Spicy Seared Green Beans
Spicy Seared Green Beans

Yesterday it was these almost-too-pretty-to-eat cookies (as my adorable husband so nicely put it), today we do a 180º turn around and it's these healthier but no less delicious (at least in my mind, unless you are absolutely hell-bent on having a cookie at which point there's no space for rational thought) Spicy Seared Green Beans. Guys, these are out-of-this-world good, so much so that I actually think about them during the day and not just because I'm writing about them right now. I WANT them! Really! They're spicy and crunchy and flavorful... ADDICTIVELY SO!! I've made them twice in the last few days and after I wrap up things around here, I'm heading to the store to buy more beans for tonight. Which leads me to my second favorite thing about this amazing side and that is that these are also ridiculously easy!! I mean, I almost feel a little funny about sharing them as a "recipe"--if you were in my kitchen I'd reveal the magic behind their wondrousness in 2 short sentences, but since we can't be together like that...well, you get my drift. In any case, short of trimming off the ends of the beans, which I guess you could avoid if you buy them in a bag pre-trimmed (although personally I like the taste of the loose ones better, but if it helps you out, no judgement here!) and mincing up a clove of garlic, all you do is cook them on very high heat for about 5 minutes or so, add in the garlic and some hot pepper flakes and serve. They're even good cold, which I can guiltily vouch for because I ate last night's leftovers while standing in front of the fridge deciding what to have for breakfast today!!! Yup, that's how deep my love for these runs. And then there's the fact that they offset the onslaught of cookies coming out of the kitchen lately!! Make them tonight and you'll see what I mean. YUM!!

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Spicy Seared Green Beans

Makes about 4 servings
Prep Time:  5-7 minutes


  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 1 pound green beans, trimmed
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 large garlic clove, minced
  • 1-2 shakes red pepper flakes

The Recipe

1.  Heat a large, deep skillet with high sides if possible over medium heat. After a couple of minutes, add the oil, turn the heat to high and swirl the oil around. After 20-30 seconds, add green beans and salt and cook for a few minutes over high heat, using a pair of tongs to keep the beans moving so they cook evenly and get slightly seared but not burned. After about 3 minutes, taste a bean and see if it's done. If not, cook a minute or two longer. If cooked enough, add in garlic and pepper flakes and cook for another minute. Serve immediately.

Note:  Recipe adapted from The Vegetable Dishes I Can't Live Without by Mollie Katzen.

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