Sweet and Sour Green Beans

These sweet and sour green beans are made with bacon, vinegar, sugar, and mustard. A perfect side for everyday or holidays, like Thanksgiving.

A white serving platter filled with sweet and sour green beans, topped with crumbled bacon.

I bet even green bean haters will eat these sweet and sour green beans. The smoky bacon and sweet and tangy sauce that clings to these green beans brings a little something different to an otherwise normal vegetable.–Stacey Little

LC Try A Little Tenderness Note

When making these sweet and sour green beans—heck, when making any green beans—it can be tricky discerning exactly when to pull them from the heat. A lot depends on you—specifically, whether you’re a slightly crunchy versus super tender sorta person. Much also depends on the girth of the green beans and whether you’re using sturdy regular green beans or slender haricots verts. What works for us in terms of knowing when to pull them from the heat is quite simply 1. not walking away from the stove, and 2. sneaking a green bean and giving it the nibble test. We like to try a little tenderness.

Sweet and Sour Green Beans

  • Quick Glance
  • (1)
  • 15 M
  • 25 M
  • Serves 4 to 6
4/5 - 1 reviews
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Fry the bacon in a large skillet over medium heat until crisp. Remove the bacon from the pan and let it drain on paper towels or a brown paper bag.

Pat the the green beans completely dry and add them to the bacon drippings in the skillet. (If you have more than 2 tablespoons drippings in the skillet, you may wish to spoon some out and reserve them for another use.) Cook the green beans over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until the beans reach the desired tenderness, 6 to 13 minutes depending on the thickness of your green beans and your desired tenderness.

Meanwhile, in a small bowl whisk together the vinegar, cornstarch, brown sugar, dry mustard, salt, and pepper.

Pour the mixture over the green beans, crumble the bacon over the top, and cook until the sauce thickens and coats the beans, about 2 minutes. Serve immediately.

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Recipe Testers' Reviews

I loved this sweet and sour green beans recipe! The smokiness of the bacon, the tartness of the vinegar, and the sweetness of the sugar made these beans yummy. The beans were tender but still had a little crunch, as did the bacon. It was a snap to put together. A nice change from my usual steamed green beans tossed in a little butter and fresh basil. A winner!

We all know that green beans pair beautifully with bacon, right? Well, this easy sweet and sour green beans recipe takes it a step further. Not only is the original pairing there, but you add a sweet yet tangy mixture of dried mustard, vinegar, and a touch of sugar that coats the beans beautifully. In terms of the recipe itself, I used fresh haricots verts and sherry vinegar instead of white vinegar because that's what I had on hand. The green beans, once added to the pan of bacon grease, took 4 minutes to cook over medium heat. I don't like my beans mushy but perfectly crisp and a bit tender on the inside. A simple yet tasty recipe that I will be making again, especially during the summertime grilling season.


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