Green Beans with Caramelized Shallots

by Kelli on November 18, 2013

Green Beans with Caramelized Shallots

I spent most of this past weekend reminding myself that Thanksgiving has not yet happened.  You’d think this would be an easy thing to remember, right?!  I feel like I have one foot in Thanksgiving prep and one foot (possibly almost a full leg) in holiday baking and decorating.

The thing is, as a food blogger I’m always thinking and planning ahead for the next holiday/season/big event.  Sometimes it’s a little hard staying in the present.  It doesn’t help that the candy aisle is overflowing with everything red & green, chocolate & peppermint, eggnog is back in the grocery store, and of course, Pinterest.

I haven’t started listening to Christmas music yet.  That’s where I draw the line.

Green Beans with Caramelized Shallots

I tried to keep myself in check, but I totally caved yesterday….and then it just sort of snowballed.  I got to thinking how thankful I am for all of you…for all of you that read the blog, for your lovely comments and emails, for the friendships I’ve made through blogging.  Really, if it wasn’t for you guys, this blog wouldn’t exist.  So, to say thanks, and to help get your holiday season started on a happy note I’m sponsoring a giveaway for a $50 Williams-Sonoma Gift Card!!

Green Beans with Caramelized Shallots

Before we get caught up with holiday baking, let’s back up to Thanksgiving for a minute because I have one more side dish to share with you…..Green Beans with Caramelized Shallots.

I’ve never actually had green bean casserole, and to be honest, I don’t even know what’s in a green bean casserole.  I do love green beans though, and I’m always happy to see them in the Thanksgiving line up!

Toss your green beans with some deep brown, tender, sweet and savory caramelized shallots for a side dish all your guests will love.

Kelli’s tips:
* Don’t rush the caramelized shallots!  Caramelizing is all about low heat, slow cooking and frequent stirring.
* Get a jump on this dish by caramelizing the shallots and blanching the green beans one or two days beforehand, then heat everything in a saute pan about 15 minutes before you’re ready to sit down to dinner.

Green Beans with Caramelized Shallots

Yield: Serves 4


  • 10 shallots, sliced thin
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 1 pound green beans, ends trimmed
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • salt
  • fresh ground pepper


For the Caramelized Shallots:

Heat the butter in a large saute pan (preferably cast iron or stainless steel) over medium heat. Add the shallots, season with salt & pepper, and stir to coat with butter. Cook, stirring every 5 minutes, making sure the shallots don't stick to the bottom of the pan, for about 40 minutes, until the shallots are golden brown, very tender and fragrant.

* Shallots will soften, become translucent and release their liquid

* Shallots will continue to soften and breakdown, and they will start to caramelize. If you notice the shallots cooking too quickly, reduce the heat.

* Shallots will continue to deepen in color and fragrance, and become jammy

When shallots have reached the desired level of caramelization remove from the heat. If not serving immediately, cool completely and store in a sealed container in the refrigerator.

To Blanch the Green Beans:

Prepare in ice bath and set aside.

Bring a large pot water to a boil over high heat. Add two tablespoons of salt to the water. Add the green beans to the water and cook for 2-5 minutes, until tender.

Use a slotted spoon to transfer the green beans from the pot to the ice bath. This immediately stops the cooking process and helps the beans to keep their vibrant green color. When the beans are cool, transfer to a paper towel-lined plate or bowl.

If you're not serving the beans immediately, store in a sealed container in the refrigerator.

To Serve:

Heat the olive oil in a large saute pan over medium heat. Add the green beans and caramelized shallots, stir together and cook until heat through. Season with salt and fresh ground pepper, as necessary.

Green Beans with Caramelized Shallots


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{ 20 comments… read them below or add one }

Julia November 18, 2013 at 8:35 AM

Yup, holidays tend to come reaaaal early for food bloggers, which I can’t say I’m too upset about because when the actual holiday comes, I tend to let everyone else do the cooking bahahaha! Sorry. Anyway, this green bean dish looks amaaaazing! I love that it’s not cream-ridden and full of unnatural things. Nice and fresh, healthy and delicious! I need to caramelize me some shallots and put my patient hat on so as not to rush them :) Need this for Thanksgiving!


Kelli November 20, 2013 at 9:24 PM

Thanks, lady!! And, so glad you said it, because it’s been on my mind….I’m kind of over Thanksgiving and not as into cooking dinner as I was a few weeks ago….oops.


Laura (Blogging Over Thyme) November 18, 2013 at 9:17 AM

Yeah, totally understand the getting ahead of yourself issue–I still can’t believe Thanksgiving is a week away still! Haha

These green beans look great! I’ve never had green bean casserole either, but to be honest, the idea sort of scares me. I’d much rather have a big platter of these any day!


Kelli November 20, 2013 at 9:25 PM

Yes….I cannot wrap my head around green bean casserole! Something about cream and fresh green veggies just seems wrong to me. And of course, I can never turn down caramelized shallots :)


Megan {Country Cleaver} November 18, 2013 at 10:32 AM

I’m a total sucker for green beans during the holidays! And shallots make me swoon. This is agreat green bean recipe for Turkey Day!


Kelli November 18, 2013 at 2:27 PM

Thanks, Megan!


Amy @ Elephant Eats November 18, 2013 at 12:02 PM

These green beans look great! I’m always looking for ways to prepare them since I end up just steaming them- so boring!


Kelli November 18, 2013 at 2:26 PM

This totally beats steaming!


Lauren @ Climbing Grier Mountain November 18, 2013 at 2:21 PM

Is there anything better than caramelized shallots? Swoon!!


Kelli November 18, 2013 at 2:26 PM

I may or may not be eating these green beans just for the caramelized shallots.


Ashley | Spoonful of Flavor November 18, 2013 at 7:05 PM

Green beans are one of my favorite veggies. I love the addition of the caramelized shallots. I’ll admit, I did already start the Christmas music :)


Kelli November 20, 2013 at 9:21 PM

Yes, team green bean!!


Natalie @ Tastes Lovely November 19, 2013 at 12:51 AM

I don’t start listening to Christmas music until the day after Thanksgiving. Then Christmas is officially on! The shallots on these green beans look amazing!


Kelli November 20, 2013 at 9:20 PM

I’m a strict no Christmas music til after Thanksgiving….but I’ve apparently loosened my standards on everything else holiday related :)


Sarah | The Sugar Hit November 19, 2013 at 8:06 AM

Caramelised shallots, I love you. You make green beans even better.


Kelli November 20, 2013 at 9:18 PM

Right!! Caramelized shallots make everything better!


Christina @ The Beautiful Balance November 19, 2013 at 3:14 PM

LOVE this take on a classic!


Kelli November 20, 2013 at 9:17 PM

Thanks, Christina!


Joanne November 20, 2013 at 7:12 AM

That mess of caramelized shallots on top is delightful!!

And seriously, if I see one more display of red and green at the grocery store, I might go crazy!! Is NOTHING sacred?!


Kelli November 20, 2013 at 8:36 PM

I know the greens beans are supposed to be there stars here and all, but it’s really the caramelized shallots that are totally making this dish!


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