String Beans with Bacon (and onions) are delicious, and they are quick and easy to make. This hundred-year-old recipe brings back vague memories of string bean dishes from my childhood.
The recipe calls for cooking the beans until they are tender – and I cooked them for about 20 minutes. They weren’t crisp like the beans often prepared using modern recipes – but I found them to be a refreshing change, and enjoyed this dish’s old-fashioned goodness. The recipe is definitely a keeper.
Here’s the original recipe:
Here’s the recipe updated for modern cooks:
String Beans with Bacon
1 pound string beans (use either yellow or green beans)
2 small onions, thinly sliced
1 slice bacon, chopped
1/8 teaspoon salt
dash cayenne (red) pepper
Clean string beans, remove tips, and snap into 1-inch pieces. Place in a saucepan. Add the sliced onions and chopped bacon; then just barely cover with water, and add the salt and cayenne pepper. Place on the stove and bring to a boil using high heat; then reduce to a simmer. Cook for approximately 20 minutes, then remove from heat, drain any excess liquid (a little is okay), and serve.
47 thoughts on “Old-fashioned String Beans with Bacon Recipe”
I just made this yesterday. My mother made them like this and I had some bacon so I seasoned my beans with onion and bacon.
Some recipes come and go as food fads wax and wane in popularity, but some old recipes stand the test of time and are always tasty.
Maybe old-fashioned but still so delicious!
This recipe sure takes me back! I love green beans and rarely cook them–time to change that!
It’s the perfect time to make green beans. There are some lovely ones at the farmers’ markets this time of year.
I still make beans this way. It’s a common way of serving them in Texas restaurants, too. Even the fancy take-out place I occasionally get something from makes them this way. It’s like the little black dress and pearls of green beans, and so much better than that mushroom soup and fried onion routine.
Wow, that’s awesome. I don’t think that I’ve seen this dish on a restaurant menu in 15 or 20 years.
Perfect holiday vegetable.
I agree . . .it would be a wonderful vegetable dish to serve at a holiday gathering.
This sounds good. But is a further example of two peoples divided by a common language. We Brits call them runner beans, though I do recognise the term string beans.
I don’t think that the term “string bean” is used as much in the U.S. as it once was. I generally call these beans “green beans” if they are green, and “yellow beans” (or “wax beans”) if they are yellow. When I wrote this post, I kept typing “green beans” without thinking, and then would have to go back and change it to “string beans” to match the old recipe.
! We’re more likely to call French beans ( the little ones) green beans, though lately the name of choice seems to be ‘bobby beans’. Isn’t life complicated 😉 ?
It is – though it’s fun to learn about all the various types of beans and their names. It’s amazing how much variation there is.
This looks delicious. As much as I like crispy string beans, no doubt the fully cooked version is very tasty too. It’s nice to alternate.
I like string beans both crispy and fully cooked. The fully-cooked version seems more like a comfort food.
Thank you for sharing this one. I am anxious to try it.
I think that you’ll like this recipe.
I was surprised that the bacon was boiled with the beans and onions. Must try it!
Maybe old-time cooks like the simplicity of just throwing everything into one pan. The bacon is in this recipe is not crisp; rather it is tender and flavorful.
Did you take the strings off or not?
No, I used a modern variety of string beans so I didn’t need to remove the strings. I just broke the tips of the beans off, and then snapped them. Now that you asked, I’m thinking that it would be fun to make this recipe again and use heirloom beans with strings. It would be more authentic. 🙂
Why don’t we have heirloom shrimp that doesn’t have to be shelled and deveined ;)!
As in non-heirloom shrimp.
Some things are just mysteries. 🙂
I bought beans yesterday. Now to buy some bacon. 🙂
I think that you’ll like this recipe.
This so makes me think of my grandmother.
It’s nice to hear that it brought back some good memories. This is definitely an old-time comfort food.
Mom made these too – good idea for next weekend. Been going to farmers market now that summer is here and looking for ways to cook fresh veggies. Going to try cold beets like mom used to make. If you find a recipe for I guess it could be called chilled beets let us know. 🙂 I remember it had onion. No vinegar and oil that I can remember. I think she just cooked them in the morning and then cooled them for a nice cold veggie for dinner on a hot summers day.
mmm. . . your mother’s beet recipe sounds delicious. I’ll have to look and see if I can find any old-time beet recipes similar to the one you describe.
I never tried the cayenne pepper,always used the black pepper. I’ll have to try the cayenne .
I think that you’d like cayenne pepper. In my opinion, cayenne pepper is a little hotter and less pungent than black pepper – though this recipes doesn’t call for much cayenne, so this dish is not hot.
I’ve had green beans cooked like this before, and loved them! (Although I’m not sure they had the cayenne pepper in the.) Now I’m going to try to make them myself, thanks for the recipe.
I think that you’ll enjoy this recipe. It’s easy to make – and is a lovely old-time comfort food.
I love simple recipes especially tasty ones, Looks delicious. Yum! 😀
It was yummy. Easy-to-make, tasty recipes are the best. 🙂
One of my favorite foods my Grandma used to make was a new red potato, bacon, and string bean recipe. I loved it! I haven’t thought of that in years. Thank you for the happy memory. 🙂
It’s nice to hear that this recipe brought back some good memories. I never would have thought of putting string beans and potatoes together, but I may have to give it a try. I have both new potatoes and string beans, and am looking for ways to use them.
I hope you like it! My grandma would cook bacon until it was almost black. She would put the potatoes (diced) and string beans in the crock pot, add the bacon crumbled and pour the bacon grease over it. Cook it on low for 6-8 hours. Not very healthy, but oh-so-delicious. 😉
Thanks for the details. I won’t have thought of cooking the bacon until it was super crispy and then putting everything in a crock pot.
If you try it out, let me know what you think. 😉
Sounds like a tasty mix!
It is yummy. 🙂
Yummy! I will definitely prepare this tasty salad, Sheryl!
I served this hot as a vegetable side dish. But it may also work cold as a salad. If you try it, let me know how it turns out.
Love those old time recipes