So You Think You Hate Veggies? Green Beans

By , SparkPeople Blogger
My boyfriend, Fred, and I joined a food co-op this summer to supplement our weekly farmers market trips (and cut food costs). Every two weeks, we pay $20 and a bag of mostly organic, local when possible produce is delivered to our door (by our friend Chad, who runs it). Most of the produce is stuff we love: fresh raspberries, spinach, apples, tomatoes. Other times we get one of the few vegetables Fred dislikes. (Me, I've never met a veg I didn't like.) This time it was beans: green and yellow wax.
I start each week by eating the fruit and vegetables that are going to spoil first: sunflower sprouts, blackberries, tomatoes. Finally, by Thursday night, only the beans were left.
It was do or (let them) die time.
The trick to learning to like vegetables you hate is to disguise their appearance and flavor. (And, no, that doesn't mean dipping them in batter and deep frying them. No Green Bean Fries for me, thank you!) Think about what it is you dislike about that particular vegetable.
I asked Fred why he's anti-green beans. It turns out that he remembers the long, mushy canned beans from childhood.

Step 1: Chop the beans into 1-inch pieces.
Step 2: Change texture. Sauté them in a bit of olive oil, salt and pepper on high heat until they're crispy on the outside and still slightly firm.
Step 3: Change the flavor: Add pesto (with homemade lemony basil from the coop) and an extra bit of parmesan cheese!
Results: "Is this pasta?" Fred asks as I hand him a plate of beans.

Crispy Green Beans with Pesto
2 cups fresh green beans
1 T olive oil
2T pesto (from a jar is fine)
2T parmesan

Trim ends from green beans, then chop into 1" pieces.
Heat olive oil over high heat in medium skillet. Add beans and cover skillet for two minutes. Uncover, add a sprinkle of salt and pepper and cook about 5 minutes, until crispy and caramelized on most sides. Add pesto and remove from heat. Sprinkle with parmesan and serve.
Makes 4 1/2 cup servings.
76 calories, 5.8 g fat (1.3 g saturated fat), 2 g fiber, 4.6 g carbs, 2.5 g protein
You can also find the recipe here.
Want to learn to like a certain vegetable? Email with your name, the vegetable you dislike and any dietary restrictions. We might blog about it!

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Like green beans cooked any kind of way. Report
This sounds different, and there are some really good comments, too.
I'll give this a try - but I reckon I'll use either tinned tomato, or tomato passata (either way, the kind with virtually nothing added) instead of the pesto - and then of course I'll need garlic, and coarse grain mustard.....
Thanks for the idea :)
My dislike for veggies came about because as a child I was forced to stay at the table until eating all on plate. Most days the plate contained brussel sprouts. Hate them! Equate veggies with punishment. Report
Sounds great - I will give it a try. Report
love it but the kitchen and I are not good friends so I avoid ti Report
My hubby dislikes the "heavy chlorophyll taste" of green beans. This may be another way to get him to eat them. So far, vinegar and other acidic sauces have been the key. "Dilly beans", balsamic vinegar and garlic, lemon and lemon pepper, etc. Report
This recipe sounds great, I'm going to try it as soon as I can get to the store and get some fresh green beans. It's snowy and cold here. Report
We have snow up to our eyeballs today in the Midwest. And, a sackful of fresh green beans. Husband says they will probably lack flavor! Ha! Not with this recipe! Thanks, sounds great! Report
Fresh green beans are one of my favorite veggies. Your recipe sounds yummy. I will give a try. Report
Sounds great! Report
I don't have a problem eating my grean beans.. but this sounds yummy and worth a try !
When I eat green beans I vomit. I ate green bean casserole once with the crunchy onions on the top and I loved it but I vomited. I always wondered if anyone else had trouble eating green beans.

I love all other vegetables. Even brussel sprouts. Report
My husband and I both love green beans and grow them in our garden. I've already got 3 gallons of blanched green beans in the freezer and are running out of people to give them away to. I'll definitely try your recipe. Thanks for the fresh idea. Report
ok article. But I hit green bean burn out. I hardly ever eat them. years ago when we were financially struggling the only cheap vegetable that we could afford was green beans. I had to eat so many that now I can't hardly stand them. Report
So did Fred like them?! Report
We have a little Chinese restaurant in town that does Garlic Green Beans to die for! Pencil-thin, bright green, crisp, in a rich, gooey sauce...oh my.

I make the best (light version) green bean stuff around (you know, the casserole that shows up at holidays). My TOPS friends are bugging me for the recipe.

No matter what the weather, I can always grow green beans. Until this year. Blecchy, cold year. Got a few dinners' worth. Maybe next year.

Love raw peas from the garden, but never could get used to raw beans.

