Green bean casserole was not one of the dishes that my parents made for Thanksgiving, therefore, it wasn’t one that I made for my family. Then, several years ago, when my children were still quite young, my son asked me why we didn’t make green bean casserole for Thanksgiving dinner. I was surprised that he even knew what it was, so I asked him about it. He had seen it on a commercial, (oh, the awesome power of advertising) and thought it looked good. So I decided to throw it into the mix.
I found 3 different recipes, and started experimenting. I know it’s not rocket science, but there are slight variations between the soup company recipes (tons of soup), the canned bean company recipes (tons of beans), or the French fried onion company recipes (tons of onions). Big surprise, I know. After a few years of practicing, I came up with the proportions that we like best. One thing that makes a huge difference is using FRESH green beans. I highly recommend … nay PLEAD … that you try it with fresh beans. You’ll never go back.
This recipe is now a family favorite (and absolute staple) for Thanksgiving. It’s rich and creamy, and, to me, qualifies as a comfort food.
- 2 ½ pounds fresh green beans
- 2 cans cream of mushroom soup
- 1 cup milk
- 1 tablespoon soy sauce
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon pepper
- 2 (6 ounce) containers French fried onions
- Coat a 13x9 inch baking dish with nonstick spray, and preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
- Fill a large pot 2/3 full of water and bring to a boil. (You can add 1 tablespoon of salt to the water, but then don’t add any salt in the recipe.) Wash, trim, and cut green beans. Cook in boiling water until tender. (10-15 minutes) If you leave the beans a little crunchy, they’ll have a strange texture in the casserole. For this recipe, I prefer them cooked to tender. Drain.
- In a large mixing bowl, combine soup, milk, soy sauce, salt, and pepper. Whisk until smooth. Add cooked beans, and mix well. Stir in one container (6 ounces) of the fried onions.
- Pour into prepared baking dish, and bake, uncovered, at 350 for 25 minutes. Remove from oven, top with remaining 6 ounce container of onions, and return to oven for 5 minutes.
- Serve hot.
- You can use either frozen or canned beans if you prefer, but fresh beans are so much better. It's worth the minimal extra effort.