Easy Green Beans with Shallots


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A quick and easy side dish, Green Beans with Shallots is full of flavor and perfect with any entree. It’s a simple dish yet so impressive.

This recipe whips up in about 20 minutes including prep time and cook time. This recipe is a nice change during the holidays, especially since it’s so easy. It’s a vegetarian dish everyone will enjoy.

Pin Green Beans with Shallots to make later.

Overhead photo of string beans with shallots.

Ingredients for Green Beans with Shallots

  • String Beans
  • Sea Salt
  • Unsalted Butter
  • Olive Oil
  • Shallots
  • Pepper

I used canola oil because, well confession time, my family does not love olive oil. If yours does, feel free to substitute the olive oil for the canola oil. Just use a quality olive oil because you will taste it.

Saute the shallots in a non-stick pan until they are fragrant, translucent, and soft. In the meantime cook the green beans and have a bowl of ice water ready for blanching them. Read on to understand why.

Overhead photo of shallots cooking in a pan.

What is the difference between string beans and hericot verts?

First, before I explain, I’m curious to know if you call them string beans or green beans. Leave me a comment. 

The big difference between string beans and hericot verts is the latter is longer and thinner. Hericot verts are also harvested when they are younger. They get limp more quickly than string beans so use them as fresh as possible. You don’t want them sitting around for a couple of days.

What is Blanching?

Blanching is a cooking method used to stop the cooking of the food. Simply, you boil the vegetable for a short period of time, in this case string beans, then plunge them into ice water. What blanching does is it stops the cooking, actually puts the brakes on it, and keeps the color, flavor, and texture by stopping enzyme actions.

Pro Tips and Tricks

  • Use the largest skillet you own.
  • Don’t overcook the shallots. They should just begin to get some color and be soft.
  • Have a large bowl of ice water ready to plunge the string beans into once you blanch them. This will stop the cooking and keep them bright green in color.
  • You could even cook and blanch the string beans a day ahead then just toss with the shallots to warm them up to serve. This is a great idea if serving for a special occasion or holiday.
  • It’s easiest to use tongs to toss the shallots with the string beans before serving.
  • Many people only snap one end of the beans, the stem end. I do both, it’s really a personal preference. You could fancy the dish up by cutting them on the diagonal.
  • Cut up the shallots and snap the beans ahead of time. Or, if you’re having company put them to work snapping beans.
  • Mix the green beans with shallots in the skillet. It’s easier and it warms the beans back up.
Overhead photo of string beans with shallots in a pan.

What can I serve as a main dish?

You can serve these green beans with shallots with just about anything but here are some suggestions:

Green beans with shallots Pinterest image.

This recipe is inspired by Ina Garten, also known as The Barefoot Contessa. She uses haricot verts but they are not always easy to find. That’s why I used the more readily available green beans.

The best thing about this recipe is it’s a reliable one. I served this side dish to family when they were visiting for my son’s graduation. There was not a morsel left.

String beans and shallots Twitter image.


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Recipe – Green Beans with Shallots

A quick and easy side dish, string beans with shallots is full of flavor and perfect with any entree.
5 from 5 votes
Prep Time10 minutes
Cook Time10 minutes
Total Time20 minutes
Course: Side Dishes
Cuisine: American
Servings: 6 servings


  • 1 pound string beans ends removed
  • Sea salt
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 tablespoons canola oil
  • 2 large shallots large-diced
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper


  • Blanch the string beans in a large pot of boiling salted water for 3 minutes until they are crisp and tender. Drain immediately and immerse in a bowl of ice water. Let sit while sauteing the shallots.
  • Heat the butter and oil in a very large saute pan (12-inch diameter) and sauté the shallots on medium heat for 5 to 10 minutes, tossing occasionally, until they just begin to show color and are translucent.
  • Drain the string beans and add to the shallots with 1/2 teaspoon salt and pepper, tossing well. Heat only until the beans are warmed through.

Recipe Notes

If using haricot verts, blanch for only about 1 1/2 to 2 minutes before transferring to ice water.

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  1. This recipe is definitely going on the menu and my family is going to be very happy it’s not the same old green beans they are used to.

  2. I love garden green beans, and you are right they are easier to find, and this recipe looks delicious- I would love to serve with with our smoked chicken!

  3. We’ve been enjoying so many fresh green beans from our garden lately and this looks delicious! Love the shallots in this recipe.

  4. Love that you simplified this recipe even more, these green beans look like they will be going on my Sunday supper dinner menu this week!

  5. I love the green beans with the shallots! It sounds crazy, but I think they would have an somewhat lighter flavor! Thanks so much for including me in #FarmersMarketWeek, and thanks for hosting!

  6. I love fresh green beans nearly as much as Frank loves sweet corn. I am going to try this recipe with my next batch. Thanks Ellen, for the recipe and for hosting. It’s been a great week.

  7. Love this recipe! Looks and sounds amazing! The recipe is also easy, simple, and quick. I loved it. Thanks for the recipe!

5 from 5 votes (2 ratings without comment)

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