I am not a fan of canned green beans. They are always that weird grey-green color, reminiscent of hospital food. They are mushy and limp, like an unenthusiastic handshake.
Frozen green beans, on the other hand, I can get behind. If done right, they are blanched before they are frozen, allowing them to keep their natural green color. Instead of hospital food, a bag of green beans brings back the thought of hot summer days in the garden. Of sipping a glass of iced tea while standing over a hot stove, dropping beans into boiling water and then plunging them into an icy bath before packing them into freezer bags. They are grassy green and still a little crisp. A much better vegetable option in the winter than beans in a can, in my opinion.
And if you freeze them quickly enough, they retain most of their nutrients. It makes them even healthier than the beans in the “fresh” produce section that have been shipped from distant states or even countries.
Frozen Green Beans
Green beans (yep, just the one ingredient!)
Wash the green beans and chop off the ends. You can leave the beans whole, snap them into smaller pieces, or slice them thinly lengthwise. I chose to simply snap this batch into 1-2″ long pieces.
Bring a large stockpot of water to a boil.
Meanwhile, fill a large mixing bowl with ice water.
Drop 2-3 cups of green beans into the boiling water. After three minutes, fish the beans out of the hot water with a slotted spoon and plunge them into the ice water to halt the cooking process.
Once the beans are cooled (about 5 minutes in the ice water), pack them into a labeled freezer container.
Repeat with the remaining green beans.
Squeeze as much air out of the freezer container or bag as possible, then seal and store in the freezer for winter.