Easy Steps to Making the Best Southern Green Beans.   Your family will beg you to make them often.  Plus, they go with everything.

What are Southern Green Beans?

Southern Green Beans cook low and slow.  They are tender beans with a whole lot of flavor.


Ingredients are used to make Southern Green Beans

Proven ingredients that work fantastically together to make the best Southern Green Beans include bacon, garlic, onion, potatoes, chicken broth, pepper, and a hint of sugar?

Your family will be begging for you to make another pot of these beans before leaving the dinner table. No worries, they go with almost everything.

Best Southern Green Beans

Can I use something besides Bacon in these Green Beans?

Bacon is the most common seasoning for Green Beans, but if you have a ham bone leftover, it is perfect for these beans.

Southern Green Beans with Ham Bone

Boil the bone down using the chicken broth, water, or a combination of the two until the meat falls off or pulls off easy.  If you are using a honey ham bone, you do not need to add the sugar to the beans.  They will be perfectly sweet enough.

Southern Green Beans with Ham Hock

When cooking my Southern Green Beans, I stick with bacon or ham bone, because I always have one of these on hand.  But, it is common to use a ham hock in your green beans.   A ham hock is the bottom part of the pig’s leg.  They are typically cured and smoked.  You will find ham hocks in a lot of Southern food like green beans, black-eyed peas, dried beans, and collard greens.

Healthier Fresh Green Beans

If you are looking for a healthier recipe for fresh green beans, try cooking your greens in a large skillet with the following ingredients.

  • One tablespoon minced garlic
  • Two tablespoons Olive Oil
  • One teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 2 pounds fresh green beans
  • 1/2 black pepper
  • 1/4 cup fresh Parmesan cheese

Saute the garlic, Italian seasoning, and peppers in a large skillet or pot with the Olive Oil.  Add the chicken stock and green beans and simmer until tender.

How do you prepare fresh green beans?

Wash your fresh green beans in cold water in a large bowl or even a clean sink.   Emerge the beans in the cold water.  Lift out of the cold water and enter the water from the container.  Rinse again.  Next, break off both ends of the beans and peel away the strings that attach to the ends.  Breaking off the ends of the beans is to “top and tail” the green beans.  You can also cut the green beans in half or thirds to shorten the length.  If your beans are fresh, you can line them up and cut the ends off with a knife.  Using a knife makes the process quicker.

bowl full of just picked green beans

Do you need to soak fresh green beans?

You do not need to soak fresh green beans in cold water if they are fresh.  A quick wash is all you need to do.

Growing Up Without Many Good Memories

These green beans bring back special memories to me. As a child of a divorced family, my childhood memories are far and few. My mom left my family when I was thirteen years old. Up until that time, our home was chaos, mainly caused by addiction. But, I have a special memory of these Southern Green Beans.

Being a Southern Country Girl, I grew up on fresh Southern Green Beans. My father would purchase bushels of green beans from farmers every summer. We would spend hours together as a family stringing and snapping beans. To be honest, at the time, I thought it was more of a chore than fun. Now that my dad and Aunt Dot is no longer here, it is a precious memory. It was a treasured time spent with my father and siblings. Good memories were made that will last a lifetime.

My Aunt Dot made sure we had a pot of fresh green beans at every holiday gathering. She is the one who taught me how to make them.

Bowl full of the Green Beans You Will Love Serving

What is the difference between Bush Beans and Pole Beans?

Green beans, string beans, snap beans are all the same. The main difference is how they grow. There are two categories of green beans, bush or pole beans.

Bush Beans vs. Pole Beans

Bush Beans or Pole Beans refers to how they grow. They either grow from a bush or a pole. These types of green beans are climbers. If the green beans can grow without any extra support to hold them up, they are called bush beans.

Another difference between the beans are Pole beans keep producing as you pick them. Most dry beans are are pole beans such as Navy beans, pinto beans, and kidney beans. Bush beans produce most of its beans at the same time, after production, their season is over.

