Green bean casserole with bacon is going to be the dish everyone can’t stop chattering about. It adds color and a feel-good freshness to the table yet it’s crazy indulgent and full of texture!
I feel like green bean casseroles can go one of two ways: they can be way delicious that people are fighting over the last bite; or they are meh and people are taking obligatory bites.
My goal is to make sure the green beans you place on your holiday table are out of this world delicious.
These green beans are smothered with a creamy Gruyere sauce. They’re loaded with caramelized onion flavor and savory bits of bacon. And, right when you think this green because casserole with bacon can’t get any better, it’s topped with sweet pecans and crispy onions.
If you’re looking for some more delicious holiday side dishes, try these Soft & Crispy Roasted Mini Potatoes or this Roasted Balsamic Brussels Sprouts recipe. Don’y forget the bread! This Gluten Free Buttermilk Cornbread is the best!
Ingredients for this Green Bean Casserole with Bacon
Butter. In my opinion nothing caramelizing an onion quite like butter so go for a nice pad of unsalted butter to throw in your pan.
Onion. I love using a sweet onion here. I chop it into smaller bits so they stick to the green beans and you get a nice little onion piece with each bite.
Bacon. Because it’s a casserole with bacon!! Isn’t that what you’ve been searching for? We’re using four strips of bacon and cutting them into little 1/2 inch pieces.
Garlic. I mean. Can you really have a creamy, cheese sauce without some garlic? I think not.
Broth. I used a veggie broth but you can use whatever you have on hand.
Heavy Cream. Because we want the creamy cheese sauce smothering the green beans to be THICK. So, heavy cream it is.
Gruyere. I’ve expressed my love for Gruyere before. It’s so nostalgic for me especially around the holidays. It just adds a nice special flavor to the dish that’s a bit unexpected.
Parmesan. To give a little sharpness and balance the Gruyere a bit.
Salt & Pepper. Obviously. Always.
Green Beans. Because it’s a green bean casserole, people! Can we really have a green bean casserole without green beans? No. The answer is no. It would have to be called something else.
Crunchy topping. I’m talking pecans, coconut sugar, some extra little shreds of Gruyere and those iconic fried, crispy onions we all know and love. I’ve eaten those onions with a spoon before. They’re just the best.
I’m all about making recipes work for you so if you have some dietary needs that don’t work with this recipe as written, here are some ideas to make it your own!
This recipe is already gluten free aside from the crispy fried onions on top! The fried onions usually contain a wheat flour making them contain gluten. It’s an easy fix to make this a gluten free recipe – just leave off the crispy onions. The pecan topping is pretty delicious and adds a nice crunch so you won’t be missing the crispy onions too much 🙂
To make this vegetarian just leave out the bacon! Everyone else is vegetarian-friendly so just caramelize those onions solo and cross out the bacon line from the ingredient list!
You may see the bacon and cream and cheese and think this may be a tough one to vegan-ize but honestly there are so many great vegan subs out there! Use vegan butter, leave out the bacon and sub in coconut cream and your favorite shredded vegan cheese. It will still be such a delicious, indulgent dish!
How to Make this Green Bean Casserole with Bacon
Caramelize the onions.
Add the butter, onions, and bacon to a pan and sauté over medium heat stirring occasionally for about 15 minutes. You want the onions to become so mouthwateringly fragrant, golden brown and reduced. Add in the garlic and sauté for just a minute or two more.
Add the rest.
Once the onions are perfectly caramelized, add the broth, cream, Gruyere, Parm, salt, pepper, and green beans to the pan. Cook for 10 minutes, stirring frequently until the sauce thickens and coats the green beans.
Top with crunchy goodies.
Transfer the green bean mixture to a baking dish (or if you’re using a cast iron skillet you can just keep it in the skillet).
In a small bowl mix together the chopped pecans and coconut sugar. Sprinkle it on top of the green bean casserole. Then, top it with the fried, crispy onions.
Bake the green bean casserole with bacon.
Cover with aluminum foil and bake for 15 minutes. You can take off the aluminum foil for the last few minutes.
Can I Make this Green Bean Casserole with Bacon Ahead of Time?
Yes definitely! I would transfer everything to the baking dish and cover with aluminum foil in the fridge until you’re ready to bake it. Wait to sprinkle on the crunchy goodies until right before you pop it in the oven to bake.
Can I Use Frozen Green Beans?
Yes! Just defrost the green beans in the fridge and rinse, drain, dry them completely. You don’t want to add any extra moisture to the dish so defrosting and drying them beforehand is necessary.
How to Store Leftovers
This can definitely be stored in the fridge or freezer if you have leftovers. Keep in mind that the crispy fried onions may lose their crispness as they’re stored.
Fridge. Keep leftovers stored in the fridge in an airtight container for up to a week. Reheat in the oven or microwave until heated through.
Freezer. Leftovers can be kept in an airtight container in the freezer for 2 months. Defrost in the fridge overnight and then reheat in the oven or microwave until heated through.
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 sweet onion, chopped
- 4 slices bacon, cut in 1/2 – 1 inch pieces
- 2 garlic cloves, pressed
- 12 oz. green beans, trimmed and cut in 1 – 2 inch pieces
- 1/4 cup vegetable broth
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 1 cup shredded Gruyere cheese
- 1/4 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/8 teaspoon ground pepper
- 1/2 cup chopped pecans
- 1 tablespoon coconut sugar
- 1/2 cup crispy fried onions
- Preheat oven to 350F.
- Add the butter, onions, and bacon to a pan and sauté over medium heat stirring occasionally for about 15 minutes.
- Once the onions are golden brown and caramelized, add in the garlic and sauté for just a minute or two more.
- Once the onions are perfectly caramelized, add the green beans, broth, cream, Gruyere, Parm, salt and pepper to the pan.
- Cook for 10 minutes, stirring frequently until the sauce thickens and coats the green beans.
- Transfer the green bean mixture to a baking dish (or if you’re using a cast iron skillet you can just keep it in the skillet).
- In a small bowl mix together the chopped pecans and coconut sugar.
- Sprinkle it on top of the green bean casserole.
- Top the casserole with the fried, crispy onions.
- Cover with aluminum foil and bake for 15 minutes. You can take off the aluminum foil for the last few minutes.
- Serving Size: 1 serving
- Calories: 390
- Sugar: 3.8g
- Sodium: 671mg
- Fat: 32.5g
- Saturated Fat: 16.9g
- Unsaturated Fat: 0g
- Trans Fat: 0g
- Carbohydrates: 13.4g
- Fiber: 2.6g
- Protein: 13.5g
- Cholesterol: 79mg