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Canned Green Beans Recipe

In this post I’ll be sharing an easy and flavorful Canned Green Beans Recipe.

What to do with canned green beans? Well, the answer is simple. Cook them up just like granny did! Stewing green beans with some good seasoning meat will add so much flavor to green beans that come out of a can.

Granny used to say that we were “doctoring them up”. I make them just like she used to and everybody loves these tasty green beans.

Mr. J. LOVES green beans! It is seriously the most requested side at our house. I don’t mind one bit either because this canned green beans recipe is so easy.

He almost always orders green beans when we eat out and is always disappointed that they don’t taste like the way that I make them. In case you are wondering, I do laugh every time he orders them at a restaurant because I know the outcome.

You would expect a restaurant that serves up Southern style food to make good green beans but most of the time it tastes like they just dumped it out of the can and warmed it up. That is not how it is done!

Once you get the hang of making them the right way, you will never turn back. They turn out delicious every time!

Southern Style Green Beans

Southern Green Beans using Hanover canned beans

There is nothing like good ole Southern green beans as a side to a down home cooked meal. Sometimes I like to add in a can of the small whole potatoes and make it a two for one side.

You can bet that if I’m serving up fried chicken, country style steak or a holiday feast that green beans will be on our dinner menu. 

Ingredients on a can of Hanover Green Beans

Why use canned green beans?

Are canned green beans okay to eat? Well, depending on the brand that you choose, they are canned with just the green beans, water and salt. Besides the convenience factor, that is why I don’t have a problem with store bought green beans.

They are canned just like I would can green beans from my own garden with the water and salt. I appreciate that there are no extra ingredients like flavor protectors and stuff in a can of green beans. 

A lot of folks wonder if canned green beans are healthy due to the salt content when canning. The salt is essential is food preservation and you’ll give the beans a good rinse anyways.

Green Beans with Potatoes

Hanover canned green beans

My favorite brand of choice for green beans is Hanover. Particularly the Blue Lake cut green beans. The can is lined with a food grade epoxy that prevents corrosion and protects flavor. You can easily find Hanover green beans at your local grocery store, Wal Mart or online at Amazon.

I really cannot tell you if it is really by my own choice to use this brand or if it is just instilled in my soul from all of the Southern cooks in my family that will only use this particular brand.

How to Make Canned Green Beans Taste Better

how to cook canned green beans and what you'll need

Let’s talk about what you will need to make the best green beans ever!

  • Canned Green Beans – use a good quality canned bean and pay attention to the ingredients listed on the can and go with an all natural selection. No one is paying me to say so but I do recommend the Hanover garden fresh Blue Lake cut green beans.
  • Chicken Stock – stock is a wonderful opportunity to add additional flavor to recipes.
  • Seasoning Meat – is usually pork used to season, or add flavor, to recipes. I prefer using country ham seasoning chunks for cooking. A ham bone or bacon are also great options. A lot of folks also enjoy the flavor that a smoked turkey leg adds to savory recipes.
  • Bacon Grease – a little bacon grease adds additional flavor to canned green beans and is a staple in savory Southern dishes.
  • Garlic – adds flavor to the beans and broth.
  • Seasonings – salt, pepper and a little onion powder are my go to for green beans. 
  • Potatoes – a can of small whole potatoes make a great addition to green beans but are completely optional.

Best Canned Green Beans Recipe

melt bacon fat and sear country ham to cook delicious green beans

Begin by adding a little bacon grease to a stock pot or Dutch oven and heat over medium. Throw in the seasoning meat and allow it to start infusing flavor as well.

Once it is sizzling good then you’ll know it is ready for the rest of the ingredients.

Easy and Flavorful Canned Green Beans

Best country style soul food green beans

Next, be sure to drain the canned juices from the beans and fill with water and drain twice to rinse the beans then add them to the pot.

Give everything a stir to coat those beans with that flavorful bacon grease then add the chicken stock and seasonings. Stir to combine then cover and bring to a rolling boil.

Once the green beans are boiling, reduce the heat to a medium low setting and allow them to simmer. Green beans need to simmer at least two hours but I strongly believe that four hours is even better.

You may have heard old fashioned Southern style green beans referred to as “cooked to death” green beans and the long stewing process is why. We have lots of funny Southern sayings in the South to describe almost anything. 

Green beans are a hardy vegetable however and holds up really well to the longer cooking times and you’ll be rewarded with an amazing side dish for your meal.

Soul Food Green Beans and Potatoes

Soul Food canned green beans recipe with potatoes and bacon grease

If you decide to add the small whole potatoes, wait until the last hour of cooking to add them to the beans.

How do canned green beans cooked Southern style taste? Delicious and savory! The beans are full of flavor and tender.

