Sauteed Green Beans with Ground Beef - The Floured Camera (2023)

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Chinese sauteed green beans with ground beef is a fast weeknight meal, great when served with a large bowl of steaming rice. The green beans are cooked with onion, garlic, and ginger, and then stir-fried with an amazing spicy sauce and ground beef. This recipe is the quick and easy version of the aromatic stir-fry green bean dish you'll find in Sichuan restaurants.

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  • How to char green beans without oil?
  • Ingredients
  • Step-by-step instructions
  • Can I sub with other ground meats?
  • 📖 Recipe
  • 💬 Reviews
Sauteed Green Beans with Ground Beef - The Floured Camera (1)

How to char green beans without oil?

Chinese sauteed green beans is a dish you make when you simply don't have enough time on your hands. This is a much simplified version of the restaurant dish that you'll find at Sichuan eateries, but flavorful enough that it'll hit the spot. The key to the texture is to pat the green beans as dry as possible before throwing them onto a well-heated pan with only a dab of oil. We call this method "dry-frying" which is to fry with very little moisture or oil.

After you have charred the green beans, you then cook the beef down and re-introduce the green beans with a flavorful sauce mixture.


  • Green beans
  • Ground beef
  • Dark soy sauce
  • Chili garlic sauce: I always use Lee Kum Lee's brand of chili garlic sauce. This sauce adds a great spicy kick with hints of vinegar. Chili garlic sauce plays a prominent role in my Instant Pot eggplant with garlic sauce recipe!
  • Rice vinegar: To balance out the salty flavors in the dark soy sauce and chili garlic sauce.
  • Sugar
  • Garlic, ginger, onion: All my key fragrants for every Asian dish!

A lot of the flavor comes from the chili garlic sauce! The dark soy sauce adds great color and with the sugar, the two add a hint of sweetness to help balance out the chili garlic sauce.

Sauteed Green Beans with Ground Beef - The Floured Camera (2)

Step-by-step instructions

  1. Wash and trim green beans. Chop into 2-3 inch length. Pat dry with a paper towel, this step is important! If there's too much moisture left on the green beans, they won't char properly.
  2. Make the sauce by mixing dark soy sauce, chili garlic paste, and rice vinegar in a bowl. Set aside for later.
  3. Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a hot pan until smoking. Add beans and avoid overcrowding. Let sit for 1 minute. Stir beans around, and let sit for 30 seconds. Stir a 2nd time, and let sit for 30 seconds. This helps to ensure that the beans are evenly charred. Place beans in a separate bowl and set aside.
  4. In the same pan, turn the heat to medium, and cook down the garlic, ginger, and onion until the onions have started to brown. This can take 30 seconds to 1 minute.
  5. Add in the ground beef (or pork or turkey) and break down the meat until browned. If there's a lot of excess fat, drain the pan.
  6. Add in the sauce mixture and sugar, stir for 30 seconds. Finally, add in the green beans and stir-fry for another 30 seconds.
  7. Serve over a bowl of rice!

Can I sub with other ground meats?

100%! This dish is typically made with ground pork, but you can sub with ground beef or if you'd like to use a leaner cut ground turkey. The most important thing is making the sauce to ensure any protein you choose soaks up all the flavors.

Enjoy this dish? Try my other stir-fry recipes such as my Chinese eggplant with garlic sauce, beef and onion stir-fry, and even my Chinese stir-fry rice cakes for something heartier.

📖 Recipe

Sauteed Green Beans with Ground Beef - The Floured Camera (3)

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4.93 from 13 votes

Chinese Sauteed Green Beans with Ground Beef

Chinese sauteed green beans with ground beef is a fast weeknight meal to be served with a large bowl of steaming rice. The green beans are cooked with onion, garlic, and ginger, and then stir-fried with an amazing spicy sauce and ground beef. This recipe is the quick and easy version of the aromatic stir-fry green bean dish you'll find in Sichuan restaurants.

Course Side Dish

Cuisine Chinese

Prep Time 5 minutes

Cook Time 5 minutes

(Video) Ground Beef Bulgogi Easy & Fun!