You pick snap beans when they reach four to five inches long. You should pick them before you start seeing the seeds or beans bulging out. They should also be able to snap, which will indicate freshness.

Southern Green Beans with Bacon

First Step: Fry the Bacon to make these Southern Green Beans with Bacon

Typically, I prepare my bacon in the oven. It is the easiest way to cook bacon. If you have not tried it, read my full post about cooking Oven Bacon Here. For these green beans, I start by cutting my bacon into small pieces. Next, I fry the bacon pieces in a large dutch oven.

While the bacon is frying, snap your green beans into two-inch pieces or the size you prefer. Next, rinse your beans thoroughly. Submerge them in a pot or large bowl full of water. Drain the water and repeat.

Southern Green Beans and Potatoes

When you add potatoes to these green beans, it makes them a meal. The potatoes are not only filling but super flavorful. They are like sponges that soak up all the broth and seasonings you put in these green beans. You can leave them out of this recipe, but you will be missing a fabulous treat.

Second Step: Potatoes

Wash the small red potatoes and remove any bad spots. Cut the potatoes into bite-size pieces. Next, add the potatoes, salt, pepper, and sugar in with the bacon.

Third Step: Green Beans

Add the green beans, chopped cooked bacon, and chicken broth to the stockpot. Plus, enough water to cover the beans halfway up the pot.

Fourth Step: Cook your Southern Green Beans

  • Cook until beans are tender about 30 minutes on low simmer heat.

Can you overcook your green beans?

Absolutely!  You can overcook your green beans.  Southerners are good at overcooking their green beans.  They turn limp and turn from bright green to an olive-green color.  Plus, I have already mentioned they get mushy.

Green Beans Were Finger Foods In My House

When my kids were at the age of eating finger foods, I would prepare a large pot of these Green Beans.  They loved them, especially my twin boys.  I would cook them al dente and put them in a snack container for them to eat.  Not only did they eat them as a snack during the day, but I carried green beans everywhere we went. They loved them!

Southern Green Beans Instant Pot

Cook these Southern Green Beans faster in your Pressure Cooker – Instant Pot.

These Southern Green Beans Instant Pot or Pressure Cooker taste like they have been simmering for hours, but yet they only take four minutes to cook.

Cheesy Green Bean Casserole

CHEESY GREEN BEAN CASSEROLE is a holiday tradition.  I updated the traditional green beans with cheese, garlic, and Worcestershire sauce to make the best casserole!

Cheesy Green Beans Crock Pot or Slow Cooker

Use your slow cooker to make the Best Cheesy Green Beans Crock-Pot.

Use your crockpot when making a lot of food.  This Cheesy Green Bean casserole cooks perfectly in a slow cooker.  Once it gets done, just turn the crockpot to warm.  The Crock-Pot will keep them warm.

Best Canned Green Bean Recipe

For quick and easy delicious green beans, try this recipe for the Best Canned Green Beans.

While competing at World Food Championships, I not only had an opportunity to cook with Gotham Steel Cookware but to learn about the company. Chances are you have seen some of their commercials and demonstrations like the ones below.  After watching their ads, you may have wondered if Gotham Steel cookware is really that good.  Are they really non-stick without any oil or butter?   You may even wonder if you can use a metal cooking utensils in them or if you can bake with them in your oven.   I was thrilled to test not only Gotham Steel Cookware but Bakeware too.

This post contains some affiliate links for your convenience (which means if you purchase after clicking a link, I will earn a small commission which helps keep my blog up and running, but it won’t cost you a penny more).

Please see my disclosure.

