Just two ingredients — bacon and green beans — come together synergistically in this mouthwatering side dish.
There is a saying that bacon makes everything better, and I have to admit that I can see why this adage was born. Bacon is crunchy, salty, smoky and sometimes even a little sweet, so it can add a huge pop of flavor to any dish. It’s great to have an ingredient in your culinary arsenal that can bring so much to the table with so little effort.
That’s the beauty of these braised green beans. As the fat slowly renders from the bacon, it coats the green beans as they cook through and sweeten while staying slightly crisp. The resulting dish is so much more than each ingredient provides on its own.
Fortunately, this magic requires little effort on your part. The prep is minimal, and though the cooking time is generous (up to an hour and 15 minutes), you only need to check on this dish three times before it’s ready to serve.
Bacon-braised green beans
Serves 4 to 6
Crisp-tender and sweet green beans are even better cooked in bacon fat and served with crunchy, salty bacon bits. Keep in mind that anything cooked with bacon fat is best served warm.
- 4 slices bacon
- 1-1/2 pounds green beans
- 1 teaspoon olive oil (just enough to keep the green beans from sticking to the dish before the bacon fat begins rendering)
- 1 tablespoon water
- Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Use a knife or kitchen scissors to cut the bacon into 1/2-inch pieces. Rinse, dry and trim the green beans.
- Coat the bottom of a large baking dish with the olive oil. Add the bacon, green beans and water and toss to combine. Move the dish to the oven and cook until the bacon is crispy and the green beans are crisp-tender, for 60 to 75 minutes, stirring about every 20 minutes. Serve warm.