Total Time 10 minutes

Author Julia


  • 1 lb green beans
  • 1 tablespoon dark soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
  • 2 teaspoon chili garlic paste
  • 1 teaspoon granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon neutral oil
  • ½ inch ginger chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic chopped
  • ½ small white onion diced
  • ½ lb ground beef sub ground pork or ground turkey


Sauteed Green Beans with Ground Beef - The Floured Camera (4)

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Reader Interactions


  1. Tyanne says

    Sauteed Green Beans with Ground Beef - The Floured Camera (5)
    I love that it is a meat and vegetable recipe!


  2. Freya says

    Sauteed Green Beans with Ground Beef - The Floured Camera (6)
    I changed out the meat for vegan meat and this was such a delicious, flavourful meal!


    (Video) Spicy Mongolian Ground Beef EASY Recipe
    • Julia says

      What a great idea!


  3. Linda says

    Sauteed Green Beans with Ground Beef - The Floured Camera (7)
    This sauteed green beans recipe is so delicious and a favorite at our home


  4. Megan Ellam says

    Sauteed Green Beans with Ground Beef - The Floured Camera (9)
    Oh, now this sounds delicious!


  5. Melinda says

    Sauteed Green Beans with Ground Beef - The Floured Camera (10)
    A great new spin on green beans.


  6. serena says

    Sauteed Green Beans with Ground Beef - The Floured Camera (11)
    Super easy for a midweek meal

    (Video) 5 Ground Beef Recipes That Are NOT Burgers, Tacos, or Meatballs | Quick & Easy Dinner Ideas


  7. Andrea White says

    Sauteed Green Beans with Ground Beef - The Floured Camera (12)
    classic! so good and simple too!


  8. Mama Maggie's Kitchen says

    Sauteed Green Beans with Ground Beef - The Floured Camera (13)
    This dish looks so deliciously good. I wish I could eat that right this minute!


  9. Laura says

    Sauteed Green Beans with Ground Beef - The Floured Camera (14)
    This is definitely making the list of regulars. It's easy to make for a weeknight.


  10. Andréa Janssen says

    Sauteed Green Beans with Ground Beef - The Floured Camera (15)
    A perfect recipe for weekdays, we loved the combination of beans and beef. And everybody loved it. Surely we're going to eat this more often.


  11. Kayla DiMaggio says

    (Video) The Indian ground meat dish everyone should know how to make.

    Sauteed Green Beans with Ground Beef - The Floured Camera (16)
    Loving these green beans! They were so savory and delicious!


  12. Ave says

    Where do we add the sugar??


    • Julia says

      Thanks for calling this out! I've updated the recipe, you add the sugar at the end with the sauce mixture.


    • Antonette says

      Can it be cooked in a wok instead?


  13. Vickie says

    Sauteed Green Beans with Ground Beef - The Floured Camera (17)
    Great idea for ground beef & veggie dish! I doubled the sauce, for best flavor (and added mushrooms).


Leave a Reply

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Should you boil green beans before sauteing? ›

No, you don't need to blanch or steam green beans before sauteing them. They will become perfectly tender and bright green using this sauté method, and they're ready to eat in just about 10 minutes!

What to put in green beans to give flavor? ›

Garlic powder, onion powder, thyme, salt, and pepper are all fantastic additions to make your green beans taste fresh and delicious.

How many minutes do you cook green beans? ›

Cook the green beans, covered, in a small amount of boiling salted water until crisp-tender: 10 to 15 minutes for whole or cut green beans. 5 to 10 minutes for french-cut green beans.

Why are my sauteed green beans tough? ›

One reason beans are fibrous, tough, and stringy may simply be that they are picked past their prime. Pod diameter, NOT length is the best indicator for harvesting beans, and freshness can be confirmed by an audible snap when the bean is broken.

What is the best seasoning for beans? ›

In general, most beans go well with herbs like parsley, rosemary, sage, savory, and thyme. You usually can't go wrong with garlic and onions, either. Specific kinds of beans, like fava beans or mung beans, have other affinities with particular herbs and spices.

What should I season my beans with? ›

Seasonings: To really add a lot of flavor, I mixed in some ground cumin, dried oregano, smoked paprika and salt. Lime Juice: Add in some lime juice at the end to add a touch of acidity that compliments the rich flavor of the beans and seasonings. Cilantro (Optional): This is one of my favorite garnishes to use.

