Admittedly, I’ve grown to love them both ways. French style haricot verts make frequent appearances on our weeknight table because I can steam them in the microwave and they’re a light, delicious, easy side. But that doesn’t mean I don’t love the green beans from my childhood.
Southern Slow Cooker Green Beans
- 2 lbs fresh green beans, washed and trimmed
- 2 cups chicken broth
- 1 (2.8-ounce) package real bacon pieces (about 3/4 cup if making your own)
- 1/2 yellow onion, sliced
- 3 teaspoons kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- Lightly spray the crock of your slow cooker with nonstick cooking spray. Add the beans, chicken broth, onion, salt, pepper, and about 1/2 of the bacon. Cover and cook on high for 4 to 6 hours or low to 6 to 8 - or until the beans are tender to your liking. Stir the beans a couple times during cooking. Serve topped with the remaining bacon pieces.
Can I make the beans the day before?
My husband is not a good veggie eater, but said he used to love his grandmother’s (southern) green beans. Made this recipe and he and his whole family LOVE it! I make it, now, for all of the big holiday gatherings.
Thanks so much for letting me know, Jennifer! I’m just tickled everyone enjoyed it!
I fry the bacon until it is crisp. This way you don’t get all of the grease in the green beans. After frying the bacon I fry the onion in the bacon grease. Doing this you get all of the flavor from both. I cook my green beans on the stove. You don’t want to over cook them. Cook them just until they are tender. Turn the stove off and then add the bacon and onions.
While I love this method, too. It’s a very difference end product. My version is the “cooked to death” version many folks associate with Southern green beans. I have several other green bean recipes that will yield more firm beans like you’re talking about.
One of my favorite go-to recipes for holidays and get-togethers. I do cut the salt back, but not too much! I get lots of compliments on this dish.
Thank you Lisa!
Semi-crunchy, partially cooked green beans are AWFUL! Thank you for providing a recipe (and slow cooker cooking times) for tender green beans. I cook soup from the stock of our Holiday turkeys and I love green beans in the soup. They take the longest time to cook, but who wants partially cooked green beans in your soup.
Take heed of this recipe for cooking times for green beans! They take a LONG time! I have not tried making this particular recipe, but I will! It looks delicious!
Ha! Thanks, Norm!
In our house we love the onion flavor but not always the texture. Do you think I could add the onion in big chunks to get flavor and then remove them prior to serving?
100%! That will work just fine!
This sounds great, my only concern is the 3 teas. Salt with the bacon. Last Thanksgiving my beans were too salty and nasty. LOL Is this a very salty flavor?
If you’re worried, you can always scale it back and add more to taste. It’s always easier to add more.
Could I do canned green beans and shorten the cooking time??
How much would you reduce the cooking time?
Essentially, you’ll just need to heat them through. A few hours should work.
I’m from the north and this is the way all of my family, friends and in-laws make green beans. It’s the only way I know of. It always puzzles me as why people want to call certain foods southern?
There was a great thread on my FB page about this very thing just the other day.
Do I need to cook the bacon before putting it in the crock pot with the green beans?
If you’re using the fully cooked real bacon pieces, there’s no need to cook it.
Christine @ myblissfulmess
Oh man… Stacey you never cease to amaze me! These green beans are not only so easy, but I love that it’s done in the slow cooker, freeing me up to work on the rest of the meal. Using the real bacon pieces is another time saver and works VERY well in this recipe. The green beans come out tender and full of bacony goodness. The family very much enjoyed them and I think these are my new favorite green beans!
Thanks so much, Christine! I’m so glad to hear you enjoyed these!
These are great but I love to add about a tablespoon of bacon drippings for extra flavor
I’d never be mad at some extra bacon flavor!
What size crock pot/slow cooker? Thank you ????
I typically use my 6-quart.
I made these for Christmas dinner. I filled the directions and they were perfect and gone!
How would you cook these if you did it in a pot on the stove instead of crock pot? I need my crock pot for something else.
You could use the same ingredients and method and just cook them until they’re tender to your liking.
Haven’t tried this recipe yet, but was wondering if I added potatoes should I cook them a little before adding to crock pot?
If they are small enough, you could add them in raw and they would cook.
Hi, wanted to make these but I only have beef broth. Do you think it would taste bad?
I’ve not tried it with beef broth, so I can’t say for sure. They’ll probably be fine.
Is there a reason the bacon has to be cooked first? Can I just put cut raw bacon in and let it cook with frozen green beans and onion?
You can do it that way. I prefer to get a little bit of the grease out of it first, so I cook it or used precooked bacon.
I also added some garlic powder and butter
I don’t know if your still replying to messages on here since some of them are from 2018 but I’m making this recipe for Christmas dinner and I cut the recipe in half and only used 1 pound of green beans and 1 c of chicken broth and I put it in my 2.5 qt crock pot. And all the liquid seems to be under the beans ? And the beans on top just looks dry like u just pulled them out of the bag.. of course it’s only been on low for maybe an hour. Is it supposed to look like that at first ?
Ha! Oh, yes! I reply to comments nearly every single day and it doesn’t matter how old the post is. That’s pretty normal. You are welcome to give them a stir, but as they cook the beans will also steam. So the top ones will cook too.
I made these for Thanksgiving this year and they were a hit with everyone. Everyone wants them again for Christmas dinner! I cant believe how easy and tasty they are.
Awesome!! I’m so glad they turned out great for you!
Can u use frozen green beans?