To serve the green beans, use a slotted spoon to remove the beans and potatoes from the cooking liquid and transfer to a serving bowl. Don’t discard the cooking liquid! Set it aside to add to any leftover green beans that you might have before placing in the refrigerator.

To reheat leftover green beans, gently simmer on the stove top in the rich cooking liquid until hot.

Canned Green Beans Recipe

Yield: 1 Vegetable Side Dish

Canned Green Beans Recipe

Canned Green Beans Recipe with Potatoes in a vintage floral serving bowl

Canned green beans recipe that are cooked up long and slow Southern style with rich savory flavor make an amazing side dish for family meals.

Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 4 hours
Total Time 4 hours 5 minutes


  • ½ tablespoon Bacon Grease
  • 1 Country Ham Seasoning Chunk (or cooking bits)
  • 38 ounce can Blue Lake Cut Green Beans, drained and rinsed (Hanover brand preferred)
  • 15 ounce can Small Whole Potatoes, drained and rinsed
  • 4 cups Chicken Stock (or 32 oz. carton)
  • 2 cups of Water, if needed so beans are covered in liquid
  • 1 teaspoon Kosher Salt
  • ½ teaspoon Cracked Black Pepper
  • 1 Clove of Garlic, peeled and left whole
  • ½ teaspoon Onion Powder


  1. Melt the bacon fat in a stock pot over medium heat.
  2. Next, add the seasoning meat and allow to sizzle a couple of minutes in the bacon grease.
  3. Next, add the drained and rinsed green beans to the pot and stir to coat in the bacon fat then add the stock and enough water, if needed, so that the beans are just covered with liquid.
  4. The next step is to season so add the whole peeled garlic clover, salt, pepper and onion powder and stir to combine.
  5. Cover the pot with a lid and bring to a boil; reduce heat to medium low and simmer for 4 hours (or at least a minimum of 2 hours but longer is better).
  6. If using the small whole potatoes, add them to the beans during the last hour of cooking.
  7. When ready, transfer the green beans and potatoes to a serving dish and serve hot.

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:

1/2 cup

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 169Total Fat: 4gSaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 2gCholesterol: 15mgSodium: 657mgCarbohydrates: 26gFiber: 6gSugar: 10gProtein: 11g

Crock Pot canned green beans recipe: if you would prefer to use a slow cooker then pre-heat your Crock Pot on the high setting then follow the regular recipe instructions. Once all of the ingredients are added reduce the heat to low and cover. Green beans in the slow cooker will take around 8 hours on the low setting.

Instant Pot Canned Green Beans Recipe: If you prefer to cook the green beans in your Instant Pot or pressure cooker, follow any manufacturer directions as needed and melt the bacon fat, then add the seasoning meat and remaining ingredients. Pressure cook for 10 minutes then natural release a few minutes before releasing pressure. Follow all safety guidelines when using a pressure cooker.

What to do with canned green beans? If you’re looking for other ways to use canned green beans, they may be rinsed and used straight from the can as an ingredients in salads, like a classic 3 Bean Salad, or a topper on a garden salad.

Fresh Green Beans Recipe: If you have a few fresh green beans from the garden, they can be combined with canned green beans for cooking or make an entire batch using fresh by following the same recipe instructions after prepping the fresh beans.

Try Simple Skillet Green Beans from Healthy Seasonal Recipes

A Walk Down Memory Lane

Some of my best childhood memories are sitting on the front porch with grandparents, aunts and uncles and stringing beans. Everyone grew their own food back then and there was just as much joy sitting around and talking while prepping as there was enjoying the meals.

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Thank you so much for stopping by! I am so glad that you did. I hope that you enjoy a side of delicious green beans with your meal soon.

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Captain Pete

Tuesday 9th of July 2024

In the 50s and 60s when Moms mom was still alive she canned beans and tomatoes forever it seemed. By April stewed tomatoes and green beans were all that was left. She always cooked the beans in salt pork from the pig that got killed in the fall. My kids would die if they saw me out in the barn reaching into salted water to pull out some salt pork never was it refrigerated. Bacon grease on the back of the stove might get you a call from Dept of child services

Barbara Miller

Friday 17th of February 2023

Canned green beans are so good cooked like this. It makes them taste like my Little Granny's green beans that we canned from her garden. I like to serve them with whole canned tomatoes on the side.

Amy L Catts

Tuesday 26th of April 2022

Julia,I had to write to let you know. I made these beans for my family on Easter. They haven't eaten canned green beans for more than 15 years. Fresh only. They were hesitant to try your beans but who could resist. They were the first to go. I made 5 cans. 4 grown adults kept looking at the empty bowl. I followed the recipe as written. I've been asked repeatedly to make them again and I will I'd rate them 10 stars.

Julia Jordan

Tuesday 26th of April 2022

Amy, You have made my heart smile! Thank you so much for stopping by to let me know how much y'all enjoyed this recipe. ~Julia

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