What spices make beans taste good? ›

Get mellow with thyme, oregano, and paprika

It adds delicious depth to bean soups, stews, and salads. For every 16-ounce can of beans that you season with this mix, add ¼ teaspoon of dried thyme, ½ teaspoon of dried oregano, ½ teaspoon of paprika, and 1 clove of minced garlic.

How do you know when green beans are done? ›

Cook the beans: Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Season well with salt. Cook the beans for 5 minutes, then start checking them for done-ness. They should be tender but still crisp, without squeaking between your teeth when you chew them.

How long do you heat up green beans on the stove? ›

Bring a large pot of water to a boil along with the salt. Carefully add the green beans to the water using a slotted spoon and boil for about 4-5 minutes, or until crisp tender. Begin checking on them after 3 minutes to ensure they do not overcook. Drain the green beans in a colander in the sink.

Can you cook green beans too long? ›

If you cook the vegetables too long or don't stop the cooking process, the bright green can change to the dull olive green. This is because as the chlorophyll molecules get heated, the magnesium ion contained in the center releases, and causes the unpleasant color change.

How do you cook beans and make them taste good? ›

Dried beans cooked with sea salt and water are delicious, but adding an onion, garlic, or other aromatics to the pot will make them even more flavorful! These simple additions turn the starchy bean cooking liquid into a fragrant broth that's just as tasty as the beans themselves.

How does Gordon Ramsay cook green beans? ›

Heat a small pot of water over high heat until boiling. Add the trimmed green beans and cook for 1 1/2- 2 minutes. Drain immediately and immerse the green beans in a bowl of ice water. This step will stop the cooking process and will help the green beans maintain the beautiful green color.

Do beans get softer the longer you cook them? ›

Cooking longer will result in softer beans. Beans should be tender but not mushy. Here are some approximate pressure cooking times for beans: Black beans: 20-30 minutes.

How long do you blanch green beans before sauteing them? ›

Blanch green beans (see notes):

Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add 1 teaspoon of salt and the green beans and cook for 2 minutes. Drain and place in a bowl with ice cold water.

How do you can green beans and keep them crisp? ›

In today's recipe, you'll first boil the green beans, then immediately blanch them in cold water. This is what keeps them crispy. If you prefer them a little more cooked, just boil for a little longer or skip the blanching process.

How do you cook beans on the stove without soaking them? ›

You don't need to soak your beans overnight. Just clean them, check for twigs or pebbles, (No fun biting into one of those!), pop them into a pot of boiling water, cover, turn the heat to simmer, and in two or three hours, you have nutritious, delicious beans, rich in fiber, proteins and B vitamins.

How does Paula Deen cook fresh green beans? ›

Add green beans to pan and sauté over medium heat for 2 minutes, stirring frequently. Add boiling water to pan and cover. Cook for about 15 minutes, just until beans are tender. Add vinegar, butter and salt and pepper and stir.

Should you season beans while cooking? ›

Seasoning is the cardinal rule of cooking anything, including beans. About a tablespoon of kosher salt per pound of beans is a good place to start if you're cooking them in water — remember as they simmer, the bean broth will concentrate and get saltier.

How do I make my beans better? ›

Sweetener: If you like your baked beans on the sweet side, add a pinch of brown sugar, some maple syrup or honey. Start with a couple of teaspoons and go from there. Heat: I like my baked beans a bit spicy. If you do too, add some sriracha sauce, hot sauce, chopped hot pepper or cayenne pepper.