Yes! But you may need to adjust the cook time a little bit.
This recipe is great, I have made twice now. First time with fresh beans, second time with 2 16oz bags of frozen beans,I did not thaw them, just cooked on low about 4 hours, they were excellent! Not mushy at all.
Wonderful! So glad this one has worked well for you, Stephanie!
Did you still use the same amount of broth, or did you cut back since the frozen beans would have some liquid when they thaw? I have a big Costco size bag of beans I’m thinking of using for Christmas Eve
Made this recipe for a pot luck at work. It was a hit. Everyone asked for the recipe. Simple and had a good flavor. Will be adding this to our list of favorite dishes.
SO glad everyone enjoyed them!! Thanks for taking the time to let me know!
Question….I havent made these yet, but I am going to for this Thanksgiving. Iij like a tiny bite to my green beans. The cooking time…r the beans mushy? Just soft? Or really soft? If tjeybr soft like canned that’s a bit to soft to.me so I can shut the off and drain @ 40 50 min earlier.
These will be pretty soft, so I would certainly recommend a shorter cooking time.
I have made this two time now and getting ready to make again today. I love this recipe!! The beans turn out perfect!!
Awesome! So glad you’ve gotten some great use out of this one!
I added a few hole fresh tomatoes with a little brown sugar.. Yummy !!!
Sounds great! Glad you enjoyed these!
Could you sprinkle a little parmesan cheese on top and does all that chicken broth stay in the crockpot when serving
Sure you could! Yep, I leave everything right in the slow cooker, but you’re welcome to strain the beans and put them in a serving bowl if you wish.
Excellent recipe! I use Smoked Turkey in place of pork. Some family members have an allergy to pork. It causes boilS
So glad you enjoyed it!
Debra M N
Just in case a cook did not know that the real bacon pieces in the recipe, are pre cooked , I think you need to say cook them until done before adding to beans, unless you bought precooked.. I think it would be easy for a novice cook, or one living in a different country to think real bacon pieces were just packages of raw bacon. Otherwise very nice recipe.
Great point! Thanks for sharing!
Thank you for posting this comment! I would have put the raw bacon in the crockpot with my green beans. I’m looking up recipes because I don’t know how to do it, so by adding this piece of information you saved me!
I’ve cooked my slow beans with ham hocks, for six to eight hrs.
I made this with 1 variation. I used about 1/4 cup bacon and 2-3 Tbsp of butter. Still had the smokey bacon flavor and luxurious mouthfeel with the butter. None left and we started calling butter “Vitamin B”! Lol great recipe!
So glad they turned out great for you!
Would frozen green beans work? If so, would you adjust the cooking time?
They would! I would imagine the time would be roughly the same.
This recipe was excellent. I used 2 tsp of salt and 2 pounds of frozen green beans that I thawed by rinsing and draining. Thank you! This saved me so much effort and stove top space.
I’m so glad you enjoyed it!!
If I use 4 cans of green beans, do I still use 2 cans of chicken broth
I would, but 1 can would probably be enough.
Do you cook the bacon before adding to the crockpot?
The bacon should be precooked bacon.
If I wanted to make 4lbs green beans should I use the portions for every other ingredient also?
I would double everything exactly.
Do the can beans need to be drained first?
Can I use canned green beans?
You can, but the cook time won’t be as long. Maybe just an hour or two.
We are hosting our first Thanksgiving and I’m excited to try your recipe! If I wanted to make 4 lbs. of green beans, how much additional time would you recommend cooking them for? Thank you!
Hi Bethany! The cook time should be about the same. I don’t see any need for additional time. Y’all enjoy!
Growing up north with a German Aunt this is the way we always ate green beans except for the splash of vinegar prior to serving. Now that balsamic is so popular I always have different flavors so I try various ones instead of just apple cider vinegar. All time favorite is an orange balsamic. Try it and taste the wonderful difference this makes.
That sounds great! Thanks for sharing, Margi!
Could you do this the night before then reheat for thanksgiving my mama always pan fried these thankyou
Could I use home canned green beans? I did about 30 qts this summer and normally just reheat them briefly on the stove top. I wonder if they’d be too mushed reheating in the slow cooker since they’ve already been processed. What do you think?
You could, I’d just cut the cook time was back to avoid them being overcooked.
When fresh beans aren’t available, I often use Blue Lake canned green beans. I place two cans in a smaller crock pot that I have along with a diced Vidalia onion and 6 slices of thick-sliced bacon cut into pieces. I let them cook all day with no problem. They come out firm with a great flavor. Everyone raves about them.
Awesome! Thanks for the great idea!!
Do you cook your bacon first or add it to your slow cooker raw?
No. Canned green beans are precooked and this would torture both you and that poor green bean. Just mix and warm up.
Jo Ann Johnson
Try adding a couple of diced potatoes too—yum
I had unusually long beans so I went ahead and snapped or sliced many of them into smaller pieces. Will this be ok?
Do I need to make any adjustments now?
Nope, everything should work just fine. Enjoy!
Must. Try. This! Hubby and I love green beans with bacon and onions–just never made them in the crockpot before. Thank you!
Who could forget that???
I cooked these last night for a work lunch… I didnt have as much luck. They tasted like earth! What did I do wrong? I cooked them on low all night for 8 hours?
Like earth? Were they fresh green beans?
If I use canned beans would I set my crock pot on high or low for 2 hours?
I think low for 2 hours should be enough for canned green beans.
How do I do this recipe for 18 people?