use dried cranberries.
- Black Pepper
How to Make This Green Beans Recipe
Blanching green beans:
Snip the ends off of the green beans if needed and prepare a bowl of ice water. Then, bring a pot of water to a boil and drop the beans into it. Boil them for approximately 3-4 minutes. Remove the green beans from the boiling water and immediately drop them into the ice water. Once they’re fully cooled, take them out, and pat them dry.
Sautéing Green Beans:
Now it’s time to sauté the green beans! Melt the butter and oil together, then cook the shallots until golden brown. Next, add the blanched green beans, and mix them in well with the shallots. Continue cooking the green beans until they’re almost fully done, but not quite. At that point, you’ll stir in the sliced almonds and dried cranberries, letting everything cook for just a few more minutes.
Why blanch the green beans first?
The reason for blanching green beans is to preserve the gorgeous, bright green color and the crispy consistency. If you cook green beans without blanching them, they will turn dark green and turn mushy. Blanched green beans stay firm, full, and bright even when cooked soft. If you don’t blanch them, they will darken and wrinkle.
Can I blanch green beans ahead of time?
Absolutely! You can blanch the green beans a few hours beforehand and set them aside, or even an entire day before cooking. If you blanch green beans the night before, just store them in the refrigerator in an airtight food storage container.
This is great for planning around the holidays, when you know you’re going to be stressed and busy. Save yourself some time by blanching the green beans the night before the big day to give yourself one less thing to worry about.
More of the Best Green Beans Recipes!
Roasted Green Beans and Mushrooms – easy to make, delicious, and healthy roasted veggies
Green Beans with Bacon and Onions – these green beans are blanched and sautéed with bacon and onions
French Onion Green Beans – fresh green beans cooked with pearl onions in French onion sauce
Green Bean Casserole – this casserole is made with fresh green beans, creamy mushrooms sauce, and French’s fried onions.
Family Favorite Green Beans with Almonds and Cranberries
- 2 lbs green beans
- 2 tbsp butter
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 2-3 shallots
- 3/4 cup sliced shallots
- 3/4 cup dried cranberries
- black pepper
Blanching Green Beans:
- Snip the ends off green beans where the bean attached to the vine.
- Prepare ice water bowl by combining cold water and a couple of cups of ice in a large mixing bowl.
- Bring a large pot of water to boil and drop green beans in it.(if you don't have a pot large enough, you can do it in 2 batches.) Boil green beans for about 3-4 minutes (depending on thickness).
- Take green beans out of the hot water and immediately drop them into the ice water.
- After green beans have cooled, take them out onto a paper towel to pat dry.
Sautee Green Beans:
- Preheat a large cooking pan over medium heat and add oil and butter. Let butter melt.
- Once butter is melted, add sliced shallots and sauté until golden brown.
- Add green beans and mix well. Sauté green beans until they almost reach the desired doneness.
- Stir in died cranberries and sliced almond and cook a few more minutes, until green beans are the softness you prefer.