Green beans don’t have to be boring! These Green Beans with Bacon and Onions are quick, easy, and most importantly, tasty! Ready in no time, start with canned green beans, and you’ll have a delish side dish ready in minutes!

fork bite of bacon, onion, green beans

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I love green beans. They’re versatile, delicious, and good for you, too! Sometimes I just like to steam green beans or give them a quick boil. Other times, I want my green beans packed with flavor and that’s where these Green Beans with Bacon and Onions come in. Loaded with bacon and onion and with a light sweet and sour flavor, these green beans are fabulous!

bacon green beans bite

Green Beans with Bacon and Onions

Who doesn’t love the smell of bacon and onion frying? My family always wanders into the kitchen when the bacon and onions are cooking, and when you pair them with the green beans, well, it’s a match made in heaven. My friend, Kay, gave me this recipe 30 years ago, and it’s my “quick and easy” go-to side dish.

serving of Green Beans with Bacon and Onions

This is such an easy recipe to double or even triple if you need to feed a crowd. You can even pop it all into a slow cooker to keep warm for potlucks or holiday buffet meals.

Why I love this recipe

  • The beans are already cooked, so there’s hardly any cooking involved.
  • You can make this recipe ahead of time and then just heat it before serving.
  • It’s easy to double or triple to feed a crowd.
  • This Green Beans with Bacon and Onions recipe goes with so many main dishes!

ingredients for canned green beans

Gather these ingredients

  • Canned green beans – Well drained (we use “cut” green beans).
  • Bacon – Thick-cut bacon works best; cut into small pieces.
  • Onion – White or yellow onion; diced.
  • White vinegar 
  • Sugar – Granulated white sugar.
  • Salt and pepper – To taste.

how to make Green Beans with Bacon and Onions

How to make Green Beans with Bacon and Onions

  1. Cook the bacon pieces in a large skillet until they’re crisp. 
  2. Add the diced onion and saute for a few minutes until the onion is tender.
  3. Add the drained green beans and gently mix with the bacon and onions. Heat through.
  4. Season with salt and pepper.
  5. Whisk the vinegar and sugar in a small bowl until the sugar is dissolved. Pour this over the green bean mixture and cook until the green beans are hot.
  6. Season with freshly cracked black pepper and serve.

green beans with onion and bacon

Can you make Green Beans with Bacon and Onions with fresh green beans?

You sure can! Instead of using canned green beans, clean and snip the woody end off a pound of fresh green beans. Cook the beans in boiling salted water until they’re tender, then drain them and add them to the sauteed bacon and onions. Finish the recipe as written.

Can I make this recipe with frozen green beans?

Yes! Prepare the bacon and onions and then add thawed green beans and continue the recipe as written.

spoonful of green beans with bacon

Tips & substitutions

  • Use good quality canned green beans for this recipe. Look for low-sodium beans if you’re trying to control your salt.
  • You can use canned whole or cut green beans or even Italian green beans. My mom called these “string” beans.
  • I like thick-cut bacon because it is the meatiest, but any kind of bacon will work.
  • You can use cooking onions or red onions, or even sweet onions in this recipe. Use what you have!
  • Change the flavor a bit and use white balsamic vinegar instead of regular vinegar.
  • Don’t like your means too sweet? Start with half the amount of sugar and add more to your liking.

Green Beans with Bacon and Onions in bowl

Serving suggestions

This easy green bean recipe pairs so well with so many dishes! I love it with air fryer Chicken Cordon Bleu, but you can also pair it with grilled salmon, teriyaki chicken tenders, steaks, and more.

taking a bite of Green Beans with Bacon and Onions

Storage

Store any leftover green beans in an airtight container in the fridge for 3-4 days. The vinegar in the dressing may discolor the beans if they sit too long, but they’ll be fine to eat. This green bean recipe won’t freeze well – it’s best eaten fresh.

Check out these awesome green bean recipes while you’re here

serving of Green Beans with Bacon and Onions
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Green Beans with Bacon and Onions

These Green Beans with Bacon and Onions are quick, easy, and tasty! Ready in no time, start with 3 cans of green beans for a great side dish.
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes
Yield: 8
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Ingredients
 

  • 3 14 oz cans cut green beans, drained
  • ½ pound thick cut bacon, cut into small pieces
  • ½ small white onion, diced
  • ½ cup white vinegar, or Trader Joe’s white balsamic
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • Salt and pepper

Instructions
 

  • In a large frying pan, cook the bacon pieces and until crisp. Add the diced onion and saute for a few minutes until tender.
  • Add the drained green beans and gently mix in with the bacon and onions. Heat through and salt and pepper.
  • In a small bowl, add the vinegar and the sugar. With a small whisk, whisk until thoroughly mixed and clear. Pour over the green beans. Turn the heat up and cook the green beans until hot. Add more fresh cracked black pepper. Remove to a serving bowl and serve!
Cuisine: American
Course: Side Dish
Calories: 147kcal, Carbohydrates: 7g, Protein: 4g, Fat: 11g, Saturated Fat: 4g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g, Monounsaturated Fat: 5g, Trans Fat: 0.04g, Cholesterol: 19mg, Sodium: 188mg, Potassium: 63mg, Fiber: 0.1g, Sugar: 6g, Vitamin A: 11IU, Vitamin C: 0.3mg, Calcium: 3mg, Iron: 0.1mg
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taking a bite of canned green beans