Pantry Staple Bean Recipes

100 Bean Recipes to Always Keep on Hand Plus All The Bean Secrets

Southern Side Dishes Easy Recipes Family Friendly

Purchase Southern Side Dish E-COOKBOOK HERE

Bowl full of Green Beans
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Best Southern Green Beans

What could be better than Southern Green Beans made with potatoes, bacon, garlic, onion, chicken broth, pepper, and a hit of sugar?
Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time30 mins
Course: side
Cuisine: American
Keyword: beans, best green beans, green beans, sides, Southern green beans
Servings: 12
Calories: 238kcal


  • 3 pounds fresh green beans (fresh is better, but you can use frozen green beans)
  • 10 new potatoes washed and cut into bite sizes (or small golden potatoes)
  • 8 slices bacon
  • 1 red onion diced small
  • One tablespoon garlic minced
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 1 teaspoon seasoning salt
  • One teaspoon black pepper
  • two teaspoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon Cajun Seasoning
  • enough water to cover the beans halfway up the pot.


  • Cut the bacon in small pieces and fry it in a large dutch oven on medium heat
  • Remove the bacon.
  • Saute the garlic and chopped onions until the onions are tender
  • Add the potatoes, salt, pepper, and sugar
  • Add the green beans, bacon, and chicken broth
  • Plus, enough water to cover the beans halfway up the pot.
  • Cook until beans are tender about 30 minues on low simmer heat


After fresh green beans are cooked you normally get two cups per pound. If a person eats 4 ounces, it should feed 4 people. Therefore, my recipe calls for three pounds of fresh green beans which should feed 12 people.


Calories: 238kcal | Carbohydrates: 40g | Protein: 8g | Fat: 6g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 10mg | Sodium: 380mg | Potassium: 1048mg | Fiber: 7g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 870IU | Vitamin C: 51mg | Calcium: 67mg | Iron: 3mg

More Delicious Sides

  • CHEESY HASH BROWN CASSEROLE includes Hash browns, butter, onion, Cream of Chicken Soup, sour cream, Cajun Seasoning, garlic, black pepper, and lots of sharp shredded cheddar cheese.
  • BROCCOLI YELLOW RICE CASSEROLE If your family does not like broccoli, they will probably eat this broccoli recipe.  You cannot taste the broccoli. The saffron in the yellow rice makes this casserole very flavorful.
  • BEST DEVILED EGGS – “BACON AND EGGS” – Have You Tried Topping Your Deviled Eggs With Bacon?  It Is A Perfect Combination.  You Have To Make These Delicious Deviled Eggs.


  • LAYERED LETTUCE SALAD with spring mix, peas, red onion, dried cranberries, boiled eggs, mayonnaise, sugar, bacon, cheddar cheese, and almonds or your favorite nuts.  Top this salad with cranberries for the holidays.
  • BEST BACON BROCCOLI SALAD includes two bunches of fresh broccoli, raisins or dried cranberries, sunflower seeds, carrots, purple onion, mayo, sugar or honey, and bacon.
  • STRAWBERRY PRETZEL SALAD – This Strawberry Pretzel salad, dessert, is fantastic!  The layers include pretzels, cream cheese mixture, plus strawberries and strawberry jello.  It is the perfect sweet and salty combination.

Sweet Potatoe Recipes

  • SWEET POTATO CASSEROLE The three different toppings on this sweet potato casserole allow everyone to get their favorite.
  • BAKED STUFFED SWEET POTATOES With Brown Sugar, Pecans, Marshmellow, Cinnamon, And Butter. These Baked Stuffed Sweet Potatoes are the perfect excuse to eat dessert as a side dish.  In the South, we call this recipe a side dish.  It is a far stretch for even me, but it is a fabulous,  indulgent treat perfect for your holiday table.

Beans Recipes Using Beans and Peas

  • BEST SOUTHERN WHITE BEANS  There is nothing better than an old fashion pot of Southern white beans and a piece of buttery cornbread.  I will teach you how easy it is to make these Southern White Beans with ham in your Slow Cooker or Dutch oven.
  • SOUTHERN BLACK-EYED PEAS If you season them well, black-eye peas are delicious.  To season my Southern black-eyed peas, I include onions, garlic, Cajun seasoning to add lots of flavor to my peas, Seasoned Salt, Pepper, Sugar, Salty Meat.

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Best Southern Green Beans

Bowl full of the Best Green Beans