Bacon-wrapped green beans?! You got that right. Fresh Green Beans are seasoned perfectly and then wrapped with bacon in individual bundles. They make an elegant presentation, but are easy enough to make for any meal.
Green Bean Bundles with bacon are a new discovery for me, though they have apparently been around for a while. I recently had bacon-wrapped green beans for the first time at a favorite restaurant on St. Simons Island, Georgia – The Half Shell. I immediately fell in love with this pretty little side dish, and had to figure out a recipe to share with y’all.
This is not your typical southern green bean with bacon side. The green beans are left a little more “crisp-tender” than the old-school way of cooking and they have a slight sweetness. When I asked about the sweetness when trying these at The Half Shell, they said it came from brown sugar.
After returning home I started searching and found a few recipes online, but none that suited me exactly. Many of them leave the green beans really crisp, and there is just too much old southerner in me to change it up that much. Also, I talked with Sara about how we could give the recipe our own twist and she suggested adding something very simple – cracked black pepper. We were thinking of the flavor you get from bacon encrusted in black pepper, which might be fun to try too.
Tips for getting your bacon-wrapped green bean bundles just right
- Blanch the beans first to keep the bright green color
- After blanching, dry the beans thoroughly on paper towels.
- Carefully watch your bacon. To ensure it gets done without getting the beans overdone you want the bacon par-cooked in the oven almost to the point where it starts to crisp. The following photo shows mine before they went in the oven.
- Adding the baking soda to the boiling water further ensures the bright color
- If you use those cute little bamboo toothpicks soak them in water for a little while so they don’t burn
- For easiest clean up and even cooking I lined my baking pan with parchment paper for cooking the bacon and the bundles
- Slightly vary cooking time and bundle size according to the size of your beans. I used the smaller French Beans (Haricots verts) and put about 10 beans in each bundle.
These bacon-wrapped Green Bean Bundles were simple, but look so pretty. I made a small amount (7 bundles) and wrote the recipe that way, but it would be very easy to double or triple for a big holiday meal or a dinner party. They would look awesome piled on a platter on a buffet. Think of the beautiful colors when you set them next to Garlic Herb Deviled Eggs!
Another colorful, delicious side dish for your holiday table or buffet is our Succotash Recipe. You can make it traditional style, or a creamy version.
Green Bean Bundles with Bacon
- Bake bacon strips on parchment paper lined baking pan at 400 degrees for 7-8 minutes and then set aside to drain.
- Bring pot of salted water to a boil and stir in baking soda.
- Add green beans to water and boil for 3 minutes after water comes back to a boil.
- Remove green beans with slotted spoon or drain in colander and immediately plunge into ice water to cool.
- Dry cooled green beans with paper towels.
- Dissolve brown sugar and salt in hot water and then stir in melted butter.
- Toss beans in brown sugar/butter mixture to coat.
- Wrap about 10 beans with one piece bacon and secure with toothpick, repeating until all beans are used.
- Drizzle with any remaining brown sugar mixture.
- Sprinkle with freshly ground black pepper and bake at 400 for about 15 minutes.
Green Bean Bundles with Bacon would be the perfect make-ahead dish.
If you want to make these bacon-wrapped green beans ahead of time, I would do the initial cooking of the beans and bacon, assemble them, and then cover and refrigerate. Then, whenever you’re ready, set them out a few minutes to get the chill off and then cook as directed in the oven. Did you know we have an entire post of “make-ahead” dishes? You can check those out by clicking here.
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