What kind of beans do Mexican restaurants use? ›

What Beans are Typically Used in Mexican Foods? Black, Pinto, Cowboy & Refried Frijoles
  • Black Beans AKA Frijoles Negros. ...
  • Pinto Beans AKA Frijoles de la Olla. ...
  • Cowboy Beans AKA Frijoles Charros. ...
  • Refried Beans AKA Frijoles Refritos.
4 Dec 2021

What can I put on top of beans? ›

Here are a few stir-in ideas to get your backyard barbecue feast started:
  1. Honey + Dijon Mustard. ...
  2. Caramelized Onion + Bacon + Espresso Powder. ...
  3. Adobo Sauce + Chorizo + Chopped Cilantro. ...
  4. Fire Roasted Tomatoes + Little Smokies + Chopped Parsley. ...
  5. Mixed Chopped Herbs + Breadcrumbs + Cheddar Cheese.
7 Jul 2015

How can I add flavor to beans without salt? ›

10 ways to add flavour without salt
  1. Fresh herbs. Fresh, soft herbs, especially parsley, mint, basil and coriander, add sensational bursts of flavour when added to dishes. ...
  2. Dried spices and dried herbs. ...
  3. Be clever with sauces. ...
  4. Stock up on stock. ...
  5. Add heat. ...
  6. Zest it up. ...
  7. Meet the alliums. ...
  8. Mix it up.

How can I flavor beans without salt? ›

5 Ways to Add Flavor Without Adding More Salt
  1. Stir in herbs and spices.
  2. Add a splash of vinegar.
  3. Squeeze or zest citrus.
  4. Sprinkle in some cheese.
  5. Add aromatics like garlic, onions, and shallots.
1 May 2019

How do you season bland beans? ›

Dried seasoning works well in beans, but if you prefer fresh garlic and onion, sauté them and add them to your crockpot about 30 minutes before you're ready to eat. Other seasonings include: Sugar (brown sugar, maple syrup, molasses): If your beans taste a little bitter, add just a bit of sweetener.

What happens if you undercook green beans? ›

While some recipes call for raw green beans, eating them uncooked may lead to nausea, diarrhea, bloating, and vomiting due to their lectin content. As such, it's best to avoid raw green beans. Cooking not only neutralizes their lectins but also improves their taste, digestibility, and antioxidant content.

How long does it take to soften green beans? ›

Add green beans, cover and simmer, stirring occasionally, until very tender, about 20 minutes.

Do you wash beans before cooking? ›

Always rinse beans before cooking, and check for stray rocks, twigs and leaves. Leave substantial time for bean soaking (either overnight or using our shortcut method) and cooking. If you are short on time, choose lentils or adzuki beans, which cook quickly and don't need soaking.

How long do you flash green beans? ›

To blanch green beans, fill a large pot of water, set over high heat, and bring it to a boil. Salt the water (per quart of water, estimate a tablespoon of kosher salt), which will bring the green beans to life and enhance their flavor. Once the water is boiling, add the beans and cook for two to three minutes.

How long are sauteed green beans good for? ›

YES! You can boil sautéed green beans first for the suggested time of 3 minutes so they don't overcook, throw them in an ice-bath immediately after to stop the cooking process; pat them dry with paper towels and store them in an air5 tight container in your refrigerator for up to 2 days.

What is the white stuff on my green beans? ›

This common fungal disease most often attacks the cucurbit family and beans. It is most often found in mid to late summer and unlike most fungi it doesn't need a lot of moisture.

What happens if you over cook beans? ›

Overcooking your beans

Signs that your beans are overcooked include them being very soft and mushy. Tender beans are ideal, but if they lack firmness and don't keep their shape, they have probably simmered for too long. Overcooked beans will also start to lose their flavor, leaving a flat taste.

What to add to beans while they cook? ›

Add a pinch of salt. If you have any aromatics lying around — things you'd use to make stock like onions, carrots, celery, bay leaves or woody herbs such as rosemary and thyme — add them to cooking liquid. You don't have to add aromatics, but they'll make your beans so much more flavorful.

Does onion make beans soft? ›

The onion slices will have an impact on the seeds, altering the protein bonds that make them resistant to heat, and as a result, your beans will soften quickly, saving you time and cooking gas. This is something I've been doing for a while and it's been very beneficial.

How are French style green beans made? ›

French cut green beans are basically julienned, or thinly sliced green beans. They begin with whole green beans and are sliced horizontally to produce thin strands of beans. These are different than French green beans (haricots verts), which are the more slender variety of whole green beans.

How do you cook Julia Child green beans? ›

Adapted from "The French Chef Cookbook," by Julia Child (Knopf, 1961). Have ready a large bowl of ice water. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over medium-high heat. Add the beans and cook, uncovered, for 5 to 6 minutes or just until tender.