My mom used to do tempura-fried garden beans (and zucchini--wow!). We kids would gobble 'em up as fast as she could pull them out of the skillet. Report
I love green beans! I cook fresh ones in the microwave until "desired tenderness" and toss with lemon, mint, and garlic.

Although, I also love the mushy green beans, cold, straight out of the can. Report
this sounds yummy! I'm going to have to make this for my family. Report
I am so go going to try this as soon as I can get (or make) some pesto sauce. It's funny because green beans are just about the only bean I eat! I hate every other bean and refuse to eat them. The texture is not for me, I think because the actual "bean" is hidden, it's easier to swallow. Im just weird like that. Report
I love green beans, but I'm not so sure I'd like them with pesto. Report
I love steamed green beans, but I grew up with a mom who boiled canned green beans with ham, and a dad who boiled them in vegetable stock with raw fennel. THAT's a different flavor. I think I like the ham-boiled beans best, though, because it reminds me of my childhood. I love this recipe and can't wait to try it! Report
Another way to prepare green beans and yes I've had a lot of people tell me it's weird. I boil them in milk with a little bit of butter and salt. The milk adds a little different flavor to it. Report
I happen to enjoy boiled green beans with nothing on them - boiled just long enough that they are cooked and bright green. I also happen to like canned green beans, lol!

Here's an interesting green bean snack idea - take leftover cooked green beans (just ends trimmed off) and coat them with italian dressing and chill in the fridge. Very yummy!!! Report
This sounds much more appetizing than the canned stuff! Thanks for sharing your recipe ... can't wait to try it!! Report
another idea to try which is less in fat is to boil the beans in water, but add a low sodium beef boullion cube while boiling. It dstracts from the strong bean flavor for those that don't "really" like green beans, but the beef flavor isn't over powering. Even the kids will like them. Report
Love green beans but reciepe sounds good and I will try it. I keep green beans steamed in the refrigerator and is my go to snack food. Add a little salt and good to go. Report
I like green beans but no one else in the family would swallow one. Maybe I will just make a small dish for myself. Report
I LOVE green beans, just ate some for dinner. Therefore, I don't need them camoflagged, but that recipe sounds great. Is it a spark recipe? Report
I LOVE green beans, just ate some for dinner. Therefore, I don't need them camoflagged, but that recipe sounds great. Is it a spark recipe? Report
Your green bean recipes sound great. Report
Stepf, this is another winner... I don't do dairy... but hey... i got a substitute for that too... so you just keep bringing on the recipes. Wish we had a coop like yours. Tell Chad I said, "What up!" (LOL). Report
I love green beans. I will try this one. Report
Thanks for the great idea. I didn't really know what to do with fresh green beans, as far as cooking them, and this recipe looks great! Report
Thanks for the recipe. I'm usually the anti-veggie person in the house. I hate mushy veggie stuff. But this looks like something I would like to eat. I'm definitely trying this recipe out. :) Report
i make canned green beans that are similar and super simple. drain beans and saute in a small amount of oil or butter along with onions, mushrooms, and garlic until slightly browned. there are never leftovers! Report
That sounds really great! I get green beans quite often from my co-op as well, so this will give me something new to do with them. Just steaming them is getting really old. Report
Great posts!! Report
I was also one of those who grew up with bacon and bacon fat added to the green beans. I never liked the bacon fat, however, I did miss that slightly smokey flavor from the bacon. A much lighter substitute is ham bouillion. I add a teaspoon of bouillion, dash of salt, and a teaspoon of honey. Simmer until done to your own satisfaction. I also like to saute in a skillet with a splash of light soy sauce. Report
Can't stand most green beans - at least not the things my parents called green beans. Have learned that if you get them fresh or frozen and don't cook them to death, they are quite tasty. I like a little crunch in them and love the REAL green color as well as the fresh flavors. Report
Green Beans are on the vegetables that are agreeable when you are trying to get your total in for the day! Report
i love all veggies. my husband does not. so finding new ways to cook them are a must. he will try anything once and if he likes it i keep that recipe. i might have to cook the veggie 2 or 3 different ways and times. but he eventually likes one of them. Report
Great recipe, thanks! I think I will make it (but without the cheese.) Report
i love all fresh vegetables raw Report
Green beans are almost any veggies I do love my veggies I have to make these green bean tonight thanks. Report
I love fresh green beans. I will eat them raw when I can. I also like them steamed with crushed garlic and butter. Report
I LOVE veggies, thanks for posting this! Report
sounds yummy, I love veggies.

Kitt Report
This looks yummy,will definately have to try it! However,I really don't need to mask the green beans as I love them anyway! Thanks Report
Ok, I pretty much avoid all fruits and veggies unless I'm really trying to be healthy...which I am doing right now. I appreciate the effort you took to help me consider new ways to make veggies appeal to me. I think you're right.... do something, anything,... to make them more interesting! Report
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