How do you cook Jamie Oliver green beans? ›

TO SERVE Cook the beans in a large pan of boiling water for 7 minutes, or until just soft. Drain well, then return to the pan and toss with the dressing. Serve hot or at room temperature.

How long does it take to cook green vegetables? ›

3-5 minutes for leafy vegetables, e.g. bok choy, cabbage, kale, spinach, silverbeet. 8-10 minutes for firmer vegetables, e.g. broccoli, beans, Brussels sprouts, cauliflower, leeks, peas, sweet corn. 12-15 minutes for harder vegetables, e.g. carrots, parsnips, pumpkin, turnips, yams.

Do you need to wash green beans? ›

As with other vegetables, give them a thorough rinse before you are ready to cook with them. Trim the stem end (the end where the bean connected to the plant) which looks brown and is too tough to eat. The other end can be trimmed, but is perfectly edible, so the choice is yours.

Do you boil beans before cooking? ›

Time to cook!

If you're using unsoaked beans, rinse them in a fine mesh strainer before you add them to the pot. Bring the water to a gentle boil, reduce the heat, and simmer for 30 minutes, discarding any foam that rises to the surface.

How long do you blanch green beans before sautéing them? ›

Blanch green beans (see notes):

Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add 1 teaspoon of salt and the green beans and cook for 2 minutes. Drain and place in a bowl with ice cold water.

Do I need to blanch green beans before cooking? ›

Blanching or par-cooking is especially beneficial for green vegetables like string beans, broccoli, snap peas, pole beans and asparagus. Blanching partially cooks the veggies making them perfectly crisp tender.

Should beans boil or simmer? ›

Place beans in a large pot; cover with fresh water and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer gently until beans are tender but firm. Most beans will cook in 45 minutes to 2 hours depending on the variety. Periodically, try a taste test or mash a bean against the side of the pot with a fork or spoon.

How do you know when beans are cooked? ›

We usually start with 30 minutes on the timer, and then we start tasting them. If the beans are still hard or chalky inside, set the timer for 10 to 30 more minutes, depending on how hard they are. Check them at regular intervals until the beans are tender but still firm. They shouldn't be falling apart.

Do you cook the beans with the liquid? ›

According to America's Test Kitchen, you shouldn't always use the canning liquid, but in recipes that you can, you always should.

How do you know when green beans are done blanching? ›

In a large saucepan or stock pot, bring 4 quarts water and 1 tablespoon salt to boil. Add the green beans and boil until tender-crisp, but still bright green, about 3 to 5 minutes. Drain well and immediately plunge into ice water to stop the cooking.

Why should we blanch the vegetable first before we sauté it? ›

If you cook vegetables gently and without a great deal of water, you will help protect the water-soluble vitamins. Blanching your veggies, which is when you quickly cook vegetables in boiling water, and remove them when they're still very crisp, helps preserve the color and nutrients.

What happens if you don't blanch green beans? ›

If you skip the blanching step and just place your green beans straight into the freezer, you run the risk of your veggies becoming mushy, flavorless and far from their original bright green shade over time.

What is the purpose of blanching green beans? ›

Blanching is boiling vegetables for a few minutes until they're crisp tender, which brings out their color and preserves a crisp tender texture. It's ideal if you're making a green bean salad, where you want beautifully bright beans and a tender crunch.

Do you cook beans on high or low? ›

One of the best ways to guarantee perfectly cooked beans — ones that emerge creamy and tender instead of crunchy or mushy — is cooking them ever so gently over low, steady heat.

How do you cook beans so they don't get mushy? ›

Rinse your beans, put them in a pot covered with water and a spoonful of salt — yes, salt; more on this later — and let them simmer until they are tender but not mushy. This can take as little as 15 minutes for red lentils or as long as four hours for large, recalcitrant lima beans. Keep simmering.

How long does it take to cook beans? ›

Depending on their age, size, and variety, beans can take anywhere from 1 to 3 hours to cook through. Be patient. Keep the beans at a gentle simmer and taste frequently as they start to become tender. Add more water as needed to keep the beans submerged, and stir occasionally.


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